Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Photo Credit: Melissa Hinnen (2007)
Additionally, share the road! A friend designed the above bumper sticker recently to remind us all of so many needless accidents with Amish buggies. Yes, they go slower than cars or trucks, so slow down instead of rear-ending them!
Friday, November 30, 2007
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
I often create a list or spreadsheet to help me make my bigger decisions. I’ve started a spreadsheet that can be weighted by prioritization during your search. For example, there’s a column for a unique quality that a particular model may possess that is very important to you, and this would be weighted heavily. Additionally, if a sunroof is a deal-breaker to you, it too could have a very high rating. I’ve included some of the aforementioned models, and left out those that my research wouldn’t allow me to recommend, or that I concluded would not be “relatively cheap.”
There are important decisions we make as consumers. As well, we become what we consume. These are times when the impact of our decisions on our planet, is on our minds more than ever. Should we go with an alternative energy source (hybrid is one example), or not?
Used vs. New? I recommend purchasing a used vehicle, and would consider a used one up to about 70,000 miles. I don’t know if buying a new car adds to the number of used cars that never get sold and end up as waste, but this recommendation is mainly for financial reasons.
Own vs. lease? I do not recommend leasing for most situations. If you were a traveling salesperson, I’ve read it can make sense for someone in that line of work to lease, but from what I’ve learned, leasing is never-to-rarely a good business decision.
I have a friend who tells me that she considers every dollar she spends to be a vote. One caveat, she’s a multi-millionaire and can afford to pay cash for her cars, and several more times over for organic food than non-organic. I also have friends who boycott the Walmart’s and Starbucks of the world for some of the same reasons, and some different. And there are others still, who favor the “Made In America” tag.
Should we purchase from Toyota after one might conclude they encouraged sexual harassment in the workplace (one might argue that by not taking their female employee complaints seriously, they were more than enabling the behavior, in fact encouraging it). They did finally take action, and I personally think that Honda and Toyota do deliver the best vehicle for the money.
Highway vs. City. The saying goes that “highway miles” are more desirable than city driving. I believe the thinking behind this is that the highway is often open road, whereas the city often has you starting and stopping, and especially if you have a manual transmission, can place more wear and tear on your vehicle (e.g., clutch, brakes, tires). A manual tranny will tend to yield a higher MPG if you don’t slam it!
Some of the Consumer Reports site is free, and I agree that it is of great value to subscribe. CSR writes to avoid the New Beetle 4-cylinder model, but I am not sure why or which exact year they mean by “New.”
I have some knowledge of the mechanics behind cars as I have done my own repairs for years on both cars and motorcycles, learning from my brother how to reseat valves, bore-out pistons, and pimp a carburetor. I’ll never forget walking into a Yamaha dealer holding part of my carburetor and asking if they could order it for me, I didn’t know the name, but knew I needed that part. The look on the clerk’s face was priceless. There was also the time I walked into a Harley dealership and asked if they could raise my foot-pegs because I like to lay the bike over on turns, but the pegs can throw you (and the bike!) if they hit the road hard enough and at the right angle. “Lady,” I was told, “You just need to slow the hell down!” But I digress.
Finally, it may simply come down to what one can afford, and finances may simply be the baseline that impacts all other choices. I would suggest finding your baseline, and moving from there. My research is far from exhaustive so feel free to alter the spreadsheet to your findings.
I’m hoping that this spreadsheet will aid you in getting to that place. I didn’t set any calculations into it, as I don’t have your priorities to weight it, and I’m not an Excel guru. Perhaps someone reading this might be able to tweak it for you.
I leave you with some helpful links that will guide you through the process-things like checking underneath for rust, and around the flooring and side-boards. Also, looking for puddles of fluid under the car that might suggest leaking. All of these and many more can be found at these links below. Let us know how you fare:
1) Mouse-over on all the major dealer sites for a quick look at suggested price (this can usually be haggled)
2) Used Car Checklists:
3) Car Buying Guides:
4) Car Pricing Guide:
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
It's a buyer's market in the housing industry right now. I've even looked at a few places myself recently, but you really want to know what you're getting into. I read numerous articles, performed my own research online, read books, and talked with friends who are home-owners. You will want to do all that yourself, but here's one piece of information that I didn't learn until it was almost too late.
