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Brad's Blog

Since blogging is riding a crest of popularity, and I have time to waste, I'm introducing this as a new feature.  I've always viewed my whole webpage as a blog with actual content, but now will try adding comments to this page on a regular basis for the more ephemeral thoughts.  Click here to zoom down to today's entry.

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Nov. 1, 2005
One of  my many obsessions is reading novels, of which I manage about two per week.  This is easier than it sounds, if you have insomnia frequently and have a couple quiet hours in the night to contend with.  For those of us with the reading habit, we work through authors more than just single works.  I mostly enjoy science fiction and mysteries.  Often I read two at once--keeping one by the bed, and one in the living area.  In these cases it's best not to read two mysteries at once.
All this might sound a bit like bragging, but there's a secret underside to it--I don't retain what I've read, so that within a couple weeks I only vaguely remember the plot, or even if I put the book down for a few days.  Although with age the tendency is worse, I think it's always been that way for me.  Of course with a weak memory one can never be sure.  Instead I find I have a strongly associative memory, that when jogged by one item will remember associated others...

Anyway, before I forget, I've been reading two mystery writers from New York lately, who've both been favorites for years.  Lawrence Block evolved at least three major series, with Bernie Rhodenbarr (a thief who has to solve murders that he gets implicated in), a recovering alcoholic detective (classic noir), and a secret agent named Tanner who received a brain injury so that he never sleeps (comfort for insomniacs around the world).  Donald Westlake has a similar thief series (though more in the comic heist caper genre) with the Dortmunder series, as well as many other classic crime novels.  Westlake has a lighter and more humorous touch.  But they are both such good writers that it's hard to dissociate in a way that leads to sleep.
So my bed novel is by A.E. Van Vogt, a very creative if quirky science fiction writer, who wrote mostly in the 1950's.  He was known to write without an outline, and the story meanders by leaps and bounds, often with awkward and dreamlike enough phrasing to encourage slumber.  In spite of this he pulled off some great stories set in the way distant future.

Bonus blog:
The weather is rain, rain, rain, with snow on the mountains (about an inch today, and 3/4 inch yesterday, and predicted through the week).  This is good news for farmers and skiers alike.  In the arid west, we tend to get rain for a period in the spring, then go totally dry for July and August (hence our biggest tourist and fire months), often into September.  When we lived in the wheat country, the farmers had to wait for the first rains of fall to soften the dirt clods so they could work the fields to plant the winter wheat (which is the more reliable of the two kinds of wheat).  Some years there was scarcely enough rain to germinate the wheat, and then scarcely enough snow to cover the young seedlings and protect them from the winter cold.  So the rain is good in its season.  If the rain falls in the normal dry months, it can cause the grain to sprout while still standing, reducing its value precipitously (perhaps I should have said as in the old Tom Swifties, "Tom said precipitously...")

Nov. 2
I heard today from a blog reader named May Luk from London, who's lived in major cities around the world, and enjoys reading the blog partially to find out what life outside of big cities is like.
I think it's similar to big cities in one way.  Currently there's a mayoral race with major mudslinging involved.
Enough politics.  I agreed yesterday to play banjo and sing with a group from our local church at a Teamsters dinner in Spokane on Friday.  So we practiced this evening.  The group is limping a bit from one member having a tooth infection and another with pneumonia.  I'd considered bowing out, since I have 3 more performances scheduled through the weekend, but I'm now glad to help them out.  It's also the only "paying gig" of the weekend--lunch plus $10.00.  Remind me sometime why I'm not rich...

My son Birrion skied for the first time today, hiking up the mountain at the local ski resort.  He saw two moose up there--a good sign for lots of snow--my wife said, as all the skiers here are grasping at any straws hoping for a better ski year than last, which was ended in January with a major thaw.

Earlier this week I said we would be short a member for our Musicians Anonymous concert this weekend.  The bass player who plays in a duo with me agreed to help fill in the sound, so we're hopefully able to deal with the imbalance.

Nov. 3
It rained all afternoon, and the first sticky snow plops appeared at dusk.  The rain totalled 1 and 1/2 inches, and nothing but rain and snow are in the forecast.  Snow is visible on the ridge this morning.  My skiing son is happy.  The carrots are still in the garden...

