59 thoughts on “Wednesday Open Thread

  1. Good back to winter morning Hamsters. Prospects for today weatherwise are not wonderful: wet and cold. That makes going back to bed for an hour or so seem to be a great idea.

  2. This Fox news Story shows how JugEars himself was involved in the Hillary email coverup and perhaps the bugging of Trump Tower.

    Page wrote to Strzok on Sept. 2, 2016, about prepping Comey because “potus wants to know everything we’re doing.” According to a newly released Senate report, this text raises questions about Obama’s personal involvement in the Clinton email investigation.

    Strswznk and Gumby need to swing from a lamp post.

  3. A little ice and sleet out here this morning, and more cold – but not the kind of cold we had a couple of weeks ago. Don’t yet have my schedule worked out for today, but I’ll get right on that as soon as I have a little coffee. I know for certain that toilet repair is one thing on my list – one of them is leaking and a new set of toilet guts is to be delivered today. Of course, that could lead to an overall bathroom cleaning project if I’m not real careful. OK, hope you all have a great day.

  4. Zuck is getting increasingly aggressive with those of us who log into FB infrequently. I used to only get messages when someone mentioned me by name or sent a private message to me. Now I get notifications on my phone like “Did you see Carey commented on Charlene’s post?” if I don’t log in every day. May be getting time for a disassociation.

  5. Earlier this morning I was scanning last yesterday’s posts and got to thinking that Pencil Neck, Schiff, wins the hypocrite of the year award. I also saw that on Tucker Carlson’s show last night.

  6. 5 Hamous

    It’s been in the news that FB postings have started to decline and they are worried. The new aggressiveness is what they think is the solution. Dumb@sses.

    I get 2 to 3 texts everyday from FB now.

  7. Chris Tomlinson’s column (“The dream of a currency free of political interference is dead.”) in today’s Chron business section exposes the big downside of imaginary currencies like Bitcoin that are virtually unregulated by any government entity other than peripherally by the SEC in the US. However the Texas State Securities Board has issued four emergency orders against cryptocurrency operators or traders.

    My take is that Bitcoin appears to be essentially in free fall, kinda like the interlude between leaping off the cliff and connecting with terra firma in an inelastic collision. He notes that China and South Korea have taken steps to regulate or flat out ban sales of cryptocurrencies before they destabilize their economies. It’s a fascinating and alarming look into the very murky world of imaginary currency.

  8. It’s snowing now and I had to go out for an errand just now. It’s a heavy wet snow, but there’s only 1 or 2 inches on the road. That’s when it can be the most dangerous and slippery because it’s not heavy enough to plow, it’s below freezing and the stuff begins to freeze on the ground. It’s like driving around on grease.

  9. #8 Texpat

    This appears to be a mess on the way to becoming a monster. Duh, their apparent current attempt at reversal is dimwitted beyond belief. I don’t do FB now and will never do FB.

  10. 11 Adee

    The only reason I ever signed up is to see my daughter’s FB page. I’ve never, ever posted anything to Facebook.

  11. #8 Texpat

    I figured out how to eliminate them on my Samsung phone. There’s an app called “Facebook messenger app”. You can’t uninstall it but you can block it from sending messages. Samsung is excellent about giving you control.

  12. Texpat says:

    It’s snowing now and I had to go out for an errand just now. It’s a heavy wet snow, but there’s only 1 or 2 inches on the road. That’s when it can be the most dangerous and slippery because it’s not heavy enough to plow, it’s below freezing and the stuff begins to freeze on the ground. It’s like driving around on grease.

    You got bread, right?

  13. I get hundreds of dog and cat rescue photos and pleadings. Don’t know where those come from. But occasionally family does post photo updates. Also post occasional weird happenings or other items that I think no one else will be interested in.

  14. The oc pic, I’d sure like to see that rig under sail. Obviously a racer and not a cruiser. Curious about the sheets running aft and up.

  15. Morning, everyone. I guess if Texpat can run errands by driving on snowy grease, I should be able to go out in a little cold rain. I discovered last night while filling my vitamin pill boxes that I had run out of vitamin D. I take a rather large amount as part of my strategy to prevent osteoporosis. It’s not like me to fail to notice getting really low on something like that. The time to have noticed was 2 weeks ago, last time I filled those pill boxes. Had sick cats and a sick Hubs, must have been distracted.

