Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Tying the High

How hot was it yesterday in Baltimore? Record tying !

The official high temperature for July 30 in Baltimore was 98 degrees. It remains 98 degrees, but the high yesterday tied that record! It was incredibly hot. When I departed work to return home at the end of the workday, the thermometer in my car indicated between 99 and 100 degrees all the way home. The added degrees were likely due to the reflection of the heat off the road. I was very happy to have my truck and not be exposed to the sun and the heat in my convertible.

It was hot! 

But, the good news is that when it is hot, the pool feels even better and Chris and I were able to go swimming and enjoy the cooling effect of the evaporating water. It is very nice to have a pool right in the back yard! 

Today, however, is one of those sad days of the year. It is the last day of July and with it comes the end of my favorite month of the year. 

Well, August is coming. And the pool remains open. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Setting the Tone for Decency

It has been my experience that the President sets the tone for decency and inclusion in the United States. 

Well, people, the train carrying decency and inclusion has been derailed.

I touched upon it in yesterday's Monday Musings. 

What has been happening in the news the past few weeks represents a total break down in decency and inclusion. The insults being thrown about and the heavily slanted news being shown and created represents the greatest threat to democracy that we have faced in decades. 

Trump ramps up war of words with Elijah Cummings, calls congressman 'racist'

Gov. Larry Hogan Calls Trump Tweets On Baltimore, Rep Cummings ‘Outrageous And Inappropriate’

An article in the Korean Times states it best: Every Republican presidential candidate claims to be the heir to Ronald Reagan’s legacy. For years, Republican partisans have carried Reagan’s memory before them as the ancient Israelites carried the Ark of the Covenant. Just invoking his name proved your ideological purity, and would smite the dreaded RINO (Republican in name only).

Problem is, those who most fervently claim to adhere to Ronald Reagan’s principles don’t seem to understand Reagan’s greatest principle: decency.

We need a return to Presidential decency!

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Monday, July 29, 2019

Monday Musings - July 29, 2019

1. It is the last Monday of July. The month is fading and beginning the transition into August.

2. Busy weekends pass too fast. Why can't weekends be longer to accommodate everything that needs to be accomplished?

3. Monday Musings is back after a week off. 

4. There were some really scary articles in the Sunday New York Times yesterday. I highlighted two below.

5. In an essay on Ronald Reagan, by Peggy Noonan titled, Character Above All, the author makes the following comment about the Presidency. In a president, character is everything. A president doesn't have to be brilliant; Harry Truman wasn't brilliant, and he helped save Western Europe from Stalin. He doesn't have to be clever; you can hire clever. White Houses are always full of quick-witted people with ready advice on how to flip a senator or implement a strategy. You can hire pragmatic, and you can buy and bring in policy wonks.

But you can't buy courage and decency, you can't rent a strong moral sense. A president must bring those things with him. If he does, they will give meaning and animation to the great practical requirement of the presidency: He must know why he's there and what he wants to do. He has to have thought it through. He needs to have, in that much maligned word, but a good one nontheless, a vision of the future he wishes to create. This is a function of thinking, of the mind, the brain.

6. I spent the weekend alone working on numerous projects. It was nice to have full control of the weekend, but that written I did not manage to get a trip to the golf course included in the planned and unplanned activities. 

7. On a hot Sunday afternoon during July there is no better place to gather and enjoy the day than a pool!

8. Jeopardy finally is on a break for the summer. The last episode for the 2018-2019 season aired on Friday, July 26th. According to the best information that I can find right now, no tapings are yet scheduled for the 2019-2020 season. 

9. Today in History. On this day in 1958, the U.S. Congress passes legislation establishing the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), a civilian agency responsible for coordinating America’s activities in space. NASA has since sponsored space expeditions, both human and mechanical, that have yielded vital information about the solar system and universe. It has also launched numerous earth-orbiting satellites that have been instrumental in everything from weather forecasting to navigation to global communications. NASA was created in response to the Soviet Union’s October 4, 1957 launch of its first satellite, Sputnik I. The 183-pound, basketball-sized satellite orbited the earth in 98 minutes. The Sputnik launch caught Americans by surprise and sparked fears that the Soviets might also be capable of sending missiles with nuclear weapons from Europe to America. The United States prided itself on being at the forefront of technology, and, embarrassed, immediately began developing a response, signaling the start of the U.S.-Soviet space race.