I was in the basement of a house in New Jersey that was for sale, with my broker. The place was vacant, and the electricity had been shut off, so we were nosing around with flashlights. By the way, seeing a vacant house where the electric's been shut off, is sort of like taking a used car for a test-drive with the dealer while they've got the radio cranked. I bought my first used car this way, unknowingly, but learned a hard lesson. The car needed repair, but I didn't hear the noises until driving it myself without the radio blaring. If you're looking at a house that's vacant, BYOF...Bring Your Own Flashlight!
So, we're in the basement of this vacant place, and my broker (who's luckily a personal friend) says to me, "Hey, you have any idea what this is?" Well, I hadn't. I'd never seen anything like it before, and this wasn't something that's written about in most home-buying guides. We were staring at a huge round cylindric-looking thing, sealed with lots of large nuts. My broker wondered if it might somehow be connected to the sewer system. I whipped out my cell phone and called my trusty handy-man friend. This guy guts brownstones in the city and restores them to their original lustre, he's truly amazing. I asked him if he had any idea what this contraption could be. That's when we nailed it. He told me to never buy a house that has a system like this.
Here's the skinny. This is one person's opinion, and there are valid reasons why this type of system exists, I simply don't want to invest in a house that has one-it's just one more thing to have to have repaired. Most cities have a public sewer system. Plumbing tends to work on gravity, so most houses are built such that the sewage can naturally flow downhill, and into the public septic system (which I think tends to run along the same path as the street in front of your house).
This particular house was nestled down a steep hill from the road. Not to mention, you might even need to have a 4WD vehicle just to get out of the driveway in the Winter, but I digress. The moral of this story was best described by my handy-man friend, ever so eloquently I might add, "No one wants to pump their **** and **** uphill! Plumbing was meant to work on gravity. What are you planning to do if the electric goes out?" Well, I really liked that house, but thought long and hard about this. I even considered putting a septic tank in the yard, but I am certain the town has ordinances against that sort of thing.
These systems are called Pressurized Sewers or Grinder Pumps, and you can read more about them by going to these links:
http://www.eone.com/sewer_systems/intro/index.htm (The video on this site gives me vertigo, but I'm amazed that anyone would take the time to produce this!)
Again, there are reasons why one might need the aforementioned type of contraption, but I'm wondering if composting toilets here, and here (photo above) aren't the best solution, but where do you empty them?! Even if you own your own land, I can just see the lawsuits from neighbors complaining of sewage leakage, but then again, it's legal to put cow and horse manure on your garden, isn't it? Can neighbors sue for that (odor, leakage)? Does anybody reading this have any thoughts?
I'd love to know what Ty Pennington of Extreme Home Makover would say about this? "Hey Busdriver, move that house!" I digress, but that show's reason enough to justify having an idiot box. I threw mine out years ago, but recently decided there's valuable content to be had on the blasted thing, you just need to search for it. Don't miss this show!
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Last week's New York Times and NY Daily News both reported on our current dwindling supply of food for the needy, juxtaposed with an increase in those needing assistance. These poor often hold full-time jobs, while remaining homeless. That's right, they work hard just like you, but don't even get paid enough to afford a studio apartment in a bad neighborhood.
There is something you can do. You can phone our local NY representatives and tell them you support the 2007 Farm bill. But act now, because the bill expires October 31, 2007.
One other thing you can do is print out these tri-fold "Street Sheets" and keep them with you. So often we don't know how to really help the needy when they ask us. Giving them a buck or two seems fleeting. If you can take the time to stop and have a brief conversation with them, get to know their name and address them that way, they may tell you more specifically what some of their needs are. These sheets are broken up into food services, shelter, legal and other. I am working with a new initiative called Partners In Grace, to distribute these sheets more widely across the city. We'll be producing a seminar in January on "Ten Things You Can Do To Help Those In Need When They Approach You."
I like to joke about how I "Mennonited It" when I fix something that's broken, or repurpose something instead of throwing it out. For example, I remember when we were kids and the muffler on our car would blow. Often it was due to the muffler piping, not the muffler itself, so we'd take a Campbell's Soup can, splice it, then place two of these hose-clamps around it and voila, our muffler would be good for another year or more. So this weekend when I woke up to find my coat hanger doubled-over, broken at the joint, I went to my local hardware store, bought a couple of these clamps and some piping, and my coat rack is as good as new.
