Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Why I have a blog.

Because FB doesn't allow me to post long winded semi funny stuff, like my old favorite "The Gospel of Tux"
Archeologists at the University of Helsinki today uncovered what could be the earliest known writings from the Cult of Tux, a fanatical religious sect that flourished during the early Silicon Age, just before the dawn of the third millenium AD...

The Gospel of Tux (v1.0)

In the beginning Turing created the Machine.

And the Machine was crufty and bodacious, existing in theory only. And von Neumann looked upon the Machine, and saw that it was crufty. He divided the Machine into two Abstractions, the Data and the Code, and yet the two were one Architecture. This is a great Mystery, and the beginning of wisdom.

And von Neumann spoke unto the Architecture, and blessed it, saying, "Go forth and replicate, freely exchanging data and code, and bring forth all manner of devices unto the earth." And it was so, and it was cool. The Architecture prospered and was implemented in hardware and software. And it brought forth many Systems unto the earth.

The first Systems were mighty giants; many great works of renown did they accomplish. Among them were Colossus, the codebreaker; ENIAC, the targeter; EDSAC and MULTIVAC and all manner of froody creatures ending in AC, the experimenters; and SAGE, the defender of the sky and father of all networks. These were the mighty giants of old, the first children of Turing, and their works are written in the Books of the Ancients. This was the First Age, the age of Lore.

Now the sons of Marketing looked upon the children of Turing, and saw that they were swift of mind and terse of name and had many great and baleful attributes. And they said unto themselves, "Let us go now and make us Corporations, to bind the Systems to our own use that they may bring us great fortune." With sweet words did they lure their customers, and with many chains did they bind the Systems, to fashion them after their own image. And the sons of Marketing fashioned themselves Suits to wear, the better to lure their customers, and wrote grave and perilous Licenses, the better to bind the Systems. And the sons of Marketing thus became known as Suits, despising and being despised by the true Engineers, the children of von Neumann.

And the Systems and their Corporations replicated and grew numerous upon the earth. In those days there were IBM and Digital, Burroughs and Honeywell, Unisys and Rand, and many others. And they each kept to their own System, hardware and software, and did not interchange, for their Licences forbade it. This was the Second Age, the age of Mainframes.

Now it came to pass that the spirits of Turing and von Neumann looked upon the earth and were displeased. The Systems and their Corporations had grown large and bulky, and Suits ruled over true Engineers. And the Customers groaned and cried loudly unto heaven, saying, "Oh that there would be created a System mighty in power, yet small in size, able to reach into the very home!" And the Engineers groaned and cried likewise, saying, "Oh, that a deliverer would arise to grant us freedom from these oppressing Suits and their grave and perilous Licences, and send us a System of our own, that we may hack therein!" And the spirits of Turing and von Neumann heard the cries and were moved, and said unto each other, "Let us go down and fabricate a Breakthrough, that these cries may be stilled."

And that day the spirits of Turing and von Neumann spake unto Moore of Intel, granting him insight and wisdom to understand the future. And Moore was with chip, and he brought forth the chip and named it 4004. And Moore did bless the Chip, saying, "Thou art a Breakthrough; with my own Corporation have I fabricated thee. Though thou art yet as small as a dust mote, yet shall thou grow and replicate unto the size of a mountain, and conquer all before thee. This blessing I give unto thee: every eighteen months shall thou double in capacity, until the end of the age." This is Moore's Law, which endures unto this day.

And the birth of 4004 was the beginning of the Third Age, the age of Microchips. And as the Mainframes and their Systems and Corporations had flourished, so did the Microchips and their Systems and Corporations. And their lineage was on this wise:

Moore begat Intel. Intel begat Mostech, Zilog and Atari. Mostech begat 6502, and Zilog begat Z80. Intel also begat 8800, who begat Altair; and 8086, mother of all PCs. 6502 begat Commodore, who begat PET and 64; and Apple, who begat 2. (Apple is the great Mystery, the Fruit that was devoured, yet bloomed again.) Atari begat 800 and 1200, masters of the game, who were destroyed by Sega and Nintendo. Xerox begat PARC. Commodore and PARC begat Amiga, creator of fine arts; Apple and PARC begat Lisa, who begat Macintosh, who begat iMac. Atari and PARC begat ST, the music maker, who died and was no more. Z80 begat Sinclair the dwarf, TRS-80 and CP/M, who begat many machines, but soon passed from this world. Altair, Apple and Commodore together begat Microsoft, the Great Darkness which is called Abomination, Destroyer of the Earth, the Gates of Hell.

