Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Docking Simulator

Test your skills on a real-life interface to dock the SpaceX Dragon capsule to the International Space Station.  The right set of controls makes changes in vehicle rotation (yaw, pitch, roll) and the left set makes changes to vehicle speed, also in three dimensions.  That's only six things to juggle in your noggin while trying not to ram the station.  It takes patience and practice to win the day.

Click the link to read the detailed instructions and begin flying.


Friday, June 26, 2020

Goober Grape

My children will confirm that I've been into Goober Grape for decades.  It's the perfect proportion of peanut butter and grape jelly stripes and it works just as well as a snack on a spoon as it does between slices of bread.

I wonder if I could make a "Gin and Jam" drink (see https://dailyposts.paulishing.com/2020/03/gin-and-jam.html for details) with this, ending up with a liquid version of Goober Grape, with a kick.  I'll let you know.


Thursday, June 25, 2020

Awful Arthur's

At mile marker 6 in Nags Head, NC on South Virginia Dare Trail (aka The Beach Road) lies Awful Arthur's, my favorite seafood restaurant in the Outer Banks.  My favorite sandwich there is the Jumbo Soft Shell Crab pictured below, which I honestly could eat every day.  It's crunchy but the shell disintegrates in your mouth and the crab flavor is awesome.  They should have named the place Awesome Arthur's because the only thing Awful is that they're closed on Mondays.


Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Vulcan Salute

Being a Star Trek fan since I was a little boy, I practiced and practiced until I could perform Spock's Vulcan salute flawlessly with either hand.  But until recently I never knew, or really ever thought about, its origin.  Leonard Nimoy based the gesture on a Jewish Kohanim Priestly Blessing and it represents the Hebrew letter Shin (ש).  This became so well-known that an emoji was added (shown below) back in 2014 to the Unicode 7 standard.

Live long and prosper!


Tuesday, June 23, 2020


While clematis usually needs at least half a day's worth of sun, we have ours planted against the west outside wall of our house and with our neighbor's house being about 12 feet away, our clematis gets 3-4 hours at best.  It's still enough to produce the beautiful flowers shown below.  It's crazy how their vines shoot up and wrap their tendrils around the trellis.  This is a great solution to spruce up an otherwise barren wall.


Monday, June 22, 2020

I Seek Dead People

As this mug my daughter so thoughtfully bought me says, I've been into genealogy recently, seeking my long-deceased ancestors, some easier to find than others.  I've been using FamilySearch.org to create my family tree and do a lot of research, although other sites such as geneanet.org, findagrave.com, our local Calvary Cemetery site, and others all provided valuable answers.


Friday, June 19, 2020

Corn Holders

Corn on the cob = Summer!

We picked up these oversized corn holders at Meijer and what a difference.  Much easier to hold onto than the normal puny-sized variety and they store more safely and conveniently as one slides into another, making a matching pair without exposed prongs.  Plus they come in a plastic jar that makes finding them way easier. 

Simplicity = Pure Genius!


Tuesday, June 16, 2020


Home2Home is a consignment shop where you turn your good-quality discards into cash.  My wife has made almost $500 for items including an antique, refurbished dresser, a pair of framed prints that no longer matched our updated decor, and a wall-mounted mirror.  You just set up an account, drop off your possessions at the rear of the store, the wait until they sell.  You get 50% of the final selling price, which drops on a schedule until it does.  They don't take just anything, so check their website for the details.


Monday, June 15, 2020

Water Fountain Madness

The City of Kettering removed the foot pedal from this water fountain at the Fraze Pavilion in June.  One questions why you would do that when this is a contactless device and can be safely used without touching it, except with the bottom of your shoe, which I have no intention of rubbing against my eyes, nose, or mouth.  The other three water fountains have buttons that require a finger, so I understand why those might (BIG might) be a concern, but there is no sign on them that indicates they are not working, so I'm pretty sure a lot of people have tried them and came away with no more than some potential (BIG potential) cooties and the thirst they were trying to quench.

It's just plain STUPID.

Friday, June 12, 2020

Boneless Buffalo Chunks

While this recipe calls for using a quart of oil in a deep fryer, it works equally well on the stovetop. 
Cayenne pepper, garlic powder, paprika, and black pepper give these a spice kick, but the real winner was dipping sauce, melting butter in the Buffalo sauce.  That small addition was a big, happy surprise.


Thursday, June 11, 2020

Scrolling Lock Screen Message

A nice feature on smartphones is the ability to have a lock screen message.  That gives you the option of putting some contact information that someone who finds your lost phone can use to return it to you.  And, yes, there are many kind souls out there that will do just that.  Instructions for the Google Pixel phone are at this link, but for other smartphones just search for "lock screen message" and include your specific phone to find out how to set it up on your phone.


Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Kelly Ventura

This pair of prints from Kelly Ventura, framed at The House of 10,000 Picture Frames, are called Protea No. 1 and 2.  They are part of a collection of very moderately priced artwork that includes single prints and, like these, a matched pair, which we needed for either side of the living room fireplace.  She also has some beautiful original artwork, albeit a bit steeper in price.


Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Compression Socks

Add these compression socks to my list of must-haves when flying on an airplane, particularly on longer trips, as my feet will swell up every time and these socks minimize that.  Their normal day job are as running socks, providing additional ankle support and avoiding the rubbing and sores that happens with regular socks.  And they're pretty styling...


Monday, June 8, 2020


We really enjoyed, and learned a lot, watching the show "Grant" on the History Channel.  It's a three-part, six-hour-long look at the life of Ulysses S. Grant with the majority being his leadership during the Civil War, the setbacks encountered, and the victories achieved.  Viewer discretion is advised, as there is plenty of blood spattered on the battlefields.


Friday, June 5, 2020

Chicken Parmesan over Zucchini Noodles

A Sunday dinner for a low-carb, but great-taste, lover.  The zucchini spirals replace the normal pasta as the side and the chicken parm, featuring fresh thyme, lots of garlic, shallot, heirloom tomatoes, and white wine deliver all the flavor your palette deserves.  Go the for fresh zucchini, spiral it yourself (it's easy), and don't be tempted with store-bought bags.


Thursday, June 4, 2020

Rear Wiper Motor Replacement

Thanks to the YouTube video at the link below, I was able to replace the rear wiper motor on my 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee.  The new motor was $70 on Amazon and I probably saved myself $100-$150 on labor.  The video wasn't a perfect match, but it was close enough to get several valuable tips and the rest I could figure out by myself.  Of course, if I did it again it would take 30 minutes instead of 2 hours, but that's par for the course.


Wednesday, June 3, 2020

iPhone/iPad Screen Recording

Just maybe you have a new grandchild that you get to see through Facetime and just maybe you want to relive a few of those darling coos and bright eye moments.  Your solution is to record your screen using a swipe and a tap.  Details can be found at this link.


Tuesday, June 2, 2020


The work involved in finding an ancestor’s gravestone is reduced from walking up and down aisle after aisle to being guided by your phone’s GPS and the webCemeteries mobile website.  Just search for your relative, select the correct one, and their position is marked by a red pin and your location by a blue dot.  When the pin and dot are on top of each other, you’re less than ten feet away.  I don’t know which or how many cemeteries use this technology, but Calvary Cemetery, where most of my local ancestors are resting, fortunately does.