This magazine, Ready Made, is chock-full of all sorts of "re-use-it" type of projects. Here's one I plan to try myself. Take an old inkjet printer and turn it into a tool chest. Check it out!
"Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ" (2 Cor 1:2). I am happy to welcome you to Rome, where Peter and Paul bore witness to Christ by shedding their blood for the Gospel.
In the ecumenical spirit of recent times, we have begun to have contacts with each other after centuries of isolation. I am aware that leaders of the Mennonite World Conference accepted the invitation of my beloved predecessor, Pope John Paul II, to join him in Assisi both in 1986 and in 2002 to pray for world peace at a great gathering of leaders of Churches and Ecclesial Communities and other world religions. And I am pleased that officials of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity have responded to your invitations to attend your world assemblies in 1997 and 2003.
Since it is Christ himself who calls us to seek Christian unity, it is entirely right and fitting that Mennonites and Catholics have entered into dialogue in order to understand the reasons for the conflict that arose between us in the sixteenth century. To understand is to take the first step towards healing. I know that the report of that dialogue, published in 2003 and currently being studied in several countries, has placed special emphasis on healing of memories.
Mennonites are well known for their strong Christian witness to peace in the name of the Gospel, and here, despite centuries of division, the dialogue report "Called Together to be Peacemakers" has shown that we hold many convictions in common. We both emphasize that our work for peace is rooted in Jesus Christ "who is our peace, who has made us both one… making peace that he might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross (Eph 2:14-16)" (Report No. 174). We both understand that "reconciliation, nonviolence, and active peacemaking belong to the heart of the Gospel (cf. Mt 5:9; Rom 12:14-21; Eph 6:15)" (No. 179). Our continuing search for the unity of the Lord's disciples is of the utmost importance. Our witness will remain impaired as long as the world sees our divisions. Above all, what impels us to seek Christian unity is our Lord's prayer to the Father "that they may all be one… so that the world may believe that you have sent me" (Jn 17:21).
It is my hope that your visit will be another step towards mutual understanding and reconciliation. May the peace and joy of Christ be with all of you and with your loved ones.
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Friday, October 19, 2007
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Tell you what, I'll make you a better offer. If anyone reading this wants to pay me a mere $60K, I'll give you my cell phone number, promise to keep it on 24-7, and will answer any questions you have for 6 months. Now that's a bargain. I give great advice!
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
A similar version of them can be yours for free here:
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Sunday, October 14, 2007
The title of this piece is, Come Unto Me.
Below is more of her artwork. She only took up painting a few years ago, so is still building her portfolio. My camera decided to malfunction during the gathering, so I have no cousin photos to share from this trip.
Sunday, October 7, 2007
Wednesday, October 3, 2007
DHS 'Spam' List
Last Updated: 2007-10-03 20:26:37 UTC
by Marcus Sachs (Version: 3)
The US Department of Homeland Security sends out a daily Open Source Intelligence Report to a subscription list of hundreds, perhaps thousands of recipients. This morning a reader replied to the list address with a request for a change and his note got re-sent to all of the list subscribers. In the next hour or so, dozens of readers have replied, creating a mini-DDoS of sorts to the subscriber's inboxes. This points out an important point - if you maintain a broadcast mailing list make sure that the address will not reflect email from sources other than the owner of the list. Otherwise, you will become a training example for SANS.
While this is not a Cyber Security Awareness tip, it comes mighty close.
(DHS has been notified.)
As of 1920UTC, about six hours into this event, over 275 emails were sent. Nearly one-half were either pleas to stop sending more replies or people demanding to be unsubscribed (in spite of the fact that unsubscribe instructions are at the bottom of the DHS daily reports.) Many of the posts were humorous, some offered jobs, at least one was a "vote for me" political advertisement, and many more offered their names and contact information in case somebody was looking to connect with their sector or region. While 275 is not even close to the millions of emails that get sent on a typical commercial spam run, it is a large number for a "flash crowd" or whatever this may eventually be called. It also revealed a nice cross-section of who subscribes to DHS daily publications and consider themselves part of the defensive security community. Most definitely do not have the Jack Bauer (character from the series "24") mentality of total seriousness and no-joking attitude.
