Monday, March 24, 2014

Evanston: on vacation; 'Q' 'R'

        Watching the second season of Netflix’s HOUSE OF CARDS—and if you haven’t seen the British original, you should—and March Madness, I had not been paying attention to weather forecasts and was surprised when I woke yesterday morning to find the world white again and flakes blowing past our windows.
        The day turned sunny and warmed to above freezing, so most newly fallen snow melted, leaving behind filthy vestiges of old accumulation from mounds once five and six feet high that make me think of corpses of prehistoric animals.
        Even to life long residents, this winter is too long and too hard on the spirit.  One sailing friend symbolically burned his socks on the first official day of spring.  He emailed me photos of the pyre.  Unfortunately it didn’t work.  I hope he has another pair of socks.
        It was snowing when I flew to San Diego on February 5.  It snowed the day I flew back on March 5.  And it is due to snow tomorrow when Carol and I fly to Florida for six days.  
        I have written that one should live so that he does not need vacations from his life, and pretty much I have.  There are those who consider my entire life a vacation; but I suggest that they lack imagination.
        Nevertheless our trip to Florida is a vacation.  We are going to visit Key West and stay at the hotel where we spent our first night of married life in August 1994, then drive up to Miami and watch some tennis.  (I will also try to sneak in some of the next rounds of the basketball tournament.)
        I am not taking my laptop with me.  Only my iPad mini and the new camera.  So you will get a vacation from me.  There will be no posts here until after my return.
        As an experiment I may post a few photos and words to the Blogger version of this journal.  But that is by no means certain.
        If I do post anything there, I will in time republish it here.
        Enjoy your time off.



        quill:  an implement of torture yielded by a goose and commonly wielded by an ass. 

        quorum:  a sufficient number of members of a deliberative body to have their own way and their own way of having it. 

        rabble:  in a Republic, those who exercise a supreme authority tempered by fraudulent elections. 

        railroad:  the chief of many mechanical devices enabling us to get away from where we are to where we are no better off.

        reality:  the dream of a mad philosopher. 

        reason:  to weigh probabilities in the scales of desire. 

        religion:  a daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable. 

        Representative:  in national politics, a member of the Lower House in this world, and without discernible hope of promotion in the next. 

        responsibility:  a detachable burden easily shifted to the shoulders of God, Faith, Fortune, Luck or one's neighbor. 

        revolution:  in politics, an abrupt change in the form of misgovernment. 

        rum:  generically, fiery liquors that produce madness in total abstainers.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Evanston: STORM OF STEEL; 'P'

        Taking another book off my shelves to reread, I just finished STORM OF STEEL, Ernst Junger’s account of his experiences in the First World War.
        I wrote of this book, which has been called “the finest book on war” by no less than André Gide almost seven years ago.  If you go to that post you’ll get the bonus of a nice photo of Carol.
        If anything, I was even more impressed by my second reading.  Junger matter-of-factly, without exaggeration, posturing or self-aggrandizement, makes men living, and, mostly, dying, in the insanity of war seem normal.
        There were afternoons when he “worked on my tan” in craters during artillery bombardments with shrapnel whizzing just above.
        I wrote earlier that it was amazing that he survived four years of combat.  I think he was amazed, too.
        Lying in bed recovering from what would prove to be his final wound, he recalled that he had been “hit at least fourteen times, these being five bullets, two shell splinters, one shrapnel ball, four hand-grenade splinters and two bullet splinters, which, with entry and exit wounds, left me an even twenty scars. In the course of this war, where so much of the firing was done blindly into empty space, I still managed to get myself targeted no fewer than eleven times. I felt every justification, therefore, in donning the gold wound-stripes, which arrived for me one day.”
        The book is still available in paperback, but also in a free PDF that can be downloaded here.