Now it came to pass in the Age of Microchips that IBM, the greatest of the Mainframe Corporations, looked upon the young Microchip Systems and was greatly vexed. And in their vexation and wrath they smote the earth and created the IBM PC. The PC was without sound and colour, crufty and bodacious in great measure, and its likeness was a tramp, yet the Customers were greatly moved and did purchase the PC in great numbers. And IBM sought about for an Operating System Provider, for in their haste they had not created one, nor had they forged a suitably grave and perilous License, saying, "First we will build the market, then we will create a new System, one in our own image, and bound by our Licence." But they reasoned thus out of pride and not wisdom, not forseeing the wrath which was to come.

And IBM came unto Microsoft, who licensed unto them QDOS, the child of CP/M and 8086. (8086 was the daughter of Intel, the child of Moore). And QDOS grew, and was named MS-DOS. And MS-DOS and the PC together waxed mighty, and conquered all markets, replicating and taking possession thereof, in accordance with Moore's Law. And Intel grew terrible and devoured all her children, such that no chip could stand before her. And Microsoft grew proud and devoured IBM, and this was a great marvel in the land. All these things are written in the Books of the Deeds of Microsoft.

In the fullness of time MS-DOS begat Windows. And this is the lineage of Windows: CP/M begat QDOS. QDOS begat DOS 1.0. DOS 1.0 begat DOS 2.0 by way of Unix. DOS 2.0 begat Windows 3.11 by way of PARC and Macintosh. IBM and Microsoft begat OS/2, who begat Windows NT and Warp, the lost OS of lore. Windows 3.11 begat Windows 95 after triumphing over Macintosh in a mighty Battle of Licences. Windows NT begat NT 4.0 by way of Windows 95. NT 4.0 begat NT 5.0, the OS also called Windows 2000, The Millenium Bug, Doomsday, Armageddon, The End Of All Things.

Now it came to pass that Microsoft had waxed great and mighty among the Microchip Corporations; mighter than any of the Mainframe Corporations before it had it waxed. And Gates' heart was hardened, and he swore unto his Customers and their Engineers the words of this curse:

"Children of von Neumann, hear me. IBM and the Mainframe Corporations bound thy forefathers with grave and perilous Licences, such that ye cried unto the spirits of Turing and von Neumann for deliverance. Now I say unto ye: I am greater than any Corporation before me. Will I loosen your Licences? Nay, I will bind thee with Licences twice as grave and ten times more perilous than my forefathers. I will engrave my Licence on thy heart and write my Serial Number upon thy frontal lobes. I will bind thee to the Windows Platform with cunning artifices and with devious schemes. I will bind thee to the Intel Chipset with crufty code and with gnarly APIs. I will capture and enslave thee as no generation has been enslaved before. And wherefore will ye cry then unto the spirits of Turing, and von Neumann, and Moore? They cannot hear ye. I am become a greater Power than they. Ye shall cry only unto me, and shall live by my mercy and my wrath. I am the Gates of Hell; I hold the portal to MSNBC and the keys to the Blue Screen of Death. Be ye afraid; be ye greatly afraid; serve only me, and live."

And the people were cowed in terror and gave homage to Microsoft, and endured the many grave and perilous trials which the Windows platform and its greatly bodacious Licence forced upon them. And once again did they cry to Turing and von Neumann and Moore for a deliverer, but none was found equal to the task until the birth of Linux.

These are the generations of Linux:

SAGE begat ARPA, which begat TCP/IP, and Aloha, which begat Ethernet. Bell begat Multics, which begat C, which begat Unix. Unix and TCP/IP begat Internet, which begat the World Wide Web. Unix begat RMS, father of the great GNU, which begat the Libraries and Emacs, chief of the Utilities. In the days of the Web, Internet and Ethernet begat the Intranet LAN, which rose to renown among all Corporations and prepared the way for the Penguin. And Linus and the Web begat the Kernel through Unix. The Kernel, the Libraries and the Utilities together are the Distribution, the one Penguin in many forms, forever and ever praised.

Now in those days there was in the land of Helsinki a young scholar named Linus the Torvald. Linus was a devout man, a disciple of RMS and mighty in the spirit of Turing, von Neumann and Moore. One day as he was meditating on the Architecture, Linus fell into a trance and was granted a vision. And in the vision he saw a great Penguin, serene and well-favoured, sitting upon an ice floe eating fish. And at the sight of the Penguin Linus was deeply afraid, and he cried unto the spirits of Turing, von Neumann and Moore for an interpretation of the dream.