Today I built a new display case for all the CD's and videos I attempt to market.  The deadline for this project was Saturday, the Fall Folk Festival, as it seems one place I might be able to sell some music (although I haven't had much luck previously).  I spent the evening packing pottery for the craft sale part of the festival.  Every craft sale seems to consume a day on either side of the event--one reason I've cut back a lot on doing them.  Currently most of the ones I do either involve a worthy charity or music, giving them (for me) an extra cachet of respectability.

Nov. 4
It's snowing this evening, in a way that may mean traffic troubles by morning.  It's funny how one of the later frosts in local history  (2 days ago in Spokane--a month or so ago here) is followed hard upon by early winter.

This noon I sang with a church group entertaining retired Teamsters.  Every musical group I'm involved in has its unique opportunities--in this case harmony gospel singing.  The group we were playing for was staid enough that they had someone read a joke as part of the entertainment. Later, as they read the minutes from the last meeting, they noted who read the joke at that meeting.  Clearly they need my mother to liven things up.

The rest of the day was caught up in getting ready for the Folk Festival, and digging carrots from the garden in case this snow is here for good.
My son and I also put the snow tires on one of our cars today, with mixed results.  If there were a tire place in town, I'd take it there, but the nearest is 10 miles away, and at this time of year the wait can be long, so it's easier to put your tires on yourself, generally.  The exception is that one of the lug nuts would not come off, and finally snapped off at our urging.  I think it was probably cross threaded, and in our defense, done at a tire place last spring (in spring there's not such a rush to get the snow tires off, unless the studs become illegal...).

Nov. 5


A friend grabbed the camera and took a shot of me with some renaissance dancers.  I was in my own colorful ethnic costume.
The Fall Folk Festival started today.  By itself it's 7 stages and 70 acts.  By myself it's 3 acts and selling pots.  Good thing there's help. Of note was the Sondahl and Hawkins performance.  The Hawkins part of the act forgot the book with all the information useful to performing, like lyrics, chord changes, and key.  So the Sondahl part scribbled furiously to recreate them, while the Hawkins better half scurried over with the music.   Half way through scribbling, the fire alarm went off in the building, and everyone had to evacuate (including the live radio performers).  It took more than 20 minutes for the all-clear to sound, which allowed enough time for Nicole to bring the music, and we still got most of our performance in, with no cardiac symptoms, but plenty of adrenaline.  The rest of the day I constantly roamed, shooting 120 pictures of performers, jammers, and vendors, which I'll post a link here when I get a webpage up about the festival (probably next week).

Meanwhile in our own family circus, son Birrion went to a ski swap this morning to get me some modern hourglass shaped skis (I've been skiing on 1960's straight skis which were also bought at a ski swap for $10 many years ago.  Birrion mentioned he saw my old ski models there for $10 again.  They're good skis--I never did wear them out, though they started wearing me out with turns in powder...  My son wears out at least a set per year of these new style ones (well, his are twin tips, so you can land backwards or forwards), so I'll keep my old ones in case the modern ones prove obsolescent.

Nov. 6
Every circus must end, and as I dozed off listening to a recording of one of my performances at the Spokane Fall Folk Festival, I realized I'd better write down a summary before I crash completely.  Whether due to  my provided (to the organizers) description (traditional acoustic Christian hymns), or from being first on the schedule, it was a small audience (under a dozen), but they listened intently to make up for their lack of numbers.  Being totally an ear-trained musician, I figured out while performing that even if I have various clever ways to vary a piece to keep it interesting, I have no way of remembering what those ways might be when performing.  So it took about 15 minutes of playing the hymns in a straightforward manner before I began to be able to improvise more freely with the tunes.

After that performance, it was back to photographing as many acts as possible, and minding the pottery store on occasion--of which I'll only say that sales went well.

Afternoons at craft fairs usually end in fizzles, but since our old-time band, Musicians Anonymous, was last on the schedule, we provided our own adrenaline to making it successfully to the end.  A pleasant surprise was the fairly large crowd that stayed for the program and seemed to appreciate us.  My wife said we never sounded better (aided by an excellent sound crew).
It's hard to come down off my favorite event of the year, but exhaustion seems to help...

Nov. 7
Back to the workaday world today, trying to rebuild pottery supplies before the next fair (in two weeks).  I fired a bisque with the sculptures in it (sculptures seem to waste a lot of kiln space, my functionally oriented mind says).

We've celebrated both my mother-in-law's 87th birthday and my brother-in-law's 75th birthday in the last two days.  Although quite senile, my mother-in-law was able to get into singing the birthday song, even changing the words to "happy birthday to me."