  16. 14 Hamous

    Nope, no bread in the house. I have a package of thin Lebanese pita. I tear off little pieces of it to eat with my eggs every morning. Otherwise, I haven’t had any carbs, bread, wheat or sugar now for 2-1/2 weeks.

    I’m sure the bread shelves of the local stores are empty by now.

  17. I have a sneaky suspicion that Adam Schiff ($#!thead-CA) is going to run for POTUS in 2020. His bona fides are gonna be that HE was the one that stood up to Trump and saved the nation from Trump’s insanity. I suspect that it will end badly for Schiff. I don’t see that anyone else on the D side is even trying to set the stage to move in the direction of the nomination other than the pencil neck. Hillary! may try, if she lives that long, Lieawatha Warren may try, but will fail because of her lies and bogus INdian heritage. Crazy Bernie is too old, so who else do the commies Ds have to run?

  18. I don’t see that anyone else on the D side is even trying to set the stage to move in the direction of the nomination …

    Two Magic Negroes for sure. Corey Booker will definitely run. So will Willie Brown’s ex-mistress. Gillibrand also. Look for Smokin’ Joe Biden to jump in. And you can knock me over with Elizabeth Warren’s feather if she doesn’t run.

  19. And you thought the press protected JFK.

    Corey Booker’s closeted gay life in New York City is bound to leak out sooner or later. One of the worst kept secrets in the Tri-State area. When he was mayor of Newark, he had a condo there that he supposedly never slept in. Rumor had it he was in the City every night.

    All in all, the lineup for the 2020 Democratic primary looks like a casting call for Theater of the Absurd.

  20. From a survey conducted in the last week of January 2018.

    Senior men are 3.5 times more likely to hesitate to have a work dinner with a junior-level woman than with a junior-level man—and 5 times more likely to hesitate to travel for work with a junior-level woman.

    Arianna Huffington, the creepiest, self-promoting goldbricker to ever cross the Atlantic is distraught because men are becoming more defensive in an openly hostile environment.

    See this famous tweet from Emily Lindin. She received so much pushback, from Left and Right, she was forced to close her Twitter account.

    But the funniest one of all is on this Twitchy page. Scroll down to the GIF posted by Smittie and click.

  21. Looks like everyone here has gone over to watch Nancy filibuster the House. Heard she had a presser scheduled to 2PM to pat herself on the back for the stunt she pulled, so for sure she will quit by then. That’s what you get when you grant a privilege to a Dem in the one minute speeches.

  22. No, I think she is taking a late lunch break at 2pm to dine on some gluten free yet thoroughly mayo stained toasted wheat bread and a side of Beanie Weenies catered to her by Shoo Fly Pie-hole Schumer.

    Filibustering for illegal aliens zaps her strength.

    Rumor has it she claims this particular cuisine tightens her skin better than Botox.

  23. #22 Texpat

    Gad, those houses are a nightmare right out of the ’50s all right. Noticed that all of the models only have a single-car garage unless there’s a double-car garage stuffed somewhere around in the back. Wonder if the heating is via hot water pipes in the slab, a good heating technique known in the 50s even in the Frozen North of Madison, WI.

    Good friends of my Dad built a custom 50s modern single-story home on a slab, no basement though everyone in the neighborhood had basements under their ranch-style houses. The heating was hot water in pipes in the thick slab, a very practical arrangement that worked well even in southern Wisconsin. The home had many large Thermopane windows, floor to ceiling in the livingroom overlooking the beautiful back yard. It did not have a bunch of crazy roof angles and was a dark red brick, no neon colors anywhere. Did have a two-car carport instead of a garage incorporated in the design, not an add-on at all. It did not stick out like a sore thumb in the neighborhood, was tastefully designed, and probably is worth a bundle now. Dad’s friends are long gone, of course, as is he.

  24. I have a dear old friend, now retired at age 88, co-worker from our days with the US Geological Survey in Austin, who lives on 200 farmland acres outside Leander. I’m sure she is disgusted by the new dense patio homes.

  25. I did go out, and behold! — the forecast that was 100% for thunderstorms in my zipcode all day, had declined to 40% for rain by the time I got back. I did not get rained on. Restocked on vitamins. Needed to buy 2 Valentine’s cards but couldn’t find even 1 that I liked enough to spend $8 on. Since when did holiday cards get so expensive? I may send e-cards instead.