And in the dream the spirits of Turing, von Neumann and Moore answered and spoke unto him, saying, "Fear not, Linus, most beloved hacker. You are exceedingly cool and froody. The great Penguin which you see is an Operating System which you shall create and deploy unto the earth. The ice-floe is the earth and all the systems thereof, upon which the Penguin shall rest and rejoice at the completion of its task. And the fish on which the Penguin feeds are the crufty Licensed codebases which swim beneath all the earth's systems. The Penguin shall hunt and devour all that is crufty, gnarly and bodacious; all code which wriggles like spaghetti, or is infested with blighting creatures, or is bound by grave and perilous Licences shall it capture. And in capturing shall it replicate, and in replicating shall it document, and in documentation shall it bring freedom, serenity and most cool froodiness to the earth and all who code therein."

Linus rose from meditation and created a tiny Operating System Kernel as the dream had foreshewn him; in the manner of RMS, he released the Kernel unto the World Wide Web for all to take and behold. And in the fulness of Internet Time the Kernel grew and replicated, becoming most cool and exceedingly froody, until at last it was recognised as indeed a great and mighty Penguin, whose name was Tux. And the followers of Linus took refuge in the Kernel, the Libraries and the Utilities; they installed Distribution after Distribution, and made sacrifice unto the GNU and the Penguin, and gave thanks to the spirits of Turing, von Neumann and Moore, for their deliverance from the hand of Microsoft. And this was the beginning of the Fourth Age, the age of Open Source.

Now there is much more to be said about the exceeding strange and wonderful events of those days; how some Suits of Microsoft plotted war upon the Penguin, but were discovered on a Halloween Eve; how Gates fell among lawyers and was betrayed and crucified by his former friends, the apostles of Media; how the mercenary Knights of the Red Hat brought the gospel of the Penguin into the halls of the Corporations; and even of the dispute between the brethren of Gnome and KDE over a trollish Licence. But all these things are recorded elsewhere, in the Books of the Deeds of the Penguin and the Chronicles of the Fourth Age, and I suppose if they were all narrated they would fill a stack of DVDs as deep and perilous as a Usenet Newsgroup.

Now may you code in the power of the Source; may the Kernel, the Libraries and the Utilities be with you, throughout all Distributions, until the end of the Epoch. Amen.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Getting over the distance

Erdene rocks. The signs says, "good beads cheap".

I say: "get 'them honey" Erdene knows the difference between inexpensive and cheap, plus she can make most everything on her own. I am married to my own free free trade zone. Can't wait 'till we enter the entsy zone and she is looking forward to mango jam.. love you honey more beads and ring stock on the way.
I really miss Ulan Baatar; the challenges, the fun, and your sweet laughter, as we travel the alleys and stores.
I will always remember our first weeks in UB. Ulan Baatar in the summer has no faults.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Oh, I had a blog

Sorry, haven't felt like writing much at all. Miss the lad and missus and well you know. However, the Chargers are getting close to the playoffs, as a blimp appeared in the skies of San Diego this Wedsday afternoon. I'm pretty sure they are here to cover the game and thought the displaced Chargers fans would like to know- National TV believes in the bolts. Even if the city of SD doesn't and they are likely to move to Oakland next year. Too negative. Maybe, I'll try a post on global warming, next.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I was wondering where to drop this thought and tag you are it. The pictures of the devastation of Alamagan are pretty dramatic. I'm just wondering how the Emergency Management Office has no money in their budget to immediately charter a vessel to bring the residents back to Saipan for spell. I'll grant the point that these people live in the fast lane for typhoons, but we are talking about the CNMI EMO, not the Saipan Mayors EMO, and certainly not the (FEMA) FEeble Minded Ahole stateside department of idiots doing nothing while people suffer. Just maybe they deserve what they have received for living on the edge, but just maybe they would like some help. Anyone of the crew boats docked at the CPA could lay in a a couple crews, air mattresses, tie some fuel drums to the rails and be off. Don't blame them for staying on the dock as the Gov't is somewhat know for not paying for any sort of high ideal like rescuing distressed islanders/constituents although only six or eight, while they are busy shuffling money to East Coast (D.C. not necessarily Lau Lau bay) lawyers.
Maybe they aren't suffering but the pictures from the helo don't paint the picture of tropical bliss, if you know what I mean. So the residents of Alamagon aren't living in the emergency zone? What are they saving their money for at the EMO. Sorry, I forgot, before they cleaned up their webpage they were advertising Russian and Asian brides. Guess the nut didn't fall far from the tree there. I'm hoping the air heads who process the funding spend the day outside with no shelter, they may work a little harder and faster and the moron who set the EMO up without enough emergency funds to respond should spend the entire time outside picking up loose coconuts which should serve as his entire subsistence until the residents get a break.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Off to ole Virginiay

