Wednesday, October 31, 2012

One More Western Wednesday...!

What would our week be without a good ol' Western Wednesday?

A lot of the stories of the wild and wooly west were about the bad guys, but at times the good guys just stand out! This story is about one of the truly good guys of those times!

Nov 1, 1924:
Legendary western lawman is murdered

On this day, William Tilghman is murdered by a corrupt prohibition agent who resented Tilghman's refusal to ignore local bootlegging operations. Tilghman, one of the famous marshals who brought law and order to the Wild West, was 71 years old.

Known to both friends and enemies as "Uncle Billy," Tilghman was one of the most honest and effective lawmen of his day. Born in Fort Dodge, Iowa, in 1854, Tilghman moved west when he was only 16 years old. Once there, he flirted with a life of crime after falling in with a crowd of disreputable young men who stole horses from Indians. After several narrow escapes with angry Indians, Tilghman decided that rustling was too dangerous and settled in Dodge City, Kansas, where he briefly served as a deputy marshal before opening a saloon. He was arrested twice for alleged train robbery and rustling, but the charges did not stick.

Despite this shaky start, Tilghman gradually built a reputation as an honest and respectable young man in Dodge City. He became the deputy sheriff of Ford County, Kansas, and later, the marshal of Dodge City. Tilghman was one of the first men into the territory when Oklahoma opened to settlement in 1889, and he became a deputy U.S. marshal for the region in 1891. In the late 19th century, lawlessness still plagued Oklahoma, and Tilghman helped restore order by capturing some of the most notorious bandits of the day.

Over the years, Tilghman earned a well-deserved reputation for treating even the worst criminals fairly and protecting the rights of the unjustly accused. Any man in Tilghman's custody knew he was safe from angry vigilante mobs, because Tilghman had little tolerance for those who took the law into their own hands. In 1898, a wild mob lynched two young Indians who were falsely accused of raping and murdering a white woman. Tilghman arrested and secured prison terms for eight of the mob leaders and captured the real rapist-murderer.

In 1924, after serving a term as an Oklahoma state legislator, making a movie about his frontier days, and serving as the police chief of Oklahoma City, Tilghman might well have been expected to quietly retire. However, the old lawman was unable to hang up his gun, and he accepted a job as city marshal in Cromwell, Oklahoma. Tilghman was shot and killed while trying to arrest a drunken Prohibition agent.

My heart goes out to all those folks that had to suffer the storm and it's aftermath! Please keep all of the fine folks on the affected area in your prayers, OK? If you managed to dodge the bullet of the terrible storm, now would be a very good time to give thanks for that as well!

Coffee on the patio this morning, since summer type weather seems to be back for a few days!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Orson Wells Creates A Panic...!

In a perfect example of just what can happen when blind faith is given to what the media says. What may seem to be the truth, often isn't!

The program that was put together by Wells and his crew was absolutely brilliant! The reaction by much of the public is both comical and sad! Sad that rational thinking was tossed aside, and that a radio show was taken as "the truth" despite several disclaimers at the start and during the program that it was a radio play!

Oct 30, 1938:
Welles scares nation

Orson Welles causes a nationwide panic with his broadcast of "War of the Worlds"—a realistic radio dramatization of a Martian invasion of Earth.

Orson Welles was only 23 years old when his Mercury Theater company decided to update H.G. Wells' 19th-century science fiction novel War of the Worlds for national radio. Despite his age, Welles had been in radio for several years, most notably as the voice of "The Shadow" in the hit mystery program of the same name. "War of the Worlds" was not planned as a radio hoax, and Welles had little idea of the havoc it would cause.

The show began on Sunday, October 30, at 8 p.m. A voice announced: "The Columbia Broadcasting System and its affiliated stations present Orson Welles and the Mercury Theater on the air in 'War of the Worlds' by H.G. Wells."

Sunday evening in 1938 was prime-time in the golden age of radio, and millions of Americans had their radios turned on. But most of these Americans were listening to ventriloquist Edgar Bergen and his dummy "Charlie McCarthy" on NBC and only turned to CBS at 8:12 p.m. after the comedy sketch ended and a little-known singer went on. By then, the story of the Martian invasion was well underway.

Welles introduced his radio play with a spoken introduction, followed by an announcer reading a weather report. Then, seemingly abandoning the storyline, the announcer took listeners to "the Meridian Room in the Hotel Park Plaza in downtown New York, where you will be entertained by the music of Ramon Raquello and his orchestra." Putrid dance music played for some time, and then the scare began. An announcer broke in to report that "Professor Farrell of the Mount Jenning Observatory" had detected explosions on the planet Mars. Then the dance music came back on, followed by another interruption in which listeners were informed that a large meteor had crashed into a farmer's field in Grovers Mills, New Jersey.

Soon, an announcer was at the crash site describing a Martian emerging from a large metallic cylinder. "Good heavens," he declared, "something's wriggling out of the shadow like a gray snake. Now here's another and another one and another one. They look like tentacles to me ... I can see the thing's body now. It's large, large as a bear. It glistens like wet leather. But that face, it... it ... ladies and gentlemen, it's indescribable. I can hardly force myself to keep looking at it, it's so awful. The eyes are black and gleam like a serpent. The mouth is kind of V-shaped with saliva dripping from its rimless lips that seem to quiver and pulsate."

The Martians mounted walking war machines and fired "heat-ray" weapons at the puny humans gathered around the crash site. They annihilated a force of 7,000 National Guardsman, and after being attacked by artillery and bombers the Martians released a poisonous gas into the air. Soon "Martian cylinders" landed in Chicago and St. Louis. The radio play was extremely realistic, with Welles employing sophisticated sound effects and his actors doing an excellent job portraying terrified announcers and other characters. An announcer reported that widespread panic had broken out in the vicinity of the landing sites, with thousands desperately trying to flee. In fact, that was not far from the truth.

Perhaps as many as a million radio listeners believed that a real Martian invasion was underway. Panic broke out across the country. In New Jersey, terrified civilians jammed highways seeking to escape the alien marauders. People begged police for gas masks to save them from the toxic gas and asked electric companies to turn off the power so that the Martians wouldn't see their lights. One woman ran into an Indianapolis church where evening services were being held and yelled, "New York has been destroyed! It's the end of the world! Go home and prepare to die!"

When news of the real-life panic leaked into the CBS studio, Welles went on the air as himself to remind listeners that it was just fiction. There were rumors that the show caused suicides, but none were ever confirmed.

The Federal Communications Commission investigated the program but found no law was broken. Networks did agree to be more cautious in their programming in the future. Orson Welles feared that the controversy generated by "War of the Worlds" would ruin his career. In fact, the publicity helped land him a contract with a Hollywood studio, and in 1941 he directed, wrote, produced, and starred in Citizen Kane—a movie that many have called the greatest American film ever made.

