Thoughts On A Sunday

We’re still digging out from yesterday’s Nor’easter. We got about 10 inches of snow here, a not unusual amount. (The last big storm we had here took place about a week before Christmas 2020 and we got 39 inches at The Gulch.) My friends – refugees from San Francisco – got closer to 15 inches at their home near the New Hampshire seacoast. Katy saw about 10 inches at her place down in southern New England, though she did see some drifts of 18 inches or so on her property.

About the only problem we had here at The Gulch was not really storm related. I had to make some repairs to the drain for the kitchen sink as something clogged it and it wouldn’t drain. It wasn’t a food clog. Or rather, it wasn’t food or grease that was the ultimate cause, but objects that shouldn’t have been in the drain or drain trap to begin with. Since neither I or the WP Mom recognized the objects, we figured they had been in the drain since before the WP Parents had bought The Gulch. (There was a lobster/crab fork and pieces of a spoon or spoons in one of the traps.)

For the most part we just watched the snow fall, blow around, and accumulate. There was nowhere we needed to go (though if the need arose, we could have), nothing we needed to get, and nothing we needed to do outside other than clearing the snow from the driveway, the front steps, and the edge of the roof once the storm faded away.


This is a lesson that needs to be learned again and again: Get woke. Go broke.

The latest business to learn this?

DC Comics.

Who’da thunk that a woke, bisexual, climate-change fighting Superman would cause sales to drop off the edge of a cliff? Apparently everyone except the pandering woke morons running DC Comics.


Speaking of woke, this is something that needs to be repeated again and again and again:

I have come to define the woke thusly: People who are angry/outraged on the behalf of people who they feel should be angry/outraged about something, but aren't, and therefore they are angry/outraged at the people who aren't angry/outraged about the thing the woke feel they should be angry/outraged about.

It's why I ignore them and show my disdain whenever I can.

I have seen variations of this, but they all say basically the same time thing: The woke are nuts and they need to be disparaged and exposed for what they are whenever possible.


Here’s an example of the woke insanity I mentioned above: A Native American group has filed a lawsuit to block a Colorado bill that would ban the use of Native American mascots.

A Native American Group sought an injunction halting what they said was a discriminatory Colorado ban on the use of Native American Mascots.


The group sought what’s called an “interlocutory” appeal and injunction, which means that there is no final judgment yet in the District Court. The group also an interlocutory injunction from the 10th Circuit, halting the mascot law pending the appeal.

The 10th Circuit just rejected the request.

So a group of woke asshats decided they needed to protect Native Americans from being offended even though those same Native Americans they say they are representing keep claiming they aren’t offended, and in fact, see the mascot names as honoring them, their history, and their culture. The woke asshats decided they knew better than the people they demanded should be offended and are offended by the fact that they weren’t offended. When will they learn that they’ve gone too far? Will they have to start dying at the hands of those they’ve decided aren’t offended enough to suit them? Or will we finally say “Enough! This far and no farther!”


Is the GOAT retiring?

There seems to be conflicting reports that Tom Brady, quarterback extraordinaire, may be retiring. The seven-time SuperBowl winning quarterback – six times with the New England Patriots and once with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers – is 44-years old, but plays as good if not better than quarterbacks 10 or 15 years his junior.

His stated goal was to play until he was 45, but if he pulls the plug early I doubt anyone will condemn him for doing so. That he could retire and still be in good shape is saying something considering how beat up many quarterbacks are when they finally hang up their helmet.

If he is indeed retiring I believe it will be a long time before we see another as good as he is and with his longevity.


Somehow, I knew someone was going to make this claim.

Nor’easter Snow Storm Being Linked To ‘Climate Change’.

What? Was there something different about this Nor’easter as compared to all of the previous Nor’easters? I can think of a couple right off the top of my head that were bigger, meaner, nastier, and with a lot more snow and wind.

The Blizzard of ‘78 is still used as a milestone to which all others are measured against up here in New England. So much snow fell and drifted that it shut down Route 128, the circumferential highway around Boston. Thousands of vehicles were buried by the snow and it took days for them to be dug out and towed off of the highway.

The Blizzard of ‘93 dropped heavy snow starting all the way down in Texas before it made its way to the East Coast and developed into a full blown Nor’easter that dropped snow from Georgia to Maine and well into New Brunswick and Nova Scotia in Canada. (If I recall correctly, that storm dropped 2 feet of snow in the town where I was living at the time and there were drifts almost 4 feet high here and there around town.)

Yesterday’s Nor’easter was pretty typical with very few surprises. While we didn’t get quite as much snow as I would have liked to see considering we are still well below average for snowfall for this time of the winter, we still had enough for most folks. I know the local ski area here is more than happy with the amount we did receive.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the skies are blue, the lake is frozen over, and where the new snow is still drifting.

