Sunday, October 20, 2019

Corn Chip Wars

Corn Chip Wars

  • Misson White corn Tortilla Strips
  • Smart & Final ( Mission brand strips repackaged for Smart & Final)
I used to think the two brands listed above were good until I tried the rest of the brands on this page. What a difference.

Image result for cantina corn chips

  • On The Border Cantina Thins  Tortilla Chips. At Walmart.

Image result for rosa linda corn chips
  • Rosalinda Restaurant Style White Corn Tortilla Strips. At your local Hispanic foods market.
Image result for 505 Southwestern corn chips

  • 505 Southwestern Stone Ground White Corn Tortilla Chips. 13 oz . Found these at Ralph's.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Twitchell Lake, NY

Someone on the internet reached out and asked me about how I thought Twitchell Lake, NY got its name and I said I would research it. This is that research. In summary, a twitchell is a place between two bodies of water linking them together. Or it was named after a family who settled in the area. Pick whichever story you link to think is the correct one.

Twitchell Lake Research

  1. Excerpts from: “A History of the Adirondacks” by Donaldson, Alfred Lee, 1866-1923. Page 88-89, Chapter XIII “John Brown’s Tract”.

John Brown of Providence, R.I., was born in 1736. He was a great-grandson of Chad Brown, the famous preacher and surveyor, who joined the colony at Providence soon after its settlement by Roger Williams.
His father was James Brown, who married Miss Hope Power, the daughter of another old Providence family. The father died not very long after, and left the widow with a family of six young children to bring up. There has been six boys and one girl, but one of the boys died in childhood and another only lived to be twenty-one. The four (boys) that grew to manhood - Nicholas, Joseph, John and Moses - became leading and distinguished citizens in their State.
Their business training was looked after by their uncle Obadiah Brown, their father’s younger brother, and they all made the most of their opportunities. They and other Baptists founded Rhode Island College in 1764. It was originally located in Warren, ten miles from Providence, but later, in 1770, as a result of lands and funds furnished by the Browns, it was removed to its present site. In 1804, in recognition of the increasing benefactions of various members of the Brown family, the name of the college was changed to Brown University. Nicholas (not the brother but the nephew of John) is said to have given the institution no less than $160,000-a large amount for those days. John laid the cornerstone of the first permanent building on the new site - the present University Hall - and was treasurer of the college for many years.

John Brown’s Tract contains 210,000 acres, and lies east of Watson’s West Triangle and the Brantingham Tract. A Straight narrow strip of it, containing 40,000 acres, is in Lewis County; a triangular peak, containing 3,000 acres, runs into Hamilton County; the remaining 167,000 acres are in Herkimer County, and the tract, according to Mr. Charles E. Snyder, Esq, the lawyer who was used by Dr. Webb when buying the land, comprises one sixth of the total area of that county.

  1. From: “ A history of Lewis County, in the State of New York; from the beginning of its settlement to the present time by Hough Franklin Benjamin, 1822-1885, first published in 1860 in Albany by Munsell & Rowland. 
“Denmark”; page 84.
Jesse Blodget was the first settler in Denmark village and arrived with his family in the Spring of 1800. The first male child
“Denmark”; page 85.
In the spring of 1801, the Nathan Mungers (father and son), millwrights, having had their attention called to the Black river country, came down the river and followed up the Deer river to half a mile above the falls where they selected a site for mills, and in that season finished a saw mill and got it in operation. The Proprietors to encourage the enterprise gave them the water proveiege from the High falls up over two miles. In 1803, they got a small grist mill with one run of burr stones in operation, in time to grind the first wheat raised in town as soon as it was in condition for use. The mill stood directly below the upper saw mill in Copenhagen Village, and it’s viciny gradually receiving a number of mechanics acquired the name of Munger’s Mills. 

The first store was opened at this place by Urial Twitchell and the first inn on the hill south, was kept by Andrew Mills. A beaver meadow, now a broad and beautiful intervale just above the village, afforded the first hay used in the settlement.

  1. From: ”State of New York Forest, Fish and Game Commission…” List of Lands in the Forest Preserve Purchased 1866 - 1909”; pages 56-57.

Date of Conveyance Dec. 1 1897, certificate number 51, Grantor: Wm Seward Webb and Nehasane Park Association. Herkimer County, John Brown’s Tract, Township 8. 244 acres.

