Saturday, July 31, 2021

One Of The Worst Cases Of Get-There-Itis Ever

Get-there-itis is when you let the determination to reach your destination overrule your judgment, aeronautical decision making, and  just plain common sense.  It can end in disaster.

Most people stop before even one crash.  Dennis "Crash" Collier didn't stop after 6 crashes and ended his rush to get home from California to Michigan with a final crash destroying the airplane.

This is a cautionary tale of absolutely and inexcusably lousy aeronautical decision making.

Traverse Record-Eagle: Seawind Saga: Pilot who crashed in Lake Michigan had 7 crashes in 7 days.

Bad Decision #1:   No pre-buy inspection.  Guy buys an amphibian airplane for $100,000 essentially sight unseen.  I'm sorry, but if you're investing that kind of coin, a thousand bucks for a thorough pre-buy would avoid a lot of grief and avoid the easily foretold end to this series of insane decisions right from the start.

Bad Decision #2: Not walking away before even the first crash 

The plane hadn't been flown for two years and had only 20 hours on the engine, and the buyer/pilot could clearly see repairs were needed.  This is a clear sign to stop right there.  This guy?  Not so much.

Bad Decision #3: Not walking away after the first crash 

On his first test flight he crashes gear up after dealing with a trim problem.  This is a clear sign after missing the first two clear signs that it is time to walk the hell away.  Of course he didn't.

Bad Decision #4:  Not walking away before the second crash 

He then inexplicably gets into the plane again and takes off for a night flight when he's out of night currency in an unfamiliar and knowingly deficient airplane and heads to New Mexico.  Oh, and the landing light on the aircraft is inoperative. He arrives in New Mexico and crash lands once again - at night  - stalling it into the grass off the runway and taking out some runway lights.  He then has another "runway incident" after recovering from this crash. 

Both his village and the FAA should have been calling for him at this point.

Bad Decision #5:  Not walking away before the third crash 

But our overly-determined pilot pushes on. He then flies through storms which is a stupid idea all by itself, and then what sounds like the trim tab gets stuck pushing the nose in the up position, and he has to fly while  pushing the stick forward constantly with his knee. 

He then crash lands at an airport off a runway in Nebraska after 4 attempts to land. Well, at least Nebraska is pretty flat, so there's that.

Bad Decision #6 and #7:  Not walking away before the fourth and fifth crashes

Sensing a pattern yet?   Of course he doesn't stop even though he described himself as "shaking" and the manager at the Nebraska airport gives the solid advice of sending the plane home via a flatbed and his flying home commercial.  You'd think he would listen, but no.  

He then has another crash at the same airport in Nebraska after a test flight and then discovers some wires are crossed in the airplane which he "fixes". 

But wait folks, there's more!

Bad Decision #8:  Not walking away before the sixth  crash.

He presses on and reaches Michigan.  Where he promptly losses his hydraulics and his fuel gauge near Escanaba and yep, runs out of fuel and yes, crashes the plane once again. His number of crashes are equaling his number of takeoffs.  This is not a good sign and anyone else would have run away screaming from that aircraft long before now.

But not our intrepid crash pilot. He just adds a quart of hydraulic fluid and some fuel to the airplane.  He departs knowing his fuel gauges are wrong, knowing there's a good chance his fuel pump is not pumping right, and knowing that he promises the FAA he won't retract his landing gear and may not have sufficient hydraulics to do it anyways.

Bad Decision #9:  Not walking away before the seventh and final crash.

So Crash Collier takes to the air again, confident that his number of crashes will equal his number of takeoffs - and he's not disappointed.  But this time he's over the water.

Sure enough, his engine sputters, he smells something burning, and  his flaps won't respond and his hydraulic pressure gauge reads, unsurprisingly, zero.

So he goes for a water landing. After all, this is an amphibious aircraft and can land on the water.

But, he lands on the water with the gear still down.  This is not how you do a water landing.

The plane then, as is often the way with gear down water landings, noses over, goes straight in, and rapidly begins to fill with water.  Luckily for Crash, it bobs back up to the surface, and then begins to sink in 300 feet of water.

He gets out and is rescued by the Coast Guard.