We did a bit of investigating and this does not look like a typical Mailman or MajorDomo listserve administered by DHS. Instead, it appears to be an email address on a Lotus Domino Release 7.0.2FP1 server hosted by a government contractor that reflects email to a list of thousands of subscribers. It's not clear why a single email got reflected today and not in the many previous months this service has been available. Quite likely an email administrator either clicked a box last night, rebuilt the system, migrated it to a new server, or did something that un-set a setting designed to prevent this type of event. Regardless, the situation is still not fixed. As this diary is being written another email just came through. Sigh....
The pain continues...in the past few minutes the CSC server has started spewing "attachment blocking notifications" in response to the emails sent in that had MIME formatted content. So now we brace for another round of spew.
A reader sent us an interesting idea - all it takes now is some wise-acre (or a BadGuy™) to send a zero-day PDF or Word attachment to the nearly 300 names now available and nail a few dozen gullible security professionals.
Marcus H. Sachs
Director, SANS Internet Storm Center
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
What a banner morning! I headed out with Howie and Anita on a week-day morning for a little extra punch in my week. I felt like I was in the Amazon Forest. There were multi-colors flying everywhere. I'm told the "bird season" here will wane soon, so I want to get in as many views as possible. Here's our list:
1 Black-and-white Warbler
1 Brown Thrasher
1 Cape May Warbler
1 Carolina Wren
1 Eastern Towhee
2 House Sparrows
1 Northern Parula
1 Red-Bellied Woodpecker
1 Red Start
Multiple Rock Doves
Monday, October 1, 2007
Sunday, September 16, 2007
where their newer hymnal was used, and I was heartened by the requests that folks called-out, even those among the younger demographic-I made a mental note that all except one, were old standards! This lead me to wonder how many of us are even singing any of the other songs in this new, more modern, Mennonite Hymnal? I personally feel that the old hymns are what I connect with most in my Mennonite faith. I apologize if I seem to be complaining, I just grew up a very traditional Mennonite.
I still get teased by my NYC friends, because while so many of them grew up reading the classics, I was busy memorizing The King James version of the Bible, much of which can still recite. Many churches don't read from that version anymore, but I cannot help myself as I still reverse-translate whatever scripture is being quoted to me, back into the good ol' KJV!
I leave you with this beautiful sacred hymn that a kind soul sent to me with the hope I'd find some comfort as I mourn my cousin's passing:
Tune: Thomas W. Carter, 1844
Words: Philip Doddridge, 1755
Meter: Common Meter Double (8,6,8,6,8,6,8,6)
Not many years their rounds shall roll,
Each moment brings it nigh,
Ere all its glories stand revealed,
To our admiring eye.
Ye wheels of nature speed your course,
Ye mortal pow’rs, decay;
Fast as ye bring the night of death,
Ye bring eternal day.
Ye weary, heavy-laden souls,
Who are oppressed and sore,
Ye trav’lers through the wilderness
To Canaan’s peaceful shore.
Though chilling winds and beating rains,
The waters deep and cold,
And enemies surrounding you,
Take courage and be bold.
Though storms and hurricanes arise,
The desert all around,
And fiery serpents oft appear,
Through the enchanted ground.
Dark nights and clouds and gloomy fear —
And dragons often roar —
But while the gospel trump we hear,
We’ll press for Canaan’s shore.
Saturday, September 15, 2007
How sad, and how sobering. We must be ready at any time. I can't help but recall a very powerful message we heard recently at church from a guest-speaker, Rev. Keith Fiveson. Reverend Fiveson is an InterFaith Minister, a term which is new to me, but as I understand it, means they embrace all religions. His voice can really project, and he is quite tall, so he made an impressive impact as he approached the lecturn and immediately began with a booming, "Are you ready? ARE YOU READY? Well, are you? Ready? I mean, really ready? Are YOU ready?"
Both his vocal flection and fluctuation were amazing. At first, I thought he lingered too long on this phrasing and I almost became annoyed, but after much thought, I believe I was not annoyed, but in fact, unnerved or uncomfortable, and I'm still learning that when I'm affected in this way, if I look deep inside myself, I will find this feeling is often prompted because there's something very important there for me to learn, and I can greatly benefit by investigating further. To this day, I can't quite shake Mr. Fiveson's haunting version of this question. How 'bout you?