  26. The people who farmed around Leander are selling out at outrageous prices and running from Austin’s urban sprawl out this way. The area between Austin and Lampasas is filling in rapidly, and people are paying $3,000 per acre out here for rural property that’s actually worth about $300. Those hicks have found out that they are now millionaires, and it doesn’t bother them a bit to come out here and jack up the appraisals 10X and having the appraisal district tax everyone local out of their homes. Same as everywhere else I guess.

  27. This is appalling and dangerous.

    “Right now, those who are best implementing the social doctrine of the Church are the Chinese,” a senior Vatican official has said.

    Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, chancellor of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, praised the Communist state as “extraordinary”, saying: “You do not have shantytowns, you do not have drugs, young people do not take drugs”. Instead, there is a “positive national conscience”.

    The bishop told the Spanish-language edition of Vatican Insider that in China “the economy does not dominate politics, as happens in the United States, something Americans themselves would say.”

    Meanwhile,

    (CNN)From an altar in a dingy backyard four hours from Beijing, Paul Dong is conducting mass.

    He’s also breaking the law. Dong and his parishioners are among millions of illegal Christians worshiping in officially atheist China.

    According to a new report from US-based NGO Freedom House, persecution of Chinese Christians and other faith groups has “intensified” in recent years.

    “Combining both violent and nonviolent methods, the (Communist) Party’s policies are designed to curb the rapid growth of religious communities and eliminate certain beliefs and practices,” the report said.

    Its release comes amid hot speculation over whether the Vatican and Beijing will strike a potentially historic deal on the ordination of Chinese bishops, ending decades of frosty ties.

    Such a deal would not be welcomed by Dong and many of his fellow illegal worshipers.

    “Jesus said one person cannot serve two gods, now the Vatican is willing to serve God and the Communist Party,” he said.

  28. One commenter said Leander is nothing anymore but cedar hackers and California socialists fleeing the nightmare they created.

  29. #32 Adee

    The heating was hot water in pipes in the thick slab, a very practical arrangement that worked well even in southern Wisconsin.

    That’s what we have, it’s called hydronic heating. It’s good to have warm floors on cold days. I can walk around and know where we didn’t lay down the PEX tubing.

    I believe in Germany and possibly other parts of the world, hydronic or radiant heating is required. It’s more efficient that forced air heating. That’s what we were told at the Radiant Panel Association conventions Hubby and I went to when we were researching our system. BTW – you’re a radiant panel, as is Hammy, as am I.

    Instead of heating large volumes of air, the thermal mass (concrete floor is the best) absorbs heat from the hot water flowing through the embedded tubing. The heat transfers from the tube, to the floor, and then radiates out to warm whatever it touches, in all directions. A small amount of convective heating will occur as objects warm up and begin to warm the air around them. It’s quite possible to have 65 degree air and feel quite comfortable.

    Radiant heating works best with a large thermal mass, such as a concrete floor, but houses with wooden flooring or tile can be retrofit, but the calculations are different and the heat retainage won’t be the same. A concrete mass will radiate heat for a longer time than a wooden floor. Think of cooking in a cast iron skillet vs. an aluminum one. You can even do it under carpet, but it’s not advised. They make a special thin, dense pad for carpet applications, but if you want warm floors, you can’t put a sweater on it and expect the heat to escape to where you can feel it!

    In some areas – Malaysia? – they use hydronic cooling as well. Same principle, but they run cool water through the pipes, which usually run overhead or in the walls rather than the floors. The cool pipes act as heat sinks. Those systems have to have dehumidifiers as well, to prevent condensation on the pipes, but supposedly they’re still more efficient that the cooling systems we use.

    I learned a lot in those workshops, and I really enjoyed them. Some of the stuff was amusing; e.g., how do you find where your tubing has spring a leak? Turn on the system and (1) mop the floor or (2) close the drapes and insert a cat into the room.

    (1) As the floor warms, the warmest areas will have faster evaporation. The tubing layout can actually be seen on the floor, and where there’s a “splotch” instead of a tubing line – there’s your leak.

    (2) The cat will find the warmest place on the floor, which will almost always be guaranteed to be where your leak is.