Maybe we should pay attention to this example of the power of the media and take most of what they say with a grain of salt! There's an old saying that goes "don't believe anything you hear and only half of what you see!" This should be even more important now that the election is so close! Makes sense, right?

How about coffee on the patio this morning? Temps are going back up to the 80s again today!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Spooky Monday Mystery...!

You just have to love the fact that there are so many good mysteries out there that haven't ever been solved.

It's a little comforting to know that even the "know-it-alls" in politics don't have a reasonable explanation for stories like this, know what I mean?

The Lead Masks Case

The Lead Masks Case refers to the discovery of the bodies of two electronic technicians in Brazil in 1966. The bodies were found in a field wearing impermeable coats and lead masks (usually used to protect against radiation – pictured above). Even stranger was the discovery of a small notebook beside the bodies with signs and numbers, and a letter in which was written: “16:30 be at the agreed place. 18:30 swallow capsules, after effect protect metals wait for the mask sign”. A waitress who was the last to see them alive said that one of them looked very nervous and kept glancing at his watch. There were no obvious injuries on the bodies. Gracinda Barbosa Cortino de Souza and her children, who lived next to the hill where the men died, claimed that they had seen a UFO flying over the spot at the exact moment the detectives believed the two men must have died.


Don't forget that Halloween is right around the corner, so stock up on goodies for the kids, OK?

Let's have our coffee on the patio on the patio this morning. It's cool, but the Sun is shining!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Already Sunday...!

I looked and looked until I found some really old 'toons that pertain to halloween.

Some of these are really old , with one from the '50s. Even though that's a long time ago, the content is still enjoyable to watch. We've certainly come a long way since these were made.

Some folks in my neighborhood kinda remind me of ol' Uncle Donald, ya know?

Maybe just one more?

Way back when I was a kid, we always had halloween parties we could attend and safe places we could go "trick or treating" without worrying about getting in trouble. I guess that those days are long gone. At times I miss those more innocent days!

Better have our coffee in the kitchen this morning. It's a little cool outside today, but just right in the kitchen!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

A Spooky Saturday...!

It seems like a good time to have a few more spooky stories, what with this being the season for spooks and goblins!

This particular story fits right in with the spirit of the season, I think! One of those "strange but true" things that no one can quite explain! Perfect, don't you think?

Green Children of Woolpit

The Green Children of Woolpit were two children who appeared in the village of Woolpit in Suffolk, UK, in the 12th century. The children were brother and sister and they had green colored skin. Their appearance was normal in all other areas. They spoke an unrecognized language and refused to eat anything other than pitch from bean pods. Eventually their skin lost its green color. When they learned English they explained that they were from the ‘Land of St Martin’ which was a dark place because the sun never rose far above the horizon. They claimed that they were tending their father’s herd and followed a river of light when they heard the sounds of bells – finding themselves in Woolpit.

Some of the more unusual theories proposed for the origin of the children are that they were Hollow Earth children, parallel dimension children, or Extraterrestrial children.


I've been green a couple of times in my life, but it usually is from eating something that wasn't good for me, ya know? However, what seemed to be the food of choice for these kids would have made me green for sure! Guess that it really is true..."to each his own!"

Coffee in the kitchen this morning. How about some apple slices and cheese?

Friday, October 26, 2012

Friday's Travels to Vlad's Castle...!

There are a number of places said to be the home of Vlad the Impaler, and this one is certainly tops on the list!

I don't want to go visit these places in person, but seeing them in pictures and reading about them is fine! Call me crazy, but I don't believe in pushing my luck...ya know?

I figure that as long as ghost leave me alone, I'll leave them alone in kind! Makes sense, right?

Poenari Castle

Do not be fooled by those who tell you to visit Bran Castle in Romania to see the home of the evil Vlad the Impaler (inspiration for Dracula). Bran castle is a tourist attraction and there is no known evidence that Vlad Tepes ever stayed there. However, not so far away is the ruin of Poenari Castle – Vlad’s real home in Wallachia. It was erected around the beginning of the 13th century by the first Romanian rulers in the South region of Romania. Around the 14th century, Poenari was the main citadel of the Basarab rulers. In the next few decades, the name and the residents changed a few times but eventually the castle was abandoned and left in ruins. However, in the 15th century, realizing the potential for a castle perched high on a steep precipice of rock, Vlad III the Impaler repaired and consolidated the structure, making it one of his main fortresses. After Vlad’s death the castle fell to ruin but it is still standing in part and is available for tourists. To reach the castle, visitors need to climb 1,500 steps. The castle is considered to be one of the most haunted places in the world!

More spooky places out there to explore and with Halloween close, we may have to do just that!

Coffee in the kitchen this morning. It's trying to rain and the wind is picking up!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Let's Talk Powdered Eggs...!

I am one of those strange folks that actually likes powdered eggs!

I don't know if it's because I ate them while I was in the service or what, but to me they taste just like real eggs...especially if they have lot's of black pepper and some hot sauce sprinkled on liberally!

With a side of bacon or ham, some flour gravy, and fresh biscuits and you have a great meal! I'm certainly not going to turn down a meal like this, that's for sure!

Anyway, I thought you might be interested in just how these eggs are processed, so I wanted to share the information with you. This information is courtesy of Steven Cyros at MREDepot. Good folks that I have dealt with before and have always been very satisfied!

Where did the idea come from, and how are they made today?

Powdered Whole Eggs (some times referred to as Spray-Dried Eggs or Dehydrated Eggs) have actually been around since the 1930's. They were developed by Albert Grant and Co of the Mile End Road - a cake manufacturer who was importing liquid eggs from China at the time. It was actually one of his staff that realized that the eggs were 95% water and therefore expensive to ship from the Orient. They built an experimental freeze drying plant and gave it a try. The end result after much trial and error was that a factory was ultimately set up in Singapore to process Chinese eggs.

As war approached Grant transferred his dried egg facility to Argentina. The patent was lifted by the British government during the war and many other suppliers came into the market, notably in the USA. Powdered eggs were used extensively throughout the Second World War for rationing and were widely used by troops in the field as well as at home during wartime shortages. They are actually still used by many restaurants today - not only in egg dishes, but especially in baking.

Today the process of creating powdered eggs has been simplified and is very cost effective compared to the earlier methods. The eggs are cracked and separated from their shell, then the liquid is pumped through hoses to the top of a large (50 to 70 foot tall) vacuum oven/chamber. Very fine nozzles spray a mist of eggs at the top of the tower, which is heated like an oven to pasteurize the eggs for safety, and the vacuum inside means that by the time the fine droplets of eggs reach the bottom of the chamber, it is in the form of a fine powder with an extremely low moisture content. Viola - Powdered or Spray Dried Whole egg.

The end result is an extremely safe product since it has been pasteurized immediately prior to drying, and the same motivation for their development is still the biggest selling feature - you don't have to pay to ship all of the water weight, and you get an extremely versatile product with a very long shelf life.

