BenTha'er-Horizons

Birthday Dinner

David and Renee hosted the Lewis and Thayer families at their place for chicken enchilada dinner with rice and beans on the side. Of course, birthday cake was available too. The kids/cousins all had fun playing and racing around the house. Jesse just looked at us like what is all the hub bub, Bub.
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A New Blue Color

Well, for all of its not as wonderful things politically, Oregon does have some wonderful scenery and things it has invented. Cool story in the news where one of the departments over at Oregon State University developed a new intense blue color. It has also been patented. Way to go and it is a new color where Indigo Blue was developed many, many years ago.
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The Real Dude

Before Bill and Ted or even Napoleon Dynamite there was a real King of the Dudes. His name was Evander Berry Wall. He was a fashion dandy for several decades. More about this Dude here….
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A Lost Spanish Settle

Archeologists have found a lost Spanish settlement in the Florida Panhandle. More cool details can be found here.
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Mc or Mac

Enjoying Scottish history, It is fun to read about where the prefix Mc or Mac comes from for Scottish names. The terms means "son of" and one is just an abbreviation of the other. This has not relationship to one being derived from Scottish roots over Irish. Read more about this here.
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True Crime Serial Killers

True Crime stories can be fascinating to read or watch. I guess though not for the people involved. I came across this article about the 7 creepiest serial killers in American history. Some I had never heard of. Definite sociopaths found here.
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A New Species

Shows how little I know and keep up with currently and in the past. It appears the wolf and coyote have mixed their genes and there is a species called the "coy wolf". The species is spreading in the Eastern U.S. A description of the animal is found here.
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George Washington

Today is George Washington's birthday. He is the epitome of a great man. I think the greatest thing he did was stepping aside for the natural progression of a presidency for the country in its infancy instead of becoming a reigning monarch as some would have made him. I cannot see many recent Presidents acting this way, especially Barack Obama. Power and money means too much for the oligarchy now. Here is an article on Powerline celebrating our first President.
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Columbine Lessons

One of the saddest days in current times was the day Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold terrorized their high school and killed a number of their classmates and a teacher. The high school was Columbine and located outside Denver, CO. It has been the source of a lot of soul searching and study. The mother of Dylan Klebold has written a book and is speaking out about how to engage in our children's lives and maybe not miss clues to things going very wrong in their lives. One such piece about this is here.
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Breakfast With Family

David and Renee did one of their breakfasts with the family all invited. We hadn't seen the group for awhile so it was nice to spend time with the kids. Here is my Jesse time at the start.
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Why Are Barns Painted Red?

I asked this question of our friends in Norway once. All their barns are painted red. There is no other color noted. No blue, no yellow, no brown or ? Well, it appears our trivia site has provided an answer to why barns were painted red in earlier times. Now it is just habit I suppose.

"When such paint became cheaply available via mass production in the late 1800s, farmers often stuck with the color red because, thanks to the abundance of iron oxide, red paint was still generally the cheapest paint on the shelf (although this is certainly not the case today)."

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A Swan Son

So why is the term Swan Song associated with a final performance? Read more about it here.

"This expression is generally thought to have its genesis in the over two thousand year old idea that swans sing a beautiful song just before death. Although this is technically not accurate, there is a hint of truth to it in select instances. For instance, the Whooper Swan, which as its name suggests is known for making a bizarre honking sound, has been observed to sometimes make a noise as it expires."
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Enemy of the State

Too many people are flirting with the thought of socialism (democratic or not). They have not read history. They have not read how the Soviet Union turned people into enemies of the state without them realizing why they were considered so. Often these people were convinced or made to be convinced they were guilty. Here is a description of how the NKVD operated in the 1930s of the Soviet Union. Read and weep.
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Bob Hope

Growing up I always enjoyed Bob Hope - movies, TV (the Oscars), and his entertaining the troops. I received a link to one of the Bob Hope videos of entertaining the troops at Christmas. He was one of a kind.
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President's Day

While I can like and admire Thomas Jefferson for his intellect and a number of the things he did for this nation, he has been reported as a not so good friend, more the back stabber even. He and John Adams were good friends and became estranged for many years. Now I read about how he tried to "take down" George Washington through the use of Washington's friendship with Alexander Hamilton. Good that it didn't succeed. We can see currently how mean-spirited and not in the best interests of our American spirit politics can be. This is an interesting post about the subject.
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Valentine's Day 2016

