Friday, December 16, 2016


This enchanting Christmas light display was done by Scott and LuAnn Trumpopwer on Abbeyfeale Rd., Mansfield.  There are larger light displays around the county but none with this delightful and creative artistry.

Do yourself a favor and put this on your must-see list during this Christmas season.

(Abbeyfeale Rd., is a short connector street that runs west from Lexington Ave just south of Sturgis to Wood St.)

Sunday, December 4, 2016

From today's headlines

"Madonna Bashes Donald Trump at Miami Show:  I'm Ashamed to be an American"

Guess what lady, I'm also ashamed you are an American!

Thursday, December 1, 2016

All in this morning's news...

The Levi-Straus Co., it is reported today, requested customers no longer bring their constitutionally protected and legally authorized concealed handguns into their stores.

This, evidently, is in response to an incident in a Commerce, GA store where some hapless twit accidently shot himself causing non-life threatening injuries with a legally carried gun and, evidently, ignoring the millions of other times legally armed customers have visited their stores without incident.

The company's witless chief executive officer went on to state:  "...he knows some individuals will react to the request to disarm by boycotting Levi Strauss, but he 'concluded that most boycott threats around this topic ultimately blow over.' "

Actually, I had learned, long ago, of this company's disrespect for our Constitutional rights under the 2nd Amendment and haven't bought a pair of their denims in the past 15 or 20 years in their stores or in any other store, for that matter.

I just counted 14 pairs of denim pants in my home closet, including the pair I am wearing, and there is not a Levi brand in the bunch.  Add about a half dozen more pairs of denims in permanent residence in our FL camper and you have 20 sales lost to this outfit at this time with one person alone, which ignores, of course pairs bought and worn out in the meantime.

Let me help you with a little math Mr. executive in chief.  There are an estimated 12.8 million concealed carry licenses now issued in the US, not counting the folks legally carrying in about a dozen states where no license is necessary.

But, considering those 12.8 million potential customers alone; if each of them has just 1/2 the quantity of denims I own and assuming an average retail price of $35 per pair of your denims (12.8 x 10 pairs x $35 each)  and you have a potential loss in sales value of some $4,500,000,000.

In the interest of making a conservative estimate lets halve that number again to $2,250,000,000.

Like the ageless politician Everett Dirksen once said, paraphrasing, "Pretty soon that adds up to a lot of money (say lost sales revenue in this case)."  If I counted my zeros correctly we are talking in the billions of dollars.

*          *          *

Speaking of stupidity or insanity or whatever, today's news also tells us democrats in the US House of Representatives have re-elected what's her name to the speaker's position.

Here we are with the recent election having demolished democrat candidates from the courthouse to the state house to the White House and their minions in the Congress vote to retain a noisy slice of the same losing leadership.

Remember the old saying that dealt with repeating the same mistake and expecting a different result.

You can see me rolling my eyes, can't you?

*          *          *

And finally there was this news headline:

"California to begin controlling cow farts."

I'll leave you to ponder that one.

Monday, November 14, 2016


The main squawk of this current rioting crowd seems to surround Clinton winning the popular vote but not likely winning the Electoral College process.

1)  The election appears to have been conducted (mostly) under the rules of our country and simply not liking the outcome is not a valid reason to try to forcibly change that result.

Changing the declared result, however, is likely very much favored by the Clinton regime, if not actually being encouraged by that crowd.  Playing by the rules of law or civilized society is not something they seem to favor.

2)  The "winning" margin of Clinton's popular vote total appears to be entirely within her winning margin in California alone.  Which means, the "winning" candidate in this or any future national election could be determined by the liberal enclaves mostly located in the dense population areas of Los Angeles and San Francisco.

This particular election is clear evidence of why the Electoral College process is part of our legal system.

Remember also our country is being swamped, daily, by immigrants crossing our southern border completely outside the rule of our immigration laws.  This has been going on, in fact encouraged, during the entire term of the Obama regime occuping our presidency.

You don't suppose that open-border tactic was intended to increase illegal votes for democrat candidates, do you?