Again, thanks to Steven Cyros for the information. Always good to add to the information data bank, don't you think?

Coffee on the patio, weather permitting. A cold front is headed this way, but we should be OK until tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Western Wednesday History...!

This probably was one of the biggest accomplishments of the time, up until then!

Communication, or the lack thereof, had always been one of the biggest drawbacks in the development of the far west. Upon the completion of the coast to coast telegraph, the drive west was almost guaranteed!

Given how quickly the telegraph link was completed, I can't help but be amazed at this milestone of American history!

Oct 24, 1861:
Western Union completes the first transcontinental telegraph line

On this day in 1861, workers of the Western Union Telegraph Company link the eastern and western telegraph networks of the nation at Salt Lake City, Utah, completing a transcontinental line that for the first time allows instantaneous communication between Washington, D.C., and San Francisco. Stephen J. Field, chief justice of California, sent the first transcontinental telegram to President Abraham Lincoln, predicting that the new communication link would help ensure the loyalty of the western states to the Union during the Civil War.

The push to create a transcontinental telegraph line had begun only a little more than year before when Congress authorized a subsidy of $40,000 a year to any company building a telegraph line that would join the eastern and western networks. The Western Union Telegraph Company, as its name suggests, took up the challenge, and the company immediately began work on the critical link that would span the territory between the western edge of Missouri and Salt Lake City.

The obstacles to building the line over the sparsely populated and isolated western plains and mountains were huge. Wire and glass insulators had to be shipped by sea to San Francisco and carried eastward by horse-drawn wagons over the Sierra Nevada. Supplying the thousands of telegraph poles needed was an equally daunting challenge in the largely treeless Plains country, and these too had to be shipped from the western mountains. Indians also proved a problem. In the summer of 1861, a party of Sioux warriors cut part of the line that had been completed and took a long section of wire for making bracelets. Later, however, some of the Sioux wearing the telegraph-wire bracelets became sick, and a Sioux medicine man convinced them that the great spirit of the "talking wire" had avenged its desecration. Thereafter, the Sioux left the line alone, and the Western Union was able to connect the East and West Coasts of the nation much earlier than anyone had expected and a full eight years before the transcontinental railroad would be completed.

When you stop and think about it, we certainly have come a long way since this completion. It's mind blowing to see what man can do when they put their mind to it, don't you think?

Coffee on the patio this morning. Summer type weather is back and it's going to be hot!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Some Good News About Sears...!

I will be the first to admit that I had no idea about this information.

My baby Sis sent me this and, with the approaching holidays, I thought you might like to know it as well!

Sears - Christmas shopping this year.

I know I needed this reminder, since Sears isn't always my first choice. It's amazing when you think of how long the war has lasted and Sears hasn't withdrawn from their commitment. Could we each buy at least one thing at Sears this year?
What commitment you say?
How does Sears treat its employees who are serving in our military? By law , they are required to hold their jobs open and available, but nothing more. Usually, people take a big pay cut and lose benefits as a result of being on active duty.
Sears is voluntarily paying the difference in salaries and maintaining all benefits, including medical insurance and bonus programs, for all employees who are serving.

I submit that Sears is an exemplary corporate citizen and should be recognized for its contribution. I suggest we all shop at Sears at least once this year. Be sure to find a manager to tell them why we are there so the company gets the positive reinforcement & feedback it well deserves.

Pass it on.

I decided to check this before I sent it forward. So I sent the following e-mail to the Sears Customer Service Department:

I received this e-mail and I would like to know if it is true. If it is, the internet may have just become one very good source of advertisement for your company. I know I would go out of my way to buy products from Sears instead of another store for a like item, even if it's cheaper at that store.

This is their answer to my e-mail:

Dear Customer:
Thank you for contacting Sears. The information is factual. We appreciate your positive feedback. Sears regards service to our country as one of greatest sacrifices our men and women can make. This is the " least" we can do for them.
We are happy to do our part to lessen the burden they bear at this time.

Bill Thorn
Sears Customer Care

Please pass this on . Sears needs to be recognized for this outstanding contribution and we need to show them as Americans, we do appreciate what they are doing for our Military!!!

It's verified! By:

It's always nice to find out that some of the larger retailers are not all about the money from time to time, don't you think?

Coffee on the patio this morning. I'll set out some brownies to share!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Moon Mystery For Monday...!

Now this is the kind of mystery we can all appreciate! At least, I think it is.

Some of this information I knew and some of it I haven't heard before! That makes it even more appealing to me, ya know? A new mystery is always worth checking out!

Spaceship Moon Theory

Over the years, it has been scientifically observed that the Earth’s Moon holds some strange characteristics. The Moon is the 5th largest natural satellite in the Solar System. It is believed to have been created by a giant impact between the young Earth and a Mars-sized body. After examination, it has been noted that the Moon is apparently in the wrong orbit for its size, according to its current assumed density. Astronomy data indicates that the internal regions of the Moon are less dense than the outer, giving rise to the inevitable speculation that it could be hollow. Some of these claims come from the fact that when meteors strike the Moon, it rings like a bell. More specifically, when the Apollo crew, on November 20, 1969, released the lunar module, after returning to the orbiter, the module impact with the Moon caused their seismic equipment to register a continuous reverberation like a bell for more than an hour.

In July of 1970, members of the then Soviet Academy of Sciences, Michael Vasin and Alexander Shcherbakov, proposed the Spaceship Moon Theory. The pseudoscientific theory claims that the Earth’s moon may actually be an alien spacecraft. Vasin and Shcherbakov’s thesis was that the Moon is a hollowed-out planetoid created by unknown beings with technology far superior to any on Earth. Huge machines would have been used to melt rock and form large cavities within the Moon. The Moon would, therefore, consist of a hull-like inner shell and an outer shell made from metallic rocky slag. The “Spaceship Moon” was then placed into orbit around the Earth. Proponents of this theory point to the increased reports and pictures of UFOs taken by NASA on their missions to the moon. It has been found that asteroids and meteors not only create shallow craters on the Moon’s surface, but produce a convex floor to the crater instead of concave as expected, supporting the idea of a rigid shell.

The moon is far older than previously expected, maybe even older than the Earth or the Sun. The oldest age for the Earth is estimated to be 4.6 billion years old, while Moon rocks were dated at 5.3 billion years. The chemical composition of the dust upon which the rocks sit is remarkably different from the rocks themselves. This indicates that the lunar surface may have been moved from somewhere else and placed on the Moon. Some of the Moon’s craters originated internally, yet there is no indication that the Moon was ever hot enough to produce volcanic eruptions. Hundreds of moonquakes are recorded each year that cannot be attributed to meteor strikes. Some of the quakes seem to follow a specific schedule.