        There is a plethora of ‘P’s’.  Only with difficulty did I reduce them to these.

        painting:  the art of protecting flat surfaces from the weather and exposing them to the critic. Formerly, painting and sculpture were combined in the same work:  the ancients painted their statues. The only present alliance between the two arts is that the modern painter chisels his patrons. 

        pandemonium:  literally, The Place of All the Demons.  Most of them have escaped into politics and finance. 

        peace:  in international affairs, a period of cheating between two periods of fighting. 

        pedigree:  the known part of the route from an arboreal ancestor with a swim bladder to an urban descendent with a cigarette. 

        philanthropist: A rich (and usually bald) old gentleman who has trained himself to grin while his conscience is picking his pocket. 

        philosophy:  a route of many roads leading from nowhere to nothing. 
        (Compare my definition of philosophy:  good questions; bad answers.) 

        phonograph:  an irritating toy that restores life to dead noises.

        plan:  to bother about the best method of accomplishing an accidental result. 

        plebiscite:  a popular vote to ascertain the will of the sovereign. 

        politics:  the strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage. 

        positive:  mistaken at the top of one's voice. 

        prerogative:  a sovereign’s right to do wrong. 

        present:  that part of eternity dividing the domain of disappointment from the realm of hope. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Evanston: tarped; 'O'

        In a email from New Zealand that included a link to a video of waves from passing ex-cylone Lusi washing across the frontage road in Pahia, John, who lives halfway between Opua and Pahia, expressed the hope that I have a good boom tent.  
        I don’t and never have had.  On CHIDIOCK TICHBORNE I lived in port under a tarp supported by a line tied between main and mizzen masts with shower curtain material clothes-pinned at forward and aft ends.  But that got me thinking.  A tarp bent over the boom above the companionway would during rain enable me to open the hatch without getting drenched and would at other times act as a modest sunshade.  So I ordered a white one 6’ x 8’/not quite 2 x 2.5 meters.
        I am aware that there are more efficient solutions, but I have always rejected them because of complexity and aesthetics.

        Speaking of unnecessary complexity, my new Nikon AW1 has a full size USB connector.  My Sony RX100 a micro USB connector.  My iPad 4 has the older 30 pin connector.  My iPad mini Retina the new Lightning connector.
        Carol and I are flying to Florida for six days next week for an early 20th wedding anniversary celebration.  We were married in Key West.  I’ll be somewhere in the South Pacific on the actual date in August.  
        I plan to take only the new camera and the iPad mini with me, and just realized that while I have the camera and SD card cables for the IPad, they won’t work with the mini.  I need yet another cable.



        Occident:  the part of the world lying west  
(or east) of the Orient.  It is largely inhabited by Christians, a powerful subtribe of the Hypocrites, whose principal industries are murder and cheating, which they are pleased to call "war" and “commerce."  These, also, are the principal industries of the Orient. 

        ocean:  the body of water occupying about two thirds of the world made for man—who has no gills. 

        omen:  sign something will happen if nothing happens. 

        once:  enough. 

        opposition:  in politics the party that prevents the government from running amok by hamstringing it. 

        outdo:  to make an enemy. 

        out-of-doors:  that part of one's environment upon which no government has been able to collect taxes.  Chiefly useful to inspire poets.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Evanston: 40 years; new stuff; 'N'

        Yesterday I sent photographs to a publisher and a publication.
        For the firm that is bringing out a Norwegian edition of STORM PASSAGE, I copied the photos that appeared on the original dust jacket, including the one above.  It was taken on November 2, 1974, nine days before my thirty-third birthday, just as I was about to leave for my first attempt at Cape Horn. 
        To CRUISING WORLD I sent the photographs that Steve Earley took aboard GANNET last month.  
        I notice a few slight forty year changes.