Why, of course not! 😉

Finally, rioting is a violation of law in most jurisdictions.  I'm wondering what would happen if these current culprits were examined by law enforcement for their status as US citizens and were sent home if they have no legal right to be in this country.

We might quickly cease to appear like the bananna republic they evidently intend to create.

(Note, this column is talking about rioters, not the law abiding folks who chose, in their good conscience to support the Clinton candidacy--no matter how flawed their logic.)

May God bless America, and may America bless God!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Election 2016

Sunday, October 30, 2016

MACKENNA CURTIS-COLLINS coasting to a dream finish in the regional cross country championship race in Tiffin, OH Saturday, October 29th.

Last week she was wearing a boot to help heal a stress fracture in her tibia.

She got her doctor's approval to attempt this race with the admonishment to stop immediately at the sign of any pain.

She ran three warm up outings on her home course earlier in the week and did a 5 minute warm-up at the regional event...

...then went out and smashed the field of over 90 other racers with a winning margin of 11 seconds leading her team to a first place finish in the regional and a place in the state championship next weekend.

Can you see this proud, adopted grand-pa's smile?

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Little Fern House
in my woods

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Vero Beach, FL

It appears the Vero Beach area dodged a bullet, so to speak.  Hurricane Matthew passed near-by, off-shore as a category III storm and the only reported damage is relatively minor; downed trees and power lines and some beach erosion.

One fellow was reported to say he expected " find nothing left when he returned to his local mobile home park."  Instead the only evidence of the storm there was downed branches and some car-ports and awnings destroyed.

Our mobile home/RV park remains evacuated.  Stay tuned!

Friday, October 7, 2016

Intellicast Radar 3:15 a.m., Friday, October 7, 2016

The designator VRB in the lower left of the eye of the hurricane is Vero Beach, Florida; our winter home for the past six snow-birding seasons.  The future of that marvelous, winter diversion is very much in question at the moment of this radar image.

May God have mercy on the folks in this massive storm's path. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2016


GOD STOPPED BY THE WOODS and sprinkled crimson stardust on this young maple tree.

Now it stands quietly and enjoys its visual blessing while its neighbors remain dressed in the fading growing season's greenery.

Thanks God for what was, what is, and what is yet to be. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2016


The boys on WMAN news radio were talking the other morning about the very noticeable lack of what's-her-name's yard signs in their local listening area during this presidential election.

It's true.  While there are Trump signs everywhere I can think of two of hers.  T.w.o.

Decided to look into this on a drive to the Columbus airport today.  I took SR 13 through Bellville to Mt. Vernon, SR 661 and US 62 through Johnstown to Gahanna and on to the airport.

I passed boatloads of Trump signs.

I saw four of what's-her-name's.

In fact, they were virtually trumped (smile) by the 3 signs I saw promoting her imprisonment.

Now, this isn't exactly a scientific poll but it is revealing.  Makes one wonder about the legitimacy of the national "scientific" polls that keep describing this election as a tight race.

You don't suppose the pollsters have been manipulating the results, do you?

Nah, that couldn't possibly happen with today's high level of professionalism and journalism ethics we've come to enjoy with pollsters and major news outlets.

Or, could it?


Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Kristin Scott, Worship Leader

Services with
CiTiChurch, Bellville, Ohio

Robert Macdonald, Lead Male Vocalist and
Sarah Griesbach, Vocalist

Tim McGunigal, Bass Guitar

Ashley Macdonald (L) and Kelli Touby, Vocalists

Dramatic Production on Sanctuary Stage

Micah Pelkey, Lead Pastor

Baby Dedication

Ethan Boggs, Executive Pastor

Justin Dillotte, Electric Guitar

Pastor Pelkey

Pastor Boggs

Visual lyrics

Pastor Boggs


...and Amen

*            *            *

The pictures above are representative from several weeks of church services.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

A thru hike on the Appalachian Trail

Five months and 23 days after launching this Goliath of a hike in the mountains of northern Georgia, Suds and Subman (above) celebrate the finish on the top of Katahdin Mountain in Maine.

That's a walk of 2,015 miles.  Yup, I said two thousand and change.  For a fun contrast; have any of us even walked 15 miles recently?