  1. From: “Annual report of the Forest Commission of the State of New York” by New York (State) Forest Commission, 1885; pages 165-166.

The Nehasane Park Association.
This organization now holds title to the larger portion of the Adirondack lands purchased by Dr. William Seward Webb, of New York. Its lands are located in Township 8, John Brown’s Tract, and in Townships 37 (* not including the land in Township 37 north of the railroad), 38, 41, and 43, and triangle north of 38 in the Totten and Crossfield Purchase, all in the northern part of Herkimer and Hamilton Counties. The number of acres owned is about 112,000; no land is leased.
The officers are: President, Henry L. Sprague, 15 Broad Street, New York; treasurer, William L. Carden, 51 East Forty-fourth Street, New York; secretary, Charles H. Burnett, 51 East Forty-fourth Street, New York.
The same persons constitute the board of directors.
The association is capitalized at $400,000, divided into 4,000 shares of $100 each; and its membership, at present, is limited to the officers and directors named, and Dr. William Seward Webb. It’s objectives are, substantially, to preserve and cultivate the forest; protect and propagate its game and fish; and to develop and better generally the Adirondacks as a resort for sportsmen and tourists, as well as to preserve, beautify, and improve its streams, lakes and ponds.
Contracts have been made for the removal of the soft or floatable timber (down to the proper diameter limit) on about 30,000 acres of these lands, principally in the Township *; but no timber in Township 8 has been sold around Twitchell Lake, or on the shores of the Fulton Chain. No effort to utilize the hard woods on these tracts has been made.

Page 365-366.
Richard Crago J. J. Rose
T.J. Rose J. H. Higby
William Dart H. D. Grost
Garrett Riggs Cyrus Wood
Milo Ball William Ball
Robert Roberts.
P.O. Address: Big Moose, Herkimer, Co., N.Y.

  1. Routes and rates for summer tours … 1888 by Rome, Watertown and Ogdensburg Railroad Company; page 51.

Twitchell Lake (2 x ¾), is an interesting body of water, beautified by several islands and islets, and encircled by densely wooded heights. This and Wood’s Lake are especially sequestered, and their solitudes are seldom invaded except by the trapper and adventurous sportsman. The scenery around then is very attractive, and but for the difficulty of reaching them with boats, they would soon become favorite haunts, as game and fish are very plentiful. Both are tributary to Twitchell Creek, a stream entering the Beaver a few rods east of Stillwater.
Hiram Burke (P.O. Lowville), the very efficient guide, has erected a substantial hunting lodge on the north shore of Twitchell Lake, where sportsmen are entertained and furnished with the best fare that the forest affords. When desired, he will conduct his gusts (no better woodsman than he) to the various choice sporting grounds which lie in the neighborhood.

  1. State of New York, First Annual Report of the New York State Conservation Commission 1911, Volume I, Divisions of Lands and Forests and Fish and Game, printed in 1912. “Examination of Waters”; page 207-209.

In accordance with a request of Commissioner Austin, I went to Twitchell Lake, three miles from Big Moose, in Herkimer county, on October 21, 1910, and remained until the night of October 23rd for the  purpose of reporting on the character of the lake and the question of screening it’s outlet.
A number of property owners around Twitchell Lake, resident and nonresident, wished to place a screen at the outlet, to prevent the rainbow trout from escaping into Twitchell Creek. A thorough examination of the lake, it’s small tributaries and the outlet led to the opinion that no screen should be introduced. It would be against the general policy of the Commission to permit such obstruction in the stream; and iot would not accomplish the object desired by the petitioners as well as the better policy of stocking the streams and lakes tributary to Twitchell Lake, and the reduction of the few rock obstructions which now interfere with the free ascent of trout through the upper waters of Twitchenn Creek into the lake. The rapids in the first one-eighth mile of the course of Twitchell Creek could easily be overcome by means of an inexpensive fishway to supplement the natural fish ladder which now appears almost complete in the creek. A few sticks of dynamite, properly used, in the rock bed would remove the obstructions to such degree as to make it possible for trout to go up into the lake.
From personal observation and from information obtained from residents Twitchell Lake, at present, contains nothing but brook trout, lake trout, and chubs, the chub is the common horned dace, or fallfish, Semotilus atromaculatus. This fish appears to be starved, probably because it has increased in numbers too rapid for the natural food supply. The troup feed upon this fish. The black nosed dace is said to live in this lake also; but we were unable to find it.
Twitchell creek is about twelve miles long, and it flows into Beaver river. Twitchell Lake is of glacial origin, and lies at the elevation of 2,050 feet. It contains a few species of water plants, relatives to the water lilies, also a plant resembling eel grass and a bushy species which is sell adapted for the shelter of young trout and the natural food of trout. The water is clear and cold and is well stocked with insects and crayfish. The comparatively shallow depth of water, about forty feet at the maximum, is unfavorable to the prosperity of the lake trout, although there are some fish if that species in the lake. There is no reason why the lake should not support a larger number of brook trout and rainbow trout.
The shores of the lake include few beaches, and the bottom is hard and covered with pebbles and boulders of various sizes. There are a few large glacial boulders in the lake and the headwaters of Twitchell Creek exhibit a great jumble of immense boulders and rock ledges.
In order to improve the fishing it would be best to increase the stock in the lake itself and to plant rainbow trout in Oswego ponds, Lilypad pon, Little Birch pond, all of which empty into Twitchell Lake, and in several small streams flowing into the head of the lake. This restocking with brook trout and rainbow trout will no doubt accomplish the object of the petitioners better than the introduction of a screen. …