Bad Decision #10:  Not insuring the aircraft.  Not sure an insurance company would pay out after such a string of events, but he didn't even get any insurance to start with, so that's a $100,000 loss right there.

The only thing "Crash" Collier may have done right in this whole insane episode is his decision, after these 10 insane decisions that he inexplicably survived, to never pilot an aircraft again.

Friday, July 30, 2021

US Air Force To Practice Landing On Michigan Highway In August

WXYZ Detroit: Military training exercise will attempt to land planes on Northern Michigan highway in August

The Michigan Air National Guard and several other military outputs from across the country will test landing planes on Michigan highways next month.

According to the Michigan National Guard, the combat readiness exercise will happen in Alpena to demonstrate how active-duty and reserve-component units can integrate to project combat airpower in austere environments.

 The MI Air National Guard's 127th wing, the Air Force’s 355th Wing from Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Arizona; and, the Air Force Special Operations Command from Duke Field in Florida, will land four A-10 aircraft and two C-146 aircraft on a closed-off portion of the road.

I hope they've sufficiently strengthened the landing gear on all the aircraft and briefed the pilots to watch out for Michigan's ubiquitous potholes on landing considering the condition of our state roads. 

Good luck, you're going to need it, not due to any question of skill, but due to a very real question as to the quality of your landing surface.

(Simulated) Flying IFR - Lesson 16 - Can You Hold Please?

 Today was simulator day.  Kevin figured this would be helpful to both work on my instrument scan and finesse as the Simulator is far more sensitive that a real aircraft.

So I met up with Robert and began the Simulator session.

We did the VOR 36 approach to Flint ad infinitum as I was haivng the most trouble with that kind of approach.

 First approach was a dumpster fire as the simulator really is crazy sensitive and I was over-controlling and trying to keep up with what it was doing.  On the upside, I was good with setting the system for the approach from Pontiac to Flint even though the simulator has a Garmin 530W rather than the Garmin 430W that is in the aircraft - similar but different - as is the heading indicator which is very different from the actual aircraft.  

Second approach much better but I got confused by one of the messages on the 530.  Once that was explained it went better.

Third Approach very, very nice hitting the right altitudes and getting it right on.

Fourth Approach also very good.

Then we started doing missed and holds as I haven't really done hold entries before.

The missed approach for the VOR 36 calls for a climbing right turn to 3,000 then hold on the 97 radial at KATTY.  I figured out the hold would need a parallel entry and Rob was very helpful in showing me exactly how to do such, basically a 45 degree entry and then get into the holding pattern.

So I flew and did the approach, went missed, and then went and did the hold and flew the hold for a few complete circuits to make sure I had it down and he was quite helpful in figuring out little issues as they arose.

Then we did that again, and then did it again one more time with feeling.

Overall I think the simulator did help with my instrument scan and over-controlling as its over-sensitivity and makes you deliberately try and under-control it.  So I'd say it was helpful and we will see if it pays off.  It's also cheaper than the cost of flying the plane and you can do more approaches and holds in the same time-span, so there's that.

Robe stated I did well and showed improvement and that the simulator beats everyone up so he thought I did good.

That's 2.0 Simulated Instrument in a simulator, with 7 Approaches with 3 holds.

Thursday, July 29, 2021

Today's Heart -Warming Story

A rally against Anti-Semitism and with a pro-Israel focus was held in El Cajon California.

Antifa showed up along with the Palestinian Youth Movement to attempt to shut down Zionism and of course white supremacy (anyone not Antifa is by definition a white supremacist to them, natch), and to show former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo  that he wasn't welcome there.  

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was not dissuaded and addressed the peaceful crowd that included both Jews and Christian Zionists.

So Antifa and the Palis attacked the rally.

And Antifa and the Palis then got their asses kicked.

A nice happy turn of events.

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Flying IFR - Lesson 15 - There, That's Better

So for Lesson 15, I  dusted myself off from the fracas of Lesson 14 and then arrived early at DCT and pre-flighted the plane.

I then met with Kevin and went over all the approaches and the issues I had with them in the dumpster fire that was Lesson 14.

In short, I need a faster instrument scan and there were a few things about the approaches themselves I wasn't quite getting and part of it was that when they were simulated IFR you have to hit minimums for it to count, which was causing me to second guess things a lot, and a few other issues.