It's A Nor'easter

We were in the middle of a classic Nor’easter with high winds and heavy snowfall. The Weather GuysTM had been hyping the storm all week, even before the storm had formed. The TV stations have been using their ominous sounding “Storm Center” music for every report even loosely connected to the storm.

Both Katy and I made preparations at our respective homes, making sure we had fuel for our generators, chain saws, and snowblower (in her case), as well as snow-shovels, ice melt and sand. And then there were the storm munchies since it has been our plan to watch the storm from the warmth and safety of our homes. However, I know that sometimes that doesn’t always happen and the need to go out during the storm might come about. So the trusty RAM 1500 had a full tank and a spare gas caddy with 14 gallons of gas (separate from the one for the generator). I also dug out the tire chains and made sure they were stowed in the truck as well as a shovel, a bucket of sand, two towing straps, and a blanket. I also checked the tool kit to make sure all the tools were present.

The snow started to fall here at The Gulch just after 7:30 in the morning. One had to look carefully to see that it was falling at all.

Since The Gulch is protected on three sides by hills we usually don’t get the winds experienced by others which means we generally won’t see as nearly as much drifting snow as more open terrain, even with a Nor’easter. It makes cleanup easier for two reason – fewer snow drifts and decreased wind chill. It was around 15ºF when the snow started, but the temps dropped as the storm intensified. The wind chills outside the area of The Gulch ran between -7ºF and -25ºF during the storm. Temps overnight were expected to be close 0ºF which will make cleanup more uncomfortable. (Yes, I dug out last night to make sure the trusty RAM 1500 could get out should there have been a need.)

I did head out this morning to complete digging out. Fortunately there wasn’t nearly as much to do as there was last night, with the most difficult part being digging out the bed of the trusty RAM 1500. There was maybe 10 inches of snow in the bed and I am going to assume that’s about how much we got here at The Gulch.

This is what the neighborhood at The Gulch looked like after the clean up:

So ends yet another Nor’easter.


"Thank You For Teaching Us We Should Never Question Authority"

Even our kids understand that mask mandates and lockdowns don’t work. They also understand that the psychological effects of these ‘protective’ measures have caused a lot more harm to children than Covid.

From a statement made by a high school student in Illinois to her local school board:

Thank you for teaching students that our own mental health is much less important than making triple-vaccinated adults feel safe. Thank you for teaching me that even the most minute risk is not worth taking. Life is best when you take the path of least resistance with no chance of failure and definitely no chance of catching a cold.

Thank you for not reaching out to the students to ask how we feel about masks because if you did the majority of students would say they hate masks and then you might second guess your decision to make us wear them.

Thank you for allowing me to experience the anxiety of never seeing facial expressions. Thank you for teaching us that we should never question authority or think critically, but instead we should follow whatever the people in charge tell us to do. Obedience is best. I realize now that thinking for yourself is overrated and not really necessary when you can just make decisions based on fear.

Thank you for pushing your irrational fears and anxieties on me because I didn’t already have enough to worry about. I realize now how easy I had it when I only had to worry about my classes, grades, SATs, and getting into college.

Thank you for teaching me that being a morally superior person only requires that I cover my face for 8 hours a day and the most morally superior people wear two masks or even three masks.

As you know, states around us Indiana, WI, IA, MI, MN which have two and a half times more students than Illinois don’t force kids to mask. I’m with you though, these states are out of control recklessly putting kids at risk of misery and death every day. Masks work, even if these states have the same outcomes as Illinois. Speaking of data, thank you for staying silent about masking despite the fact that COVID has a very high survival rate in kids my age. Who needs data, though. We all know that it will never be safe to see anyone’s face ever again.

How does the saying go? “Out of the mouth of babes…” This Illinois teen has addressed the subject and found her ‘betters’ wanting.

Ironically, while I was growing up the mantra was “Question Authority”. Now the descendants of the very same people who believed that are telling us we should sit down, shut up, and do what they say.


Thoughts On A Sunday

It was cold yesterday, with the temp at The Gulch yesterday morning dropping to -12ºF. By noon the temp had risen to about 7ºF, but only 4ºF at our town dump..er...transfer station. The only saving grace was that there was very little wind. It made what outdoor chores I had yesterday bearable, such chores including separating recyclables and collecting trash for a dump run, a run to the one of the local big box hardware stores to pick up a new dryer vent and the appropriate ducting for the Official Weekend Pundit Clothes Dryer, a trip the to the barber shop then to the gas station to fill the tank in the trusty RAM 1500, then back to The Gulch to replace the dryer vent and ducting, clean up the garage, run the vacuum cleaner around the interior of The Gulch, then wash a couple of loads of laundry.

I also had a chat with Katy as she finished out her day, too. She did tell me she was glad she was home where it was warmer than here. Despite her Scandinavian heritage she doesn’t particularly care for the really cold weather while I tend to revel in it.