        Both sets of images were sent via Dropbox.  
        You’ve seen some of Steve’s photos here before, and he has kindly agreed that I share the Dropbox folder link with you, with the understanding that his photographs are copyrighted and can only be reproduced with his permission.  If you should want to do so, email me and I’ll forward the request to Steve.
        The folder link is:  

        Now that I’ve bought the stuff I need, I’ve started buying stuff I don’t need.
        As I have noted before, CHIDIOCK TICHBORNE was a self-simplifying boat.  Much of the stuff aboard when I sailed from San Diego did not long survive, including a Canon SLR and lenses in a waterproof case that wasn’t.  Only Nikon’s Nikonos diving camera endured.  
        Recently Nikon came out with something of a successor, the AW1, the world’s first, and presently only, waterproof, interchangeable lens camera.  Good to a depth of 49’/15 meters; and able to withstand being dropped 6’6”/2 meters.  If ever there was a boat for a waterproof, rugged camera, it is GANNET—or CHIDIOCK TICHBORNE.  So I bought one.
        They come in black, silver and white.  Inexplicably the white appeals to me.

        The camera is bigger than the Sony RX-100 I’ve been using, but still much smaller than a DSLR.  Even with lens in place it will fit in some jacket pockets.
        The build is reassuringly robust.  The photo images good.  The auto-focus and burst modes phenomenal.
        I hope to put it to good use.

        While slithering back and forth on the quarter berths installing the backing plates for the Jordan Drogue hull attachments, I misplaced my small LED flashlight.  I knew it had to be somewhere in the boat, but couldn’t find it for several days. 
        Before it eventually turned up, hiding in my tool bag, I researched online and discovered the ZebraLight H502 and ordered one to be delivered to Evanston.  That is it next to the AW1 with an AA battery for size comparison.   
        The ZebraLight is as waterproof and rugged as the AW1.  It comes with a headband and can be used as a headlamp.  Powered by a single AA battery, there are three light levels.  The highest is searchlight bright.  So bright it does not seem possible from such a tiny source.
        Although they are relatively expensive, ZebraLight H502s are hard to come by, on back order at both Amazon and the manufacturer.  I found mine on eBay, and as I write some are still available there.



        Newtonian:  pertaining to a philosophy of the universe invented by Newton, who discovered that an apple will fall to the ground, but was unable to say why.  His successors and disciples have advanced  so far as to be able to say when. 

        nihilist:  a Russian who denies the existence of anything but Tolstoy.  The leader of the school is Tolstoy. 

        non-combatant:  a dead Quaker. 

        nonsense:  the objections that are urged against this excellent dictionary. 

        nose:  the extreme outpost of the face.  It has been observed that one's nose is never so happy as when thrust into the affairs of others, from which some physiologists have drawn the inference that the nose is devoid of the sense of smell. 

        novel:  a short story padded.    

        november:  the eleventh twelfth of a weariness.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Evanston: 'M'


        mad:  affected with a high degree of intellectual independence; not conforming to standards of thought, speech and action derived by conformers from study of themselves; at odds with the majority; in short, unusual.
        (Compare with the quote from the Australian novelist, Patrick White,  I have long used to respond to those who call me mad:  “You are mad,” shouted Angus, who had learned to cherish his own limitations as a sure proof of sanity.)
        magic:  the art of converting superstition into coin. 

        malefactor:  the chief factor in the progress of the human race. 

        man:  an animal so lost in rapturous contemplation of what he thinks he is as to overlook what he indubitably ought to be.  His chief occupation is extermination of other animals and his own species, which, however, multiplies with such insistent rapidity as to invest the whole habitable earth and Canada. 

        marriage:  a community consisting of a master, a mistress and two slaves, making in all, two. 

        mausoleum:  the final and funniest folly of the rich. 

        meekness:  uncommon patience in planning a revenge that is worthwhile. 

        mercy:  an attribute beloved by detected offenders. 

        mine:  belonging to me if I can hold or seize it. 

        Monday:  in Christian countries, the day after the baseball game. 

        mythology:  the body of a primitive people’s beliefs concerning its origin, early history, heroes, deities and so forth, as distinguished from the true accounts which it invents later. 