Then we headed off to fly them all again.

I had very nice radio work if I do say so myself, and it has improved quite a bit since starting IFR training.  Much better at conveying what I want and in keeping up with some very busy controllers and getting clearances down pat.  I'm also better at taking notes during approaches when they add information such as a modified missed procedure, which Flint does a lot.  I now write it right on the plate in Foreflight and that works rather well.

We did the VOR 18 approach first, and yes, I pooched that one yet again. Basically, I was behind the airplane and didn't get low enough to circling minimums fast enough, but the rest of it was ok.  It was an ok landing on the circle to 27, and an ok initial procedure turn, but not a particularly great end to the approach at all. Good lesson learned.

After landing I taxi'd back to 27 and then did the ILS 27 approach which went a lot better than last week even as we were getting a little rushed through it, and ended it with a missed approach.  I did forget to audibly identify the localizer in all the rush but had confirmed the right frequency was in - will not miss that next time.

Then the RNAV 27 approach which went very nicely and again went missed and back to Pontiac.

The RNAV 27L circle to 27R at Pontiac went pretty much perfectly, got a much better idea of using the GPS glide-slope for it and basically was dead on both vertical and lateral guidance and nailed it.

So, that was much better and I have a better understanding of what I'm doing now, which is good.

I need to speed up my instrument scan and be more choppy-and-droppy on the non-precision approaches (ie chop the throttle and drop like a rock to get down in altitude for circling quickly).

So today's flight was a good improvement overall, I think.  At least I sucked less than last time.

That's 2.1, 2 landings, 4 approaches, 2 holds, and 1.7 simulated instrument time.

Modern Samurai Project - Take 2

This would be my second time taking the MSP class, but it would be for a 2-day Red Dot Class rather than the 3-day Path To Performance class that includes the Red Dot Class.

I got up early and drove the 20 minutes form the hotel to the Deer Creek Conservation Club in Jonesboro, IN.  I wanted to be early having never been there before, which was a good thing as the GPS doesn't quite get you to the club.

On the upside I arrived the same time as the instructor at the wrong place and we then both found the range.  The club is very nice and they had arranged for us to use a bay with some shade, which would become very important.  It was both hot and really humid so lots of sunscreen and a ton of water was consumed on both days.

Unfortunately, Jedi himself would not be teaching the class as he was hospitalized due to an illness (He is feeling a lot better now, and that's a good thing). 

Instead, A.J. Zito would be teaching the class.

A.J. is a master-class shooter, and a very effective instructor with a great manner and an informative, entertaining and enthusiastic teaching style.

The class had quite a variety of students - newer shooters, more established shooters, quite a few police officers, and one FBI agent.  Oh yes, and before you ask, the Police and FBI agent could definitely shoot very well. A very good bunch and most of us got together for dinner at the end of the first day which was fun.

AJ was very true to Jedi's curriculum and gave excellent instruction throughout - explaining the hows and whys of the dot, and the ways to get the most effectiveness from using it.  The class was very much like it was last year, with a few changes.

I also understood more taking the class a second time - most especially about modulation, which went way over my head last year.   This is the first shooting class I've taken for a second time and it was worth it - as there is a fire-hose of information coming out taking a second time lets you catch things you missed the first time while you were busy absorbing something else.

The class also gave a great example on why you wear eye protection at all times.  While we were practicing transitions between some metal targets, I was in line waiting to shoot and suddenly it felt like I got punched in the mouth.  A piece of the bullet the shooter was firing, or a rock came back and gave me quite the bloody smack right on my left upper lip.  No major harm done but that was a bit exciting and as the class unanimously declared, chicks dig scars, so that's something.

We finished the class with the Black Belt test, and I did not set the world on fire by any means.

3x5 Drill -3.06 Clean
7 yard one shot - 1.56 clean
Bill Drill - 2.94 clean
25 yard one shot - 2.20 clean

Not my best times ever, but they were all clean and that's a good thing and overall my shooting improved compared to last year overall especially in terms of finding the dot and hitting the target.  I still have a bad tendency to punch the gun out when I'm feeling rushed, so I need to fix that and dry fire a heckuva lot more.

No one earned a patch this class, but a few came close.

