Musings from Brian J. Noggle
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Good Book Hunting: Early November
Well, it has been a while since I told you about what I've bought as far as books go, but that's because we spent Saturday mornings in the latter part of October looking at sport utility vehicles and minivans because although one can sort of fit a single child seat into the back of a Mitsubishi Eclipse with only slight discomfort for the passenger, two child seats would be impossible. So for a span of a couple of weeks, I bought no books.

Fortunately, though, on Sunday, November 4, my mother and I found an estate sale in Lemay. Within a tiny house in one of the older parts of Lemay on a street that ultimately connected to a newer part with larger homes and lawns, some assorted odds and ends remained from a household recently and fairly suddenly emptied. However, in the basement, several boxes of books, mostly paperbacks, lay unpriced. The assortment was rather eclectic; romance novels, 60s detective pulp, philosophy, literature, and some of those paperbacks your grandfather used to keep hidden.

I picked a couple out:
Estate sale book finds
Click for full size
My selection includes a couple of Matt Helm novels (I read one earlier this year and watched the Dean Martin movies in the last two years), the first of the Enforcer novels (I read the third earlier this year), a Richard S. Prather Shell Scott novel (I singlehandedly drove blogger Robert Prather from the Web by commenting every time he guest posted on myriad blogs that I loved the Shell Scott novels), and whatnot.

You want the full list? Click and look. The stack to the right are some theologically-flavored tomes I bought for my beautiful wife.

It was only when I got to the counter, manned by the daughter of the fellow who had to take a book everywhere, that I discovered that paperbacks were a dime and hardbacks were a quarter; it's a good thing I didn't know earlier, or I'd have had boxes of smoky and musty pulp to show you.

Then, last weekend, we actually hit some yard sales in our suburb. Global warming is pushing garage sale season into November; now that we have a full SUV, I am driving it up and down the block to help push garage sales in Missouri into January.

At any rate, here's what we got:
November garage sale book finds
Click for full size
I'm not saying that reading Farnham's Freehold affected my thinking at all, but I did find my basic skills reference works lacking. So I bought, for $25, a seven volume set called The Science Library, a 27 volume set called The Complete Handyman Do-It-Yourself Encyclopedia, and 11 of 12 volumes of the Popular Mechanics Do-It-Yourself Encyclopedia; oddly enough, of the latter, I lack volume 11. My mother has this set, too, and she's missing volume 11, too. Hmmm. I wonder if that's where they put all the neat do-it-yourself nuclear things.

The fellow also threw in the free sample starter pack of the Easy Home Repair binder series. These were sold by packets you could stick into the binders, kind of like those old boxes of recipe cards. I only got the first set, still in its plastic cellophane, and the binder. That's okay, though; my mother also owns the complete set of these, and I'll own them all myself far too soon.

Additionally, I bought a book called TV Closeups, a 1974-1975 book produced by Scholastic or some other children's book publisher that ties into television and a copy of Sinclair Lewis's Cass Timberlane. And a copy of the 1984 game Ambush, a solitaire war game.

So I've added a pile, but not much for my to-read shelf. Regular garage and estate sale stuff has resumed. Thank you, that is all.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Career Advice
Courtesy of Rob Preston of Information Week:
    If you long for a Leave It To Beaver world where life is simple and jobs are secure, watch Nick at Nite and take the civil service exam.

Monday, November 12, 2007
A Very California Solution
Problem: Neighbor downhill from you has a metal roof reflecting its light into your sensitive eyes.

Missouri solution: Sue the fellow, the metal roofing company, the neighborhood association, the township, and Hephaestus, probably followed by fines and potential condemnation by the local government.

The California solution: Put some glass insect sculptures on the roof to make it pretty colors.

Everyone note that the California solution, if applied in Missouri, would meet with the same response; namely, art on your property is cause for lawsuits and legal action.

Because There's No Defense Like A Good Offense
The Crossbow Project lives:
    The world's most powerful airborne laser capable of shooting down a ballistic missile is being re-assembled by Northrop Grumman and the US Missile Defence [sic] Agency (MDA).

    The laser is being integrated onto MDA's Airborne Laser (ABL). High-power system testing will follow completion.
As they said at Ace of Spades:
    If you can burn down an incoming missile, you ought to be able to burn down some miscreant 50 miles away too, right?
And make a lot of popcorn.

Sunday, November 11, 2007
Google Maps Shows Moving Day
How many of you can say what you were doing the exact day when Google Maps snapped your house? Well, in my case, I was moving out:

Moving day

That's our old house with the moving truck backed into the driveway; the second moving truck sits at the edge of the cul-de-sac, awaiting its turn at carrying away the Noggle library. Heather's car and my truck are parked out on the main street to make room.

No Word On Left Handed Hunter Accident Rates
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel finds a truth in statistics:
    An estimated 650,000 hunters, many with high-powered rifles, will saturate the fields and forests of Wisconsin when deer-hunting season opens Saturday. They will track game at a time when hunting has never been safer in Wisconsin.

    But a Journal Sentinel analysis shows the percentage of accidents caused by hunters 21 and younger in 2006 was the highest since 1999. And in the past five years, those young hunters were more than twice as likely to cause hunting accidents than all other hunters.
Fortunately, judicious use of a calculator has given the paper its needed anti-hunting trope.

To say Noggle, one first must be able to say the "Nah."