Nov. 8
Last Saturday, the tire that had a lug bolt break off, blew out while my son was driving.  There were holes in the tire large enough to drive a truck through.  Other than that the tire tread was in great condition, so I checked the warranty and it was guaranteed against road hazards.
Today I took it to the tire place and learned that road hazards mean nails and stuff like that.  If your tire just blows up without any nails in it, it's not covered.  This is, of course, counter-intuitive.  The tire that just blows up is more the maker's responsibility than the nail on the road.  But who said life is fair?

Nov. 9
The 100 or more pictures I took at the Fall Folk Festival are up at http://spokanefolklore.org/FFF2005/index.html
It's a long time till such a good time for me will come again.

I suppose that's particularly true in comparison to today's task --digging 50 lbs. of wet cold carrots out of the ground in order to store them in sand in our root cellar.  A similar amount was left in the ground, covered with a dense layer of leaves.  It's interesting to note that some of the carrots split as they grow, and the cavity encouraged slugs to hibernate in the crack.  I mostly left those out to rot, as they aren't very usable with the big crack anyway.

In the pottery, I found a couple recipes for a gloss brown glaze in my record book, and noticed they both had the same ingredients in fairly similar amounts, so decided to mix them up, then do a small line-blend between them to see what came out best.  If I remember I'll report the results here when the kiln cools in two days.  Gloss brown glazes used to be common on everything from little brown jugs to electrical insulators, all glazed from the brown clay-glaze pits of Albany, New York. Then the land there became deemed more valuable as realty, and the pit was shut down.  Some potters still search for bags of the original Albany Slip (I've got about 25 lbs. if you're interested), but mostly the popular culture doesn't go with gloss brown glazes too much any way.  But a few customers like the color, and my bucket is nearly empty, and the recipe for it is lost, so it's time to do a bit of glaze research...

Nov. 10

So this sculpture came out of the firing today.  I intend to make it wall mountable like a moosehead.   I'm calling it, "Tastes like chicken."  I was thinking it would be nice to have a little plaque on it saying something like, "Bugblatter beast, Eridani IV."  I envision it as part of a series of unusual trophies, such as a large carrot, for a vegetarian (funny I should be thinking of carrots, eh Doc?).
I guess technically this is a pot, not a sculpture, as it was mostly pieces thrown on the wheel and assembled.
There's nothing like actually making a sculpture to get one down off one's flights of fancy.

My mother called to say she broke a couple antique Spode plates today.  She didn't get much sympathy, as I generally break a pot or two per day at some point in the process.  In fact, for quite a while I've been using a 4 gallon bucket to set my cardboard banana box on while loading it with finished pots from the kiln. Today the box tipped over with a large bowl and about a dozen creamers in it.  The first time it fell, I set the box up again on the same bucket and put the unbroken ones back in it.  Then I thought I ought to check the large bowl closer (give it the ring test--if it rings it's not cracked).  So I lifted it out of the box which made the box fall over to break a few more creamers.  And sure enough, the large bowl was cracked as well.  I'll recycle it as a planter.  I've retired the bucket, and gotten a larger based short table to set the box on, so perhaps I'm actually learning from one of my mistakes.

Also today we were spreading leaves in one of our gardens.  We like leaves well enough to stop and fill the car with garbage bags full that are left on the curb to be hauled  away.  We reuse the leaf bags for garbage, which is a bonus.  The leaf mulch breaks down over the winter, and in the spring is either raked aside for planting, turned in, or covered with a layer of horse manure.  Our soil was gravel before we started doing this...

Nov. 11
I got the garden carrots stored away in wet sand in the root cellar today.  There's enough left over that we'll be offering them to friend and foe alike.

We also got a new fireplace catalytic insert stove for our house, replacing a pellet stove.  The pellet stove, like apparently the charcoal grill, was developed to make use of industrial waste (sawdust, in both cases.  I've heard that Henry Ford figured out he could make some of his wastes into charcoal).  The pellet stove  never appealed to us, with a noisy fan and small artificial looking fire that didn't produce enough heat to heat the house.  So we went with a local stove maker (and a model he's been making for 25 years), and it's being fired up for the first time currently.

It's also sleeting out currently, with 1-2 inches of snow predicted by morning.  All of today's musings are portents of winter.

Nov. 13
Well, it's still sleety, but stayed above freezing enough here that winter is still a few hundred feet of elevation away.