Friday, March 14, 2014


        Before the coming of the Kindle and the iPad, I felt the need for more bookshelves in our condo.  No longer.  Now the shelf on which I kept books bought but not yet read holds only one:  THE CORNISH TRILOGY by the Canadian, Robertson Davies, whose DEPTFORD TRILOGY I read a few years ago and very much admire.      
        I’m going to take THE CORNISH TRILOGY with me to GANNET and read it at sea.  It will be the only printed book on board.
        Saving the ebooks on my Kindle and iPad mini for the voyage, I’m rereading some of the others on my shelves, and just finished Penelope Fitzgerald’s OFFSHORE.  
        The title is clever because the characters are physically only slightly offshore, most living aboard deteriorating Thames sailing barges—the kind that though 80’ or 90’ long could be handled by “a man, a boy, and a dog”—moored to the south bank of the Thames near Battersea Bridge in 1961-62; yet in other ways they are far adrift.  There are husbands who don’t want to live aboard; wives who don’t want to live aboard.  Troubled marriages.  Two quite likable children.  And other eccentrics and misfits.  As you should expect, coming from me that is compliment, not criticism.  
        I don’t want to make the book sound dark.  It isn’t.  Penelope Fitzgerald was a fine writer and OFFSHORE is a short, very enjoyable read, with a storm providing an original and perfect ending.

        Of storms, a serious one is about to reach New Zealand, the still powerful remnants of Cyclone Lusi.  The above image is from the Earth Wind Map an hour ago.  Lusi will bring heavy rain and Force 12 wind gusting 120-130 kilometers/65-70 knots.
        I hope those of you there remain dry and safe.


        I don’t understand how the film, A LATE QUARTET, which I watched last evening streamed from Netflix, ever managed to be made.  But I’m very glad it was.
        A member of a renowned string quartet learns that he is developing Parkinson’s Disease.  The end of his career, finding a replacement, a desire by the second violinist sometimes to play first violin, and some sex, all ensue.
        What makes all this so watchable is the acting—the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, Christopher Walken, Catherine Keener, and Mark Ivanir, are all excellent—and the insight into the professional passion, even obsession, of musicians on this level, ceaselessly striving for understanding and perfection.  To be thus obsessed is a gift, and a curse.
        You can find Roger Ebert’s review here.
        And, again, a perfect ending.


        labor:  one of the processes by which A acquires property for     B. 

        lawyer:  one skilled in circumvention of the law. 

        liar:  a lawyer with a roving commission. 

        lighthouse:  a tall building on the seashore in which the government maintains a lamp and the friend of a politician. 

        litigation:  a machine which you go into as a pig and come out of as a sausage. 

        logic:  the art of thinking and reasoning in strict accordance with the limitations and incapacities of the human misunderstanding. 
        love:  a temporary insanity curable by marriage.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Evanston: as others see; 1, 2, 3; 'K'

        The above photo was taken by Ronnie Simpson.  I don’t have his permission to use it, but he is now at sea and not likely to initiate litigation.
        When we had lunch before he sailed for Hawaii, he interviewed me for Latitude 38.  A preview has been posted on their site.
        I have been following Ronnie’s passage on his tracking page.  That I enjoy doing this has reenforced my decision to allow others to track me.
        Six days out Ronnie has covered about 660 miles.  110 a day.  Roughly a 4.6 knot average.  The first days of a passage from California, breaking free of the coastal weather, are usually slow.  He should soon reach the trades and his average increase.
        He is using a different tracking device than I and the speeds are given in mph. Seven miles per hour is six knots.  His tracker is providing updated positions every hour.  I’ve clicked back on some of them and came across one that showed speed of 10.9 mph.  However the ones immediately preceding and following were in the 5 and 6 mph range, so I assume it was erroneous. Cal 2-27s don’t often make 10 knots.  
        Ronnie’s interview begins with a to me surprising (and pleasing), “An eternally youthful Chiles…”
        I’ve thought about that.  I certainly don’t look youthful, so I conclude that if I give anyone that impression it is because I still have energy and enthusiasm, passion if you will.  A lot of life is nothing more than energy.  The French philosopher, Henri Bergson’s élan vítal.  I’m fortunate that mine has lasted.

