Saturday, July 12, 2014

Conducting a Symphony takes practice

A student conductor in practice - click to enlarge
Photo: Gabor Degre, Bangor Daily News
  You may think a school for Symphony Conductors would be in a large city like New York City or Paris, but that's not where you'd go to learn.  The Pierre Monteux School is in Hancock, Maine a Town of about 2400 people.
  The School for conductors has been in Maine since 1943, it was previously in France.  Each summer students from all over the world travel to the school.  Musicians that make up the orchestra at the school come from many places too, some are musicians and student conductors.
  Read more:
In the classroom - click to enlarge
Photo: Gabor Degre, Bangor Daily News

Friday, July 11, 2014

Tired and blurry

  The Red Sox have won two games in a row, that's why I'm tired - the celebration lasted into the wee hours of 7:30PM!  I'm wiped out.
  I took a friend on a trip yesterday to Damariscotta and Pemaquid Point, so I was already tired before the game.
  Let's see;  gone all day, Red Sox celebration = no blog.
  No blog because someone didn't do his homework!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

How's you "fit"? Tight? Loose?

Source: U of Maryland via MotherJone
  See, with some extra dollars to spend on interviews and taking lots of notes; here is what you get.  Is your State loose or tight?  In between?  Who really knows, and who really cares?  I think I know the answer but make up your own mind.
  Looseness is described as being more accepting to people who are different than you.  For instance State laws regarding punishment in schools or in favor of same sex marriage - things of that nature.
The higher the number the looser the State - looks like the Northeast and Western states are all loosey-goosey and the rigid guys are down south.
Read more:

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Mare Island NSY and history

A part of the long closed Mare Island Naval Ship Yard in 2011 - click to enlarge
Photo: U S Navy via
  An article or advertisement that mentioned the city of Vallejo caught my attention some day late last week, and I remember a Navy ship yard and couldn't come up with the name.  Finally it dawned on me, Mare Island, so I just had to look it up.  Here we go. 
  The Navy purchased 900 acres near Vallejo, California in 1853 to build steel and wooden ships and until it's closing in April 1996 it thrived.
  Grown to over 2000 acres by the time it closed many, many ships from 1856 until the end of World War 2 had been built at the yard.  Mare Island at one time was the only Marine Corps Recruit Depot (Boot camp) on the west coast.  Ships important in Navy history came from this yard including the USS Jupiter, a collier (coal refueling ship), which became the USS Langley the Navy first aircraft carrier.  Many, many diesel electric submarines came from Mare Island along with battleships, cruisers and destroyers.
  It is on the National Register of Historic Places and sits empty and in disrepair at the northern end of San Francisco Bay.
The cruiser USS San Francisco, a Mare Island build, passes under the Golden Gate - click
Photo: U S Navy via
USS Langley CV-1 at sea
Photo: U S Navy via

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Just thinking and a follow up moose report

Says it all in my opinion
Photo: Steve Bullen
  What more can I say?  Be a sailor like Wilbur and me - Lifetime Award for Sailorism.  Any comments?
Wrecker removes the moose
Photo: Ashley Stoddard
  A couple of days ago I showed the moose that went in to a car through the windshield and was partially out of the back window.  It had been hit by a speeding car.  A flatbed wrecker used the winch to remove the animal; yes it was dead.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Airplanes on Main Street

1957 Piper Pacer and Wooden water tank in Beaumont, Kansas - click to enlarge
Photo: Molly McMillin The Wichita Eagle
  The old Hotel Beaumont in the Town of the same name, located in the Flint Hills of Kansas, has been restored.  The hotel is a favorite of pilots and light planes, motorcyclist, and drivers of restored autos.
  Ben VanKampen flew his restored 1957 Piper Pacer to Beaumont, landed on the grass airstrip, and taxied down Main Street to a parking area for planes and the Beaumont Hotel.  It was, in his words, a terrific experience taxing on the Main Street which usually would never happen.
  The old hotel, built in 1879, has been completely refurbished and is more than ready for your visit.
Read more:

The Hotel, the plane is parked in the rear - click to enlarge
Photo: Molly McMillin The Wichita Eagle

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Seeking smaller places?

A "container" home - partially finished - click to enlarge
  Some people, a growing number, are shunning the Mc mansions and moving to, or building, smaller spaces.  They're sometimes called minimalists and are tired of the fuss of larger and larger homes.
  It may be a good idea.  There's a company in Brewer, Maine called Snap Space Solutions that builds homes, office buildings, bunk houses and all sorts of things from shipping containers.  Good looking stuff too.  Here's a peek: some of you know I have an interest in Brewer things because the City was my employer for a long stretch of time.
Some people build their own homes.
Photo: Logan Werlinger Portland Press Herald
  Mr. Plummer above is building his own home in Maine, he is a single man with adult children and just wanted to down size.  I've lost the article and that paper charges people $8.00 a month to read more than 10 things - I'm downsizing on them!