Under Brazil’s Far Right Leader, Amazon Protections Slashed and Forests Fall - The New York Times

The Roots of Boeing’s 737 Max Crisis: A Regulator Relaxes Its OversightThe Roots of Boeing’s 737 Max Crisis: A Regulator Relaxes Its Oversight - The New York Times

Ratcliffe tapped to replace Coats as spy chief - Reuters

Suspected Islamists kill at least 65 in northeast Nigeria: state TV - Reuters

Ronald Reagan Quote for the Week

You and I are told we must choose between a left or right, but I suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There is only an up or down. Up to man's age-old dream -- the maximum of individual freedom consistent with order --or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism. Regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would sacrifice freedom for security have embarked on this downward path. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Updates on Sunday

The tire repair worked fine, the second time! I have driven over 20 miles since the repair and it is not losing any air! Yay!

Finn and Louis in a Sunbeam
Elkridge, MD
July 28, 2019
I love it when repairs go well, even if it is the second attempt. It had been a while since I plugged a nail hole in a tire and it took me some time to remember the tricks. And there are tricks. 

Today is a lazy Sunday. I have been sitting by the pool while the animals are basking in a sunbeam. I think that they are cute. 

I have projects to get started today and with it quiet, I will likely get them done. Today is very different from last Sunday when I was on a golf course in Trumansburg playing in a golf tournament. Chris and I had a lot of fun last week. And we finished only four shots out of third place!

It is the last Sunday of my favorite month of the year. I guess I will begin the countdown for next year soon.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Repair Fail

Repaired Nail Hole
Sometimes in my best effort to save a time or money, I repair things and they don't work out--at least the first time.

Tire monitoring Center on my Ram
Definite Problem with Left Rear
Case in point was last night and the tire on my truck.

The tire had a nail in it and Chris was kind enough to drive to the garage to have it repaired during the week, however there was a two-and-a-half hour wait. TOO long!

So, I bought a kit and tried to do it myself. Last evening I worked on the tire for some time and repaired it, or so I thought. Later during the evening I took the truck for a test drive. Very soon it was apparent that the repair had not done its job. I was lucky to get back home with 29 pounds of the 39 pounds of air that I started with. I parked the truck for the night and determined to work on it again in the morning. 

Flat tire
July 27, 2019
This morning the tire was flat. I mean really flat. Too flat. When I had to roll the truck forward to get the hole on top, the truck gauge indicated that I had 3 pounds of air in the tire. That, friends, is the definition of flat. So I pulled out the repair kit and tried it again about two hour ago. I repaired the hole and put 39 pounds of air in the tire in the hopes that the repair would hold. 

After sitting for two hours, I just checked the pressure and it is holding at 39 pounds. I am almost afraid to take it for a test drive. But I will take it out in a bit. 

I hate having to do things twice, but given the cost and time required to get the tire repaired at a tire shop, hopefully, this experience pays for itself. Not to fear, however, Cat, my Jaguar, is ready to serve as my transportation for the day should I need it. 

Maybe I'll go play golf.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Friday, July 26, 2019

July's Salute

Crepe Myrtle in July Against a Clear Blue Sky
Elkridge, MD
July 25, 2019
My favorite month of the year is slipping by at what seems to be an ever increasing pace. There are only five days remaining in July and 

The pool is beginning to show the signs of the lengthening summer, but the water is fantastic. The days this week have been idyllic with cooler temperatures and lower humidity. The Crepe Myrtle are in full bloom and dropping their petals into the pool at an alarming rate and require frequent removal. They are pretty gracing the surface of the pool, however. We have two colors of Crepe Myrtle around the pool, violet and red. When the petals mix in the pool it makes it look as if someone has covered the surface with confetti. I was not particularly smart in planting the Crepe Myrtle so close to the pool, but they were very small those few short years ago when I planted them. They are not towering over the pool and providing much needed afternoon shade, and color. 

July is the month when the Crepe Myrtle begin to bloom and unlike the Lilacs of springtime, their flowers and color will last for the remainder of the season well into September. 