In the meantime, I was photographing something the other day and the lens cap dropped off the lens to the ground, and in reaching suddenly to get it, I sprained my back (a recurring problem).  It's now a couple days later and I've hopes for recovery in the next couple days, which is pretty necessary in order to do the lifting involved in pottery making.

On to other topics. I was looking at some pictures of the tornadoes that hit in Iowa yesterday, since it was near a former hometown, and while I felt sympathy with the victims, one picture showed a damaged gas station with prices of gas under $2.00 per gallon.  It was that image that caught my imagination, since gas is $2.40 here, and we travel a lot, so I got sidetracked off the issue of the tornado onto the vagaries of the gas pricing.  I know there are international readers of this blog, and that gas varies widely around the world (usually has been about twice as expensive in Europe, for example, so I have no reason to moan at the current prices).  But the recent fluctuations have brought about great disparities in pricing. It used to be in Spirit Lake we'd pay 5 to 10 cents more per gallon than in nearby larger towns. Today in one of those towns gas was $2.08, or 32 cents cheaper per gallon.  At least such prices give them a healthy competitive edge...

Nov. 14
The thing I was photographing the other day, when I sprained my back, was this picture intended for this blog:

It shows the test tiles for the brown glazes I've been working on.  At either end are two glazes that use the same ingredients, but in different proportions, with the middle being mixtures of the two.  They are both supposed to be brown glazes, but when fired electrically some iron browns turn green, as the one on the right has.  I like using hybrids, so I was inclined to mix a batch of one of the middle mixes.  Then, while entering them into my glaze chemistry database, I discovered a couple more recipes, so decided to test them also before settling on a new brown gloss glaze.  They'll be out in a couple days.

Meanwhile, my back is still mostly recovering.  I went to a clay arts guild meeting to plan the 26 potter sale we're having in December, which nicely combines all our various other skills (accounting, promotion, music, organization) into a hopefully successful sales event.

Nov. 15
I woke up this morning with the name for an experimental comic strip that I then went ahead and started today.  I like the fact that distribution doesn't have to be through a syndicate, just user to user on the internet.  I also like that it can be in color, since there's no ink costs involved.  It may take awhile to evolve details like characters, names, plots, etc, but who's in a hurry.  I made the first 5 days' worth today, so I don't have to worry about writer's block for a while.  Here's the page link: http://sondahl.com/soc/soc.html
 

When I was in Spokane tonight, I walked around downtown, and Harold Lloyd movies were being shown on a building wall by a supper club by video projector.  It was a real joy for me, as I'm a big Harold Lloyd fan, and I was aware a new 3 DVD set of his silent films was just released this week.  I like all of the big 3 of silent comedy--Keaton, Chaplin, and Lloyd.  But Lloyd's characters are by today's standards the least sappy, on average.  And his legendary feats of physical derring-do add to the fine entertainment he provided.  To tie this paragraph in with the previous, Lloyd's comedy was episodic and flowing as I'd like the comic to become, which is part of why I called it Stream of Consciousness.

Nov. 16
I'm having fun with the Stream of Consciousness cartoon, so now I've posted a week's worth (and made about 20 days worth).  The challenge with a blog, daily cartoon, or newspaper column, is to stay ahead of the curve.  This may just be another trial balloon, but it's tugging at my hand wanting to fly.  Being essentially a new medium, though, the 20th day shows some improvement over the first.  My wife says it may appeal to post modernists...

My back was well enough to move firewood again today.  The weather is hovering around freezing, day and night, so we're heating like it's winter.

Nov. 18
I suppose I need assertiveness training, but I'm too wimpy to go and get it.  Earlier this week I took the car to a muffler place (local car repair Spirit Lake style--30 miles away).  They needed to get a special muffler so I made an appointment for today.
When I arrived, the office woman told me the muffler guy was gone to Spokane for a meeting, and might not be back for a while. "You have a lot of errands?" she asked hopefully.
Actually I did have a lot of errands, but none of them near the muffler shop, but I went for a walk and came back an hour later.
She confessed sheepishly that the muffler guy might still be gone for hours, so she suggested trying again another time.  So I made an appointment again.
It all reminds me of one of my few forays into acting, playing some minor character in Endgame, who tells the meandering story of an Englishman who takes his pants to the tailor, and has to keep coming back to see if they're done...
Although I'd pretty much wasted a morning and 60 miles of driving, I didn't let my exasperation show to the office lady.  Instead I'm ranting to the world (albeit a small one) of my blog.  But I'm not ranting to the point of mentioning the name of the muffler shop--that wouldn't be nice...