All in all it was a busy day and I got most of my chores done. Just a few more to take care of today.


Is it just me or does it seem more Democrats are finding their party has devolved into something they find scary, abhorrent, and no longer represents their ideals? I know a few of my Democrat friends aren’t liking what they’re seeing, particularly in the White House. Their trust in the party they grew up with has been eroding as they’ve seen it changing into something unrecognizable, something that pushes agendas and ideologies that in no way reflect their beliefs.

You know it’s getting bad when even the media that normally dotes on the DNC has been hitting the party with truth bombs and criticizing some of its actions. Goodness knows we’ve been seeing the results of Democrat policies at federal, state and local levels and it hasn’t been good.


Define ‘irony’.

How about “Joe Biden is everything the Democrats feared about Trump.” (Paywalled link)

I can remember Trump’s critics making all kinds of accusations about what a Trump presidency would look like. We were warned that he wasn’t disciplined enough, presidential enough, or competent enough to be president.

The left also predicted that Donald Trump’s election would result in a massive rollback of women’s rights. A “Women’s March on Washington” was even held the day after his inauguration.

Women never became second-class citizens under Trump, but under Biden, women are literally being erased.

Trump’s critics also claimed he’d start a war.

Trump was accused of putting our nation on a warpath with Iran, North Korea, and China. Some said another Civil War was likely under Trump. Some even said he’d plunge us into World War III. Rest assured, none of those things happened.

In the end, Trump was the first president since Jimmy Carter not to enter U.S. troops into a new conflict.

Seems everything they said Trump was going to do has been committed by the Biden Administration instead. But what do we hear from the media about any of this?

Absolutely nothing.


It seems the administration of Dartmouth College is under the control of the local chapter of the Brown Shirts..er..antifa, using online ‘threats’ made by antifa as a reason to cancel a lecture by journalist Andy Ngo.

Ngo was going to be speaking about “Extremism in America, A Discussion on Antifa”.

What’s ironic is that antifa’s actions and Dartmouth’s administration caving to them proved the subject of Ngo’s program. Another bit of irony:

We spoke to some members of the police during and after the event, and they took it as a personal insult that Dartmouth cited safety concerns as a reason for canceling the in-person. We had State Troopers, Hanover Police officers, and SWAT members in and around the building. Moore Hall may have been the safest place in all of New Hampshire. They would never allow things to spiral out of control and (according to multiple officers privately) never expressly advised Dartmouth to cancel the in-person event.

Despite a heavy police presence, the Dartmouth administration caved to a bunch of fascist wannabes?


“Don’t underestimate Joe’s ability to fuck things up.” Thus spake The Won about his Veep.

Looking back on the past 12 months, we can see that if anything, Obama was understating that truth. Certainly Mike Taibbi is seeing that.

How great was life for Joe Biden a year ago? MSNBC’s John Heilemann compared him to Lincoln; PBS White House correspondent Yamiche Alcindor said the return of the Democrats “felt like we are being rescued from the craziness and now here are the superheroes to come and save us all”; Rachel Maddow went through “half a box of Kleenex” in joy; even Chris Wallace on Fox said Biden’s half-coherent inauguration speech was “the best inaugural address I ever heard,” JFK’s iconic “Ask Not” included.


Biden looks bad. During the campaign, when he was challenging strangers to pushup contests and doing sternum-pokes in crowds while nervous aides bit their lips, you could make the argument he was merely in steep mental decline, which was okay. Against Trump the standard of “technically alive” worked for a lot of voters. Biden now looks like a man deep into the peeing-on-houseplants stage, and every appearance is an adventure.

I can’t tell if SloJo’s deterioration is accelerating, but then he’s not making nearly as many public appearances and those he does make are carefully scripted and controlled (for the most part). He (or WRBA) has certainly caused a lot of damage in the 12 months since he took office – skyrocketing energy prices, shortages of all kinds of goods, inflation to a level we haven’t seen since the Bad Old Days of 1970’s stagflation, and attempts to get around the Constitution as a means of forcing the American people to do things they don’t want nor or obligated to do. Every bit of it is self-inflicted by the Biden Administration along with the collusion of Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer.


And that’s the news from the frozen over Lake Winnipesaukee, where the temps are still in the single digits, we’ve dodged another snowstorm...for now, and where we’re still chopping away at the accumulated ice and snow to make room for more.


Just How Clueless Is Newsom?

As someone somewhere asked, “How stupid is this man?”

It appears California Governor Gavin Newsom is either incredibly stupid or willfully ignorant of the consequences of his action and/or the actions of his fellow travelers in the California legislature. The more the state government tightens its grip on California residents and business and weakens its institutions, the worse things get. The worse things get, the more California comes to resemble a Third World nation, something that ‘shocks’ the governor.

