Category Archives: Rants

Short and sweet rants on my favorite science topics

Jumbo and Jackass

Jumbo and Jackass – the sad political animosity

I wonder when we can learn that neither side is good nor bad we just need to get together and find common solutions. Is that concept just “dead”.

democrats republicans elephant donkey

Quilts forgotten:

This will be a different kind of a post. It reflects my own “terror” of being old and “being forgotten” maybe even more, the total loss of anything I did in my life as meaningful. I have tried to be kind, thrifty towards myself, generous to my family, and others, but nothing I have done would seem to have had much impact on the planet, on life, on the present, or on the hereafter, whatever the hereafter is.

I like to quilt. I quilt with scraps, tiny scraps (down to 1.5in square). Its like putting together something organized out of something lost in entropy, destined for land fill in some foreign country, saving grief from the world wide land fill.

I like putting the scraps of “nothing” together into something orderly. I don’t quilt all the time, incessantly, but about one or two quilts per year, using my old (now ailing) green metal singer sewing machine. Many quilts I made had clothes from my three children, boy scout color light brown blocks from their shirts, and pink glossy fabric from my daughter’s play dress up dresses. Fabrics from PolyFlinders left over boxes of cutter’s scraps… 7 dollars for several pounds of stacks of cute ginghams, flower prints, delicate little girl fabrics and sometimes yard goods, ribbons, thread etc. (They were on 8th street i believe, in cincinnati in the 1980s). I enjoy quilting.

I have a colleague who offered me a bag of fabric scraps, since they knows I quilt with scraps. These scraps were presumably from a family member no longer with them.  It was a heavy bag of scraps, I could see from the outside that some piece work was there.

I was not prepared for what was inside. Nine (9) finished quilt tops, varying sizes, all waiting to be quilted into bedspreads, or coverlets.  I was full of grief: for that woman who’s last dozen years were spent hand piecing these precious gifts for her children, grandchildren and friends and they were never finished, never given as treasured gifts, and then “pitched” to an unknown friend of a friend, as if the thousands of hours of hand piecing these quilt tops was “nothing” “nada” “rien” “zilch” “zero” “trash”.  It grieved me so much.  They went back to the giver. Hopefully with instructions on where to find someone who will add batting and a back, and finish what this woman can give her children and friends.

There were three quilts i suspect were for three little boys, in particular, maybe one for her grandson, they looked pretty much alike. I hope when i return them, they are finished by a professional and given to individuals, just where they were intended, as finished works, they can ask her who was to get which.

I was totally grieved.  For her yes: for myself yes, as I know beyond hope, that because I have not completed my own grandmothers, necktie quilt, whose silk is shreding from a 100 years of age, that the quilts i have made will be similarly “pitched” as will my grandmothers quilt.  I dont find those thought entertiaining at all, i find them totally depressing.  And in fact, there is nothing new in my thoughts….. dust to dust and there is nothing then to remember, to treasure, to feel proud of, to hand out as a legacy. That is just how this journey works.   See pix below…. all 9 of that grandmother’s hand work, tossed, but maybe saved and given as gifts.

So this also begs the question, why were these quilt tops NOT finished. I suspect the reasons are just like my quilting. Not perfectly straight, there will be lumps in the quilting with puckers in the fabric, no straight corners, some colors showing through to the front. The backing and quilting the whole quilt is really a hard part.  I know. I have one pieced currently waiting to be finished.

Kudos to this woman, whose fingers didn’t stop when she got old.

Just Blau Mit Weiss — legacy of errors

I have had my 2003 mini cooper s for about 10 years.  I have taken many of my cars to Just Blau Mit Weiss….  a summary of his mechanics acumen from April 2023 till October 2023 is an astounding array of mistakes which have cost me plenty, including filing complaints with the Better Business Bureau, Attorney General, and Visa, hoping for some compensation.  It will/is costing me about $4000 to undo John Gadbury’s mistakes for which I paid him, in good faith, about $7000.

There are hard times we all go through, I had pity on this man who in exchange took me to the cleaners. A sad legacy, you should read reviews of his company JustBMW from the last year on BBB, they sound just like mine, or on Google.