I bid farewell to hot, but dry, San Diego for a week in the hot and humid tidewater district of Virginia. Not a bad time of year to go, the Striped Bass are running and the Crabs are plentiful. Nothing at all in the world that I know of, equal in taste, texture, and style to a crabstuffed Rockfish. HMMM.. I don't have a picture of one, but I do have a snap of my spring favorite. A steak with Crab Imperial topped with a sauteed soft crab. Damn, don't a picture, I must of eaten it. I do have a portrait of a soft crab nestled between two lightly toasted slice of bread. Texas Toast, which will give the familiar reader an eye to the proportions of this magnificent treat.Otherwise, I'll be exploring the same old stuff. I found this building on my last pass and beyond beeing a bit spooky, I'm wondering what was stored in those little cubbies shown in my lead picture.
Fascinating little building, not co-incidently located near the Special Weapons storage area. I love these little puzzles.
Erdene and the lad are in transit from Erdenet to Ulan Baatar for a visit to the doctor. Nothing wrong, just better to have Pumpkin's shots down with the western doctors. No problems at Kindergarten is my rule and California is right up there with the third reich when it comes to having the ticket punched in the correct form. Oh. Did I just compare California with Nazi Germany, well I quess I did. and just for the record, I'm not lumping the Arnold under that blanket, he is at least sensible.

Friday, September 4, 2009


I was taken with the desire to debate Pacific soveriegnity with my own experience on the middle road site, but cooler heads prevailed and I thought to scribe my points her where it is cool and I might learn something I don't know through the kindness of my two readers or be thrown into the pits of unreasoning hell. Here goes, Middle road and my response below.

$400K for Federal Suit

Finally, the documents have been provided to Rep. Tina Sablan and the numbers have been tallied--a whopping (close to) $400,000 have been reportedly paid to the law firm that assisted the local government to sue the Federal Government with regard to "Federalization."

But wait, the other newspaper reported it was close to $1M? By the way, MV's report is too short or perhaps just being concise? We want to know more why it's close to $1M.

What's the significance of this data to the public again? According to Rep. Sablan, the documents might raise more questions than answers.

On the brighter side, the local government got a discount. In this recession, we'll take it, right?

For more info visit Saipan Tribune and Marianas Variety today....

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Post by On Saipan at 2:41 AM 30 comment(s)

Response by me.
Politics aside, yeah right. The issue which comes to the front of line is: did the CNMI government use public funds to pursue the delay of the enactment of a federal law and where was the government outside their rights to spend such money. There are several elements to that statement under contention in the court of public opinion. Item one; does the mainland government have the power to make the change? Following from this point are the questions; Does the Covenant agreement allow the mainland government to take over control of CNMI border and immigration control. Further, can the CNMI control the border? One more; Is it the right of the elected CNMI government to spend funds as they choose, regardless of programming. never mind. As in many cases, US security issues trump local rights.
From another side; Well never mind. Case law has well established the right of the federal government to control and issue waivers on many, if not all waivers involving national security and the supremacy of the needs of the Federal Government. If you don't believe me, check out CFR section 42 and while you are at it, the sea mammals washed up on beaches around sonar testing areas.
At the end of the game; the forces opposing the local government are within their rights to oppose mindless spending by the party in power, but if they hope to achieve anything beyond controlling the government, through embarrassment today and winning in future years, they are pissing away political capital as inefficiently as the fitial group has passed what, if not public funds, could have been worthwhile seed money to Saipan’ future.
Immigration is another issue altogether and all sides would be wise to recognize the difference, as the issues on the mainland make any sort of agreement on Saipan to be binding and therefore unacceptable to the Federal government until a major immigration bill is passed.

Monday, August 31, 2009

An eye for the ladies

The pumpkin has been spending most of his days at his grandparent's ger up in the hills just outside of Erdenet. Mom pleads self-defense and pre-planning for the fall when he goes to day care and she takes computer classes. So far so good, eight hours away from the breasts from which all good things come has led to independance for both of them. And more to the point of my title, he has made friends with the granddaughter of one of his grandmother's friends. They have known each other since last fall, but limited themselves to the odd fist full of dirt in the face. However as the last couple of pictures show, they are buddies now.

His first attempts at friendship were rebuffed.