        A friend who once heard me speak in public and knew me from my writing for twenty years, commented after meeting me in person that he had not expected me to laugh so much.  Hopefully not maniacally.  
        A long time ago I concluded that there is enough sorrow in life, some inevitable and much unnecessarily man made, and I would rather be on the side of joy and laughter.

        Yesterday I went for an eye examination and to order new glasses.  (For those of you truly paying attention, I also got the number I needed to order a prescription snorkeling face mask and have done so.)
        Conversing with the young man who was fitting me with frames, I mentioned that I have spent time in New Zealand.  He responded by asking if that is where my accent comes from.  He was surprised when I told him I was raised in a suburb of Saint Louis.
        Now I don't think I have an accent.  But then no one does.
        Walking home I wondered about his question.  One possibility is that I speak grammatically, and that is so rare in contemporary America that it sounds foreign.



        ARCHITECTURAL RECORD, one of Carol’s professional magazines, includes in its current issue a list of the top five government construction projects.  
        1.  $524 million.  U. S. Strategic Command Facility.  Offutt Airforce Base, NB. 
        2.  $316 million.  Phoenix State Correctional Institution.  Schwenksville, PA.
        3.  $245 million.  San Bernardino Justice Center.  San Bernardino, CA.
        4.  $221 million.  San Diego County Woman’s Detention Facility.  Santee, CA.
        5.  $181 million.  Benner State Correctional Institution.  Bellefont, PA.

        The pattern is obvious and led me to Wikipedia, where I found:  

The incarceration rate in the United States of America is the highest in the world. As of 2009, the incarceration rate was 743 per 100,000 of national population (0.743%). In comparison, Rwanda had the second highest, at 595 per 100,000, Canada was 123rd in the world at 117 per 100,000, and China had 122 per 100,000.
While the United States represents about 5 percent of the world's population, it houses around 25 percent of the world's prisoners. Imprisonment of America's 2.3 million prisoners, costing $24,000 per inmate per year, and $5.1 billion in new prison construction, consumes $60.3 billion in budget expenditures.

        One possible conclusion is that Americans have far greater criminal tendencies than any other people.  Another is that our society has taken a seriously wrong turn and is criminally wasting money and lives.


        I have been in all U.S. states except South Dakota, so I knew that Florida is the flattest state.  When I said Florida will disappear with climate change and rising ocean levels, I was not joking.
        I live here in obvious flatlands, but was surprised to learn from an article in THE ATLANTIC how flat.  Depending on which measurement you choose, Illinois is the second flattest state, or the third, after Florida and Louisiana.

        3.6 more inches of snow fell over night, bringing Chicago’s official total so far this winter to 79.1” and moving it into number three on the all time list.  
        The two snowiest Chicago winters were back to back.  1977-78 with 82.3”.  And 1978-79 with 89.7”.
        I am very pleased to say that I was not here there.
        In 77-78 I was living ashore in San Diego between my first and second circumnavigations.
        In 78-79 I was sailing CHIDIOCK TICHBORNE across the South Pacific.



        I didn’t find any ‘J’ definitions I want to include.

        kill:  to create a vacancy without nominating a successor. 

        king:  a male person commonly known in America as a “crowned head,” although he never wears a crown and has usually no head to speak of. 

        kiss:  a word invented by the poets as a rhyme for “bliss.”  It is supposed to signify, in a general way, some kind of rite or ceremony appertaining to a good understanding; but the matter of its performance is unknown to this lexicographer. 

        kleptomaniac:  a rich thief.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Evanston: belief: 'H'; 'I'