The trail basically follows the Appalachian Mountains along the East coast of the US.

No wonder it took 5 months.  Not sure I could drive it any faster.

Those monikers are their trail names.  Suds' belongs to my neighbor's daughter really known as Angela Mays and Subman is Larry LaPierre.  The neighbors are directly across the road from me; John and Sondra Mays and we've both been following their hiker's journal, sometimes breathlessly.

Trail names are a treasured mystique of veteran, thru-hikers, often being proclaimed by fellow hikers after some memorable happening.  Suds got hers when she was doing a 5-day tune-up hike and her shoes foamed like a miniature washing machine with toooo much soap when they encountered heavy rains and Subman, watching the spectacle, made the proclamation.

Her life's partner Subman was, you guessed it, a submariner in the US Navy and, drum-roll please, a veteran of two previous thru hikes of the AT.  That's more than 6,000 miles of wandering the mountain peaks and valleys of the Appalachians.  He's also fond of sub sandwiches.  Very fond.

The highest mountain they climbed was Clingman's Dome at 6,643 feet above sea level.  Their finish climb was a mere 5,267 feet above sea level to the top of Mt. Katahdin, the highest point in Maine.  That mountain is so far north in Maine hikers are likely to see more moose in a day than humans.

Angela said, "I'm sure our hike will be the most exhilarating adventure I am blessed with."

Fogeyisms tips it's hat to these world-class wanderers for this successful pursuit of their dream.

Mt. Katahdin, Maine

Thursday, September 8, 2016


Somebody on my rural road has this sign in front of their property.

Can you imagine?

Actually, it reminded me of a news story I read recently that said folks are buying anti-what's-her-name campaign merchandise at a rate 814% greater than they are buying "anti" campaign material for, well, what's his name.

Makes me wonder if that represents some kind of non-scientific poll.

Nah!  That couldn't be.

Could it?

Saturday, August 13, 2016

PENNSYLVANIA; Final Edition--

Known as the Sauches Covered Bridge at the time of the Battle of Gettysburg, both the Union and Confederate Armies used this bridge to enter the battlefield area.  Four days later the remnants of General Robert E Lee's Confederate, Army of Northern Virginia, retreated over this same bridge after the Union victory.

I stood in the mddle of this truss structure and tried to imagine the muted thunder of colonial armies rumbling their way across this bridge to a monumental battle that would take place just a few miles away; a battle over the period of three days that was to change the course of history for our newly developing country.

Today, the bridge is limited to the solitude of pedesterian traffic in this bucolic Pennsylvania, farmland setting.  It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

*            *            *

Col. Patrick H. O'Rorke (left) was graduated first in his class at the US Military Academy, West Point, NY in June 1861.  He is featured on the New York monument honoring their 140th Infranty, erected at Gettysburg in 1889.  His fellow commanders described his heroic action on Little Round Top as among the most instrumental of the entire Civil War.

He was killed there on the second day of battle, July 2, 1863.  A bridge in his hometown of Rochester, NY was named in his honor in 2004.

To this day, visitors to the battlefield rub the nose of his bronze casting for good luck, polishing it to a bright lustre.

*           *            *

Later in our battfield visit we came upon another monument where visitors have accorded similar treatment; this time to twin parts of a lady's anatomy.

I didn't know whether to laugh or frown at this mild indignity.

Still later we were visiting the battfield cemetery and began to notice coins, mostly pennies, lying atop the small grave stones.  Park officials appreciate the respectful intent of those responsible but have discovered the alloy of the coins when exposed to rain leaves nearly permanent stains on the grave markers.

Sue, Becky and I collected 814 pennies and a handful of other coins which Becky turned over to the cemetery treasury in her role as a volunteer park ranger.

*            *            *

One memory I have carried with me since a childhood visit to Gettysburg is that of a musket ball that passed randomly through an entrance door at the home of Jenny Wade, killing her and making her the only civilian casualty of the battle.

The ball actually also passed through an interior door and struck her while she was kneading dough in the kitchen.  She was 20 years old at the time.

As is often the case with such experiences, my memory is of a much larger hole that easily accommodated my curious finger nearly 70 years ago, and the door was a natural, aging wood color, not the bright red of present day.