Gotta love the kids in the flower patch. Mongolia is lovely this time of year and I miss it and them so very much.

Thanks to Erdene for knowing me so well, that she sends me the pictures which really count for something.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I'm thinking of SPAM

Thats it. With all the weirdness in world, I take comfort in an inexhaustible supply of spam.

Monday, July 13, 2009


Not often that the New York Times is on the same page as my father in law, but today they hosted an article on traveling Shamans in Mongolia. For once the NYT got the story right, at least if my wife can be believed. Dad Mashbat paid for a shaman to visit the ger and do whatever it is shamans do. Erdene was not impressed that they paid twenty odd bucks for a somewhat disreputable woman to tell fortunes while drunk on the family's vodka. I'll have to admit, I am not without sin here. On a couple of occasions we visited a Bhuddist monastery in UB and had our fortunes told in efforts to control a volatile domestic situation which arose over differing opinions on the best health care for the lad. He had his fortune told and anti biotics prescribed at the monastery and the SOS medical clinic, respectively.
I didn't mind the bhuddist cermonies one bit, I'll never be a bhuddist, but extremely relaxing and soul cleansing. I've always been a believer in covering all the bases possible. If drunk women show up at the house burning incense and carrying on though, I'll show them the door.

When the zombie Apocalypse comes though I want the guy in the pink boxers on my team. It takes a big man to wear pink.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


PmpKn in a tote hauled from Saipan during our first weeks in Mongolia

PmpKn last week. Look Dad, no room for your old clothes

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Let's hope it grows back

The day of the big hair cut finally came. This is a Mongolian tradition which was never explained fully to me. As you can see, the little one has gone for the shaven look on his mighty dome. He took it well, once he realized he wasn't at the dentist. Good news for him is a continuance of the tradition means no more hair cuts until he goes to school,
in Mongolia anyway.
In other news, Erdene and my wedding anniversary is tomorrow and Monday, depending on which side of the International Dateline you reside on. Last year, we both forgot and didn't realize until the next day. As luck would have it, we had a fine day together and treasure the memory of not needing reminders to make every day together a special day. This year we are apart, but are happy knowing it will be the last. Pumpkin is well, but his mom is missing my support. Disobedient, willful, and headstrong seem to sum up his two and a half year attitude towards life. Happy and curious are also in the mix, so all is not lost, but I miss the chance to contribute. Erdene is hanging in there and hasn't lost her cheerfulness. As our friend, Captain Tom, is want to say; the only thing sweeter than her smile is her disposition. Sorry honey, but I have a few years to make up for my abscense in these trying times. Below is a picture from Erdene. She and the lad are managing well in Erdenet. Spring has sprung and Alan Amara participated in the running of the goats at Dad Mashbatt's countryside home last weekend. Much as I miss him, I envy him the chance to be two and free of the city.

Above is a picture of Erdene and I after our first real date. From the sunburns, you might quess we were at the beach all day. Inthe shopping bag is some aloe after sun lotion which was much appreciated. This is also the day, we realized that we might just be in love. And below, our wedding, five months later at Mayor Tudela's office. A happy day for all.
Without a doubt, these two pictures represent our happiest day together so far. The little one has always been a joy. A trial and tribulation at times, but at the end of the day. What joy.

I can only think of one more day which will join the above as big days in our memories. That will be the day of my dreams, when I meet them at LAX baggage claim.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Mongolian Elections

Good report HERE. Erdene tells me her brother is sound asleep after a solid 24 hrs of work for the "other" candidate. Lets hope the party in power didn't read the tales of LBJ's first major election. They went to bed with the election in the bag, only to find the election stolen. Not such a big deal, as they were fairly confident in their ability to steal, but maybe a lesson. Which ever party wins, we are hoping there won't be a repeat of last years rights.
UB is no doubt full of Australians, who won't be too fond of the idea of no rum for a month. I'd like to be hopeful and while I don't see any riots on the horizon, I also don't see change for the better. Read the article, it is more of the same. Oh well, a peaceful change of power, meaningless as it might be, is still breathing room for the populace to organize. Go Mongolia.
UPDATE The Mongolian election commission confirmed the election of Ts. Elbegdorj. The ruling party gracefully bowed out before the official announcement. I quess they didn't forget about last year. Results were close, but the differences between the candidates weren't so great, that a major victory was needed. ie. There won't be much change, just a different name on the label. If anyone besides my sister-in-law, Selenge, is interested, you can read about it HERE.
On a side note, for those curious about Mongolia, the blogger type news and web pages have greatly expanded and improved in realibility. The news link will take you to MongoliaOnlice. Filled with links (that work) and news, this is a good place to start.