The morning wasn't totally wasted.  I'd been thinking of getting some more lighting to improve on the double florescent unit which lights our year-round showroom.  After stopping in a lighting showroom and figuring anything there would cost $200, I stopped at the new Habitat for Humanity store, which turned out to be like any other second-hand store, only all hardware related...  I got a couple of double aluminum sort of spot lights for $10 which seemed much more in keeping with our lifestyle than the $200 tracklights.

Nov 19
I mixed a 10 Kg. batch of the new brown gloss glaze today.  I should see the results in a couple days.
My wife sold pots at a craft fair in  Osburn, Idaho today.  I'd mostly phased out craft fairs, but finally decided it was the best way to get into the holiday shopping, since locally we have snow and icy roads that curtails the random wanderer.  On Sunday I'll take my turn at the booth.

Nov. 20
I realized partway to the craft fair today, that I'd forgotten my book that was to get me through the 6 hour event.
It was an ill portent.  Two day craft fairs, except in the height of summer, are bad ideas.  It started slow and went downhill from there. I sold two pots, totalling $13.00.   It reminded me again why I don't like craft fairs.  If I don't sell anything from my home sales area, at least I have the comforts of home...
The saving grace for the day was that since I'd forgotten my book, I stopped and bought a tablet of paper, and settled in at the fair to draw out "Stream of Consciousness" comic ideas.  I got at least another month's worth, but they still have to be made into images, so my spare time will be busier for a while with this kind of goofing off.  Currently I'm adding a couple strips per day, since I've got a good backlog, and want to have enough out to pique people's interest in the idea....

Nov. 21
So I opened the front flap of the backpack that I bring with me with my lunch and everything to art fairs, and there was the book I thought I'd forgotten yesterday...
In the movie version of The Wizard of Oz, now I know how Dorothy felt when the witch told her that the ruby slippers could have gotten her home at any time...  ("You mean I had to endure flying monkeys, a shredded scarecrow, a near poppy overdose, for nothing?")
So I mentioned it to my wife, who then remembered she'd stuck the book in there before I left, and meant to tell me where she'd put it.
It was a funny "rest of the story" ending...  Today I also got the muffler repaired at the time requested in the amount of time estimated at less than the price quoted.  And the Vikings squeezed out a win over Green Bay, so things are going well.

Nov. 22
Christmas orders are beginning to come in.  I'm still adjusting to it being autumn, although the end of daylight savings time makes the transition to dark winter more sudden...
One nice thing about Thanksgiving in the north lands, is that the leftovers are usually pretty safe out on the back porch, which is often used by us folks as our fridges get over full about now. For instance lately we've been having highs of 39 and lows of 32, which are good refrigerator temperatures. Unfortunately that's about all this weather is good for, as we never see the sun, nor get the snow the ski resorts (and my son) need to operate.

Nov.23
We've never been big on secular holidays, of which Thanksgiving is one.  My wife and her sister were going to volunteer to serve meals to the homeless, but all the worker positions were filled.  But we did go to my wife's sister's place today (yes, Wednesday) for a Thanksgiving dinner.  The reason for Wednesday is that our son was intent on skiing on Thanksgiving, so we skirted the traditional celebration by doing it a day early.  I plan to spend Thanksgiving taking care of my mother-in-law and starting on several pottery orders.

Nov. 24
And that's just what I did...

Nov. 25
Today was busier--I footed and added handles to one kiln load of pots, and glazed two other kiln loads. I also unloaded and priced one kilnload, which included the final winning brown glaze (which wasn't one of the samples shown way up above...) (My kilns are 7 cu.ft. in case you were curious).

I liked it because it was reminiscent of the old Albany Slip brown glaze, and because it shows the throwing lines and clay body nicely.
Brown glazes aren't exactly popular, but they fill a niche in my limited color palette...  The brown it replaces was so dark that it was confused with my black glaze (which some patrons call dark blue, just to add a bit more confusion).

I learned that today is sometimes called Black Friday, as it marks the day many retailers go in the black for the year.  If that were the case for me, the two or three customers that wandered in today would not give me a big bump into the black.
However, due to my low overhead philosophy, I think I probably turn profitable for the year by March or April, or June at the latest. Usually the winter snows pretty much shut down the visits to my shop, as the roads turn icy, parking becomes hard to find, and sometimes a big mountain of plowed snow obscures our kiosk from the street.
Tonight the first big snow is promised.  For some reason the local weather service likes to predict 100% chances of precipitation, which to my mind is stupid, and they often turn out to be wrong.  If they only hedged their bet by saying 90% instead of 100%, I'd have no bone to pick with them.  To me, you can only talk about a 100% chance of precipitation if you're talking about now while it's raining.  I'm guessing the weather people, after having the same boring fog forecast for a week, just got a bit excited at the prospect of some real weather to predict...