The moon’s crust is much harder than originally presumed. When NASA was recorded drilling down a few inches into the Moon’s surface, it appeared that metal shavings were visible. Earth’s moon is the only natural satellite in the Solar System that has a stationary, near-perfect circular orbit. How does one explain the coincidence that the moon is just the right distance, coupled with just the right diameter, to completely cover the sun during an eclipse? Professional astronomers have been gradually discouraged from investigating a phenomenon that has been reported on the Moon for 1,000 years. It is short-lived light, color, or other changes in the appearance of the lunar surface, referred to as Transient Lunar Phenomena. Read more at

I think that this universe of ours is so filled with mysteries, we may never even scratch the service as far as discovering them all! Guess that gives future generations something to look forward to, don't you think?

I think we had better have our coffee out on the patio this morning. snacks, but the weather is great!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Ready For The Sunday 'Toons...?

What would our Sundays be without some 'toons?

Nothing earthshaking today, just a little taste of Sylvester ! I reckon that we might find a grin or two in there somewhere!

Maybe another one, just for luck?

That should do it for now. It's really too nice to stay inside, don't you think?

Coffee out on the patio sounds good. How about some donut holes to go along with it?

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Saturday Fun Facts...!

Today I want to do something just a little bit different, OK?

I searched long and hard (not!) to find these tid-bits of information, so I hope you'll find them interesting! If you don't, don't won't hurt my feelings!

1. Fingernails grow four times faster than toenails

2. Right handed people live, on average, nine years longer than left-handed people

3. If you rub an onion on your foot – within 30 – 60 minutes you will be able to taste it – this is because it travels through the blood stream

4. You can’t kill yourself by holding your breath (if you hold it until you go unconscious, you begin to breath normally as soon as you do)

5. On one square inch of human skin there are 20 million microscopic creatures

6. Armadillos are the only creatures apart from men that can catch leprosy – there are known cases of armadillo to human transfers of the disease

7. A snail can sleep for 3 – 4 years – during which period it does not need food

8. Giraffes can live longer without water than camels

9. The songs of humpback whales can change dramatically from year to year, yet each whale in an oceanwide population always sings the same song as the others

10. The forces required to remove a foot from quicksand at a speed of one centimeter per second would require the same amount of force as “that needed to lift a medium-sized car.”

11. To test if a pearl is real, you can rub vinegar on it – the composition of the pearl will cause it to bubble furiously

12. Goldfish kept in a dark room turn much paler – and if it wasn’t for the color in the food they eat, they would turn completely white

13. Unlike normal bees, the Queen bee’s stinger is not barbed and can be used repeatedly without harming her

14. Quicksand doesn’t directly kill humans as it is usually not very deep at all – it is the fact that it can be incredibly difficult to remove yourself from quicksand that causes death by the environment – such as exposure.

15. Oysters can change between being female or male

16. Men are over 30% stronger than women on average, especially in the upper body, and men’s brains are heavier than women’s

Some of these are fairly interesting, don't you think? I'm surprised that I haven't posted these before. In fact, I may have done that, but if I did I forgot! Not surprising considering my memories now days!

Coffee out on the patio this morning. I still have some pumpkin pie if you want a slice!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Friday Traveling To Alabama...!

I figured that since it's close to Halloween, we would visit some haunted places near home.

What makes this story so interesting is that the town of Carrollton, Alabama fully accepts that the courthouse is haunted. That's unusual to say the least! Most of the time, townships and other authorities always try and deny things like this!

Pickens County Courthouse

Face In The Courthouse

The Pickens County Courthouse in Carrollton, Alabama is a courthouse in west Alabama famous for a ghostly image that can be seen in one of its windows. The image is said to be the face of Henry Wells, who, as legend has it, was falsely accused of burning down the town’s previous courthouse, and lynched on a stormy night in 1878. The image on the window is easily seen, although it is more face-like from some angles than from others. It is said that the image is only visible from outside the courthouse; from inside the pane appears to be a normal pane of glass. Since the photo above was taken, the city of Carrollton has installed, on the exterior of the courthouse, a reflective highway sign with an arrow pointing to the pane where the image appears. There are permanent binoculars installed across the street from the window for people who wish to get a closer look.

Spooky road trip, wouldn't you say? Probably close to home for some of you, and for the rest of us I'd be willing to bet that places like this are just around the corner!

Coffee on the patio this morning. Cold front is coming in, and it's supposed to get all the way down to the high 60s until about noon!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Let's Talk Salt...!

Salt has always been at the center of many discussions about health.

One group says salt should be used very sparingly, while the other side argues that salt is actually good for you and it's use only promotes good health! Regardless which way you think, this article from Listverse points out some very interesting facts.

Salt Kills

Fallacy: Salt kills

Salt is a naturally occurring substance that, when added to low-salt food, enhances and deepens flavor. The human body has around 1% salt in it and this is constantly removed through urination, sweating, etc. The salt is essential to our health so we need to replace it through our diet. Excess salt does not cause a high salt percentage – our bodies are smart enough to handle it. If you eat too much salt you just pee it out. There may be some negative impacts on the body through extremely high consumption of salt in those with blood or heart disorders, but the average healthy human can quite happily over-consume the substance without ill-effect. To kill yourself with salt, you need to consume about 1 gram per kilo of body weight. In other words, if you weigh 130 pounds you need to eat around 5 tablespoons of salt – an immense amount of salt and you would probably vomit before you could finish it (because salt is an emetic).

Did you know: Before Biblical Judaism ceased to exist, salt was mixed with animal sacrifices. This originated from Moses in Leviticus 2:13 which states: “Whatsoever sacrifice thou offerest, thou shalt season it with salt, neither shalt thou take away the salt of the covenant of thy God from thy sacrifice. In all thy oblations thou shalt offer salt.” The salt was a symbol of wisdom and discretion. [Stolen with impunity from one of my previous lists.]

Personally, I like salt and I use it on nearly everything I cook or eat. So far it hasn't hurt me, as far as I can tell!

Let's go to the patio for coffee this morning. I have some fresh pumpkin pie to share!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Western Wednesday With The Rangers...!

By the Rangers I don't mean the modern day sports team, but the Texas Rangers of old!

Probably better known than just about any other group in the old west, the Rangers did a lot in taking many of the worse outlaws and their cohorts out of circulation. Still active today, they remain a force to be reckoned with, that's for sure! There is an old saying about the Rangers..."One riot, one Ranger!"

Oct 17, 1835:
The first resolution formally creating the Texas Rangers is approved

On this day in 1835, Texans approve a resolution to create the Texas Rangers, a corps of armed and mounted lawmen designed to "range and guard the frontier between the Brazos and Trinity Rivers."