As July slips by and August arrives next week my favorite month of the year will have passed, but the memories will remain.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Clouds and Birds

Cloud Over Tequesta
Tequesta, Florida
July 18, 2019
They are usually above us, unless we are above them or the sky is clear, that is clouds.

Gray Heron
Jupiter Island, Jupiter, Florida
July 18, 2019
I saw this cloud on the morning of the day before we departed Florida. It was hanging directly over Tequesta as Chris, Finnegan, and I were preparing to walk the beach. It was an awesome cloud in its solitary existence. I took the image looking back across the intracoastal waterway at 7:24 AM. The day was just beginning and it was our last full day in Florida. The walk that morning was beautiful as we watched some storms forming out over the ocean.

I took some pictures of a gray heron that was fishing along the shore. It allowed me to get very close, but even after two tries I could not get a good picture of it taking off as it moved down the beach.

A beautiful day to remember.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

After the Sunset

After the Sunset
Ithaca, NY
July 20, 2019
Saturday evening, after a day of driving to Ithaca, I was outside after the color of the sunset had left the sky and I saw the treelike silhouetted against the waning light of the sky. It was the fitting end to a day which had seen me drive for about six hours, after flying home to Elkridge the day before form Florida. I was engaged in a travel weekend. 

The stark blackness of the trees reminded me of an event 50 years before when two Americans, for the first time in Human history, stepped foot on the Moon and the images were broadcast back to Earth for all of us to witness live. I recall the stark white of the lunar surface and the inky black of the sky. There were no trees, no signs of life except for Neil and Buzz.

Who says nothing good happens after dark?

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Calling an Audible

Chris and Finnegan on the Beach with Sargassum
Carlin Park,
Jupiter, Florida
July 19, 2019
Chris and I tried to walk the beach every day while we were in Florida, but some days the sargassum washing ashore just made that impossible, especially with Finnegan.

Unfortunately, our last morning in Florida, that was the case. The sargassum was so thick on the beach and the tide was coming in--there just was no place to walk--and we went to two different beaches to attempt out morning walk.

On a morning like that we were just thankful to be in Florida enjoying the sound of the waves hitting the beach and looking to over the broad ocean. 

Life goes on and so did we. 

NOTE: Due to travel, Monday Musings was not published this week. It will return next week.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, Maryland

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Looking out the Window

Finnegan out the Window
July 19, 2019
Sitting in the car waiting for a drawbridge to raise and lower is a time investment with little return. The other morning, while we were still in Florida we caught the drawbridge on our way back from the morning walk on the beach. Finnegan was very interested in the activity occurring in the river and so Chris opened the window for him to enjoy the light breeze. I saw his reflection in the rear view mirror.

We sat there for at least five minutes and he remained transfixed on the activity all while the interminably slow drawbridge raised and then lowered.

— Bob Doan, writing from Ithaca, NY

Saturday, July 20, 2019

The Best Happy Hour

Happy Hour
Intracoastal Waterway, Jupiter, Florida
July 16, 2019
People who know me, understand that I love celebrating Happy Hour and especially enjoying the time with friends. 

The other evening, we observed a great happy hour in Florida with friends that was one of the most memorable in a long time. 

Happy Hour Along the Intracoastal
July 16, 2019
Happy Hour lasted about three hours because the water was flat, the day was warm, and the company was inspiring. That was what made it such a memorable Happy Hour. Coming at the end of a busy day which saw a lot of work accomplished to complete the new Key West room of the condo and so it was nice to relax and enjoy the beautiful ending to the day from the shores of a quiet and picturesque spit of sand along the intracoastal.

We were in sight of the drawbridge connecting to Jupiter Island and there were schools of fish of all sizes in the channel. We did some snorkeling, but the current was swift, I thought it was like doing a drift dive in the Gulf Stream.

It is a good memory from a great time with friends. But now, I'm back in Maryland and headed to a golf tournament tomorrow.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, Maryland

Friday, July 19, 2019

Project of the Day

The Sitting Room
July 18, 2019
Today marks the end of our all-to-short trip to Florida. It was supposed to be a mid-summer vacation and while we enjoyed being away from the heat of the mid-Atlantic region by walking the beach, snorkeling, and visiting new places for happy hour; we did a lot more work on our Florida home than either of us imagined. 

