Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Playing Trains


17 comments:

  1. Mali-cat, Thomas the Train, and Howard Dean are First!

    wOOoooooooooooooot!

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  2. WoooooOOOOOoooOooOoooooT~!
    …………………………………_______. \ . /
    ………..______________| | . |__|♡|____
    ………._ | …DEAN …...|.|.|__| . . . . . . . |<
    ………|___EXPRESS__|.|__.._.._.._..__| |_
    ..........( + )…( + )…( + )( + )( + )( + )..\
    ###############################

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    1. I'll need to "play" with the train a bit. I had to build it from scratch, as ALL my ascii art got mangled in my email changeover. :-(

      If anyone has the old train, cake, etc., please post!! Thanks!! ♥

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  3. That IS a cute photo, listener.

    I hadn't heard anything from the author of the handwriting course I ordered, so I looked him up on Facebook and see that he will shortly be teaching a three-day course in Italy (Milan?). It seems that Europeans have lately developed an appreciation for both the Palmer-like cursive styles and the older, more ornate Spencerian cursive. Well, it won't do me any harm to persist with the Palmer exercises until he gets back and can send me the book.

    Note: I looked up French cursive script with Google and saw their capital "J." Yes, that's a little different. I find myself actually looking at the many samples of handwriting (often printing, on the theory that would be clearer) on the labels and forms we get at work. I today noticed three examples of "sprinkled capitals"--printed/written upper-case letters where lower-case letters should be used. In one case it made it unclear whether the writer intended "gg" or "bb." I hadn't paid attention before. Just like I really hadn't paid attention to my own writing, which is really more promising than I had assumed. Interestingly enough, in some cases the upper-case letter forms are better when I am dashing things off than when I take my time, and especially when I make an effort to write things "correctly"--and write like a child! I am slowlyworking on my numerals and slant as well, while on the job.

    I am starting with a Pilot Varsity disposable fountain pen, and it seems to work well. I have some other inexpensive (and refillable) pens to try after that runs out of ink--I particularly want to try the Platinum Preppy. It comes highly recommended and only costs $3.00. One can fill it using a "single use" cartridge (which in fact can be refilled) or a "converter" which is designed to draw up ink from a bottle. Uniquely for a Japanese pen, the nib sizes (the widths of the lines they make) match US/European sizes, not Japanese sizes. Figure a Japanese medium equals a US/European fine, and so forth.
    I remember going on a couple of field trips to the Sunmaid raisin processing plant--very interesting! The raisins may be left in crates for years before being processed. They are puffed up with steam to make it possible to remove the bits of sand and dirt from the wrinkles. The cap stems (the tiny stems directly connected to the grapes/raisins) are removed by jiggling the raisins across a vibrating table with holes just the right size for the cap stems to be sucked through by the vacuum on the other side. The cap stems (after steaming, I suppose) are added to cattle feed. The non-salable raisins are used to make alcohol, as one might suspect. Commercial bakers get a special small size of raisin.


    Well, time to work on my handwriting exercises, and then to bed.

    Alan

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    1. Thanks for the penmanship update! My dearest friend and I hand-wrote letters to one another for more than a decade before succumbing to the ease of email, etc. We both used fountain pens and nibs of all stripe at various times. Inscribing a gift book was a true work of art! :-) We still make an effort to have those look nice, often complete with little, related sketches.
      Since three of our children plus myself have a "J" first name, I got into the habit of writing the "J" differently for each of us. Eldest's was boxy at the top (and he still writes it that way himself!), Daughter's was scroll-y, Youngest's was more simple, as he wasn't really big on handwriting, and mine is curvy, the way I was taught in school.

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    2. Fascinating about the raisins. Thanks, Alan.

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  4. Speaking of trains, I slept on one last night on the way home from Connecticut. Great trip. I saw nieces and a nephew I hadn't seen in years. Maybe a couple of decades. And people in Skip's family I had met maybe once before in my life. Great food, too. Pie for breakfast Tuesday morning before we left in the afternoon. And a couple of pieces of chochadot pumpkin cake came home with us.

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  5. Daughter broke the news on her Facebook page tonight, so I am now free to speak freely. Our 6th Grand is due in February, and this one will be a grandson! Nearing her 39th birthday, she decided not to wait any longer for Mr. Right and chose the sperm donor path. And, oh my goodness, we have never ever seen her so happy, from the inside out!! :-D So much JOY!!
    All is well. She never even had any morning sickness! She takes after me in this regard and I am tickled to be able to give her something she actually can make use of! LOL!

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  6. Comment from last post:

    I am a fan of ethanol. Both for drinking -- lots of good wine on the trip, including a 6-year-old homemade Zeitgelt and a blueberry wine -- and as motor fuel. I lived in Southern California at the height of the smog era and consider reducing photochemical smog a Good Thing. Not to mention that reducing dependence of imported oil has good effects on our foreign policy, although Saudi Arabia will manipulate oil prices to discourage development of any alternative.

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  7. And another comment from yesterday:

    I think jalapeno peppers, in moderation, are good in their place. Can't comment on whether that place includes Italian subs, since Italian subs are not permitted in my diet.

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  8. ALAN!! Tsunami Warning for the California Coast!!!

    8.3 earthquake in Santiago Chile sparks tsunami warning all the way to NZ and Hawaii and more!

    http://www.weather.com/news/news/chile-major-earthquake-tsunami-warning

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    1. Got it, fixed it (probably), and sent back a tsunami height prediction map--it looks like a one or two centimeter tsunami on the west coast of North America.

      Re penmanship, I figure that is a reasonable self-improvement project for my geezerage (not my dotage, I am not planning to have one of those). I have today been looking at samples of Round Hand Script--arguably the predecessor of Spencerian. Some of the capital letters look very interesting, notably D and H. I will keep my A, M, N, U, V and W like Palmer; B, P and R are pretty much the same from Round Hand through Palmer, although I may make them less swoopy. F and T have so many variants, that is a problem unto itself, but I want something clearer than the standard Palmer version. I found a Q that inspires some reflection. I have a second good pen (Xmas present) coming from Japan, together with some miscellaneous supplies. If one should like Japanese fountain pens (their best are some of the best in the world--but don't expect any italic nibs), Internet prices are great--think half off list, give or take.

      --Alan

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  9. Welcome back, Bill! That pumpkin cake sounds wonderful!

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  10. ALAN, I emailed you but your Spam blocker nabbed it. The form one has to fill out wouldn't load. So here you go:

    Add: june at julians window dot com NO SPACES

    Thanks!

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  11. Ah, cute kitty! Everyone loves playing with trains.

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