        While I no longer believe in winter, winter still believes in itself.
        Yesterday Carol and I walked down to the lake.  With temperatures again below freezing, Friday’s puddles had become  ice rinks.  Part of the way we walked in the street.
        The lake is frozen beyond the horizon.  
        The mounds along the shore are ice, built up by spray from once lapping waves.  
        They are not as high as the year I photographed Mount Evanston, perhaps because this winter has been so cold that the lake froze earlier.

        harangue:  a speech by an opponent, who is known as an harangue-outang.

        harbor:  the place where ships taking shelter from storms are exposed to the fury of the Customs. 

        heathen:  a benighted creature who has the folly to worship something that he can see and feel. 

        hermit:  a person whose vices and follies are not sociable. 

        history:  an account mostly false, of events mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers mostly knaves, and soldiers mostly fools.

        hurry:  the dispatch of bunglers. 

        idiot:  a member of a large and powerful tribe whose influence in human affairs has always been dominant and controlling. 

        impiety:  your irreverence toward my deity. 

        improvidence:  provision for the needs of today from the revenues of tomorrow. 

        impunity:  wealth. 

        infidel:  in New York, one who does not believe in the Christian religion; in Constantinople, one who does. 

        inventor:  the person who makes an ingenious arrangement of wheels, levers and springs, and believes it civilization.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Evanston: melt; listless; 'G'

        The temperature outside is 46°, resulting in melting snow and ice, puddles on the sidewalks, and an almost forgotten sense of spring. 
        Walking a couple of miles to run a couple of errands, I was comfortable in one of my lighter jackets.  Because of the puddles I should have worn my winter boots, but still in a San Diego state of mind didn’t think of them and had on boat shoes instead. 
        A gigantic, intricately beautiful ice sickle hanging from the building next to ours has melted.  I noticed it yesterday when I took the trash out and intended to take a photograph today.  There may be a lesson here, but it is tenuous.
        Even though more snow is due tomorrow with a low of 11°, I no longer believe in winter.
        That Carol and I are flying to Florida in a few weeks for an early twentieth wedding anniversary  celebration—we were married in Key West; and I’ll be somewhere in the South Pacific on the actual date—helps.


        I ordered a bunch of stuff online yesterday:  Torqeedo propeller; mesh bag for snorkeling gear; various waterproof bags; stainless plates to protect the transom from the Jordan drogue bridle shackles—they are actually backing plates for pad eyes, but will serve nicely; and courtesy flags for Samoa—now officially the name of what was Western Samoa—Tonga, Fiji, and New Zealand.  And suddenly found that, but for an uncooperative and/or incompetent man in my optometrist's office who couldn’t provide a number I need to order a prescription snorkeling face mask, there is nothing left on my list.  
        This is not unparalleled, but almost.
        In late 1991, when I was preparing RESURGAM to sail from New Zealand around Cape Horn, I turned 50, and, having a little money in hand, decided to buy everything on my list in one of those:  If not now, when? moments.
        No deliberate decision this time.  I just kept chipping away and it snuck up on me.
        True, I still have things to do.  Fit the emergency rudder.  Check to see if I’ve solved the leaks.  Provision.  
        But there is nothing on my list except the face mask, and I’ll get the information I need to place that order soon.  
        Who knew that being listless is a minor triumph.



            gallows: A stage for the performance of miracle plays, in which the leading actor is translated to heaven. 

            genealogy:  an account of one's descent from an ancestor who did not particularly care to trace his own. 

            ghost:  the outward and visible sign of an inward fear. 

            grape:    Fill up, fill up, for wisdom cools 
                            When e’er we let the wine rest.
                            Here's deaths to Prohibition’s fools, 
                            And every kind of vine-pest! 

            grave:  a place in which the dead are laid to await the coming of the medical student.