Fran Adding a Junction Box in the Master Bath
Note the White rectangle Where the Old Light unit Resided
July 15, 2019
The big objective for the trip was to receive the chairs for the sitting room and which would complete placing furniture in all of the rooms of the house. We successfully accomplished that objective and have created a very nice sitting room off the kitchen as a place to enjoy morning coffee and to write my blog. The chairs arrived yesterday, as promised by the shipping company, and we were ready to position and place them into service. 

The Master Bath is now the Key West Room
July 18, 2019
But there was so much more we accomplished during the trip. A new light was planned for the master bathroom--and we had purchased the light during our last visit to the house. The problem was that the footprint of the new light unit was significantly different from the existing one and that meant the area behind it would need to be painted to match wall. Well, as it turned out, that became a project that transformed the master bath into the Key West Room. 

Chris Installing the Blades on the Ceiling Fan
July 18, 2019
But wait, there's more. Through a series of discussions it was determined that there needed to be a filing fan in the living room to replace a fairly unbecoming ceiling light. Guess what? Yup, a new ceiling fan was installed and the light unit form the living room in the new sitting room. Chris was right there in them mix helping to get the ceiling fan installed and operational. 

To get the projects accomplished there were the obligatory shopping trips which also included finding more wall art and items to soften the look of the house. Chris tells me we are nearly there! Yay! There are only a couple of projects outstanding life under-counter lighting and lighting for the wall unit. These projects will have to wait for an other trip.

There is so much to do no matter which house I am living in at the moment. Projects seem to be a way of life.

But they keep me busy!

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Cup of Coffee

Why does it take longer to drink a cup of coffee than it does to drink a glass of wine?
Fin began Paw Prints in the Sand
Carlin Park Beach
July 17, 2019

My first, and only, cup of coffee of the day lasts over an hour. Sometimes, longer.

My first, of two or three, glasses of wine lasts at most 30 minutes. Why is that?

I am sitting this morning looking at a cup of coffee that I brewed an hour ago--it is cooler now, but I like it that way, and the cup is just under one-half full. I guess it is like walking on a beach with Finnegan, it just takes time. 

Well, since it is my only cup of the day, I guess I should take some time to enjoy it. 

Maybe I should head to the beach now for a quiet walk with the surf and leave the remainder of my coffee for my return?

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Racing to an Accident

America is racing full-speed down a road that narrows until a fatal accident occurs. The person at the steering wheel is navigating a course that appeals to the wrong America.

I read a scary CNN article yesterday about the existence of two Americas: 

There's a sobering truth to Trump's racist tweets that we don't like to admit

It is a thought provoking article and makes a good case for the current state of affairs in America.

The article, in part, states:

But Trump's recent tweets could show that he understands America better than his critics realize. 

These two Americas have long co-existed.

One is the country represented by the Statue of Liberty, and its invitation to poor and tired immigrants "yearning to breathe free."

The other is the one that virtually wiped out Native Americans, enslaved Africans, excluded Chinese immigrants in the late 19th century and put Japanese Americans in concentration camps.

Yesterday, the House passed Resolution 489Condemning President Trump’s racist comments directed at Members of Congress.

I read the resolution and was pleased to see all of the references to diversity made by the great leaders of America including Franklin, Kennedy and Reagan. 

The Resolution contains the following: Whereas President Ronald Reagan in his last speech as President conveyed “An observation about a country which I love”;

The resolution references and quotes from the speech which were made during the presentation of the Medal of Freedom, I have excerpted portions here:

Yes, the torch of Lady Liberty symbolizes our freedom and represents our heritage, the compact with our parents, our grandparents, and our ancestors. It is that lady who gives us our great and special place in the world. For it's the great life force of each generation of new Americans that guarantees that America's triumph shall continue unsurpassed into the next century and beyond. Other countries may seek to compete with us; but in one vital area, as a beacon of freedom and opportunity that draws the people of the world, no country on Earth comes close. 