Californians have recently been treated to images of mountains of trash along the Union Pacific rail line in Los Angeles. CBS-LA reporter John Schreiber went to the site and took video of looted packages from Amazon and UPS, prescription drugs, “unused Covid tests, fishing lures, EpiPens. Cargo containers left busted open on trains.”


“California Gov. Gavin Newsom showed up Thursday with a clean-up crew and vowed action.

And the Democrat, dressed in a T-shirt, baseball cap and coronavirus mask, pitched in himself, joining crew members from the state Department of Transportation in grabbing handfuls of debris and placing the trash in bags or in a dumpster.

“What has happened on this stretch of the Union Pacific Railroad is unacceptable,” Newsom told reporters. He said the area looked like a scene from “a Third World country,” according to FOX 11 of Los Angeles.

It is unacceptable. But this has been going on for a long time, with little or no reported response from local or state government.


But rather than doubling down on the source of these crimes, Fox 11 LA reports Newsom praised Proposition 47, Proposition 57 and AB 109, claiming they had helped reduce crime in the state: Proposition 47, which downgraded some felonies to misdemeanors; Proposition 57, which reduced prison sentences; and Assembly Bill 109, which shifted detainees from state prisons to local jails, FOX 26 of Fresno reported.

Yup, making crimes less onerous which in turn lessens the penalties for said crimes will reduce crime...at least on paper. In reality, not punishing crime encourages more crime, including more serious crimes. So is it any surprise crime has been skyrocketing in the Pyrite State?


Thoughts On A Sunday

It was another cold morning with the temperature here at The Gulch being -2ºF, but not quite as bad since the winds are nothing like they were yesterday. We are also preparing for snow starting early tomorrow morning and into tomorrow afternoon, along with high winds. In other words, it’s winter up here!

At least I won’t have to travel to work tomorrow since I can work from home and I won’t have any lab work to do until Tuesday.

I know Katy hasn’t been enjoying the winter conditions nearly as much as I have, telling me “I want NO part of that!” While it wasn’t nearly as cold at her home as it was here and keeping in mind her Scandinavian heritage, I’m surprised she hasn’t been enjoying the winter weather more.

If the Weather GuysTM are right we have more sub-zero temps on the way for the end of the week, though not quite as cold as those we’ve experienced the past two days.


Now that Glenn Youngkin is actually the governor of Virginia he hasn’t been wasting any time getting things done. On his first day in office he:

Overturned statewide mask mandates for children.
Is ending CRT in public education.
Is investigating “wrongdoing” in Loudon County.
Opened the economy for all business.
Is withdrawing from previous “green energy” initiatives that have been harmful to Virginia’s economy and bureaucracy.
Is slashing “job-killing” regulations.
Rescinded vaccine mandates for all state employees.

It is going to be interesting to see how he’ll deal with the screaming from the “usual suspects”.

However, we know the Left is still going to blame him for the state’s inaction on I-95 during the last snowstorm even though he wasn’t yet governor.


Is the media hype about the Omicron variant of Covid overblown?

Yes. Yes it is.

They keep trying to push it as being far deadlier than the Delta variant. It spreads much easier than previous variants, but its effects aren’t nearly as severe as previous variants despite what the media is trying to sell.


If we needed any more proof that the Democrats are the party of the rich, there’s this:

Some House Democrats warn they will tank Biden’s big bill if a hefty tax cut for the rich is dropped.

They are showing their true colors. They say they want to tax the rich but then work hard to cut taxes for the very same rich they say they want to tax. In this case, they want to repeal the $10,000 limit on the SALT (State And Local Taxes) deduction put in place during the Trump Administration.

Taxpayers used to have unlimited deductions before the new cap was introduced in the 2017 Trump tax law.

A group of Democrats from high-tax states like New Jersey and California added the rollback of the cap into the Build Back Better bill that passed the House in November, and they’re vocally standing behind the measure in the face of possible opposition from Manchin.

It’s caused angst among many Democrats, given that it hands wealthier households a hefty tax cut.

None of this surprises me in the least.


From the comments of this Instapundit post about why so many women are still single:

Why are so many women still single?

Part of it is that they decided they would run up their body count in their 20's, i.e. have fun and party, then in their 30's they create an impossible list of 'must haves' for any guy they would date or become serious with, 'friend-zone' guys who don't meet their impossible criteria and then wonder "Where have all the good men gone?" (Answer: In the friend-zone where they left them.)

Why are so many men still single? See the above.

A lot of men have given up on dating altogether because of some of the reasons why women are still single. Instead they focus on their careers, their finances, and enjoying other aspects of life. If they date, it's casually because they know it's likely it won't go past that. They also see the statistics on marriage and realize it is a losing proposition for them, both emotionally and financially, so they don't date or marry.

As I have said more than once, thank goodness I am not a young(er) man dating these days. It's a minefield.

The dating apps and social media also add to this disconnect. While the dating apps original purpose was to make it easier to meet someone to date, they have devolved more into hookup apps.