In the midst of their revolt against Mexico, Texan leaders felt they needed a semi-official force of armed men who would defend the isolated frontier settlers of the Lone Star Republic against both Santa Ana's soldiers and hostile Indians; the Texas Rangers filled this role. But after winning their revolutionary war with Mexico the following year, Texans decided to keep the Rangers, both to defend against Indian and Mexican raiders and to serve as the principal law enforcement authority along the sparsely populated Texan frontier.

Although created and sanctioned by the Texas government, the Rangers was an irregular body made up of civilians who furnished their own horses and weapons. Given the vast expanse of territory they patrolled and the difficulty of communicating with the central government, the government gave the men of the Rangers considerable independence to act as they saw fit. Sometimes the Rangers served as a military force, taking on the role of fighting the Indians that in the U.S. was largely the responsibility of the Army. At other times the Rangers mainly served as the principal law enforcement power in many frontier regions of Texas, earning lasting fame for their ability to track down and eliminate outlaws, cattle thieves, train robbers, and murderers, including such notorious bandits as John Wesley Hardin and King Fisher.

Even as late as the first two decades of the 20th century, the state of Texas continued to rely on the Rangers to enforce order in the wilder regions of the state, like the oil boomtowns along the Rio Grande. Increasingly, though, some Texans began to criticize the Rangers, arguing that they used excessive violence and often failed to observe the finer points of the law when apprehending suspects. As a result, in the 1930s, the state won control over the Rangers, transforming it into a modern and professional law enforcement organization.

No doubt the Texas Rangers will always have a spot in the history of the early west and will remain as heroes in the hearts of Texans everywhere!

Coffee inside today. It looks like rain and we better not take a chance!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

I'm Ready For Some Fall...!

We've had maybe two or three days of Fall weather so far and bluntly, I want some more!

Ol' Buddy is ready for some as well, I think. It should be interesting since he really has not experienced any cold weather in his short life. All he has known up to this point is warm and sunny weather!

He has learned that the patio is a good spot to catch a nap and that he has plenty of company at the patio table if he waits long enough. He has adopted one particular chair as his own, and that's the one that he wants to get in! Here he is, waiting on the coffee crowd to show!

When he is inside, one of his favorite spots is in my rocking chair, especially if it's full of clothes waiting to be put away!

I'm thinking that if I could get as comfortable as my cat for just a few minutes a day, I'd feel great! Anyone with a pet probably knows just what I mean!

Coffee on the patio this morning. Watch out for o' Buddy, 'cause he likes to drink coffee right out of the cup! He doesn't like milk, but he does enjoy a lick or two of coffee! Strange!

Monday, October 15, 2012

I Love A Good Monday Mystery...!

One of the great things about doing research for a certain topic is the fact that there are so many articles out there, the reading can be very interesting.

Many of the mysteries I look at are unsolved, which leads to some major mental exercise. This can be a good thing, but never seems to answer any questions about the mystery itself. That's a bit unsatisfying at times!

The Mad Gasser of Mattoon

The Mad Gasser of Mattoon was the name given to the person or persons believed to be behind a series of apparent gas attacks that occurred in Botetourt County, Virginia, during the early 1930s, and in Mattoon, Illinois, during the mid-1940s. The first reported gasser incident occurred at the home of Cal Huffman, in Haymakertown, Botetourt County, where there were three reported attacks over the course of a single night.

At about 10:00 pm on December 22, 1933, Mrs. Huffman reported smelling an unusual odor, and was overcome by a feeling of nausea. The odor and the nausea returned again at about 10:30pm, at which time Cal Huffman contacted the police. A third attack occurred around 1:00 a.m., this time affecting the entire house; in total, eight members of the Huffman family were affected by the gas, along with Ashby Henderson, a guest staying at the house.

The next recorded incident occurred in Cloverdale on December 24. Clarence Hall, his wife, and their two children returned from a church service at about 9:00 p.m. They detected a strong, sweet odor and immediately began to feel weak and nauseated. Police investigating the case discovered that a nail had been pulled from a rear window, near where the gas appeared to be the most concentrated, and presumed that the nail hole had been used to inject it into the house. A third incident occurred on December 27, in which Troutville resident A. Kelly and his mother reported similar signs and symptoms to the Huffman and Hall cases. A fourth and fifth incident occurred on January 10, when Mrs. Moore, a guest in home of Haymakertown resident Homer Hylton, reported hearing voices outside before gas was injected into the room through a damaged window. The second attack that night was reported in Troutville, at the home of G. Kinzie.

At least 10 other cases were reported in Botetourt, and 10 years later, over 20 new cases were reported in Mattoon. One witness claimed to have seen the gasser and described “him” as a tall thin woman dressed as a man and footprints belonging to a woman were discovered at some of the scenes.

From time to time I notice a strange smelling gas around my place, but I usually just blame it on the cat!

I guess we best have our coffee in the kitchen this morning. I'll make biscuits and gravy, OK?

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Guess What's On Today...?

I know! I know...! Cartoons again!

But, after all it is Sunday, right? We always do cartoons on Sunday!

One more Foghorn Leghorn, just because I like the way this guy talks! Must be a southern thing!

I can't help it! Cartoons always make me smile a bit! Guess I'm a kid at heart! Either that or I'm having my second childhood...or is it my third?

Better have coffee in the kitchen this morning. Supposed to start raining soon, but you know how accurate these weather guys are!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Slightly Different Saturday Snacks...!

I thought I would find us a little different snack to have while watching the Saturday night movie!

Since the movie of choice for Saturday night will be a monster movie, it seems on right to have a monster of a snack! Sort of a "Frankensnack" if you will!

Actually, I found this recipe while browsing the web, and it was strange enough to share with all of you. Truth be told, it really doesn't sound all that bad! I might try it!

Here’s How to Make Corn Dog Brownies

October 12, 2012 // 12:04 pm // By: Becky McKay

You know how sometimes you are really into two different things, and you think putting them together is a great idea, but it’s really not? Pottery and break dancing. Kittens and hang gliding. Drinking and operating heavy machinery.

This is not one of those times.

You’re bonkers for brownies and crazy for corn dogs, so it’s only right that you put them together in one awesome dinner/dessert of epig (get it!?!?) proportions.

Corn Dog Brownies


2 boxes of your favorite brownie mix
4 eggs
2 sticks (16T) butter, melted
30 frozen mini corn dogs (They come in packs of 40. You know what to do with the rest.)


Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line a 9×13 pan with non-stick foil (or use sticky foil and grease it).
Mix brownie, eggs, and butter in the biggest bowl you own.
Chop corn dogs in half and stir into brownie batter.
Pour and smash the pork-laden batter into the foil-lined pan and bake for 55 to 65 minutes.
Let cool for a long as you can stand it, cut, consume, and cry-gasm.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, these corn dogs taste like donuts….with pork in them. So yes, I think they taste great apart and great together, and I know you will too. (Especially if you add in your previously mentioned love of drinking.)

To be honest, I'd eat this...I think! BTW, this recipe came from right here!