This, I believe, is one of the most important sources of America's greatness. We lead the world because, unique among nations, we draw our people -- our strength -- from every country and every corner of the world. And by doing so we continuously renew and enrich our nation. While other countries cling to the stale past, here in America we breathe life into dreams. We create the future, and the world follows us into tomorrow. Thanks to each wave of new arrivals to this land of opportunity, we're a nation forever young, forever bursting with energy and new ideas, and always on the cutting edge, always leading the world to the next frontier. This quality is vital to our future as a nation. If we ever closed the door to new Americans, our leadership in the world would soon be lost.

The Resolution appeals to the America that is represented by the Statue of Liberty. I am appalled that more Republicans did not cross party lines, only four did, and support the resolution. I wonder why so many seemingly intelligent people continue to follow the path leading to destruction.

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

50 Years Ago - Apollo 11

I remember the launch of the Apollo 11 mission to land men on the moon vividly to this very day, even though I was only 13 years old. I was excited about the greatest adventure in the history of humankind. For the first time, humans were planning to set foot on something other than Earth.

Today, we begin a period of remembering what happened 50 years ago. At 9:32 AM EDT, July 16, 1969, Apollo 11 launched and the journey began. 

While it seems like ancient history to some, to many others of us the launch, the risk, the journey to the Moon by the brave trio of Neil Armstrong, "Buzz" Aldrin, and Michael Collins; was as if we were making the trip along side of them.

The hopes and prayers of all Americans traveled together with the three astronauts. 

Take some time this week to pause and reflect about one of the greatest achievements in human history, and something that has been replicated by no other country on the planet. 

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida

Monday, July 15, 2019

Monday Musings - July 15, 2019

1. The mid-point of July is upon us and, sadly, the summer is speeding by and an ever increasing rate, it seems. Don't forget to enjoy the best month of the year!

Flip-flops on the Beach
Home Sound National Wildlife Refuge Beach
July 14, 2019
2. Getting away is a definite requirement for the summer. A mid-summer break from the routine to recharge and relax. Except, sometimes I think I am working harder now.

3. Sitting on the beach yesterday, I was napping and enjoying the soothing sounds of the waves hitting the shore. I also spent a lot of time in the water enjoying the undulations of the waves. It seemed that my flip-flops were calling to me to walk to down into the ocean.

Moon Over Our House in Tequesta
July 14, 2019
4. Walking the beach in Jupiter yesterday morning, Chris and I notices that numbers, and I mean a lot, of turtle had come ashore overnight to make nests and lay eggs. We wondered it the bright moon was partially responsible. Last evening, I managed a moderately good image of the moon over our house.

5. The Orioles began the post-All Star game campaign by losing 2 of 3 to the Rays and nearly having a perfect game pitched against them yesterday. Things are not looking any better for the second half of the season. They remain on track to lose 114 games this season. 

6. I wish we could find the way back to a "kinder, gentler nation."

7. It is amazing how hot there sand can get on the beach as it bakes all day. 

8. Today in History. On this day in 2006, the San Francisco-based podcasting company Odeo officially releases Twttr—later changed to Twitter—its short messaging service (SMS) for groups, to the public. Born as a side project apart from Odeo’s main podcasting platform, the free application allowed users to share short status updates with groups of friends by sending one text message to a single number (“40404”). Over the next few years, as Twttr became Twitter, the simple “microblogging” service would explode in popularity, becoming one of the world’s leading social networking platforms.


Trump Fans the Flames of a Racial Fire - The New York Times

China’s Economic Growth Hits 27-Year Low as Trade War Stings - The New York Times

Hong Kong leader says protesters in latest clashes can be called 'rioters' - Reuters

Britain sees 'small window' to save nuclear deal, Iran presses Europe to act - Reuters

Ronald Reagan Quote for the Week

The problems we're overcoming are not the heritage of one person, party, or even one generation. It's just the tendency of government to grow, for practices and programs to become the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this Earth. [Laughter] And there's always that well-intentioned chorus of voices saying, ``With a little more power and a little more money, we could do so much for the people.'' For a time we forgot the American dream isn't one of making government bigger; it's keeping faith with the mighty spirit of free people under God.

-- Address Before a Joint Session of the Congress on the State of the Union, January 25, 1984

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Walk on the Beach

Happy Bastille Day! Just saying. It is my second favorite foreign holiday. 

Chris and Finnegan at Carlin Park Beach
Jupiter, Florida
July 13, 2019
We began the day with a walk on the beach. Chris and I were excited about the beach and feeling again the sand under our toes and hearing the rhythmic sound of the weaves hitting the beach. 