My son BeezleBub found that out the hard way, using one of the online dating apps and finding out it wasn’t what he’d thought it was (despite what the TV ads claimed). After a number of disappointing matches and realizing that dating app was being used for hookups rather than dating, he deleted his account and removed the app from his phone. He has put aside ideas of dating for now and is instead focusing on farming and building up his bank account. He does not lack for companionship as he does have his dog. A plus to this is that she won’t cheat on him or spend his money.

Dating as many of us older folks remember it doesn’t exist any more. That is certainly working against our younger men and women. More’s the shame.


This is how it starts.

First, push for the quarantine of the unvaccinated, using the excuse of public health, i.e. “for the public good”.

Second, come up with another group you don’t like and push for quarantining them too, except rather than it being a “public health” issue, it will be a political issue and the quarantine will take place in prison camps and “re-education” camps. The other difference will be that most of those detainees won’t leave those camps, ever.

The horror of the gulags will have come to the New Soviet Union and the US will be nothing but a memory.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where sub-zero temps are leaving for now, the snow is on its way, and where Monday is a holiday this week.


Baby, It's Cold Outside

It was -6ºF here at The Gulch this morning, with a wind chill of -35ºF. I decided to postpone some planned morning errands until this afternoon since there was nothing that I needed done before then. I also didn’t feel the need to start the trusty RAM 1500 quite so early. I usually don’t start it up and let it run in order to let it warm up before heading out, with an exception to that being if it is iced over and I’ll run the engine while scraping ice to help defrost the windshield. Sub-zero temps is the only other exception and that usually requires running the engine a lot longer than when defrosting the windshield. (I keep thinking I should have both a block and oil dipstick heater installed in the trusty RAM, but haven’t done so yet. I did have both in the old trusty F150 and they made a difference on those sub-zero mornings.)


The local news outlets have been warning folks about the sub-zero temps and what to do to prevent problems, with one of the most oft mentioned tips dealing with keeping pipes from freezing. It still surprises me that any builder would purposely place pipes against exterior walls where they can be vulnerable to freezing temps. The design for The New Manse has all pipes well away from exterior walls. The Gulch was built in the 1980’s and there isn’t a single interior pipe along an exterior wall. (Some of the other homes in the neighborhood built at the same time didn’t take that step and frozen pipes are a regular occurrence during winter.) The exterior water faucets have had the water shut off inside and the exterior faucets cracked open to make sure all water was drained from the pipes between the interior valve and the faucet.


Between the sub-zero temps forecast for today and tomorrow morning and a snowstorm forecast to start Sunday evening I figured it would be a good idea to run The Gulch’s generator yesterday to make sure it would start if needed. I never assume it will run when I need it, so I test it now and then. In this case it started on the first pull, a good sign.


One thing we do during the winter months, particularly when we get very cold temps, is to run some form of humidifier. Most folks forget that dry air feels colder than moist air. It’s something anyone who heats with a woodstove knows. Those who have forced hot air heating also experience this. (When I was renting a mobile home in a small town north of here, I had problems with nosebleeds and didn’t realize it was because it was so dry inside - less than 5% relative humidity – and once I got a humidifier the nosebleeds stopped and I was able set the thermostat back a few degrees because it felt warmer with more humid air.) Even though The Gulch has forced hot water heating, it still gets quite dry inside. To combat this our humidifier – a $16 Vicks vaporizer – is pulled out of the closet, filled with water, and plugged in. After a couple of hours it feels a lot warmer inside even though the temperature hasn’t changed.


One thing I noticed is that Lake Winnipesaukee finally appears to be frozen over. Whether the entire lake is frozen from shore to shore is unknown only because I can’t see an area known as The Broads which is usually the last part of the lake to freeze over.


Stay warm, folks!


Thoughts On A Sunday

We had our share of snow from Friday’s storm, with around 5 or 6 inches of light fluffy snow. As storms go, it was a minor one, at least for us up here in New Hampshire. Some schools closed, some went remote, and others remained open. It seemed hit or miss which schools were open or closed. The road crews did their usual good job and the highways and roads were clear even as the snow ended early in the afternoon. However, we will be paying the price since really cold temps moved in yesterday morning. It was 7ºF Saturday morning with a windchill of -10ºF. The high only reached about 18ºF.

There was more precipitation this morning in the form of freezing rain which made getting to church problematic, though the temps during the morning were warmer but still below freezing.

We’re in for some even colder temps on Monday and Tuesday and into Wednesday morning so we’ll need to bundle up a little more than usual.


The “January 6th Insurrection” meme has been pushed by the Democrats and their media propagandists for all it’s worth. It is interesting considering no one has been charged with insurrection. However, cracks in the insurrection narrative have been cracking and I saw it first here in New Hampshire on the local ABC outlet.