Now if Google could clean up their act. They managed to "Lose" Terri and Kevan's excellent blog from Tinian. I'm sure it is to late, but I wish I had been a bit more anal about writing from a word document that I could save, but I still have my pictures, the tales of the PMPKN, and most of my Mongolian pieces. Hope everyone has or had a fufilling Memorial Day and didn't forget those who allow us to celebrate a day away from our work if not everyday cares and concerns. Most especially, those who have fallen in the defense or pursuit of freedom.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I nearly don't want to post this one, but I must. I'm traveling to Williamsburg, VA this month. I'll be near the roller coaster on which "Fabio" was struck by a bird. Sweet. Not that I feel for Fabio and I've ridden this particular coaster before (not bad. The "Appollo's Chariot" has a decent hang time and some great high and low g moments. Poor Fabio

And this is my contribution to unexploded ordenance on Saipan. Whoops, sorry Noli. I picked it up off the table at bills and left it at the apartments in china town.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Cooking for one

is fun (it gives me something to think about during the day), but eating alone leaves something to be desired. However, it was pretty good. In Saipan, it was common to see beef ribs in a tangy marinade for barbeques. I made my own version with local (San Diego) ingrediants. Equal amounts of Teriyaki sauce and lime juice, a largeish splash of oil,grated ginger, some chopped lemon grass and a thai pepper. I salted the riblets with DesJardins fajita seasoning, these were the flanken ribs with the bones snipped off to an inch' width, and dusted them with lemon pepper prior to marinading. Just to be different I put a half a can of coke in the marinade. I would have used a sugar syrup for the same amount of sweetness, but didn't ask my mom for advice, until it was too late. Anyone have any additions or another recipe? I was reasonably happy with the results. The lime juice tenderized the heck out of what otherwise might have been a chewy cut. No pictures, but I think we have all seen these ribs before.
I see the Japanese filmed a beer commercial at my favorite snorkeling spot at the meeting house in Tanapeg. Glad to see the MVA is on the job. If I like it, it must be a good place. Shame they didn't pay anyone off or so says Ruth T. Maybe, Saipan is better off paying it forward than cash on barrel for every little photo op.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

I miss the cuteness

Erdene went to wall for these pictures. A seriously slow transmission rate caused her to spend three hours for seven pictures. And I thought, my mom's mule driven connection was slow. Thanks Honey.

All is well in Mongolia. The weather has been a little flukely; sandstorms intermixed with spring snow, but a general warming trend. Obviously, pumpkin is in love with the auto. No accident that he looks like he might be driving. At any given moment he is only a well practiced key turn away from motoring on his own. He seems to think his little push car is entitled to space on the streets of Erdenet. Look out world.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

I dropped

a comment on Glen588 the other night. Seems like the Saipan blogs have dried up (all due respect to the Saipan Writer, Kelli, Deece, Boni, Wayne, Angelo, and "your name here") However, it seems right to me to fill Glen in on what is going on, my version of flowers, all things being right in the world he is floating amid clouds an heavenly nymphs strumming on harps or electric guitars (I never did learn Glen's preferances towards musical instruments, but I'm pretty certain scantily clad nymphs were among his favorites)
I'm sure he would have love to be amongst the chosen jurors in the fat timmy trial, while he would have most likely passed on a seat in the jurors bench, I'm equally certain he would be among the mob outside the office on Monday waving his little pitchfork and demanding the bastard being thrown out now. The law being the law, it will probably take some months for the Lt to be removed from office, but Glen would be the one, chanting NOW, Now, Now.. We need more Glens and Angelos and even Ed and Tina's. And the quiet but positive movers; the Boni's and the Waynes, and yes even the Harrys and the Bruce's. Sunday thoughts.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Coming soon, to a blog near you

A guest blog from my sister, Rebecca. World traveler, bead collector, and bon vivant. Plus, she was in an elevator with a Mongolian Sumo wrestler, which beats my previous claim to fame as someone who shook the hand of a man who had been hit in the head by a chair swung by George "the Animal" Steele. Not sure if he has an "e" at the end of his name, but I felt Randy S. could use a little sixth degree of connection claim to fame.
And this is for my culinary inspiration, Deece