Tacky or Elegant?
You Make the Call
Day one in Florida was spent shopping for items to complete the house. We ran into a quandary in that we found an interesting coffee table and end tables, but were concerned that they might be more tacky than elegant. Nonetheless, they were very interesting and we spent a great amount of time talking before deciding against purchasing them. Even though they were on a fantastic sale! We resisted the urge.

We actually shopped for many hours--driving about 40 minutes from our home to find the special places for the treasures we were seeking. But in the end, nothing made the grade! 

For Day 2, I think we will perform a repeat walk on the beach.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Sunset Above the Clouds

Sunset Above the Clouds
Southwest Flight 2418
July 12, 2019
Last evening, Chris and I returned home to Florida. Having homes in two states means that we can wake in our own bed in Maryland in the morning, work through the day, head off the to airport and fly for just over two hours to Florida and then go home and sleep in our own bed! It was great to step through the door to the condo and be home, even though we were almost 900 miles from where we woke in the morning.

Flight 2418
July 12. 2019
During the flight we were treated to a display of color as the day ended and the sunset appeared. The reflection of the setting sun off the clouds was spectacular. I occupied a rare, for me, window seat. I usually prefer aisle seats. The scene outside the window was beautiful and I captured a couple of images to remind me of the splendor of the end-of-day display.

The day dawned here bright, cloud-covered, and humid--a near carbon copy of weather in Maryland. The big difference is that we will be heading to the beach in a few minutes for our morning walk along the shore. 

It is nice to get away from it all by going home and to be treated to such beauty along the way.

And now, it is off the the beach.

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida

Friday, July 12, 2019


Flamingos are back! 

Flamingo Sofa Pillow
I am seeing flamingos adorning all sorts of items these days as the lawn objects form the 60's make a resurgence into the mainstream again. I remember, from when I was a boy, that we had a pair of lawn flamingos--they were tacky, but it seemed many people added flamingos to their gardens. 

Flamingos are making a resurgence and just yesterday, I received a gift of a sofa pillow adorned with flamingos. This is not a solitary flamingo item, however, because out Florida house has a while room dedicated to flamingos! It also had a room dedicated to pelicans and another dedicated to turtles!

I love flamingos! They just scream the Caribbean to me and make me smile when I see them. I remember going the salt flats in Curaco and seeing the flocks of flamingos--they made me smile even then.  

And now, I smile whenever I see flamingos--I could go a bit overboard, but Chris keeps my irrational flamingo desire in check, mostly.

Think pink!

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Money on the Road

Money Along Atlanta highway
From The New York Times
Money was just laying there along the side of a road near Atlanta yesterday according to a report I saw on the news last night and read about in The New York Times this morning. 

The article in the Times was titled, An Armored Truck Spilled Thousands of Dollars on an Atlanta Highway. What Would You Do?

According to the reporting, about $175,000 fell along I-285, the beltway encircling Atlanta from the back of an armored truck. Drivers stopped and scooped up money and fast as they could, BUT, it is actually theft to keep any money retrieved from along the roadway and the windfall should be returned.

While the skies may have been raining $50 bills, it was not a windfall for those who gathered them from the roadway. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Mid-Season Break

Baseball is taking a time-out for the All Star game which was again won by the American League!

Bottom Five Teams in Baseball
July 10, 2019

The Orioles are the worst team in baseball. They were the first team to amass over 60 losses and are on track to lose 113 games. The Orioles are 31.5 games out of first place in their division and 23.5 games out of the Wild Card spot in the league. With some luck, perhaps the Orioles can improve and become the 29th best team in all of baseball!

No Orioles player actually played in the All Star game on Tuesday night--the only Orioles player, John Means a starting pitcher, was held in reserve. 

Well, now that the mid-season break is over, we can resume watching the wheels come of the Orioles. Maybe I will go to a game later in the season. I have attended only one game thus far--and it, predictably, was a loss. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

The Fledgling

Fledgling Cardinal on the Pool Fence
Elkridge, MD
July 8, 2019
After another long day at work, Chris and I decided to relax in the pool last evening. Shortly after we began to chat and float in the pool, I noticed a female Cardinal frantically flying around the fence near the pool. I remarked that the bird seemed stressed about something, and then I noticed something moving in the grasses along the pool--yes, it was a fledgling. The cardinal was protecting and caring for the chick which was attempting to fly, walk, and untangle itself from the grasses. 