Certainly a great class with a bunch of great people, and I learned a lot and doing it for a second time was worth it.

Monday, July 26, 2021

Indiana Nice Is Apparently A Thing

So this weekend I traveled to Marion, Indiana for a Modern Samurai Project class.

Leaving at 3pm on Friday traffic was ridiculous near 696 but opened up on 275 until hitting near Ann Arbor when it again slowed to a standstill for no known reason, and then opened right back up.

Made it to Marion in decent time and checked into the Hampton Inn there with no issues and rather nice and friendly staff.

I unloaded the car and then got some gas and went to get some dinner.  

I saw that Brooks Upper Crust Pizza was highly recommended and so I went there to get some pizza.

It turns out they were carry out only so I placed an order for a small pizza and they got to making it while I waited.

Quite a few people were coming in for pickup of pizza orders while I waited, and I then had a nice chat with the owner.  He explained they weren't doing dining in now as the wait staff did not want to come back to work.  This is a recurring problem and a lot of places are having as people are still being paid as much or more to stay home on UI than go to work.  He's thinking of converting it to quick-order dining to deal with the lack of wait staff as he misses having people and families in his restaurant.

So he showed me around the restaurant which is in a historic building on the river and very eclectically and nicely decorated with a lot of neat items and memorabilia, with much of it dating back to the late 1800s.  Kinda neat, and it would have been nice to dine in as it has a nice view of the river and a very nice ambiance.

Super friendly people there and the pizza was excellent. 

A thin crust round, but not so thin that it tasted like cardboard, and not too chewy either but just right and rather addictive.  Different from Detroit-style pizza but good in its own way.  Curiously Indiana apparently serves nacho cheese with bread-sticks in pizza joints, which is totally different from the Michigan style of marina/tomato sauce for dipping bread-sticks.   Local customs and all that. 

So I took the pizza back to my hotel room, enjoyed it immensely, and then did a bit of work, and I then prepared for class on Saturday.  A good start to the weekend.

Saturday, July 24, 2021

Bail! Bail! Man The Pumps!

But sadly there were no pumps to be manned so we had to get the water out manually.

We happened to get a rain storm in earlier this week that took out power in ours and a lot of other neighborhoods.

The storm was intense and as you may have guessed, that meant water rushing into the sump pump pit. With the power out the sump pump decided to take the night off.

That left Leah and I bailing it out for more than three hours until it finally stopped coming in.

That was not pleasant, especially when it looked like it might overflow as were were not keeping up with it.  We filled two different 5 gallon buckets and I would carry the full one to the drain and then come back for the other once Leah had filled it up.  Over 60 buckets - 300 gallons - was dumped out of that pit which is a helluva lot.  I really got a workout in as a result. My aching everything.

I've now ordered a Raybend Primary Sump Pump Backup Power System and while waiting for it to arrive, I've purchased the appropriate Deep-Cycle battery so it will be ready when it gets here.  This should hopefully stop future bailouts from needing to occur.

Friday, July 23, 2021

Flying IFR - Lesson 14 - Well, That Sucked

So today was the flight portion of Stage Check 2.

It did not go well.

Basically showed up and pre-flighted the airplane, in the rain, met the instructor who was doing the check ride and was told we would do The Flint VOR 18 circle to 27, then the Flint ILS 27, then the Flint RNAV 27 followed by the RNAV 27L circle to 27R at Pontiac. Not a lot of prep.

Of those, only the RNAV at Pontiac went even passably well.

In short, I was feeling rushed, over-controlling, behind the aircraft, and not ready for this stage check. 

I do feel like I'm still missing a lot.  On the upside, the check instructor who is the head instructor for DCT said I seemed to have a good understanding of what was going on and was doing things right but need a lot more work on my instrument scan and controlling the airplane.  I think I fooled him on the understanding part though.

So yep, I flunked that one pretty good.

Ah well, need some more work on it but I kinda knew that going into this stage check, onward and upward or something.

That 's 2.0, 1.7 simulated instrument,  4 approaches with 3 being crappy, and 1 landing.

Thursday, July 22, 2021

That's Very Convenient - DOJ Announces It Will Not Investigate Gov Half-Whit

Democrats are always going to cover for Democrats.