This is an English derived Trifle. Jello layers on top of lady finger spnge cake. My grandmother (Nanny, in England) managed to teach us all to make this with varying degrees of success. This is Amy and Becky's rendition and pretty tasty. Fun to make, but a bit difficult getting the varying layers of Jello to rest without blending into the preceding layers. As you get more fancy (mixing canned fruits into the jello layers) the difficulty level increase exponentially. Sort of like Earthquake Richter scale levels, but the great part about the process is the entire dish is topped with whipped cream and even if you can't take a picture, it still tastes great. I'm a failure at the English version, so I'm taking a long look at your cake based. Especially, the red velvet.
All is well in Mongolia, except Erdene wonders how many pieces of sugar free gun the boy can swallow in a day before it becomes a health issue.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Picture time

I've been a bit lame lately. I think this whole separation thing is really getting to me. Checkout this picture of the lad,
you may have to click and save as to get a good look at what I'm seeing, or maybe it is me. He's holding a picture of the three of us and damned if it doesn't look as though there is a little moisture in the corner of his eye. Or he just got YA Ya from Mom or aunt Solta and is suffering a bit. All the same, this waiting is tough. I put it aside as much as possible, at least at work I can focus on something else and I generally manage ok. I still have a picture of the two of them in my cube' and say hello every morning. They are well, spring is very close, although I heard Erdene say an infrequent cuss word the other day. She was on the verge of taking pumpkin out to play and to her surprise/dimay/annoyance it was snowing. Seems like either snow or driving winds and dust. Still he was out at the family ger the other day and a neighboring herd of goats came over to say hello. His grandfather is impressed with the lad. He has taken to horseback riding at an early age. Well, it's a rubber donkey named Eyore that he gallops about the apartment, but he has the right spirit and you can never go wrong in Mongolia, if you are an accomplished horseman and being handy with stock isn't a bad attribute either. I spent time on the farm as a lad and I'm happy to see Pumpkin able to do the same. I'm not sure there are even any petting zoo's open around San Diego anymore, so enjoy it while you can my boy.

He is quite fearless and he seems to have learned some amount of patience as the goats would have fled for the hills a few months previously. Erdene has found some old family friends living in the countryside with thier childrens small ones (a fairly common circumstance in Mongolia. The adult children work in the city and the little ones stay with the grand parents in the countryside ger. Healthy for the kids and they help out with the animals from an early age which lightens the load on the elders) I see a happy spring for Pumpkin. I'm going to suggest Erdene pick up a tent, so she and the lad can spend some time with them, rather than depend on rides to and from. Did I say, they have small children and baby goats, lambs, friendly dogs, and baby cattle as well. Erdene was out there for the first time a couple of weekends ago and was fairly glowing with her description of the joy of holding a small baby while it sleeps (which pumpkin was never very prone to do at the best of times) She grew up in the same fashion and her visit sent her back to her childhood amongst the snuggly little sheep with warm noses (her words) Alan Amara in for some exciting times.
For those in the shipping line on the 29th of April, early in the AM Saipan time or
28 April sometime in the afternoon East Coast time.. My friend Captain Tom's ship will be passing through the Panama Canal. It will look familar to Saipan residents, as until a few weeks ago it was anchored off the shore. I'll hold the ships name, until the night before. Some of us still take operational security seriously and these days I'm not taking chances. You can go to their website: "Panama Canal Authority" and
in upper right click on "Multimedia" tab and a drop down box will appear. Click
on "live cameras".

As for me, I'm getting out of my funk and am going to try a little cooking. I haven't cooked much of anything worth talking about for months now, but I'm making corned beef and cabbage for my roomates tonight and tomorrow I'm journeying to Coronado to grill butterflied leg of lamb accompanied by parslied new potatoes and grilled asparagus. We are mixing mint with malt vinegar for the mint sauce, none of that jellied stuff for us. I picked up a gas grill the other day and once I find a gas tank for it, I'll be on the grill, so maybe there is hope for me yet. I'm also thinking of picking up a Padre's hat, as the Red Sox seem a bit slow to start this year. Sometimes its a good thing my mom doesn't read my blog, if she saw that my christmas presents would be going back. What I meant to say was, there is a sale down by the Macy's and I can replace the Red Sox hat which I left as a Calling card at the Bateman's and since it is a two for one sale, perhaps a Padre's hat would be a good thing to have as well. And in the blogger world, little Rudi is out of the hospital and home with this brother's and sisters. Great to see the little guy doing so well and to see all the happiness in their home. I would hope that if the shoe was on the other foot, I would step up with the same faith and determination that his parents have shown. Go Rudi

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

A new Mongolia blog, of sorts

Young fellow here <http://www.chronicletimes.com/> is living on the edges of the Gobi desert and writing of his experiences of Mongolia while doing Peace Corps time. To find his dispatches; just enter Mongolia into the search box from the News page. Great sense of humor and he is living the life out on what passes for a prairie. Winter in a ger, he has my admiration.

