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Letters home to mom

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      Posting these cat-cartoons-without-the-cartoon was a long journey that I don’t know if I’ll repeat soon again. A daily blog is tough … even when you have your material handed to you! But, I couldn’t have done it without the artwork … Continue reading →
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      A happy young lady shares a table at a tony restaurant with her cat; they both wear festive, cone-shaped party hats. The woman gaily says to the tuxedoed server, “One martini and one glass of milk.” The cat does not … Continue reading →

Another weekend

Posted by joeabbott on April 17, 2011

imageIt’s just after noon on Sunday, the weekend isn’t nearly over, but the time has already been full.

Yesterday morning came and was spent the usual way: arise to feed the cats, start a spot of tea, read the paper, and then head to the computer for some blogging and my many other “wired” activities. Aside from shooting my momma a little note, the main issue I was dealing with was trying to better understand RSS feeds.

As I’ve made a big deal about, I’ve moved my cat cartoons of the day to a new spot, but the RSS feed I was using didn’t seem to be working. Or, rather, there was a latency (delay) between when I posted and when they showed up. So, I went a-lookin’ to see if I couldn’t figure out if this was normal and expected, or something I had wired incorrectly. It turned out to be the former, and so I plan on just posting my cat cartoons a bit earlier so they will appear in the RSS widget closer to morning than afternoon.

After that bit of skullduggery, I noticed Suz was already outside and working away at the garden beds, so it was my turn to get to it and change that pile of lumber in the garage into a garden gate.

I started by printing out plans for each part of the gate (image to the right) and then rough-cutting the materials; again, I was using cedar. The top and bottom were the tricky parts so I started with them.

The bottom was just a 2x4x27.5” that had a 1/2” trough plowed through the top. I then got my plunge router and an up-cut spiral straight bit and cut the ends to 1.5” deep for 3.5”. Taking a section cut through the trough would yield a picture like this:

image

The top is nearly identical except for the rounded curve on the top edge and the decorative hole cut in the center.

imageThe reason for the deeper troughs on the end, is that the design calls for the side pieces to have a longer “tab” that will fit into that slot. For the “bars” in the center of the gate, they just need to stay in place; the side parts are intended to provide stiffness and structural support.

I’d used a similar design on the gate I’d previously built, but that one took a very long time to build. Today I finished this much of the gate in the afternoon!

imageI quit about 10 AM, had a shower, dressed, and got a bite to eat. After Suzy whipped us up some hot dogs for lunch, we were off to the Seattle Link Light Rail. As I’d mentioned previously, taking the train into Seattle is a great way to go. This time we were heading to the 5th Avenue Theater to see the plan 9 to 5: The Musical.

While I wouldn’t have picked the play from a varied selection, it was in our “package” and I was happy for the variety and found myself laughing out loud several times during the show. For those unfamiliar, the play is set in corporate America, ca. 1979, and involves the downtrodden office workers (especially secretaries) in a farcical plot to dispatch their boss and run the company on their own.

The plot may be more nuanced than I’m giving credit, but I wouldn’t imagine anyone seeing the show for the plot. The humor was good-natured, the voices were powerful (holy cow … that amp does go to 11!!), and enjoying a view of things from 30 years ago was most entertaining.

I came away with a much-revised impression of Dolly Parton. I thought she was just an actress in the original movie (in addition to her country western singing accomplishments), but she wrote the music and lyrics for this play! Dolly herself showed up via video projection and both introduced and closed the show.

A big part of the fun was the stage curtain, which, when closed, displayed images from 1979: a reclining Burt Reynolds, Three Mile Island, Jimmy Carter, the Ayatollah, Billy Jean King and Bobby Riggs, and many others. Suzy and I even played “hey, what’s that a picture of” with the people in the seats around us during intermission. In all, a very nice show.

A final treat was, as the curtain was closing for the last time, the cast actually got down on their hands and knees to continue waving to the leaving crowds. Now I thought that was awfully cute.

After we returned to our car via the train (and, on the way back, we actually got seats!), we headed to Burien for a little shopping before arriving home around 6:30PM.

It’d been a long day but Suzy found it in herself to whip up a little spaghetti and, after the meal, I did dishes and cleaned up.

About then I was ready to call it quits for the day until we realized obligations would steal part of our Sunday … so, into the shop I went to complete the work on the gate.

After finishing the sides, I thought it looked good, but a bit diminutive. So in the fading day’s light I hustled out and, sure enough, the gate was about 6” short! It was comparable in height to the gates on the far side, but those were situated in a pergola; standing alone between posts, this was just too small.

So, with disgust, I set this aside and called it a day.

Sunday morning introduced us to a wonderful day: the sky was clear, the weather temperate, and the day was young.

Suzy made us a big breakfast, I knocked out the parts for a taller gate, and then I weed whacked the backyard while Suzy continued tending the beds. And here I am now after a shower.

It’s been a good weekend, so I’m not stopping now. Before we head out, I’ll put a little glue on the gate and see if I can’t be ready to hang it tomorrow.

Hope your weekend’s been as good as mine, and thanks for reading!

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