  30. I drove through Elgin back in December for the first time in about 10 years. You can’t tell where Elgin ends and Austin begins. Sort of like what happened out I-10 West ’80s and ’90s. Remember when there was nothing but rice fields between Houston and Katy?

  31. Spouse says an average human body radiates about 150 watts. No wonder in a jam packed open air football stadium in the dead of winter the fans don’t freeze. And that does not count the contents of flasks snuck in.

  32. #39 Hamous

    Sadly, we do recall those rice fields and the flocks of Canada geese visiting to feed in winter. Miss those flying Vs and their songs.

    Miss the cow pastures and rice fields in west Fort Bend County that were here when we built the house in 1980. They are disappearing and almost gone in places around the Richmond/Rosenberg area, and pretty soon it will be subdivisions solid all the way to Fulshear and Katy. A saving grace would be more multi-acre lot subdivisions, but the land is likely getting too expensive for many more of those to be feasible. Fortunately there a some long-established ones like ours that are safe as long as the deed restrictions are kept up.

  33. #39: Yes I remember those times quite well. I used to hunt geese within 10 miles of where I now live. I rarely even hear or see them anymore.

  34. Some of my favorite memories are riding the school bus and as it went by rice fields, seeing a flock of red-winged blackbirds arise from that beautifully bright green.

    No more rice fields out where I grew up anymore. Or meadow larks, either, I believe. They have the most beautiful, piercing song.

  35. The last few times I made the trip to our bank in Pearland, a large flock of mallards was camped out in a subdivisions “lake”. I like to drive that route just to see the birds and turtles. For some reasons, seeing turtles sunning themselves just makes me smile. And I like the egrets and ducks, too. Fortunately, there’s still a field with cattle on it near my house. Nothing makes me happier in the car than seeing baby cows. Or ponies. But I like the little calves the best.

  36. We went to our annual pipeline safety meeting early this morning. Fortunately, only one family brought their under-9 child and teenager to the meeting, so my desire to slap someone was kept to a minimum. The pipelines hand out “welcoming gifts” (read: bribes to attend) at these meetings, so OH5 were both loaded with bags to bring home. I unpacked mine this morning, and found among the usual pencils, safety literature, and assorted bags a very nice bluetooth speaker. I shall be putting that puppy to good use soon. I also acquire two yardsticks, as my help gave hers to me. It seems that I can never find one when I need one, so I’m happy to have two of them. One company handed out a very, very nice moleskin notebook, and another few distributed some smaller and slightly less expensive versions, all welcome. I only had one rain gauge this year, thank goodness (what does one do with five of them?). Surprisingly, only one water bottle and no insulated cups, which is fine. I’m still well stocked with those items from the last few years. I found a small knife, some cloth gloves, a box cutter, and one or two other items that I’m adding to my car’s safety kit. I also got a seatbelt cutter/window breaker tool that I may add, also. If I end up at the site of a car accident again, that might come in handy.

    Our new employee took lots of notes and paid very close attention to the safety program, which made me very happy. I like it when our employees know how not to get blown up.

  37. I remember when Leander was a wide place in the road. I got a ticket there in 1978 coming back from West Texas at about 3 in the morning. I think I was doing about 95 in a 55 zone. I was tired and wanted to get home.

    When I was in elementary school on the prairie where Town & Country Village is now, we could see the trucks and equipment to the north turning the two lane blacktop Katy Highway into Interstate 10. We lived west of there on Britt Moore Road and that was the last outpost of civilization in Houston on the west side. Next stop was Addicks.

  38. If someone already linked this, sorry I missed it. Michael Berry was discussing, fascinating to me.

    Pay Disparity Between Men and Women Even Exists in the Gig Economy
    Female Uber drivers make 7% less per hour than their male counterparts—even though the algorithms that determine pay for the ride-hailing service are gender blind, according to a multi-year study.

    http://fortune.com/2018/02/06/uber-gender-pay-gap-study/

  39. This Uber paycheck story is quite similar to the real reasons why women usually don’t make as much as men. And it is mostly due to the choices they make.

  40. #52

    Absolutely! What is interesting is this study, or Uber’s system, is totally gender neutral. Men and women traditionally have different roles in life, good or bad, like it or hate it..

  41. #54
    I’ve heard it’s men your age that have to go potty a lot.

    It is true that it takes a woman longer because her clothing and her anatomy are somewhat more complex.

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