i am going to give you an update on the repairs on my mini  poorly done, even wrong…… unbelievable just since April.
  1. put in new battery in april 2023 – which somehow was drained to ruin while the car was in his shop for a routine —
  2. supercharger oil lube june 2023 — i hope that it was done correctly
  3. johns tech broker my shifter cable june 2023 test driving after supercharger lube
  4. john’s tech put in the shifter cables but when i drove it clearly shifting was not good
  5. i took car back to john next day, john says “cannot find cause” and “i will make it right” and then says i have to replace starter, why?
  6. two month old battery was dead and it doesn’t take a rocket scientists to surmise  “he left the hatch or door open and drained the battery and his tech burned out the starter not wanting to charge the battery”,
  7. john says, again, he doesn’t know what is wrong with the car, and now he says it needs a clutch, and I am depending upon the fact that he said “he wil make it right” he puts in clutch with all trimmings, i see my car is on the charger when i go to pick it up but he sends me home with the car
  8. car does not shift still, i drive it saying in the 3rd gear the whole way, theonly gear that it will go in t
  9. i take the car to cinci mini, within 20 minutes the say — shifter cables were not attached to the transmission –easy fix  …  shifting works fine (i did check with parts stores, and general consensus was that when one breaks a shifter cable and drives the car, the clutch doesn’t survive. I did not need clutch after all, or shifter cables till johns tech broke them, the gasket was worn yes (70k miles, but it was “torn” as would have happened with no proper shifting cable connection).
  10. cinci mini says battery is not being charged (i buy a new battery from them)
  11. car drives for one week, i take rita to the ER, and on the way out of the ER parking lot i have no power steering (and car sounds funny starting)
  12. i take car to back to cinci mini….ask tech to test drive with me to confirm no power steering assist…. car is dead.
  13. cinci mini says i need a new alternator (dunno who is telling the truth now) but battery light is still on and there is a new starter.
  14. cinci mini checks more and says, we will put in a new battery cable (which is apparently long and hard to install, but before going further they call and say john hooked up the starter wires “backwards.
  15. I get a letter in the mail from Visa saying I have no recourse and that john did install all the parts….. i dont know who they talked to but i guess johns group didn’t really admit to installing the shifter cables or the starter wrong.
  16. so i am reopening the visa case, and asking cinci mini to sign letter that says cables not hooked up, starter wired backwards, adding info to the BBB case.
  17. johns bills are about $7000,  cinci mini, $4000 to fix johns mixtakes.
  18. johns business phone now says “not in service at this time”….his business address changed and of this date, it is open and the phone works.
  19. Fortunately  we negotiated. and issues are settled (i am unable to know for sure if any serviced parts are installed correctly.

AND the saga has still not ended…..  new supercharger, new brake line another 12k, and then the battery is dead…..  how can three batteries die in one year?  back to john and the way the initial battery in april of 2023 was misinstalled, or junked up somehow….. the story hasnt ended yet…..  feels really bad to have been a victim…… all you have to do is read the BBB comments about this company…..  sorry to all who have been victims as well.


Kroger’s plastic packaging abuse, totally eggregious

Kroger’s plastic waste abuse, totally eggregious.  Do customers of Kroger not understand that as the corporations go, so goes the planet. I am not talking climate change, i am talking total disregard for using natural resources in a completely unconscionable manner.  In addition, foam is not typically recyclable in local curb side plans.


Upon questioning a staff member in the meat department he clearly said, I have no power here, we dont even choose what we sell.  How sad to not use the most important resource the company has, the people who listen to the complaints of their customers, and know the products.

Two counts against you Kroger (among thousands I could quickly add), not even wanting to mention false advertising by design  “yellow stickers that say LOW PRICE” when you just raise prices, and tiny tiny print for items that are for digital coupon people only, I know you clean house with that scam daily, I have been victim to the tiny lettering for digital coupon and lured by the huge price lettering…. in fact just this morning that happened.

Kroger does not play fair. Truly, you are a disgrace to Cincinnati.

Whats wrong with Kroger?

Whats wrong with Kroger? Do they really think that people on Pinterest want to watch their flittering flashing obnoxious adds, like stupid neon idiot flashing lights. Whats wrong with Pinterest that they dont stop that kind of ridiculous Kroger advertising aimed at IQ less than 20.  Is money worth losing integrity on both sides?

Ode to the reseeding impatiens flowers

For 36 years+ I have had pink impatiens flowers in my yard, first blooms appearing right around the first of July.  They were here when I bought the house and the previous owner pointed out these tiny sprouts and said to me that these are “reseeding impatiens”.  They come in various shades of pink from a deep magenta to a pale baby pink.

Over the years I have noticed that weather plays a huge part in whether these impatiens come back in droves or whether they are sparce.  At some point a few years ago I began collecting seeds thinking that perhaps in a warm december that the seeds would sprout and then succumb to the freezes in January.

The flowers themselves are the only flower in my yard which attracts migrating humming birds and the bees and bumble bees dont seem to pay them much attention.  From August onward the seed pods form (which are terriffic examples of genetic engineering), and as they mature into little “impatiens-seed grenades” they pop with huge vigor spreading their 50-100+ seeds (within each pod) out onto the ground. This year I decided to count the seeds (so to speak) and there are about 222 seeds in each 0.15g.  (I will update with total seeds collected later in the fall).

I have noticed that there are differences in seed-producing vigor with the very pale pink impatiens having fewer seeds and smaller seed pods, and lighter color seeds than the very dark impatiens do.  The biggest pods seem to be on the medium pink variety.  I collect them all, every color.  I have sorted seeds by color in the past, but when I throw the seeds to the ground in early May it seems not to make much difference how I have sorted the colors and what color impatiens flowers spring forth.

Not the prettiest, or showiest variety of impatiens, just plain and simple, but I enjoy them, their color, and the fact that they have persisted in my yard (sometimes with my help), for decades.

Images below show flowers with mature and immature pods, and pods I have collected (immature pods are small, narrow, and dont have a translucency, and dont look “pregnant”), and the seeds are shown collected in the last image.

reseeding impatiens reseeding impatiens reseeding impatiens reseeding impatiens
reseeding impatiensreseeding impatiens reseeding impatiens

NATURE: inexcusable abundance and waste

What is the reason for the inexcusable abundance of nature? Take for example the number of seeds in a pod, and the number of pods on a red bud tree, or the number of keys from a maple tree, or seeds in a sunflower, or eggs thrown off by a frog in the water.  What is the reason that the countless brilliant thoughts and creative and wonderful ideas of humans are just lost to the “forever” star dust as each artist, craftsman, builder, and scientist and educator and poet dies.