The Detroit Free Press: Feds won't investigate Whitmer, Michigan nursing homes despite data request under Trump

They are not going to investigate nor seek any data previously requested relating to her order requiring nursing homes to take in Covid positive patients and the deaths that resulted.

Funny how that works, isn't it?

More Woke Ridiculousness - Detroit To Put Reparations On The Ballot

Detroit, a majority Black city, through it's majority Black city council is going to put reparations on the city's next ballot.

The Detroit News: Detroit City Council votes to add reparations committee question to November ballot

Of course the details are fuzzy, as the opportunities for graft from such a vaguely worded proposition offering free money (from whom is not exactly explained) to the gullible on account of their skin color is rather limitless.

Let's point out there's no one alive in the city of Detroit that has been a slave in America and thus eligible to receive reparations.

Let's also point out that Detroit is in Michigan, a state that has never a slave holding state,  unless for example one counts slavery by the Indians, the French and indentured servants, as the attached article does.  The last recorded slave in Detroit, if one includes indentured servants ended was freed at the latest in 1815.  There are no living people from 1815 in existence in Michigan, even if some of the deceased still vote Democrat in Presidential election in Wayne County.

Indeed Michigan sent its sons to end slavery in the United States and at least 14,790 of them gave their lives doing so which pays off any "reparations" for slavery in full.

Of course they're wanting to expand the concept of reparations to anyone who has been discriminated against in Detroit - although one wonders if they will cover the Poles who had lived in Hamtramck who had their properties seized under Coleman Yong to build a GM factory.  Somehow I doubt that's the target recipients of such reparations as they tie it all to slavery in their statements for the proposal.

In short, the proposal is for Democrats to give money to those in Detroit allegedly historically discriminated against by Democrats in Detroit.

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

When The US Government Makes The Idiotic Canadian Government Look Good - Which Takes Talent

Canada finally announced they would open the border to vaccinated Americans on August 9.  Rather late to do so, and it is more than about flippin' time.

So what does the US government do? 

The Detroit News: U.S. extends Canada border restrictions through Aug. 21


This is more fear-mongering over the Delta variant (the variant formerly known as the India variant btw) and this directive comes down from the top:

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Monday: "Any decisions about resuming travel will be guided by our public health and medical experts. ... I wouldn’t look at it through a reciprocal intention.”

Well, it darn well should.  

This is especially so as Biden has the Mexican border wide open with untested illegal aliens swarming in and then being shipped around the country on purpose by his administration, including to Michigan, and Democrats from Texas are busily spreading the Delta variant far and wide around DC. 

Quit the fear mongering and open the Canadian border fully already.

Aside From Instigating And Assisting Plots They Later Break Up - What Is The FBI Good For, Exactly?

The FBI has certainly declined from the reputation it used to have, and sadly it is for good reason.

Let's see,  for example they are not good at stopping serious inter-state crimes - their Indianapolis office ignored the reported depredations of  Dr. Nasser, a serial child rapist for years, allowing him to continue his crimes.

The Detroit Free Press: 'FBI failed survivors': Massive systematic failures uncovered in DOJ's Larry Nassar report

To be fair, they were not the only ones to either aid, abet, ignore, or sweep his crimes under the rug, but that they did is rather telling.  That likely no one at the FBI will be sanctioned for this appalling failure is also telling.

Stopping terrorism or mass killing?  Not so much. The number of killers "known to the FBI"  but not interdicted before they commit their crimes is rather lengthy.   Think Parkland, the Pulse Nightclub, the recent Boulder supermarket killer and the list goes on and on and on.

They are however rather good at plotting against sitting presidents and using knowingly false information to do so.

They are also rather good at inducing idiots to participate in harebrained plots, where it seems the FBI agents and informants outnumber the non-FBI participants by a considerable margin and potentially the FBI were the ones doing the plotting.  Note this is still likely not entrapment, but it is interesting that they put in the resources to potentially manufacture such a scheme, potentially for political gains to get heat off Whitmer while she was being criticized for her heavy-handedness and ineptness at the time.  While another example of the FBI making the plot up to later arrest the plotters it draws in, it is however not actual entrapment if you're a willing participant and stupid enough to participate in such a plot.

Apparently, they're also great at manufacturing cases against undocumented tourists at our nation's capitol.  Against Antifa, well, not so much.