We went to 1847 Bar and Grill late this afternoon for our Valentine's Day dinner. I enjoy going there. I got 2 nice cards, one from Bob and one from the cats and dog. How thoughtful. I also got a set of colored pencils to go along with my adult coloring book I bought at Costco yesterday. At the end, I had there wonderful cranberry/orange bread pudding. Yum.
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Pre-Valentine's Day Romantic Quotes

Well, someone had to do it. Run a survey of people on what they consider the most romantic lines from literature, film, and TV drama. It appears that the line most picked is from the movie Sense and Sensibility…………..

''My heart is, and always will be, yours''

The rest of the list can be found here.

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Lincoln's Birthday

Since I like Abraham Lincoln, I like to post any remembrances of his great speeches and works. This article is a lovely tribute found on Powerline to one of the greatest and bravest men every known.
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The French Resistance

There has always been a mix of romance and controversy surrounding the French Resistance movement from World War II. Now there are two books out about this part of our more recent history. Read about it in the NYRB.
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The Rhodes

Well, I have not been to Africa. I have not visited South Africa nor Zimbabwe. I do remember when there was a Rhodesia. I can also say that I have met a large number of people living in the UK who used to live in South Africa and Rhodesia who returned to the mother country. A bit of understanding of Cecil Rhodes and his influence on southern Africa and how it reflects in current affairs along with the Rhodes Scholarship, please read this article from New Criterion.
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Lovely Sunrsie

We had a striking sunrise this morning. I could not help but grab a photo. It really stood out!IMG_5421
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The Real Steve Jobs

I have always been an Apple product fan since I got a MacIntosh product back in the 1980s. Hard to believe that that old Mac Plus cost over $3500 and needed a back up hard drive. We have come a long way, Baby, on computers. Much to the influence of Steve Jobs. Interesting and difficult guy. I saw a documentary on TV recently that is mentioned in this article. It was interesting and enlightening. He did change our world or how we look at it. Few have done so in the manner he did. Read about it.
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Amazing Survival Stories

I came across this webpage today about some of the most amazing stories people have of survival in bad circumstances. They overcame adversity to live when others may have died or did die.
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Another Book List of What Have I Read

Here is another booklist. It is a list of the top 20 books people lie about having read. I have read 17 of the 20.
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Vikings and Navigation

So did the Vikings use crystal 'sunstones' to discover America? This article discusses the possibility.

"Ancient records tell us that the intrepid Viking seafarers who discovered Iceland, Greenland and eventually North America navigated using landmarks, birds and whales, and little else.
There's little doubt that Viking sailors would also have used the positions of stars at night and the sun during the daytime, and archaeologists have discovered what appears to be a kind of Viking navigational sundial.
But without magnetic compasses, like all ancient sailors they would have struggled to find their way once the clouds came over.
However, there are also several reports in Nordic sagas and other sources of a sólarsteinn 'sunstone'.
The literature doesn't say what this was used for but it has sparked decades of research examining if this might be a reference to a more intriguing form of navigational tool."



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Psychopaths In Movies

This fascinating article talks about how a group of psychiatrists viewed 400 movies to determine which characters were truly a psychopath in nature. Norman Bates is not it. Neither is Hannibal Lecter. A psychopath has a combination of cold-heartedness and violence. The number one character chosen was Anton Chigurh played by Javier Bardem in "No Country for Old Men". He was a chilling movie character.
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Jesse Betrayed

Of course, Jesse went with Dad and Mom to the class. Doesn't he look betrayed kept from staying with his brothers and grandparents? He wanted to stay behind too.

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Brudders Together

We were asked to kidsit late this afternoon and evening for Nicolas and Ryan while David and Renee had a class. They both came in and sat down together on a chair as buddies to watch the "Odd Squad". Quite a cute pair.


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Unexpected Snow

We woke up to a bit of unexpected snow on the ground. Not a lot but it was cold and there was white everywhere. We did have a break in the clouds and the sun came through to shine up our world.
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