Yours Truly, W.M. Dick.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

2019 so far...

2019 is not going down in history as one of the happier times in my life. In actuality, this getting old business is for the birds.

Two cracked ribs, a bashed knee, and a knuckle laceration. These sound like the result of a prizefighting boxing match or some shit, but no, it's what happened to me just this year in everyday life. The ribs I cracked myself over two different occasions. The left one on SuperBowl Sunday reaching for something over the arm of my couch. The right one at work reaching over the side of a large blue wheeled trash bin when some nameless clerk from the prior shift left trash in the recycle bin instead of cardboard only. It says "cardboard only" posted right on the side of the bin! And I took it upon myself to remove the offending mailers tossed in. The laceration happened at work through the fault of a well-meaning clerk just trying to help but instead, the Acco fastener sliced through the knuckle on my right thumb and it wouldn't stop bleeding. That happened about 10 days before my vacation. Oh, and then there was the time when I overpacked for my vacation and on the way home I fell onto the marble floor at Regan Airport before my flight. Not fun. My left knee was a mess and still, I can't quite function as it did before. I'm hoping time will take care of it, but really feeling older than I ever have before, it leaves me thinking how much time do I really have left on this miserable planet and what else can go wrong?

I think the rest of the year I really need to focus on self-preservation and paring down. It's amazing all of the stuff we accumulate that is useful for a period, but we can't let go of even when it's not being used anymore. When things get retained in your life because they are attached to memories instead of people, that's when life gets ugly. And I'm glad I don't have this problem, but look, I had to clear out both of my parent's abodes after the died so it allows me the following perspective:

How big will the pile of stuff be that you allowed yourself to live with on the day your mortal soul passes onto its next plane of existence? And what kind of financial and/or legal turmoil will you leave behind for "loved ones" to deal with?

Friday, June 21, 2019

Jeff Lynne's ELO at Honda Center, Anaheim, California 06/20/2019

Jeff Lynne's ELO at Honda Center, Anaheim, California 06/20/2019. The setlist seemed very 2017, but a bit shorter. See:

"Standing in the Rain" was an unexpected opening song for me until I reviewed the setlist for 2017, but the visuals were so stunning, no one seemed disappointed.

It's too bad we can't say the same thing for the visuals for "Livin' Thing" which looked like a poorly lit aquarium set-up placed upon a spinning lazy susan.

Audience participation was limited to clapping from time to time and many didn't at all when encouraged to do so. I could have sworn they were singing though.

Jeff is still so shy, there were no announcements for the songs and little talking. He had his musical director introduce the "band".

Dhani Harrison was invited on stage to help sing "Handle with Care" with Jeff and the band and the crowd roared when George Harrison and Tom Petty appeared on the montage.

The one song so out of place in the set was "Wild West Hero". It was never on US radio. They should have switched it to something else. To like "Birmingham Blues" or "Joker".

Two songs had lasers all over the place and again, visually stunning. I bet the fact that ELO was one of the first to use lasers in their concerts was a fact lost to many who saw the show.

Photo by: @oliver_halfin

Sunday, May 12, 2019

The day before Mother's Day...

The day before Mother's Day I decided it was a nice enough day outside to do some spring cleaning work on the patio.

