October 16-24, 2004
Any interest in this corkscrew junk?
Here is a slightly tighter picture of the earlier 'junk'.
PS: For those of you who are tired of corkscrews....it was a nice day at the beach today.
This is the final close-up of the 'junk' box before the jewel will be revealed.
No one managed to claim the Pitt from my 'junk' drawer. Because it was so well buried? Perhaps no one recognized it? (*)
(*) "More likely, Alf, is that most of your readers come here for the 'skin' ... serious corkscrew collectors go to Don Bull's pages!"
It is time to vote!
Yes, Florida ... (the hanging 'chad' state ... the same place that forced the Supreme Court to decide the 2000 election) ... today delivered my absentee ballot.
No, it did not come with a postage paid return envelope (*). A little box in the upper right hand corner of the envelope advised me to affix 60 cents in postage (**).
But, inside the ballot was an insert that the proper return postage was 83 cents ... not 60 cents (***).
Yes, I am a paranoid-conspiracy person. By requiring odd-denomination postage is the government only encouraging people with postage meters to vote? Or, are the extra pennies needed to help defray the cost of the Iraq war? And, what about the fact that the only document in the ballot envelope that is NOT bilingual...(the rest of the stuff is also in Spanish) ... is the warning that you must attach 83 cents worth of stamps or else your vote will be returned for insufficient postage? (****)
Am I crazy?
"Yes, Alf, you are flaming nuts! Some stupid clerk at the Election Office used the wrong calibrations to weigh the ballots. That's it and nothing more. What do you expect from minimum wage workers? But, it is sort of silly that the Post Office can't increment their postage charges on a scale that takes into consideration normal household stamp inventories."
(*) Had it been delivered to me in Bangkok Federal Express would have returned my ballot to the vote counters at no charge.1
(**) Since most households only have 37 cent stamps on hand this means that most absentee voters would have to give the post office 14 cents (37 times 2 equals 74). Assuming that the 60 cent figure was right.
(***) Again, since most of us only stock 37s this would give the government a 28 cent windfall ($1.11 - .83) per vote.
(****) Bush angered many Cuban Americans by limiting their trips to Cuba.
1 This from my minder in Bangkok, the US Consular section of the American Embassy:
Dear American Citizens:
Election Day is fast approaching. By now, you all have already sent in your request for an absentee ballot. If you sent your ballot request in on time, you should already have, or will soon receive, your absentee ballot. Please send your completed ballot back to your local election officials as soon as possible to ensure it arrives on time to be counted.
Each state sets their own rules regarding the election calendar. For most states, the deadline has already passed, but some states will still allow you to request an absentee ballot. To check your individual state's deadline, please look Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP)Main Page <http://www.fvap.gov/>.
Most states will accept your absentee ballot right up to, or even after, the election on Nov 2. Again, to see your state's calendar for accepting absentee ballots, please look at Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP)Main Page <http://www.fvap.gov/>.
If you requested an absentee ballot, but do not receive one in time to vote, you may vote by using an Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB), which is available from the consular sections in Bangkok and Chiang Mai.
When sending in your completed absentee ballot, you may use the Thai postal system, drop it at the consular section, or use FedEx, which is generously offering to return all ballots to the US for free. If you use the Thai postal system, you must buy a Thai stamp. If you drop your ballot at the consular section, and your ballot is marked postage-paid, it goes to the US for free. If a stamp is required, you will have to buy a US stamp. The consular section in Bangkok has a supply on hand for this purpose.
The FedEx offer began on September 20, and runs through to Nov 1. To use the FedEx offer, you must ship your ballot using a FedEx envelope and you must complete a FedEx Int'l AWB. You can drop your ballot off at any designated FedEx facility. In Bangkok, these facilities are located at:
CNN predicts rain tomorrow in Florida....the local girls are going to stay out of it:
Some in less colorful positions:
The Boat Show draws near ... the main site is the Bahia Mar Yacht Basin.
Stone Crab season is here!!!!!
Do you recognize these corkscrews?
A strange animal sighting near our house:
Krummer Patents: 2 versions, one is very rare.
Yikes ... now there are mechanical monsters in our neighborhood.
Reader W. J. from Auckland writes:
"We are tired of corkscrews ... and strange animals that lurk in your backyard ... how about something interesting: ... well; let's make it RAW ... OK?"
For Sure ... how about something Micro-Macro-Sabbath like ... this! (*)
(*) THOCBDC caters only to direct wishes from readers who do not have a political ax to grind ..., but, this being an election month ... THOCBDC is vaguely sort of quasi-pseudo-religious ... in a counter-intuitive pro-cunt sort of way.
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?
Cindy came over for dinner ... she brought along a bottle of alcohol free Champagne.
PS: A 'snap' from the past (*) ... only those who were there will remember this. But, there were a lot of 'those' there. Any guesses?
(*) Found on an old computer.
Next: Part IV