It's not surprising that the FBI has now been accused of becoming the law enforcement arm of the Democrat party, they certainly seem to be living up to that moniker and failing at their other duties.

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Flying IFR - Lesson 13 - Partial Panel Approaches And Circle To Land A Lot

Lesson 13 started with a good pre-flight of N5337F.

We were going to get some approaches in today.

First a full procedure RNAV 9 at Troy  with the full procedure with the turn, with a circle to land on 27.

That went rather well if a tad speedy on final.  Circle to land apparently is an issue the checkride examiner has identified in that students need to stay closer to the airport during the circle and get used to it being at a lower altitude than normal pattern with accompanying different sight picture during the maneuver, so the school is heavily emphasizing getting every student comfortable and proficient with it.

Then off to Flint for the VOR 36 approach with the complete procedure including the procedure turn.

Then things started getting turned off. It was partial panel time.

I was then down to using VOR 2 with no heading indicator and no attitude Indicator which is quite frankly a pain.  Using the altimeter for pitch; turn and slip indicator for roll; and the compass for heading is just not a lot of fun. The compass, she lies unless you're in straight and level unaccelerated flight. Doing a full procedure turn by compass was interesting as was adjusting ground track just by the VOR receiver and turn indicator.

Still, I got it all lined up and then we did a circle to land on Runway 27 at Flint, getting in ahead of an Allegiant jet preparing to take off.  We then took off after the jet, avoiding wake turbulence, and headed back to Pontiac where I did the RNAV 27L circle to 27R with only the G5 attitude indicator uncovered, which certainly helped with the instrument scan.  I then followed the LPV glide slope down, did the side-step/circle to 27R and landed.

I think I getting a bit better at it and am getting less behind the aircraft but there's still a lot of work to go for sure, especially as I was over-controlling quite bit and chasing my heading as a result, even while trying to keep changes to small amounts at a time, but I'm working on it. 

My radio communications are now a lot better.  I did goof up initially at Pontiac by requesting flight following with the K in the airport identifiers ie KVLL instead of VLL rather than without.  The controller nicely said that wasn;t necessary and holds up things.  I agreed I would say no to Kilo from then on, and they got a chuckle out of that.

Other than that, radio communications were solid this flight, got the right things stated at the right times to the right people.

Overall it was another good flight. 

That's 2.1 with 1.5 simulated instrument, 3 approaches and three landings.

Monday, July 19, 2021

One Would Think That English Proficiency Is A Requirement For Citizenship

If you though that, you would be correct.

While the USCIS deems this a requirement part of the steps to become a US citizen, apparently some in Dearborn think otherwise.

The Detroit Free Press: Arab American advocates ask Dearborn for Arabic-language voting help, ballots

Apparently requiring citizens to know enough English to vote disfranchises people, or something:

"With the largest concentration of Arab Americans, the city clerk should on his own initiative make sure that all voting information is available in Arabic, including on the web," Ayoub said. "It's skewing voter participation and it's a method of voter suppression."

How about no? After all if you're a citizen you should have demonstrated enough English to be able to vote.  Failing that, you can use online translation programs ahead of time to figure it out.

Saturday, July 17, 2021

Yep, He's A Dumas Alright

Sometimes criminals live up to their names.

While on parole for larceny, with among other restrictions, a requirement not to use alcohol, ends up intoxicated, drives drunk and wrecks his car to then have a conservation officer come on the scene.

He then assaults the conservation officer.  Which doesn't go too well for him, especially when passersby came and assisted the conservation officer.

The Detroit News: Grand Rapids man convicted in attack on conservation officer

Yes, Devinci Osiris Dumas is indeed a dumbass.

Friday, July 16, 2021

Not Flying - IFR Stage Check 2 Ground Lesson

Today was scheduled to be Stage Check 2 in my IFR training.

An instructor named Aaron was going to conduct it, very good and memorable name he had.

I arrived early and pre-flighted N6288J.

Since it is raining cats and dogs with a low ceiling of MVFR at best, it would be perfect IFR weather for the check and to get some actual time in the clouds.