Friday, August 12, 2016

was delivered at this very location on November 19, 1863

during the dedication ceremony for the Gettysburg National Cemetery to honor the fallen Union soldiers and redefine the purpose of the war.

Between 46,000 and 51,000 soldiers from both armies were casualties, killed or wounded, in the three-day battle, the most costly in US history.

Sue and my cousin, Becky (above) a volunteer ranger with the National Park Service at Gettysburg, explore the Devil's Den, near both Big and Little Round Top, all prominent battle sites and popular with tourists to this day.

The Virginia Memorial (right) was the first Southern monument which was placed at Gettysburg in 1917 at a cost of $50,000.

The monument stands 41 feet high and is topped by Confederate General Robert E. Lee and his horse Traveller.  Virginia contributed over 19,000 men to the Confederate Army, the largest contingent of the Southern states.

The soldiers below Lee were representative of the wide variety of professions and ages of the state's soldiers.

Becky and Sue examine a canon at the Peace Light Memorial which was dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1938, the 75th anniversary of the war's end.

The tower commemorating General James Longstreet's service in the Confederate Army towers 650 feet above the battlefield.  Longstreet first served as a major in the Union Army from 1842 to 1861 then joined the Confederates and rose to the rank of Lieutenant General from 1861 to 1865.

The Battle of Gettysburg, also known as the Gettysburg Cyclorama, is a cirular painting depicting Pickett's Charge in the climatic Confederate attack on the Union army, July 3, 1863.  It is displayed in the battlefield's Museum and Visitor's Center and is extremely popular with tourists.

Sallie, the mascot of the 11th Pennsylvania Infantry, is memorialized on the base of the regimental monument.  She was given to the regiment as a puppy and took part in all their battles, taking position at the end of the firing line and barking furiously at the enemy.

She was separated from the regiment during a retreat through the town.  After the battle the men returned to the scene of the first day's fighting and found Sallie, weak but alive and maintaining a vigil over the dead and dying.  She was killed at the Battle of Hatcher's Run in February 1865 and, in spite of heavy enemy fire, several men stopped to bury her.

When the monument was designed the regiment's survivors unanimously decided to include a tribute to their smallest comrade. (

Thursday, August 11, 2016

The President--

The Address--

Gettysburg Battlefield
November 19, 1863

"Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal..."

*                *                *

The bust of President Lincoln was photographed during our recent visit to a memorial on the Gettysburg battlefield near where he delivered his historic address.  The glassed display of the address text Sue is enjoying (above) is in the museum at the visitor's center.  The quoted text is a live link to the full address.

Saturday, August 6, 2016


A bruising thunderstorm drifted over Mansfield's South Park pavilion where the ensemble, Paradigm,  was just beginning to perform a concert that recent evening.

When a gully washing rain began hammering the venue, the musicians scrambled to reverse their orientation and invited the outdoor audience members to join them under the somewhat dubious protection of the newly constructed pavilion's roof.

Turns out the musicians and audience squeezed nicely under the modest sized roof area but the torrential downpour easily penetrated openings all around the walls and began to flood the "stage".

You can see water just beginning to creep under the drummer's cymbals (above) while a few stalwart audience members choose to ride out the onslaught outside; their umbrellas visible behind keyboard artist and ensemble leader Steve Brown's head.

It wasn't long until the rising tide covered the performance area drenching the wild array of power cords feeding the show.

Nervous band members expressed hope the ground fault equipped electrical service would actually work while an audience member borrowed a broom from a nearby food vendor and tried to sweep the water away.

Imagine trying to use a tea spoon to bail a hull-punctured charter boat.

Finally, while Brown was discussing the pathetic failure of the little pavilion's poorly constructed floor to simply utilize gravity to drain the encroaching water away, the GFI circuit protection did it's job and shut off the power flow.

Grateful band members found the failed connection, reassembled the power cords somewhat away from the menacing water and reset the GFI protection thus honoring the mantra of the business that the show must go on.

The performance was part of a popular, summer concert series offered by various ensembles of Local 159 of the American Federation of Musicians and this evening's group featured two guitars, a trombone, Brown's keyboard and a drummer.


