Speech jamming gun silences annoying people.

The Japanese have invented a speech-jamming device that forces people you find annoying to shut up.

Psychologists, who apparently don’t have anything better to do, did research that proved that it is almost impossible to speak when your words are replayed to you with a delay of a fraction of a second.

Japanese researchers have built a handheld device consisting of a microphone and a speaker that records a person’s voice and replays it to them with a delay of about 0.2 seconds.

The microphone and speaker are directional so it can be aimed like a gun.

Someone points that baby at you and you may as well take a break. Nothing coherent is going to pass beyond your lips.

The gun works better against reading aloud than plain talking. Which means it would be an effective weapon against the reading of bad poetry.

That alone makes it worth the sticker price.

So far no one has come up with any practical commercial applications for the device.

Then again, no one could imagine any practical use for the telephone when it was first invented either. Look at how that puppy caught on.

Who knows? This could become a major shift of our cultural landscape. A prospect that is both frightening and mind boggling.

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Control Codes for International Space Station Stolen – I am innocent.

NASA computer stolenThe press reports that NASA Inspector General Paul Martin said a notebook computer stolen from NASA contained command codes to control the International Space Station.

This was one of forty-eight notebooks or mobile devices that have been stolen from NASA. The number of stolen computers might be considerably higher because NASA relies on employees to “self report” these thefts.

A silly notion if there ever was one.

Suspected in the thefts are the Romanians, the Chinese, and myself.

I am totally innocent, of course.

I am only suspect because I was offering room rentals on the International Space Station at $1,000,000.00 per night over Facebook. So far I have sold two.

I won those rooms fair and square through a Publishers Clearing House contest.

I am confident I will be vindicated.

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Life inside a cave, one family’s dream.

Having a man-cave is one thing, but living in a real cave is something else all-together.

It would be uber-cool.

Curt and Deborah Sleeper built this underground home in a 17,000 foot gouge in the earth created by a sandstone mine from the 1930’s.

It is at least forty-five feet underneath a forest and is located in Festus Missouri.

Geothermal heating and smart passive design keeps the interior comfy while completely eliminating the need for a furnace or air conditioning. The home maintains a cool sixty-five to seventy degrees year around.

The three bedroom home is built from glass doors and local materials.

The cave consists of three chambers. Many of the walls are in their unfinished natural state, so you retain the ambiance of living in a cave.

The walls do shed sand, so the family has built interior roofs and placed coverings over areas that need to stay sand-free.

It seems that this would be like being at the beach all the time, with the constant annoyance of having sand in everything. That could get rather old over time.

None-the-less, it is a wonderful alternative to the monotony of modern day conventional housing.

I’d sure like to take a shot at living in this amazing space.

I doubt that will ever happen.

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The Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman, a mini book review.

The world is made of stories.

We tell stories, we hear stories, we believe stories.

Or not.

Our reality is created by the stories we tell, or the stories we choose to accept as real.

There is no reality outside our stories. There are only the stories.

I don’t usually buy this sort of crap. Native American stories about birds and coyotes and other critters that scurry about in the shadows usually leave me cold.

But Neil Gaiman’s book “The Anansi Boys” , based on animal mythology, is a whole different deal.

It has a different twist that makes what are essentially traditional animal teaching stories interesting and meaningful. What makes his writing so outstanding is that he has great characters, imaginative plot, and quirky humor.

I love quirky humor.

If you are already a Neal Gaiman fan you are going to love “The Anansi Boys”.

If you’re not a Neil Gaiman fan, and read the book, you are probably going to become one, or think the book is stupid.

Which way that goes says something about you, but I’m exactly not sure what.

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The Andy Reekers Silver Special.

The picture on the left is of a fishing lure invented, manufactured, and sold by my grandfather in the 1920’s and 1930’s in Portland Oregon.

The lure is called an Andy Reekers Silver Special.

It is prized by serious fishermen and lure collectors. Actually it more prized by fishermen than collectors because these suckers really catch fish.

The Andy Reekers Company was bought out by other companies and the quality of the lures declined.

The lure in the picture is an original Andy Reekers, which you can tell by the primitive packaging. They didn’t have slick marketing back in those days.

The fact of the matter is the whole manufacturing plant consisted of my grandfather (Andy Reekers), my grandmother (Harriet Reekers), my mom (June Reekers), my aunt (Margine Reekers), and my uncle (Jack Reekers). My grandfather was an entrepreneur back before anyone knew what an entrepreneur was.

Back in those days they just called it putting food on the table.

If you would like to learn more about Andy Reekers and his company, go to http://www.andyreekers.com.

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Carlo of Hollywood picture.

My wife and I found this original Carlo of Hollywood picture in a second hand store for $40.00.

It it is quite large, 23″ x 65″, and is hand painted. Not a print.

Paintings under the “Carlo of Hollywood” label were actually massed produces, though they were massed produced by real artists. Or at least people with a talent for painting.

They were mostly manufactured in the 1950’s, which works well for our mid-century home in La Grande.

His art was carried in department stores and included with tract housing. So we’re not talking high-end artsy-fartsy highbrow art.

But what do you expect for forty bucks?

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