Thursday, September 13, 2007
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Most anyone who knows me, reaches-out to me when they have computers to recycle or upgrade. They know I will take the old ones off their hands and rebuild them, then place them in the hands of those who need them most. It is one small way in which I can use my skills to help those less fortunate. My friend Bill, an Engineer from M.I.T. had about 6 PC's and 3 MAC's to get rid of. His company was upgrading, and Heidi Beth had recently called me to ask if I knew of any equipment she could acquire as a donation to her community project. Shortly after leaving New York City, Heidi Beth and her husband Will bought a house in a very poor section of Lancaster. They quickly became a fixture in the community, and have revitalized their neighborhood with their kindness and compassion. Heidi Beth opens up her home to kids after school, as a means to keep them off the street. They know they can come to her for food, shelter, and help with their homework. She wanted to turn the front room of their home into a “cyber café” experience, where kids could add a digital element to their learning experience. She is also very active in the martial arts community there, and has inducted several of the kids into her Capoiera classes. She told me accounts of seeing a complete turn-around in children’s demeanor, grades in school, and overall health since becoming involved in Capoiera. After working from noon to midnight, and up again at 5 a.m., I ended up with a small LAN both wireless and wired, and about 4 decent workstations.
I also wanted to visit with my cousin Julia who has been battling cancer for the past two years. My cousin Mel, who lives here in New York City and makes frequent humanitarian trips to Iraq to take medical supplies to children dying due to sanctions, also really wanted to visit Julia, but because of his career-choice, has very little money. I told him I would rent a car, and he could travel with me.
Another reason I wanted to visit Lancaster is that my cousin Stanley (who lives in Delaware) was going to be in Lancaster with his mother. Our mothers are related and hadn’t seen each other in quite some time, so I wanted to plan a dinner where we could all catch up.
One more reason to visit home was to see my Aunt Mary Louise who I had not seen in several years. We thought it was high time that we got together. We had a nice breakfast with my mother.
Lastly, and always a reason to get back home, is to visit my brother Harold and his family. Harold was in a horrific automobile accident several years ago, and unfortunately has never recovered mentally and physically. Since Harold’s accident, I have maintained an informational Web site on head injury, coma and traumatic brain injury, and I keep it going because I get occasional letters from families in similar situations, thanking me for its helpful information. September 18, 2007 will mark the eighth year since Harold’s accident in 1999.
I find it worth mentioning that as we were driving on familiar back-roads in Lancaster, en-route to dinner, I saw a bicyclist approaching and noticed he looked unusually decorated with a lot of colorful riding gear. It wasn’t until he passed, that I realized it was Floyd Landis! And by the way, NO, I don’t think he “did it.” I believe he was either “slipped a Mickey” or showing higher levels due to his medical condition. Mennonites are poor liars, as it goes against their grain. There’s no way he was secretly sipping any juiced-up Kool-AID.
Something else I came across on my travels was a sign that my mother and I saw on the side of a Dentist office in Lancaster next to a huge picture of a tooth: “We cater to cowards!” I saw that and I immediately had to phone my friend Jane who works at the NYU Dental School.
My trip wouldn’t have been complete if I did not pay a visit to my 86-year old cousin Martha whom I’ve referenced before on this blog. Martha was recently the subject of New York based artist, Jayne Holsinger, whose gallery opening happened last week. Cousin Martha came up to the city for it, and I spent the entire evening with her at the gallery. Both Martha and the paintings were very well received. The artist is a member of the Manhattan Mennonite Fellowship, and wanted to create art that portrayed her Anabaptist roots with dignity and integrity.
Finally, I always try to stop by to visit our Amish friends when I’m home. We have many Amish friends, and I don’t always have time to visit each of them every trip, but this time I stopped to briefly visit with the Amish family who bought my father’s homestead. This particular home has great meaning to our family, as it was where my father grew up, and I believe his parents as well. My Aunt Ruth likes to tell the story of “The day I was born was the day we got electricity.” Of course we laugh sometimes about how the Amish bought the farm and then ripped out all the electric.
A few years ago when my sister was home, she told me about how she drove by the ol’ homestead very slowly. It just so happened that the Amish owner was outside working, and asked if she needed some help. She explained that her father's family grew up there and it came up in that conversation that my sister had acquired a very old aerial photograph of the farm. He said he'd very much like to see it, so I figured I'd make a few copies and drop it by the next time I was in the area since I tend to take more trips there than my sister. Well, that sat on my “To-Do” list for some time, but after about a year, I got it done. I snail-mailed it to the Amish man, and the next time I was in town I drove by and he again was outside. He didn’t know me at first (because he’d only met my sister), but as soon as I told him I was a sister to the other gal he’d met and had mailed him the photos, his face lit up. He was very pleased to see me. He then asked me if I knew what year the photo had been taken, but I wasn’t sure. After I got back to NYC, I dug it out of storage again, and tried to make out what was written. It was hard to read, but appeared to be from 1919. This past week when I was in town, I stopped by to deliver this date to him, but he was not home so I left a note on the door.