Monday, July 25, 2016

The Service on Baptismal Sunday, July 24

After the church service congregants streamed as a body to the Clear Fork Branch of the Mohican River adjacent to the church for the baptism of over 100 celebrants.


Saturday, July 16, 2016

A caching day at Put-In-Bay

Caching partner Sue Brooks (left) and friend Rosa Hatfield--at the encouragement of the photographer-- (me) "pout" their disappointment at our failure to find a geocache near the glacial grooves at Ohio's South Bass Island State Park recently.  That's Rosa's hubby Rich (middle) tolerating our foolishness.  We logged 15 finds out of 17 attempts for our day's visit.

The camera in my Samsung Galaxy 3 cellphone never ceases to amaze me.  I own two Canon Rebel DSLR cameras and several expensive lenses.  They are bulky and heavy to carry on our caching adventures so I bought a shirt-pocket-sized, point and shoot, digital camera to carry in my caching kit.
The big cameras and lenses now live in my fire safe and the little pocket camera gathers dust in my backpack ever since I discovered the picture quality of which the cell phone camera is capable.

I used the cellphone to do the photo above in Perry's Cave on the island.  The photo was done without a tripod (hand-held) and available light (no flash).  Simply hold the camera steady, touch the shutter release and bingo!

The shiny, gray foreground is simply wet rock on the floor and ceiling of the cave lit by bluish-cast flood lighting.  The orange-like background was created by tungsten lighting of a warmer nature--color temperature wise.  Fortunately, the people stood relatively still while our guide discussed the geology of the cave.

Glowing rays from the setting sun smile across the cloud-speckled evening sky as we slice our way toward Port Clinton on the popular Jet Express ferry.

With photos ranging from a typical, snapshot (top) to a technically challenging cave photo to the splendor of nature's artistic pallet, the cell phone camera showed its capability on this sunny, summer day.  

Monday, July 4, 2016


*            *            *


Once again it appears we are deep in a forest, but, this day we are caching in the village of Milan, OH (birthplace of Thomas Edison). That village has wrapped itself nicely around the Galpin Nature Preserve, adjacent to the Milan Cemetery whose cemetery association apparently manages the preserve's trails with the doctrine of letting nature take its course.

The preserve is comparatively minuscule as such things go in Ohio but it sizzles with beauty and a geological oddity or two.  I noted one ravine in the woods that simply--began.  Yup, level, now heavily wooded land, plunged into a rapidly deepening ravine that meandered around a curve and joined what surely, some long-ago-time, was an energetic watercourse.  Today, it is just--there, dry as a bone with a zero to 100 foot deep slice gouged in the ground which goes who knows where.


We discovered this marvelously wooded oddity while searching for (and finding) the three geocaches that were sprinkled across its diminutive acreage.  I think I've seen bigger shopping center parking lots.     Curious?

*            *            *

Scourge of the 17 year locust

Many places around greater Mansfield, some worse than others, are now showing the result of our recent visit from this huge, say 2" long, flying bug which invades, seemingly randomly in its 17 year cycle just ending here.

Areas around the county show lots of this kind of damage. Sometimes, neighboring areas show very little or none.

This damaged maple tree (above) was photographed along Millsboro Rd., July 4th.  The short lived insects climb from underground where they have existed for the past 17 years, leaving visible soil punctured with 1/2" holes, escape their brown, semi-translucent shells (exoskeletons) and fly haphazardly to-and-fro until they eventually mate whereupon they land on the end of select tree branches, slice an incision in which to lay their egg--the act that causes the end of the branch to die.

Soon thereafter they die too.

The damaged end of the branch will fall to the ground surprisingly quickly, where if undisturbed, will rot and drop the embryo of the next generation which will manage to bury itself and wait its 17 year turn to repeat the cycle.

During that short visit, about a month or so, the noise is a raucous cacophony like a bazillion, inebriated and celebratory tree frogs on a warm Spring evening down by the wooded pond.

I'm told they can kill young trees with their breeding melee but adult trees mostly show no evidence of their visit during the next growing season.