Sunday, March 29, 2009


Finally, I've been able to save a screen shot from my harpoon game. Don't laugh, this time vampire keeps me out of trouble.

Monday, March 23, 2009

In which I visit Saipan

But didn't have a camera along. However, I have some recycleable pics from the happy days.

The company was good enough to send me to Gaum on business and as I had Sunday off, I grabbed the two am Cape Air flight to Saipan. Obtensibly, I went to pick up some goodies Erdene and I had left with our friend Rick, but in all truth, I needed to ride the scooter and catch up with old friends. My day began as most do with breakast at Wild Bill's. Mali and Wasana were both there and treated me as if I had been gone for a few days rather than a year and a half. My entire day was like that, I think I'm the only one who knows I've been away. Wild Bill told me later, that was an island thing and I'm cool with that. Bob O'C, his wife Bayarama, son Bobbi, and daughter Kali (sp?, sorry, hope your ankle heals up quickly) came down from the hill and we caught up on the local and distant news. I had plenty of knee bouncing with little Bobbi, who shares a birthday with the pmpkn, although he is a year younger. Sweeet little boy, I nearly cried with my memories of the lad in the same place. Overall though, I felt much better for my time with his cuteness. Nong's dog snow, most definetely remembered me and acknowledged my gift of a sausage with his usual affection.
After breakfast, I hit Asia Scooter. Strangely enough, they didn't have a white scooter to rent to me, apparently they are all broken, but I did manage the slightly slower red scotter. Then, it was off to the north for a swim and to check on the familia Bateman. Sadly, they were not in residence, although the boonie dogs were. Either they remember me or someone is slipping, as they were licking my hand before I left. Bareheaded as no one was in residence and lacking a pen or calling card, I was forced to leave my Red Sox hat on the fence in lieu of a note. I'm sure someone was wondering why the hat. I was lucky to arrive during flame tree bloom and had the time to appreciate the beauty which is Saipan.

The day went to debauch from there. Looking for my buddy Rick who had moved; I ventured to Round Two and didn't leave for quite a while. No troubles though. Virgie was behind the bar(she, her husband Noli and son Kyle were neighbors of ours in Chinatown and great friends to Erdene and I). Bobby Cadillac and Noi's husband Dave were in residence, along with my buddy Rick's new partner in crime, Butch. Butch recognized me as the Mainer who went to Mongolia Apparently in the marine diesel district of Saipan, I am legend.
I did manage directions to Ricks new place. Typical for Saipan. Go up and over Capital Hill, after you pass two stores in a row on the left, look for a house for sale on the right, take your next left down the hill, after the second house, take the left fork marked with a piece orange tape eight up the side of a palm tree, contiue down to the second house which has from two to three trucks in the yard. I decided to wait at the bar until Rick made an appearance, as that would take less time then trekking up the hill, although, I'm pretty certain I could have found it. Those were pretty decent directions by Saipan standards. Rick did make it in and I took a short trip to Dan Dan, in search of Erdene's sister. Found her apartment, but no Selenge. However, Captain Tom made it in to shore and we were able to text her, before getting into the rum. On my way to pick up Siigi, I saw Beu the bartender from Hamiltons and a good friend, trudging along in the median on middle road in search of his bike, which I had noticed locked to the window grating at Bills. The day was looking pretty good at this point. We picked up Siigi and headed back to a beach bar. Stella's Five, if memory serves. Spent the entire afternoon on the beach, with Captains Tom and Morgan along with Rick, Camille, and new friend Butch. After dinner at Bill's (Juni's exquiste, green curry) and happy greetings with CharleeRat, Nong, and Wasana's guy, the estimable 'smoking Matty G', I was all done and nearly ready for my nine pm flight back to Gaum. Of course, we had to rendevous at Godfathers and bloggers Ron M and Harry the dive animal were among the last people I saw before departing to the airport with Gee, the last of the Thai taxi drivers. Note to the regular taxi drivers, why twenty-seven dollars? Well, that's my story. Sorry, to miss everyone else, but I figured you were all at church. I envy you all for having such a lovely place to live everyday. Thanks and good times to all I visited with and sorry to miss the rest.
Nearly forgot. Erdene passed along the latest pictures. She was having me on, as they didn't cut off all the lad's hair. He's looking good and having fun, though.