It was during one of WMUR’s newscasts yesterday that one of their weekend anchors, Amy Coveno, talked about the January 6th riot at the Capitol building. She did not say ‘insurrection’. She did not imply a terrorist action. She said ‘riot’, for at worst that’s what the protest action that took place on that day was.

Whether it is indicative of a change in the narrative or some members of the media are realizing the narrative was seriously faulty and are backing away from it is still unknown. Only time will tell.

Update: I also heard the term ‘riot’ used during this morning’s Good Morning America broadcast. No mention of insurrection was made.

Is it a turning point?


Some of the less informed folks have been trying to place the blame for this past Monday’s I-95 debacle in Virginia on not-yet-Governor Glenn Youngkin even though he had absolutely no power to do anything since he won’t be sworn in until January 15th. Others are blaming outgoing Governor Ralph Northam for his inaction. However, one meteorologist is placing the blame for the incident where it belongs: Virginia transportation officials.

The chief meteorologist for Accuweather criticized transportation officials for effectively ignoring forecasts of a winter storm that hit the mid-Atlantic on Monday morning, saying engineers had adequate warning and could have prevented the I-95 gridlock.

Accuweather’s Jonathan Porter provided screenshots showing that his team predicted six to 10 inches of snowfall in the Washington, D.C., area. Up to 10 inches of snow ultimately fell across the D.C. metropolitan area...marking the highest total the region has seen since Jan. 2019 and one of the biggest snowfalls on record in the city.

Porter said the Virginia Department of Transportation (DOT) could have done more to prevent hundreds of motorists from being stranded overnight on a roughly 50-mile stretch of I-95 running from Richmond to D.C. Accuweather had issued its first snowstorm forecast on Sunday night and another one warning of “rapidly worsening travel conditions” on Monday morning.

Maybe the weather forecast didn’t fit the climate change narrative and therefore was devoutly ignored? It wouldn’t surprise me if that was the case.


Here is yet another story about the uselessness of masks, specifically cloth masks, when it comes to their ability to prevent the transmission of Covid.

For most of this pandemic, you’ve been told to mask up because masking will protect you and others from getting COVID.

But suddenly the ball game has changed. New studies show that the commonly worn cloth masks aren’t very effective, and experts are saying you need to ditch them.

“We want to make sure that it is not a cloth mask. A cloth mask does not offer protection,” says Asha Shajahan of the Mayo Clinic.

The Mayo Clinic recently conducted a study that found that cloth masks had a negligible impact on COVID transmission in villages in India—about 5%.

The ubiquitous disposable masks have also been shown to be ineffective as well, with one virologist showing us with a practical demonstration. The YouTube video linked in the post has been removed because according to YouTube it violates their rules by questioning anything put forth by Dr. Fauci. Heaven forbid you can show with empirical evidence and a demonstration that masks of that type are nothing more than a psychological sop and do little to prevent transmission. However, there is this separate demonstration showing the problems with the cloth masks that has not yet been spiked.


There has been an explosion of short term rental properties, many listed via AirBnB, VRBO, and other online listing services here in New Hampshire. I have no doubt that has also been experience elsewhere, but my only experience is with New Hampshire. Some communities have had major problems with these short term rentals and have created rules and regulations to deal with the problems. Some of those rules and regulations have been draconian. Some have outright banned them.

In our town we hadn’t really had much of an issue with them until this past year. They existed, but not in large numbers. That changed over the past 18 months or so with an explosion in the number short term rentals, and with it, an increase in complaints by neighbors, and reports to police and town officials. We saw a considerable number of homes being sold to LLCs, usually for cash and for well above the asking price, some ridiculously so. (One such home, an 1800 square foot three-bedroom, two bathroom chalet with no view, no garage or paved driveway, and no real yard, went for more than twice the asking price due to a bidding war between different LLCs.)

This demand caused two problems, the first being that homes that would normally house families were being converted to short term rentals which added to the already severe housing shortage in our area. The second has been the disruption caused by some of the less-than-courteous transient renters, many who came to “party” and the neighbors be damned. This has driven our town to propose its own ordinances, regulations, and rules to deal with these short term rentals.

Banning them outright was seen as violating property owners’ rights. No regulation whatsoever was seen as violating neighboring property owners’ rights. The town has had to try to balance the two competing sets of rights, enabling the various AirBnBs and VRBOs while at the same time reining in the excesses we’ve been experiencing and giving neighbors some recourse when things go awry.

It’s going to be interesting to see how this will play out.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the freezing rain has moved on, the crews are making sure the roads are passable, and where we’re keeping an eye on the upcoming sub-zero temps arriving overnight.


An Effective Low Key Campaign

I think we have have all seen variations of the sticker seen in the picture below, either on the web or on gas pumps.

It has been called a brilliant guerrilla campaign, putting the responsibility for our high energy prices squarely in the hands of President *. They have been showing up on gas pumps all across the nation.

