Workmen came by to start the new stone wall. It is meant to play off the old stone wall. This has been an ongoing upgrade at Jasperwood that will make a historically inert part of the yard bloom with new vigor. I hope. I’ve tried to seed it, but the ground is sour, as they say, and nothing grows but spurge and thistles. Hey, that sounds like an adage: life isn’t all spurge and thistles, you know.

They were working all day, which meant Birch was barking all day. The music was interesting. At one point it was like . . . doo-wop ambient mariachi band.

In addition to this expense, today was Property Tax Day! Joy. I don’t have the taxes wrapped into the mortgage, so I pay them in person, just to have the physical sensation of writing the check and handing it over. Reminds me of the obligation. Once upon a time you could drop them in a box or pay them in a desk conveniently located in the skyway level of the hulking Gov Center, but now you have to take an elevator to the 6th floor. The desk was shut down along with the cafe during COVID and never came back, possibly because so many people in gummint are working from home. It's hard to be behind a counter and serve the public in person when you're in Golden Valley in pajamas. This means you have to go through security, removing everything from your pockets, then reassemble yourself before you head up.

A man was having an arcane argument over the taxes of a house he had just bought, and was trying to figure out if he could get a rebate. I wonder if he expected them to say “by cracky, you’re right! Let me get out the ol’ checkbook and settle this right now.” He seemed to leave content, though.

The clerk asked if I would like a receipt, and yes, I did. I intend to go back in 30 days with a list of complaints and ask for my money back, as things seem to be broke, or warped.

I wonder how long it will take to clean this up:

You might ask: when they identify the culprit from similar vandalism left elsewhere, are they hustled to a small tank cell and lightly lashed with wet bamboo rods? They are not. No ill comes to the despoilers.

Here's the thing about this guy: he probably has tremendous self-esteem. I think we were once told that this is a plea for attention, as a result of some familial or social or societal trauma, but nah: this guy just thinks he's awesome and everyone ought to know it. Look upon my handiworks, and, like, know that I was here! Well, yeah, and now I know you have no artistic skills or intelligence or sense of community.








I’ve had little appetite for modern TV, for some reason - the shows are good, I know what I want to watch, but come the end of the evening it seems like work to start to get into something again, to remember what happened before. That’s why I loved Poker Face: no arcs! For the most part. That’s why I loved ST: SNW. (For the most part. The episode with the crossover from the animated series, while not bad - none of them are even close to bad - posited that the future belongs to weightless flutter-hand ninny boys and other modern youthful archetypes who speak in an unnatural lingo of sarcasm and constant meme explanations.) So I was surprised to see I had not finished a show I regarded well: Silo.

It’s very good. But here’s the thing: I don’t need any more.

There was a series on Amazon a while back, Night Sky, with J. K. Simmons and Sissy Spacek. Engrossing and smart. Ended after eight episodes, and ended with a surprising, enigmatic image. They’d intended more, but it was canceled . . . so we’re left with that image, and the rest is up to us. Same thing with Silo: the last few minutes are remarkable, but then . . . holy crow. Didn't see that coming.

It’s the high point of the story and there’s nothing more to be done, because anything else will diminish the mystery and questions you have. It’ll just be more bad guys vs good guys in a grimy dystopia as someone tries to tell THE TRUTH. At least that’s what I suspect. I’m tempted to read the books just to see if they make good use of the set-up. But I’m content for it to end.

Like this.

I think the movie from which this was taken, This Quiet Earth, is regarded as a classic just for that image. It knocked us out when we saw it. Sorry! Movie's done, nothing about this will be explained. Go to the Valli and have some pie and coffee and talk about it.

I do miss going to the Valli after a movie for pie and coffee. A big slice of Apple a la mode. Some would have it with a slice of cheese, a garnishment to which I never cottoned. The pie would arrive hot from the microwave, already falling apart, delicious beyond measure.

Oh, one more thing: the predominate palette in Silo . . .

That damned color. If this is the color of dystopia, why does it characterize most of our ads?






It’s 1974.

These are from “Personal Romance” magazine, one of those slighty-steamy mags that abounded at the grocery and drug store once upon a time.

Lady be Cool!

I could never figure out why you wouldn’t smoke 100s. They cost the same. And there was more cigarette. No one got tired of smoking 5/6ths of the way through one.

Anna Wade, America’s Favorite Fundraiser:

Sells on sight! Tacky as all get out.

  They also sold extracts, and I think that's how they started out.
  Wait a minute

Ah, the old days of Conglomerates. They thought that was the future. Roll 'em all up into one company. It'll be more efficient that way!



No cigarette is more exciting than any others, I’m sorry. Unless it has, you know, 14X the nicotine.

Viceroy was always an in-between brand with no real cachet, or reputation. No one could describe a “Viceroy smoker.” I don’t know how people decided hey, this is my brand.


Conception control.

"While no method of contracepton is foolproof . . . " look at the odds. Look pretty good, eh? Nonoxynol Nine, a surficant spermicide. I wonder if there are Amazon reviews, all one-star: “Didnt work! Am pregnant!!!!!”

  Still sold, and apparently in Costco-sized drums. That'll run you $409.




Sounds like the name of a character in a bad sci-fi serial:

Better known today as “ibuprofen.” But look at how relieved she is! Maybe “relieved” in the sense of “the long and arduous divorce is finally settled, and the papers have been signed, and now for some reason the expected relief she thought she would feel is replaced by something else, something lukewarm and slightly salty.”

These were famous for having “coupons,” which you could trade in for OH MY GOD THAT LEISURE SUIT

It’s one thing to wear a leisure suit, another to wear a plaid leisure suit, and another entirely to say “got one in Raleigh hues?”

Oh sure, that’ll work. Use a glove to eliminate cellulite.

Every women looking at this ad: AS IF SHE NEEDS IT

Everything about 1974 was just off.

I mean, we know she’s not really human, right? That’s a flesh-mask over a reptillian head, right?

Now two ways to chip in!


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