Coffee on the patio this morning. Anyone want some brownies?

Friday, October 12, 2012

Chicken Little Was Right...!

You all know the story...where Chicken Little runs around telling everyone that the sky was falling! Seems like he might have been right after all!

I've heard some pretty strange stories as of late, but this one ranks right up there with the best! Guess the Aliens have moved on from cow mutilations to chicken mutilations. I can't help but wonder what will be next!

It's raining chicken
By Carol Vaughn, The (Salisbury, Md.) Daily TimesShare

10:27AM EST October 10. 2012 - ASSAWOMAN, Va. -- A teen's horseback riding lesson ended abruptly after a foot-long hunk of raw chicken that fell out of a cloudless sky hit her in the head.

Fortunately, what hit Cassie Bernard last week was the smallest of three or more poultry parts that rained down as owner Jennifer Cording was giving a lesson to a group of advanced students while several parents looked on.

"Three objects fell out of the sky in front of us, two larger and one quite small," Cording said.

Bernard, who was not injured, was wearing a riding helmet when the chicken hit her. Protecting a rider from unidentified flying chicken parts is not the helmet's normal function, but it did the trick.

Officials from a nearby Tyson Foods Inc. processing plant denied that the flying chicken parts originated there. No matter what brand of chicken fell, a scientist later said high-flying seagulls probably were involved.

A Virginia Department of Environmental Quality official said the agency will investigate.

Land Protection Manager Milton Johnston of the department's Tidewater office said the parts more likely came from improperly composted dead chickens being spread on a nearby farm. Staffers at the regional office with more than a quarter century's tenure said they have not encountered a similar complaint.

"We can't have pieces of chicken falling out of the sky," Johnston said.

Everybody at the farm looked up to see where the strange objects came from, but the clear blue sky didn't hold any clues.

"It was kind of odd; it made me think about the movie back in the 1980s, The Gods Must be Crazy," said Bruce Penland, who was at the farm. The comedy recounts the strange chain of events that occurs after a soda bottle falls from the sky and lands among a primitive tribe in the Kalahari Desert.

Avian expert Bryan D. Watts, director of the Center for Conservation Biology at the College of William and Mary, said high-flying gulls likely are to blame.

"I doubt it would be vultures because they don't typically carry things and they don't regurgitate in the air. … It's more likely gulls, which we know carry chicken parts," Watts said.

When scientists from the center monitored gull colonies in seaside marshes on the Eastern Shore of Virginia in the past they encountered "a lot of chicken bones" coming from the area, he said.

Cording's farm is located between those marshes and a poultry-processing facility in Temperanceville, Va., about 3 miles to the west as the crow, or gull, flies.

Watts said while the parts pose no threat, "the concern it brings up is the parts are supposed to be disposed of or covered. They are not supposed to be available to scavengers."

Tyson Foods Inc. spokesman Worth Sparkman said the company doesn't know where the parts came from.

"When we transport by-products, our trucks are loaded inside (and) are covered with tarps," Sparkman said, adding trailers carrying byproducts are unloaded in covered areas and each is washed after it is emptied.

Cording called an early end to the lesson after the bizarre incident, followed within the next half hour by one of her steadiest horses running away with a rider and another horse crashing through a jump.

"It was one of those things around here that gives us something to talk about," said Cording, adding, "It was a weird night."

It's pretty warm outside, so we will have our coffee on the patio. I think some biscuits and sausage are in order!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Some Snack Food History...!

Since we all seem to like some snack food from time to time, I thought a little history of one of the favorites might be in order.

This piece of trivia was actually new to me, so I figured it was worth sharing! The information actually came from Dan Lewis over at "Now I Know!"

Disneyland, the iconic theme park in Anaheim, California, officially opened its gates for the first time on July 17, 1955. The park quickly became a cultural touchstone around the world. In 1959, Nikita Khrushchev, the Soviet Premier, visited the United States and requested to visit the park; this request was famously denied. A few years later, the Shah of Iran visited the park and rode the Matterhorn roller coaster with Walt Disney himself. (There's even a video of the ride, replete with campy music, available here.) Disneyland bridged cultures in a way few others have.

Perhaps realizing the future value of an association with Disneyland, Charles Elmer Doolin, the founder and then-CEO of the Frito Company, sought to open a restaurant at the park just months after its opening. That restaurant, named "Casa de Fritos," strived to introduce Mexican cuisine (loosely defined) to a world of tourists (and to a lesser degree, locals) who typically did not have an opportunity to experience such food. The restaurant was probably more a marketing scheme than itself a moneymaker. Fritos-brand corn chips were the ubiquitous snack at the Casa --
according to a tribute site called "DaveLand" (which has many historic photos of the restaurant) there was even a "Fritos Kid" vending machine selling Fritos for a nickel. Doolin and company hoped that Casa de Fritos would introduce a new generation of consumers to their corn chips, and Fritos would be the one "Mexican" thing tourists would continue to purchase when they returned home from vacation.

As any Mexican restaurant would, Casa de Fritos sold tortillas. They did not make them on-site. Rather, they purchased them from a local food distributor named Alex Foods. It is a fool's errand to try and guess exactly the right number of tortillas needed for any given day, and one does not want to run out, so Casa de Fritos regularly purchased more than needed.
According to OC Weekly, at one point in the 1960s, one of the Alex Foods salesmen saw the wasted tortillas at Casa de Fritos and suggested that the chefs cut them up and fry them, turning them into chips. The chefs took the salesman's advice, added some Mexican seasonings, and gave them to customers.

They were a hit. By the mid-1960s, Arch West, then Fritos' Vice President of Marketing, noticed the popularity of the chips and approached Alex Foods about making them at scale, intending to produce them as a regional snack food. West and his team came up with a name for the chip -- a Spanish word meaning "little golden things" -- and found that their successes as Casa de Fritos were not only replicated, but exceeded. In 1966, these chips -- which we now know as Doritos -- were a hit nationwide.

Today, Frito-Lay sells
roughly $4 to $5 billion worth of Doritos each year.

Don't you just love food history? Only trouble is, this kind of history always makes me a little hungry! Now I need a snack!
Coffee on the patio this morning. Might need some shade, as the temps are going back toward the 90s!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Custer On Western Wednesday...!

So many of the early legends as we know them were formed of mostly one sided tales of the times!

If the true story were told, many of them weren't nearly as exciting as we would want to believe. Custer was certainly one of those characters, without a doubt! Today for Western Wednesday, let's look at the often controversial figure under a slightly different light! Thanks to the folks at for this article!

Oct 10, 1877: 
Custer's funeral is held at West Point


On this day in 1877, the U.S. Army holds a West Point funeral with full military honors for Lieutenant-Colonel George Armstrong Custer. Killed the previous year in Montana by Sioux and Cheyenne Indians at the Battle of the Little Big Horn, Custer's body had been returned to the East for burial on the grounds of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, where Custer had graduated in 1861-at the bottom of his class.

