Friday, June 25, 2010



I'm just finishing a wonderful medium sized residence in Graton are for the world's best client. I knew if I stayed with this long enough I would encounter him. Harry Carr is a doctor here in Sonoma County, a batchelor who has a rare affliction, good taste in design. 2400 square foot with three bedrooms, the house has three heating/AC zones, ceiling heights that vary with the use (Basic 8'' general, 10' at kitchen & Master Bedroom, 14' at Living & Dining). Cedar celilings at high areas. Interiors are cherry floors with black slate at higher use areas. All cabinets are cherry. Joy & I have been able to help with the furniture specifying as well as designing a few major pieces (In cherry, of course). We used a single ply membrane on the roof, EIFS (Exterior Insulation Insulation System) for exterior walls, with redwood trim and trellising. Incredibally, the cost of the house came in at $256 per square foot, an amazing cost for this area considering we used the best appliances and fixtures available.
All lavs have wood countertops, which I like to use, except for granite in the kitchen. The house sits on a west facing slope overlooking vinyards and apple orchards.

I've used the Krupps espresso maker for 20 years. My third one failed after many years of service so I bought a new one for $60. after a few months, the valve was difficult to use so I returned it to the store and they gave me a new one. Lo and behold, the same thing happened after another few months so I tried to let Krupps know of the problem. Well, this day & age, companies don't seem to want to hear anything negative about their product, and after trying on their web site, calling them, etc. to make them aware of this problem, I gave up. I returned it again, got my mony back, went over to Target and bought a Mr. Espresso for $25. (Actually $24.99). This machine is just the basic coffee maker with milk steamer like the Krupps, except not quite so cool looking. But it actually has a few features that are superior to Krupps. However, there is a major flaw in their design as the knobs are of some really weird design that actually hurt my fingers to operate it. In lieu of tossing the whole godamn thing out I, being the ultimate do it you selfer, decided I could make it funtional without too much trouble. I simply screwed on two plywood discs to the knobs, added a bit of epoxy, and viola! it works better than my old Krupps. Of course, I will paint them black and all will be well with my morning espresso.


Harley Davidson motor noise machines. These miserable people that need to assert their idiocy on the rest of the population ought to be neutered so they can't reproduce anymore. Then maybe in a generation we (If we still have any hearing left) can spend the rest of our days in peace. My house is several hundred feet from a minor highway and although I do hear all the cars passing by,, it's mostly the air and rubber that I hear. But there is always some fool ripping by with his no muffler Harley blasting a noise path thru the neighborhood. I perceive these egotists at the center of a decibil monster that is a circle several hundred feet in diameter destroying the peaceful lives of us tranquel folk. I cannot imagine what is must be to live in a place like Richmond, Virginia, where they passed an Ordinance making it illegal to "cause a disturbance" that can be heard 50 feet away from the noise source. Now, I know that nut cases like Sarah Palin wouldn't let government intrude on our lives like that, but I'm all for it, and give those folks a medal who passed the ordinance on top of it. Of course, then you have to battle the ACLU that you're taking away the rights of others to fuck up the life of your neighbors.


Oh yeah. But we're not going anywhere soon.
All I've got are some memoriesw of Europe so I 'll just regurgatate some of those in lieu of actually being there. We always get in a weeks canal cruise which has become deriguer anytime we do play on the other side of the pond. It's pretty amazing that they will let you drive off in a $100,000 boat with only five minutes of instruction. Unfortunately, that wasn't enough on our cruise in North Holland as they didn't mention how to work the air conditioning (or that there even one was there) and we hit one of the hottest weeks in history. Joy & I shared the boot with two women from the East, but I was the capitan, of course, with my vast knowledge and experience on boats. I was a qualified submariner, you know. Pictured is our boat tied up in a small medievil town noth of Amsterdam, searching out a cold beer. Of course, these are not always strickly a canal trip as once in a while we found ourselves out in the middle of a huge inland sea (Zee). This kind of freaked Joy out but we soon realized that the water was only 3' deep if you miss the dredged waterway. We actually did ground once but got away without too much damage. If you choose this method of sightseeing, be sure to get a boat that has a BOW THRUSTER, a very important feature, especially when backing up to a dock. And always remember to duck when going under a low bridge.
"Blowback" by Chalmers Johnson, lays out the dangers faced by our overextended Empire, which insists on projecting it's military power to every corner of the earth and using American capitol and markets to force global economic integration on it's own terms. This book, written a couple of years before 9/11, warned us of the consequences of our foreign policies that rely on a massive military presence in so many countries. His more recent book is "The Sorrows of Empire" to opens our eyes to our 800+ military bases around the world (We have 80 bases alone on Okinawa). We may be at a point where our military is so imbedded in our government it may be too late to regain control from them. Onward, Christian Soldiers!