One of his first Executive Orders killed a much needed oil pipeline. Others banned further oil and gas leases on federal lands and put restrictions on fracking. He also threatened to cancel existing oil and gas leases. What did he and WRBA think would happen to gas and oil prices with these actions?

Or worse, is this exactly what they wanted to happen?

This guerrilla campaign is a constant reminder to motorists who is responsible for the huge rise in gasoline, oil, propane, and natural gas prices. While President * has tried to blame Covid and market forces for the rise in prices, it is his actions that caused this. Market forces reacted to his ill-advised actions. Thus it is always so.


This Isn't Exactly News - The Left Is Insane

The Left is insane. There is no doubt. How is it I can say this?

There’s proof...like this:

It seems the Left lit up twitter, blaming Virginia’s Governor-elect Glenn Youngkin for his failure to act regarding the debacle on I-95 during the recent snowstorm. They either didn’t know or didn’t care that Youngkin had no power to do anything because he won’t become governor until January 15th. Their ire should have been aimed at soon-to-be-ex Governor Ralph Northam.

To add to the insanity, here’s what that self-same Governor Northam had to say about the I-95 ordeal experienced by Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) and others stuck on the high for more than a day: It’s your own fault.

Then, there’s this:

When the Right protests against the Left’s corruption of the electoral process and there is violence, the protesters are considered ‘terrorists’. However, when the positions are reversed and the violence includes arson, looting, and murder, the perpetrators – BLM and antifa – aren’t called terrorists? Considering these deadly and damaging riots took place again and again and the damage done and the people killed in the various cities where these riots took place far outnumbered what took place in Washington DC last January 6th.

Related to this, but a bit off topic, is how crazy it is that the so-called January 6th insurrection is lacking one important ingredient: insurrectionists. There are a number of people imprisoned for their part in the ‘insurrection’, but not one of them has been charged with insurrection. As best as I have been able to determine they haven’t been charged with anything, yet they languish in solitary confinement. They have very limited access to legal counsel, little contact with the outside world, and no visitors. To me (and many others), this makes them political prisoners, period.

How about this one:

It appears a professor couldn’t see the facts for her devotion to the narrative that Kyle Rittenhouse was a white supremacist, going so far as to put a wholly false claim that he killed two black men in Kenosha, Wisconsin “while waging a glorious race war on behalf of his inherited White power” in her new book about Egypt. I have to ask this: What the hell was anything dealing with Kyle Rittenhouse doing in a book about Egypt? How does one have anything to do with the other? Then again, the professor teaches at UCLA, so that might explain a lot.

These are but a few examples of the Left’s insanity. Thousands of examples abound...and it’s only getting worse.


Thoughts On A Sunday

Here it is, the first Sunday of the new year, the last day of my two-week vacation, and I’m trying to make the mental transition from vacation mode to work mode. I did some of that earlier today, logging into work and catching up on my e-mail and pre-configuring some calibration paperwork so I can get started first thing Monday morning calibrating some lab equipment.

The End-of-Christmas-Vacation traffic started mid-Saturday, a not unexpected event. The traffic outbound from this area was pretty heavy yesterday and quite heavy today. I really hadn’t thought it would be like this at all. Yes, we usually have a lot of people returning home for Christmas as well as the folks who want to have the whole ‘Christmas in New England’ experience. We did have a white Christmas this year which added to the ‘Christmas in New England’ mystique and the feeling that it really was Christmas.


Though mentioned over at Instapundit, I also wanted to mention SloJo’s Ten Worst Things He Did In 2021.

Here are just a few:

9. He weaponized the FBI to intimidate parents who show up at school board meetings.

7. His war on fossil fuels helped drive domestic production down and gasoline prices through the roof.

4. He unleashed the worst border crisis in US history.

3. His $1.9 trillion in social spending disguised as “Covid-19 relief” helped unleash inflation and extreme labor shortages.

Read The Whole Thing.


Just (yet) another reminder: We’ve left 2020 Won behind are now in 2020 Too.

You may now continue screaming in terror.


This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who’s been paying attention.

New State Business Tax Climate Index: Blue States Are Worst, Red States Are Best.

Some of the blue states like California, New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut have punishing business taxes (and regulations), yet they can’t seem to understand why an increasing number of businesses are relocating out of those states. They can’t make the connection between punishing businesses and those businesses desire to go elsewhere.


The push for renewables like wind is something we should rethink. One has to remember that renewables are unreliable due to the vagaries of weather.

It is quite shocking to see that wind generation has fallen by 38% for onshore and 24% for offshore year on year. This is despite new capacity being added.

We are familiar with short term drops in output, maybe for a few days or even weeks. But to lose effectively a third of generation for a whole quarter shows just how dangerous over reliance on wind power is.

Solar has problems of its own due to the nature of the technology, bring wholly dependent on the sun. It too is unreliable due to weather, particularly in northern climes like here in New Hampshire and in Minnesota.