The male cardinal also appeared and both birds cared for the fledgling by periodically feeding it and trying to get it to imitate their flight patterns. The small bird, for its part, did attempt short flights and made good progress, It rested on the fence for a long time before jumping/flying down and shuffling off into the wooded area. 

All-in-all the entire event took about an hour and we were transfixed watching the small cardinal begin the process of caring for itself and learning to fly. 

Oh the things we can see if we just take the time to watch.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Monday, July 8, 2019

Monday Musings - July 8, 2019

1. It is the second Monday in July and the month is already beginning to speed towards its conclusion. 

2. In an amazing stretch of baseball, the Orioles have improved their record to 27-62 .303 and have lowered their anticipated losses to 113 for the season.

June 7, 2019
3. Hanging out in the pool for the afternoon is one of the best ways to enjoy a hot, July afternoon.

4. Finnegan knows how to relax on a hot afternoon by sleeping on his back on a cushion by the pool.

5. Congratulations to the Women's National Soccer Team for bringing home Gold! As a side note, the men failed to defeat Mexico for their gold medal.

6. Rain. Everyday there has been rain! 

7. Quandary:  There is a nail in the tire of my truck. My tire is not losing air. Do I remove the nail and potentially cause a leak or do I leave it in the tire until it becomes a problem?

8. Today in History. On this day in 1951, Paris, the capital city of France, celebrates turning 2,000 years old. In fact, a few more candles would’ve technically been required on the birthday cake, as the City of Lights was most likely founded around 250 B.C. The history of Paris can be traced back to a Gallic tribe known as the Parisii, who sometime around 250 B.C. settled an island (known today as Ile de la Cite) in the Seine River, which runs through present-day Paris. By 52 B.C., Julius Caesar and the Romans had taken over the area, which eventually became Christianized and known as Lutetia, Latin for “midwater dwelling.” The settlement later spread to both the left and right banks of the Seine and the name Lutetia was replaced with “Paris.” In 987 A.D., Paris became the capital of France. As the city grew, the Left Bank earned a reputation as the intellectual district while the Right Bank became known for business.


Iran Announces New Breach of Nuclear Deal Limits and Threatens Further Violations - The New York Times

Hong Kong protesters march again, reaching out to Chinese visitors - Reuters

Ronald Reagan Quote for the Week

Call it mysticism if you will, I have always believed there was some divine providence that placed this great land here between the two great oceans, to be found by a special kind of people from every corner of the world, who had a special love for freedom and a special courage that enabled them to leave their own land, leave their friends and their countrymen, and come to this new and strange land to build a New World of peace and freedom and hope. Lincoln spoke about hope as he left the hometown he would never see again to take up the duties of the Presidency and bring America through a terrible Civil War. At each stop on his long train ride to Washington, the news grew worse: The Nation was dividing; his own life was in peril. On he pushed, undaunted. In Philadelphia he spoke in Independence Hall, where 85 years earlier the Declaration of Independence had been signed. He noted that much more had been achieved there than just independence from Great Britain. It was, he said, ``hope to the world, future for all time.''
--Remarks at the Opening Ceremonies of the Statue of Liberty Centennial Celebration in New York, New York, July 3, 1986

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Just add sand, water, and palm trees

Getting ready for upcoming vacations can sometimes be a full-time job. 

Ethan in the Pool
Elkridge, MD
July 6. 2019
Yesterday, Chris and I took Ethan out to acquire a well fitting mask and snorkel for his upcoming vacation. He went with us on our cruise last summer and could not find a correctly fitting mast and that really was a problem during our snorkeling adventures. So, Chris made the promise to get him correctly fitting equipment for his vacation this year.

And we made good on the promise! After he was correctly fitted as the local dive shop, he bought the equipment home to try it out. 

The equipment worked and he looked like a creature rising from the blue lagoon as he checked it out.

Ethan is ready for a snorkeling adventure on a far away Caribbean island--just add sand, water, and palm trees!

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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