All of this winter's rain brought weeds that were once bird seed and the potted plants (French lavender, rosemary, heirloom tomato) and sage all died except for the cactus. The chinka cherry tomato reseeded itself into a planting box where it has never been before and that turned into weedy looking bush that I think I've cut down at least three times since December.

Tomatoes being nightshade have reseeded in one of the older bed sites. I'm going to try and move it after I get some new potting soil tomorrow.

But after a dinner of tilapia and jasmine rice, and as I'm watching "Dead to Me" and "Wine Country" on Netflix while perusing Facebook, my cousin sends me this text on messenger that she's got stage 4 pancreas and intestinal cancer and that she's moving back home to live with her brother. And the first thing that runs through my mind is our family doesn't have cancer and it's gotta be the italian side of her family. So sad. Someone at work died of stomach cancer.

Death of my friends and family is going to come faster now that I'm turning 53. The first one was an accidental death of two former co-workers along the 55 freeway the last time I went on vacation. I went to the funeral, but couldn't bring myself to speak. Next weekend, there is another for a woman that worked in another department, but her husband works for me.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

May 6th, 2019 Day Dreaming

I woke up from a 30-minute power nap and in that between space between sleeping and being fully awake, I saw something in my minds eye. I saw a group of people, teenagers, kids, young adults, mulling about in an office space and they were all wearing these black winter coats with hoods and with a little black rectangle patch on the arm that said 360(degree symbol). And I kept looking around to this group asking, "Do you speak English?" and "Do you know English?" There was one large, tall man in a blue or black business jacket standing, hovering over them with kinda short curly black hair a small mustache and a flat football player looking face, little expression. Maybe he was Security and standing by the double doors? And then I said, " You need to go to the mall."

I have no idea where this dream came from other than the fact that I've been looking for another job on the website and one of the security guards told me to apply to an office that is no where near where I currently live.

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Christ, January is almost over...Happy 2019

I had to work on December 31st, so last year's New Year's Eve was a non-event. The closest I got to a celebratory mood was saying to my staff "Happy New Year" as we all exited the building at 11:30PM. I worked so hard in January that when MLK Day rolled around, I didn't even recognize it as a day I got off work for a hot minute.

I bought rocks for painting and a new rosemary plant to replace the last one that I had for years. I'm going to plant that in the one medium planter/pot and the other with basil. Or maybe I'll move the onions into a pot this year. Last year's cherry tomato self-seeded and I currently have a hedge of chinka cherry tomatoes. It's spectacular. Best this plant has ever looked.

I decided this Spring is the time to go get my mortgage refi in order. I need to get the place all spiffy before the appraiser gets here. So I'm doing things like completing the LVP floor project for the two closets that I didn't do. FINALLY painting my bathroom. Throwing away the broken cheap ass mirror over the sofa and putting up a more stylish one I found at Target with a shelf. Have to paint the living room and the kitchen. All of this so I can get a chunk of the equity out of my home to get two windows, two patio sliders installed, maybe a new kitchen and bath remodels and pay off some bills. But because we've lived here since 1999, it's a cluttered mess. Not packrat, hoarder type piles, just little piles of stuff that need to go be donated, better organized if it's going to stay or put away.

The idea to get all this stuff done in a reasonable amount of time for this professed procrastinator is a simple one. I know I'll be financially in a better place and I'm using the following to keep me on track and motivated each day:

> Clean one thing;
> Fix one thing;
> Put away or organize one thing; and
> Donate one thing I don't need or want anymore.

Stephen's closet took 3 days for the floor during the week and yesterday, I went to Home Depot and bought the baseboard moulding. After I made my purchase, and with the molding in my hands on the way to the car. some random guy was laughing at me in the parking lot about getting that moulding home. Umm, yeah, 9 ft of moulding fits in my car with the back passenger seat down, thankyouverymuch. That's why I cut it that length. Jerk.

The fig tree that once seemed like a miracle when it popped up growing in my #1 raised planter box is now a nuisance. Between Winter, the rain and the wind, it looks like shit and from what I read it takes a year to get figs from it if the birds and rats don't get them first. At one point I saw two on there, but that was months ago and I didn't attend to the fruit to keep it for myself I mean atleast grow it because I can't eat seeds anymore. So really what's the point of keeping the fig tree, right? So I'm planning on cutting it down and/or digging it out.