You sometimes see newspaper headlines to the effect that, say, a “50 megawatt solar power plant” is being constructed. But you shouldn’t count on getting anything remotely approaching 50 megawatts of power from such an installation.


Isaac’s analysis applies specifically to Minnesota, but bear in mind that while northern states get fewer hours of sunlight than southern states in the winter, they get more hours of sunlight in the summer. And note that in the best of times, solar panels don’t produce electricity anywhere near half the time.

Minnesota solar panels are most productive in June and July, when they produce almost 30 percent of their potential output. Unsurprisingly, solar panels produce far less energy in November, December, and January, where production capacity factors are seldom above 10 percent.

That is pathetic. We spend billions of dollars on solar panels and transmission lines, and in winter, when we need energy the most, they work only around ten percent of the time.

Compared to generation sources like nuclear which can have a capacity factor of 100% day after day, month after month regardless of the time of day or season of the year, renewables like wind and solar are pathetic. Why anyone thinks this is a step forward is baffling to me.


Is Germany on the verge of becoming an energy wasteland?

It is shutting down 3 of its last 6 nuclear power plants, replacing them with wind turbines, use of dirty coal plants, natural gas plants (assuming the Russians will sell them natural gas when they need it most), and nuclear generated power from France (assuming they have any available).

It seems the Germans haven’t learned the lessons from their power shortage last year, having to ask industrial users to shut down operations in order to ensure enough power for non-industrial users. I expect they will experience even more such shortages going forward, and every bit of it self-inflicted. I expect the negative effects on their economy will be huge, between the energy shortages and skyrocketing energy prices.

It’s not just Germany having to deal with this issue. Europe in general is also dealing with an power crunch. It is already affecting the economy as on more than one occasion industrial users were directed to decrease energy use, if not shut down entirely.

Like Germany, much of this problem is self-inflicted as the push to green energy sources like renewables has driven abandonment of more traditional electrical sources, seeing them being shut down.

This is a big example that renewables can’t meet the electrical needs of a 21st Century civilization.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee where we’re winding down from the holiday season, winter weather is skirting the area, and where an actual Monday will be here all too soon.


Another Look Back

Yesterday I took a look back on the year that was, that view being rather broad and pertaining to everyone. Today this is a look back on the year that affected me personally.

No, I am not going to delve into private things or things that would make a reader go “Ewwww!” It will be a look into more general things that have had an effect on me in 2021. It also won’t be a long list since I am somewhat of a boring person.

Here goes:

- One of the most pleasant things that occurred was reconnecting with an old flame, Katy. We’d known each other for almost 40 years and kept in touch on an irregular basis. She called me out of the blue at the beginning of the year, asking me for some advice for her older brother who was going to be going through the whole security clearance process for a new job. After that there were regular phone calls and texts, and then in July she came up to New Hampshire for the long Fourth of July weekend. “And the rest is history...”

- With the exception of July, I spent a lot of time out on Lake Winnipesaukee during this past boating season. July was quite cool and rainy, so neither BeezleBub or I made it out on the boat. However, we more than made up for it in September and October with regular trips, with our last trip taking place in the first weekend in November when we finally pulled the boat out of the water for the season.

- I worked a lot of overtime this year, putting in an average of 55 hours a week. (Considering I worked from home about 50% of the time, working the overtime wasn’t nearly as onerous as it might have been.) Even though nominally salaried, my employer still compensated me and my fellow engineering types with overtime pay, so my bank accounts were healthier than they otherwise might have been. I also spent a lot less money this year, not having the time to spend much and that which I did spend being more targeted and not impulse buys. It’s amazing how much you can save when you spend a lot less than you make!

- I finally got the generator transfer switch installed. It only took four months of waiting before an electrician, a family friend, was finally able to make the time after his regular work hours to do the install. (Tradesmen of all types are in very short supply because the demand is so high.) Now we have the means to power The Gulch in the event of a power outage, something known to happen around here over the winter months. I have to admit that I felt ‘naked’ without the ability to connect emergency power to The Gulch.

- I have become embroiled with the whole AirBnB kerfuffle here along Lake Winnipesaukee. Our town and others along the lake have seen a lot of homes being bought by out-of-state LLCs and converted to short term rentals. This has caused a number of problems, between homes no longer housing families and noise complaints coming from neighbors of those AirBnBs along with other inconveniences being caused by them. There is little in the way of regulations covering AirBnBs and its causing a lot of problems. Since I deal with zoning issues here in my home town I am now working with others in our town to resolve some of the problems with some kind of regulations on these short term rentals and making sure the owners of those properties will have skin in the game if their property becomes a chronic problem. It’s only fair to the neighbors of those short term rental properties.

There are a lot of other things I could list ad nauseum, but I have a feeling you really wouldn’t be interested. So we’ll let it finish here.