Even before the Battle of the Little Big Horn, Custer had won national fame as a bold-and some said foolhardy-Civil War commander who eventually became the youngest major general in the U.S. Army. A handsome man, famous for his long blond hair (though he cut it short while in the field), Custer, even after the Civil War, continued to attract the appreciative attention of newspapers and the nation as a lieutenant colonel in the 7th Cavalry, a unit recently created to fight in the western Indian wars. Reports that Custer treated deserters of the 7th with unnecessary cruelty and overworked his soldiers led to a court-martial and conviction in 1867. But Custer redeemed himself, at least in the eyes of some, with his subsequent attack on a winter camp of Cheyenne in on the Washita River. Others, though, faulted Custer for attacking a peaceful band of Cheyenne and leaving behind some of his men when he withdrew from the battle under cover of night.

Though Custer was controversial in his day, his spectacular death at the Little Big Horn transformed him into a beloved martyr in the eyes of many Americans, especially those who were calling for wholesale war against the Indians. Some newspapers began to refer to Custer as the "American Murat," a reference to a famous martyr of the French Revolution, and they called for decisive retaliation against the "treacherous Indians" who had murdered the golden-haired general. Others refused to believe that Custer's own tactical mistakes could alone explain the disaster at Little Big Horn, and they instead sought to place the blame on the shoulders of other commanders who had been at the battle. (Tellingly, no one suggested that clever tactics and leadership by the Indians might have been the cause for Custer's defeat.) Custer's widow, Elizabeth, also worked to transform her husband into a legend by writing several adulatory books chronicling his career. Hundreds of other books and movies, many of them more fiction than history, helped cement the image of Custer as the great fallen leader of the Indian wars in many American minds.

Custer's status as a national hero and martyr only began to be seriously questioned in the 1960s, and since then he has often been portrayed as a vain and glory-seeking man whose own ineptitude was all the explanation needed for the massacre at Little Big Horn. The truth about George Custer is probably somewhere in between these two extremes.

Like I said, maybe just an average man with more than his fair share of attention! Some of it good, some of it bad! Probably we will never know just which Custer is the real one, but that's OK. After all, what would the stories of the early West be without a legend or two?

Coffee on the patio this morning! Temps are headed back up to the high 80s again!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Spooky Gravesites...!

With Halloween just around the corner, This might make for some interesting post.

Burial customs are sometimes very different from culture to culture, and because of those differences often seem strange or spooky to others.

Even in our own country, the burial customs change from generation to generation. Many times we look back and say "why did they do that?"


Logierait Parish Church, Scotland

Victorians. What a wacky bunch they were. When they weren’t swanning around the seaside in full body swim suits they were sipping turtle soup, enjoying their tenth meal of the day. But when they weren’t doing either of those things they were, evidently, putting cages over burial plots. But was this weird act to keep the dead from getting out or to keep the gravediggers from getting in? Rather disappointingly mortsafes were exactly that, ‘safes for the dead,’ placed over plots to deter robbers looking to sell body parts to local medical intuitions. Shame. The Victorians could have done with a bit of zombie in their lives.

Probably some of our customs will eventually seem strange to someone in the future, providing, of course, that there is a future!

I think we'll have our coffee on the patio this morning. The weather is supposed to start warming up again today. Guess we have had our 2 days of Fall!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Merry Monday Mystery...!

I like finding these Monday mysteries! It makes the start of the week a little more interesting, I think.

This one is another from the long ago past. It truly makes you wonder just what else from our past we haven't uncovered yet!

The Dropa Stones

In 1938, an archaeological expedition led by Dr. Chi Pu Tei into the Baian-Kara-Ula mountains of China made an astonishing discovery in some caves that had apparently been occupied by some ancient culture. Buried in the dust of ages on the cave floor were hundreds of stone disks. Measuring about nine inches in diameter, each had a circle cut into the center and was etched with a spiral groove, making it look for all the world like some ancient phonograph record some 10,000 to 12,000 years old. The spiral groove, it turns out, is actually composed of tiny hieroglyphics that tell the incredible story of spaceships from some distant world that crash-landed in the mountains. The ships were piloted by people who called themselves the Dropa, and the remains of whose descendants, possibly, were found in the cave.

Pretty interesting find, wouldn't you say? Something like this could keep the researchers busy for a really long time, I reckon!

Coffee in the kitchen this morning. Still a little cool in the morning and the kitchen is nice and warm!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Sunday Smiles...!

Well, you know what Sunday means, right?

I realize that we have had a lot of Roadrunner cartoons lately, so I thought today we would change over to Tom and Jerry. These guys have been around for a very long time, and even at my age I enjoy them! Guess my "inner kid" is showing through!

Ya know, the way I see it is that having something like cartoons once in a while, is like taking a day off! Only thing, it's a day off that others can enjoy a little as well! Does that make any sense? I hope so!

Ya know, it's just a few weeks until all the year end fun begins! I'm talking Halloween, Mom's birthday, my birthday, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and somewhere in there...the election! Oh, and I almost forgot the end of the Mayan calender! Sounds like plenty of opportunity for some crazy times, doesn't it? Guess we all had better buckle up! Could be a rocky ride!

Let's have our coffee inside this morning. Should be a cold front moving in and I want to stay warm!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

J.F.K. Encouraged Prepping...!

I found this to be interesting, to say the least!

If I knew this before now, I had forgotten it. Guess we were a lot closer to major disaster than any of us thought! I have tried in vain to find a copy of that speech, even knowing it's out there somewhere! Maybe some of you will have better luck than I!

Oct 6, 1961:
Kennedy urges Americans to build bomb shelters

President John F. Kennedy, speaking on civil defense, advises American families to build bomb shelters to protect them from atomic fallout in the event of a nuclear exchange with the Soviet Union. Kennedy also assured the public that the U.S. civil defense program would soon begin providing such protection for every American. Only one year later, true to Kennedy's fears, the world hovered on the brink of full-scale nuclear war when the Cuban Missile Crisis erupted over the USSR's placement of nuclear missiles in Cuba. During the tense 13-day crisis, some Americans prepared for nuclear war by buying up canned goods and completing last-minute work on their backyard bomb shelters.

Who knows what effect a statement like that coming from the White House in today's world would have? Might just be something we don't ever want to hear!

Let's have our coffee out on the patio this morning. Be careful, the hummingbirds are getting very aggressive!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Traveling This Friday To Devon, England...!

The reason I wanted us to travel here is because of this grave.

There are some fairly unusual burial places in the world, but not many have this kind of history. This site is peaceful and sad at the same time, if you know what I mean.

At least this person has not been totally forgotten. That's something good, I think.