        I took the photo Tuesday night.  You'll probably have to turn your display to maximum brightness to see anything.  The white column is the furled jib which I usually unbend and stow below, but left in place this time.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Evanston: shock; Martinus; 'F'

        Stepping  out of the terminal at O’Hare last evening was a shock.  Intellectually I knew winter still rules Chicago, but really I had to feel it.  I had on a coat, but not the parka I usually would have been wearing in such conditions.  Three inches of snow had fallen earlier and the temperature was 18°F/about -8°C.
        I am still disoriented by looking out windows at snow instead of San Diego’s sunny sky.  
        Compare the above with the view from GANNET Central on Tuesday.


        When I reached the condo, Carol had been home from work long enough to prepare libations and I had a Martinus.
        An email from Dave, for which I thank him, explains.

        Centurion walks in to a bar.  “I’ll have a cold Martinus”.
        Bartender replies, “ You mean, a Martini?”
        Centurion, “If I had wanted a double, I would have asked for one”.  

        If you go back to the early days of this journal, you will find that we once invented a variation, the tuliptini.



        fiddle:  an instrument to tickle human ears by friction of a horse’s tail on the entrails of a cat.

        fork:  an instrument used chiefly for the purpose of putting dead animals into the mouth.

        friendless:  having no favors to bestow.  Destitute of fortune.  Addicted to utterance of truth and common sense.

        funeral:  a pageant whereby we attest our respect for the dead by enriching the undertaker, and strengthen our grief by an expenditure that deepens our groans and doubles our tears.

        future:  that period of time in which our affairs prosper, our friends are true and our happiness is assured.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

San Diego: leaving; 'D' and 'E'

        I applied two coats of Deks Olje to the tiller, polished stainless on deck, resignedly rather than hopefully applied sealant to leaks.  These are drips not gushers.  I will keep trying, but I can live with them and probably will have to.  Then took a last bike ride.  
        I had considered going to a place that has great fish tacos in Ocean Beach, but decided I wanted a last look at Mission Beach instead and so went that way, stopping at a supermarket along the way.
        There was evidence of the storm:  sand washed over the seawall onto the boardwalk, standing puddles, a lot of kelp on the beach, both along the waterline and pushed to the base of the seawall.  All of which substantiates my observation a few months ago that Mission Beach will not survive global warming and rising sea levels.  Neither with Florida.
        It was fine to ride my bike.  My legs are in shape.  A young man did pass me going up the Mission Bay bridge.  He was standing up in the pedals on a 21 speed racer.  I am not impressed.  I made it to the top sitting down on a one speed.  
        A beautiful day.  A final drink on deck at sunset for sure.  Here is my view from Central, taken a few minutes ago.

        When you have nothing better to do than polish stainless steel, you are either ready or you are lost.  I think GANNET and I are ready.  I’m old, but I’m getting excited.  
        Tomorrow night a cold martini with Carol.
        Two months from tomorrow and I’m back here.  
        By that time it may have stopped snowing in Chicago.


        The opinions of Mr. Ambrose Bierce do not necessarily reflect those of management.   
        Management does not, for example, believe that all beautiful women are as deadly as poison; nor does it share Mr. Bierce’s antipathy for the clarinet, which can be enjoyed in measured dosages, such as the Clarinet Concerto in A by Mozart.
        With that out of the way:

        daring:  one of the most conspicuous qualities of a man in security.

        day:  a period of twenty-four hours, mostly misspent.  This period is divided into two parts, the day proper and the night, or day improper—the former devoted to sins of business, the latter consecrated to the other sort.  These two kinds of social activity overlap.

        debt:  an ingenious substitute for the chain and whip of the slave-driver.  (Compare with management's oft-stated dictum:  debts are chains, which is why management has paid cash since 1974.

        diplomacy:  the patriotic art of lying for one’s country.

        egotist:  a person of low taste, more interested in himself than me.

        erudition:  dust shaken out of a book into an empty skull.

        eulogy:  praise for a person who has either the advantages of wealth and power, or the consideration to be dead.
        evangelist:  a bearer of good tidings, particularly (in a religious sense) such as assure us of our own salvation and the damnation of our neighbors.