Thursday, October 30, 2008

Philly loses its cool.

Proof that Philadelphians are nuts.

Watch all five videoes. They get steadily scarier. I really don't understand this whole mentality.




Wednesday, October 29, 2008

My new roommates

Penny. She loves the litter box.


The Last 24 Hours

Have been as exciting as can be. It started snowing here yesterday and by the time I got to checking fences it was late afternoon and many of them were already down from the weight of the snow. As a matter of fact, when I was walking to the barn, five heifers met me outside the milkhouse. I spent hours clearing snow and ice from the fences in the driving snow in an effort to keep dry cows and heifers from walking to Earlville. As it was, I knew I was short 5 or 6 animals. Happily, they showed up just before dark, wandering in from the north 40. By the time all the animals were safely inside reasonably secure fences it was 11 pm. 25 dry cows and heifers spent the night and today down in the grove of trees in the southeast corner.

Then the trucker arrived at 8 am to haul the 30 cows down to PA. It was snowing and he had a pretty big rig. He got hung up two feet from the pole by the pool that holds the electrical wires running to the barn.

But he knew all the ins and outs and we hooked the tractor up to the trailer and dragged it back to the cattle chute. The trucker was about 60 y/o and not an ounce of fat on him. He'd just driven 420 miles since midnight and yet he was spry and lively. Once he got backed up to the cattle chute we loaded 30 cows without any problem.

There are now only 31 cows in the barn, all of them in the upper end. The other 30 are Amish cows now!

Company for the weekend

We had a houseful over the weekend: Grandma Murphy, Caleb, Kate, Hobbes, Sheba, and on Sunday night, Uncle Don, who came from Maine bearing lobster. We had a great time, except when we were dealing with scary calls from Laura in Philadelphia. I didn't take many pictures, but here are two from Saturday, when the weather was so terrible that there wasn't much to do besides helping Grandma with her jigsaw puzzle.

I included both pictures, even though they're a lot alike, because I couldn't decide which shot of Caleb trying to look as if he's working hard on the puzzle was funnier.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Burning off the well

They are burning gas off at the Corey well. This is done as a safety measure to reduce pressure, I'm told by the safety officer on site, who politely prevented me from getting closer with my camera. The first video was taken from the road by the well. Make sure your sound is on. (I can hear the flames roaring right now, from inside the house with doors and windows closed.) The second video was taken from the hill above the pond on the farm. I wish I could get a decent still picture. It's an extraordinary sight.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

So many posts...

so little time. I have been inclined to post many times in the last couple weeks but haven't had the time to do the posts justice. I'm not saying anything about this one in an effort not to prejudice it. Just watch it. All the way through. Just watch it.

Finally, some celebrities with sense.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Your Red Sox Offseason

How do you do it?

Current players' futures to consider:

Major Free Agents/Trade options:
CC Sabathia
Derek Lowe
Ben Sheets
Ryan Dempster
AJ Burnett
Jake Peavy
Brian Fuentes

There's a full list here, but I think it's a little out of date. Adam Dunn and Pat Burrell are the two biggest bats after Teixeira and Manny, but I don't think we could fit them in anywhere.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Game Thread

Seriously. Tonight. 8:07. Be here. Or I'll be really mad.

Who stayed up for the comeback? Who went to sleep? I'll admit that I fell asleep, even after David Ortiz's homerun. I was trying to stay awake. Gameday just isn't captivating enough. I came in and out of consciousness until 2 am when I woke up and found IMs from my brothers telling me to wake up. Oops. I really feel crappy about it. I also went to bed on Wednesday before finding out the result of the Phillies vs. Dodgers. I woke up at 11:45 and thought people were dying in the streets. Turns out that what I thought were gunshots were actually fireworks, and the screaming was in celebration, not pain. Thank God Manny isn't going to the World Series.

Also, I HATE that the playoffs are on TBS. You'd think they would at least put the playoffs on a channel most people get.

Friday, October 17, 2008

I have no idea what's going on.'s new feature, "Five ways to go green — and get in some exercise."

Some really good advice here. Really good. Just smart, well written, coherent stuff.

Murphies in Japanese (ed.: Chinese, she means.)

Somebody used Babelfish to translate us into JapaneseChinese. Why are Murphies, Caleb, and Red Sox the only words that don't translate?

Update: Laura asked what I was talking about here. It was a Sitemeter report, Laura -- one of the referrals there (currently #46 on the "Referrals" list, but that will change with each new visit and disappear when it hits #101) shows that somebody used Babelfish to translate us into what I thought was Japanese. I went back and looked again. It's Chinese, and the visitor was from Taiwan. I'm not sure it would be fair to say that we have a Taiwanese fan base, but we do continue to get hits from all over the place. (On our little family blog!) Here, for example, are the latest 100:

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Pool cat

Cool cat.

What do you mean, my tail's in the water?

It is not.


Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto in D Major. There's nothing like the sight and sound of pure human ability:

1st movement pt. 1

1st movement pt. 2

2nd movement

3rd movement

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Red Sox

Pena should not have scored just now. Was that Lowrie as the cut-off man? VERY weak throw from him, and Bay's wasn't really that much better.

A drilling rig comes to town

They've been drilling across the road from the northwest corner of the farm for a week or so. They work around the clock. There's a steady dull roar from that direction, though you can't hear it very well in the house. The drilling rig is the tallest thing that's ever visited this valley. At night it is lit up like a miniature skyscraper. We tried to take pictures but they didn't come out too well, so I went back by daylight. It seems that even Nornew is enjoying the beautiful fall weather.

The rig is on the former Corey farm, on the knoll behind the barn.

You can't get too close. There are signs requiring hard hats and warning off unauthorized persons. They have smoothed off the the whole top of the hill to make a platform for the well and have built gravel embankments around the platform's edges.

Here's how it looks from the hill on the east side of the farm.

The drilling rig and the mountain. (Enlarge.)

Here's where it is.

Be careful out there!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Head Spinning

So much happening around here.

1) Installing and learning to use a new-fangled stoker-type coal stove. Difficult even to get the danged thing lit.

2) Cow sales. the sooner the 30 PA cows leave the better. Meanwhile, testing for brucellosis and TB. UGH.

3) Negotiations for a pipeline ROW. They (NOWNEW and the "landmen") are pros. We have to learn about all this from the ground up.

4) A Natgas well being drilled a feww hundred feet from our property. You should see it at night! Absolutely thrilling! A spaceship has landed!

5) Red Sox in the playoffs yet again. A very exciting series with the "halos". Wow!

Life is very full and complicated at the moment.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

The Angels deserve to Lose

Whadda bunch of wankers. I have NO sympathy for them. Bottom of the second, bases loaded, two outs, and Ellsbury pops it up. Do the center fielder and the second baseman break their necks to catch the ball? No, they both back off and let it drop, letting in three runs. They don't deserve to win. Pedroia and Coco would have crashed into each other making the catch. You want it or you don't. The "Halos" don't want it.

Alternative This, Alternative That

Why are alternative medicine, alternative energy and alternative anything else alternatives?

Because they are, in some way, inferior.

Thursday, October 02, 2008


Boy, the home town team looked like a well-oiled machine last night. The "Halos" (how many times will I have to hear that?) looked Bush League, meaning the non-presidential sense. The RS may have won the WC series last night.

I'm sorry I ever whined about Lester. What a pitcher he's become.