Nov. 26
The weather sputtered out with only a light dusting of snow, with temperatures dropping well below freezing for the next few days.
So besides working on a couple of projects like improving the show room lighting and insulating a crawl space, I took it somewhat easy today.  In fact I was dozing in front of the tv watching a college football game, when I heard some customers at the door.  One of the customers commented that I must be taking the weekend off (since I wasn't wearing my clay covered apron...)  While this was somewhat true, I always stick to the P.G. Wodehouse dictum of "stout denial," so I pointed out that in fact I was selling pots.
A lot of people (aspiring potters included), don't think about the fact that every pot I make has to get sold, so I am as much a salesperson as a craftsperson.  I didn't think of it myself, starting out, as I'm not gregarious, so I tend to sit and read books or play guitar at craft fairs rather than chat up the visitors or hawk wares.  That's also a reason I allow my pots to sell themselves in my outdoor kiosk display area.
The other reason, of course, is keeping overhead low.  I've never employed anyone more than for short time help for a single fair, because if I did I would have to raise my prices astronomically to cover the expense, and end up paying the help as much as I make.
This strategy has worked for me (with the help of my family), but it means I'm also the advertising department, secretary, shipping clerk, research and development section, and janitor, so I'm generally working, with potting being only the stereotypical image associated with me.
And sometimes I work with my eyes shut and a football game on...

Nov. 27.  I discovered a new dimension, today, called Crawl Space. It's mostly two dimensional except for having floor joists above you just high enough so you can't go on hands and knees.   Snakes are used to Crawl Space, but there weren't any there--just hundreds of spiders.  I'd been in Crawl Space before, but this was my longest foray, adding insulation to the outside walls and spring loaded vent boxes to the vent holes.  The vent boxes were necessary so that the insulation would have something to snug up against, and the spring loaded lids on them were my idea.  When combined with long strings leading to the Crawl Space entrance, it will make it possible to open the vents in Spring, and close them in Winter, while standing at the Crawl Space Portal.
The physics of Crawl Space posit that everything is hard to do.  I had to spread plastic over the ground, which is sort of like making a 20 by 40 foot bed while being under it.  Another corollary is that every tool is as far away when needed as possible.  Also everything in your pockets will leave at some point, as you try rolling from location to location.  And the cordless drill will mysteriously lose all its charge when you are furthest from the Crawl Space Portal to the Basement Shop.
While working in Crawl Space, I could dimly see sunshine occurring outside, but like the characters in Plato's cave analogy, I could only guess what a great time everyone else was probably having.  That is, until my wife showed up after sundown and said she'd thought of coming to help me, but it was too nice outside.   It's good to have one's suppositions verified.
I'm still suffering some ill effects in every joint from my voyage to Crawl Space--man was not meant to crawl on his belly like a reptile...
I used muscles that haven't been used since we escaped from the primordial ooze...

Nov. 29
We finally got some serious snow, so winter looks assured. The ski area announced it will open on Friday, so our ski obsessed son will be able to blend in with similarly afflicted people and appear normal for a while.
Normal for me is going to the Tuesday night jam, in spite of the first major snowstorm to hit the area.  The snowstorm had hit early, and I presumed it was over before I started driving in.  Nowadays you can check the webcams of the freeway before you start, to check on conditions in Spokane, which generally are a lot better than our local snow zone of Spirit Lake.   I should have checked the weather as well, as it started snowing again as I headed in, and snowed all evening.  It wasn't a huge storm, only about 3 inches, but enough to make for the usual rash of fender benders related to the slippery roads...

Nov.30
Every once in a while I send one of my daily blog entries, when it's pottery related, to the Clayart pottery discussion group.  I did that with the comment on last Saturday about working while snoozing and watching a football game.  As usually happens with internet discussions, it got reactions in various ways.  Because of some technical difficulties, I only caught the end of the discussion when I saw some messages  with "In defense of Brad Sondahl" as the topic.  This is good, since I don't have to defend myself, and I get free publicity as well.  I was just surprised my comment was controversial enough to elicit responses...


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