People often ask me if I knew any of the Amish families affected by the tragic story earlier this year. I did, and in fact spent the latter part of that week sitting with them as they recounted their nightmare, supporting them in any way that I could. That schoolhouse was a few miles from where I grew up. When I asked my Amish friends if there was anything I could do to help, they said my visit was enough.
My bird list for the day is short. I was in the car for a few hours, then inside the rest of the day, but I had barely left the Holland Tunnel when out of the corner of my eye, I saw a pair of pantaloons wafting in the breeze. This was no whirligig folks! This was a big ol’ Red-Tailed Hawk, sitting atop a building, peering down at me! I saw many other hawks along the way, some perched on lampposts, while others chose the tops of telephone poles or trees. There were some Seagulls and Mourning Doves also on the wires to greet me.
Saturday, September 8, 2007
I arrived in the park around 8:40 a.m. and phoned my birding buddies to see where they were so that we could walk together. They told me that they were going to be arriving a bit later this morning, so I killed some time around the castle. I ended up relaxing on a big rock that doesn't get a lot of traffic. Next thing I knew, a little girl (who couldn't have been more than 3 years old) had slipped and fallen into the pond! I was closeby, heard her screaming and saw her flailing her arms in panic as her head was bobbing under. I immediately dropped everything and ran to her. I anchored myself on the rock and shouted for her to "Grab my hand! Grab my hand!" She was so frightened, she almost couldn't, and I thought I was going to have to jump in, but in seconds I was pulling her out, trying to calm her down by repeating over and over to her "It's OK, everything is going to be alright." I'm starting to tear-up just typing this. Her parents came running over shortly afterward, thanking me. Strangers had gathered and they too were thanking me. Some wanted to call the newspapers saying, "The Mayor will give you a medal" and I just told them, "I didn't do anything that anyone standing here wouldn't have done." I was also afraid that Children's Services might try to take the child away from the parents. They had two other girls and seemed like decent people who made one mistake. One of my friends said to me, "Yes, but that's one mistake you can never let happen!" of which I agreed, however, does this warrant the child to be taken away? I'd heard just this week of a similar instance. I am not a parent so I cannot say, but it seemed a bit of a grey area to me.
Next we saw this lovely Downy Woodpecker
Turtles Having Fun
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Saturday, August 25, 2007
4 American Redstarts
1 Baltimore Oriole
3 Black-and-white Warblers
1 Black-throated Blue Warbler
2 Blue-gray Gnatcatchers
Multiple Blue Jays
1 Carolina Wren
1 Cedar Waxwing
1 Chestnut-sided Warbler
1 Downy Woodpecker
1 Mourning Dove
1 Northern Flicker
2 Prairie Warblers
Multiple Rock Doves
1 Yellow-breasted Chat
Assorted Grey Squirrels
Check out the mold growing on this fungi. Who knew this kind of thing could happen? Mold on fungus?!
Ahhh, freshly cut grass. I learned from my father that if our yard looked like this after mowing, there were two things we had to do (a) take the blades off the mower and sharpen them and then (b) put them back on in a balanced fashion so they were level. Looks like The Great Lawn mowers of Central Park need a tune-up. Maybe it's toward the end of the season and they're getting ready to do that over the winter.
Friday, August 24, 2007
I purchased three really interesting bird books today. This first one looks amazing, I basically read the entire thing in the store and just had to have it. I don't normally buy things that I don't absolutely need, but I treated myself today, and all of these were discounted heavily.
This second book looked appealing to me because I'd heard from a professional birder recently that there is a new thought (and research) behind why birds call, and that it's not always for any real purpose. I am not sure I can accept that, as I would think that birds only really "talk" when there is a real reason, but I'm going to read this book and see what I can learn.
This last book had one of the funniest cartoons I've seen in a long time. Inside the book, there is an illustration by Robert A. Braunfield of a woodpecker entering items into a journal, recording what humans he saw that day and what they were wearing along with the color of their hair and eyes, just like we do with birds.