Kitty Jay

Manaton, Devon, England

Colloquially called Jay’s Grave this rather nondescript mound of grass has been baffling Devonians for years. Thought to be the resting place of a suicide victim of the late 1700s the grave situated within the eerie depths of Dartmoor has become a cult haunting spot for ghost-chasers. Due to the religion led ignominy towards ‘self-murder’ in the 18th century, Kitty Jay was denied a church plot in consecrated ground and instead was buried at crossroads so that her spirit would remain confused and never be able to find its way to the afterlife. Someone somewhere certainly has sympathy with Kitty because fresh flowers are regularly placed on the grave and despite numerous investigations, paranormal and otherwise, no one has ever come claimed responsibly for the frequent floral tributes.

See what I mean about this final resting place being both peaceful and sad at the same time?

Let's brighten things up just a bit by having our coffee on the patio. It's kinda nice out this morning!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Foodie Fact Thursday...!

Here's something a little different for ya today!

Since the unusual makes for a good read, an article like this is perfect for what we need to get the bad taste of politics out of our systems. In fact, this type of article is much more educational than a whole basket of politicians speeches, if you know what I mean!

Carrots Were Originally Purple

Carrots are mutants.

Well, orange carrots at least. Originally, purple carrots were the norm, but there were some offshoots — yellow and white ones appeared in the wild. Over time, somehow, 17th century Dutch carrot growers managed to cultivate these yellow and white ones carrots into the orange ones we are familiar with today.

The purple ones still do exist, but by far are the minority in the world of carrot colors. Want to try some? Beware — there may be a good reason why purple carrots are now the uncommon breed: the orange ones taste better. In fact, orange carrots may be a superfood of sorts when it comes to taste. A recent study showed that children said foods tasted better if favored cartoon character appeared on a box, with one food excepted: carrots.

This little know fact comes from a newsletter put out by a guy named Dan Lewis. The newsletter is named "Now I Know!" and is well worth taking a look at!

Coffee in the kitchen this morning. Today I have some cheese coffee cake! OK?

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Another Western Wednesday...!

It's time again for western Wednesday!

Today let's take a look at just one of the incidents stemming from the hostilities between the native Americans and the military of the day! At best, the road to peace was a long and rocky one! Some might say that it remains a struggle to this day!

I got the following information from the good folks over at, a very good source for historical information! Check it out when you have time!

Oct 3, 1873
U.S. Army hangs four Modoc Indians for the murder of a Civil War hero

On this day in 1873, the United States military hangs four Indians found guilty of murdering the Civil War hero, General Edward Canby, during the Modoc War in Oregon. Canby was the highest ranking military official--and the only general--ever killed by Indians.

As with most of the American military conflicts with Indians, the Modoc war began with a struggle over land. A treaty signed in 1864 had forced a band of Modoc Indians under the leadership of Chief Keintpoos-known to Americans as Captain Jack--to move to a reservation in southeastern Oregon dominated by Klamath Indians, who viewed the Modoc as unwelcome intruders on their traditional lands. Frustrated with the ill--treatment they received at the hands of the Klamath, Captain Jack and his followers abandoned the reservation in 1870 and returned to their former territory and traditional hunter-gatherer life.

But during their six-year absence, white settlers had flooded into the Modoc's former territory. Despite Captain Jack's repeated assurances that his people wanted only peace, many feared the Indians. In 1872, bowing to public pressure, the U.S. dispatched military forces to remove the Modoc and force them back onto the reservation. When some of the more hotheaded Modoc resisted, war broke out; and the Modoc fled to a stronghold among the Lava Beds south of Tule Lake, where they succeeded in holding off U.S. forces for almost half a year.

During the early months of the Modoc War, Captain Jack had strongly opposed armed resistance and continuously searched for a peaceful solution. But under pressure from more aggressive Modoc who were challenging his leadership, he made the fatal error of agreeing to a plan to kill the leader of the American forces, General Edward Canby. On April 11, 1873, Canby and two other men entered the Modoc stronghold under a flag of truce, hoping to negotiate a peaceful end to the conflict. Captain Jack murdered Canby, and other Modoc killed one of his companions. The third man escaped to give a detailed report of the Modoc's treachery.

Outraged by the murder of an honored Civil War hero, Americans demanded swift retribution. The Army stepped up its attacks on the Modoc, and by early June Captain Jack and his followers had been captured. After a military trial at Fort Klamath, Oregon, Captain Jack and three other Modoc leaders were found guilty of murder and hanged. As a result of the Modoc War and the murder of Canby, the U.S. began to take a much more aggressive approach to dealing with Indian problems throughout the nation.

It's hailing just a few miles to the south of here, so I think we'll have our coffee inside this morning. Pull up another chair to the kitchen table, OK?

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Let's Talk Spiders...!

Not just any spider, but one that is really unique, to say the least!

Now you know that here at the Hermit's, we pride ourselves on finding the unusual! Today's topic certainly fills that bill!

I've seen some really ugly critters in my life, but this guy looks to me like he was hit multiple times with the preverbial "ugly stick", ya know?

Bird dung crab spider

This spider has one of the most effective camouflages of all animals; its body is covered on blobs and warts that give it the appearance of a fresh piece of bird excrement; it often produces a small thread of white silk and sits on it so that it looks like the white stains caused by bird droppings falling onto leaves. And as if this was not amazing enough, it also smells like poop. This camouflage has a double function; it makes the spider a rather unappetizing prey for most animals (especially birds themselves), and it serves as a lure for the small, excrement-loving insects which are the spider’s favorite prey. These spiders are found in Asia, from Indonesia to Japan.

I told ya this thing was ugly! Believe me, I know ugly! Remember, I've been married more than once...and this fellow would have fit in at some of the family reunions I attended during those times!

I think we'll have our coffee out on the patio this morning. It's nice and cool out and that Autumn smell is actually in the air!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Good Monday Mystery...!

Today is the first day of October, so it's time for a great Monday mystery!

I swear that I can't keep up with how fast the time gets away from me. I'm not quite sure where September went, but gone it is! Let's hope that I can get a better handle on how fast my time is passing!

Hopefully this little mystery will slow things down a tad, ya know?

Angel Hair

 Angel Hair is a rare phenomenon that has so far defied explanation. It is made up of silken threads that rain down on to the earth, but reach out to touch it and it will almost certainly vanish before your eyes. It is a world wide phenomenon with the most regular occurrences from North America, New Zealand, Australia, and western Europe. There is no known proof for what causes this substance, or even what it is made up of. Speculations are that it has come from Spiders or another type of silk-spinning insect, and even UFO’s as it has often been associated with UFO sightings. Because of its sensitive nature, it has been difficult to collect, and to analyse as it is subject to contamination from car exhaust fumes, and even human contact, which could skew the chemical results.

The rain has been coming around daily and the temps have dropped a bit, so it's coffee in the kitchen this morning. That OK?