The plan was a round-robin to Flint, then Linden, and back to Pontiac, starting with a VOR 36 approach at Flint with a circle to land on Runway 9 with a missed approach and then an ILS approach to Runway 9, then off to Linden with an RNAV circle to land and then back to Pontiac for an RNAV 9R circle to land on Runway 9L.

I prepped and then filed the flight plan and since it is my second time doing it, I am getting better at it, which is nice.

Then back to the plane.  Good start-up.

So, are you wondering why this post is labelled Not Flying rather than Flying?

Because:  The plane was not so good on the run up. Drat.

During the mag check, the magneto ran as rough as a magneto has ever sounded to me before.  I mean serious vibration and very rough sounding.  We tried to lean it and burn off any carbon, but no dice, still rough.  

Both Aarons in the aircraft unanimously decided it was a no-go as a result.

I'm definitely not going up in IFR with a known rough mag.  Heck, I would not do that VFR either. 

So I taxi'd it back to the maintenance hangar and shut it down.  Even on shut down it sounded rather awful.  

So we went inside and did the ground portion of the Stage 2 check - Aaron was happy I clearly was studying and I could answer most questions without issues.  I certainly did stumble on some, and I learned quite a bit from the check as well and will tighten things up, which is the point.  I still have a lot to learn though.

So I passed the ground portion of the Stage 2 Check, but the flying portion will need to await another time.

Thursday, July 15, 2021

More Unemployment Fraud Uncovered In Michigan

The Detroit News: Investigators: State worker got unemployment while still employed, hijacked other legitimate accounts

Federal authorities believe thousands of dollars in fraudulent pandemic unemployment assistance was processed through the scheme, including nearly $15,000 under Mims' own name and about $40,000 under the names of two legitimate claimants who knew nothing of the scheme.

Mims was collecting unemployment before she started working for the state in August, investigators said, but continued to collect it "while gainfully employed by the very agency responsible for administering the benefit."

Federal and state investigators began looking into Mims' activity in June and issued a search warrant on June 30 at a Birmingham home where they seized "significant evidence of UI fraud." At the time of the July 1 complaint, Mims was still employed by the agency. 

Fraud is always easier when it's an inside job.

The agency said Thursday that Mims is no longer employed by the state.

Well, that's a relief.  

One would hope she is not now collecting unemployment  .  .  .  .

In another case, using an insider yet again, criminals took Michigan's UIA for at least $2.5 Million.

The Detroit News: Detroit man pleads guilty in COVID-19 unemployment fraud scheme

Unemployment Fraud during Covid in the USA has been estimated to be between $63 billion dollars and $400 Billion Dollars - half of all UI money distributed.

$400 Billion dollars lost due to fraud and lack of adequate anti-fraud measures and indeed complete disregard for fraud prevention in an attempt to shovel money out into the economy with no accountability - with predictable results and it is pretty much assured no bureaucrats' head will roll for this massive malfeasance.

Let's put it this way - that $400 Billion fraudulently taken could have funded an entire new round of $1,400 checks going out to every legitimate American rather than to fraudsters.

Ghosting Your Attorney Is Never A Good Idea

It's an even worse idea in the middle of litigation.

Representing some commercial tenants in a landlord-tenant dispute.  In short, landlord  didn't keep up his end of the bargain and made it impossible for them to do business at the location, they stopped paying rent.  We sued the landlord, landlord sued them back.  Lots of fun complication 'cause its a crappy lease. th

Of course they didn't bother having an attorney look over before signing - because why spend a few hundred having an attorney check it when you can instead spend thousands in litigation?

Other side makes a settlement offer as they can see from initial discovery that both sides have produced so far that this case is going to be a complete s-show.  

My this time my clients are now 90 days behind on paying my bill.  Hate when that happens. Oh and they;re not responding to my communications re not just paying the bills but deciding on settlement, further discovery that has to be done etc.  Emails and phone calls go unanswered.

Rather frustrating.  In short wither they take the settlement or pay my bills and pay me to fight it out, ignoring this will not make it go away especially as they have some decent claims and a decent shot at winning but they apparently can't go the distance. No response for a good long time and multiple emails that they really need to respond to me.

Since I've now been ghosted, the only thing left to do is perform an exorcism.

I filed a withdrawal from the case accordingly.

They are so going to mess up their case.


Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Another Neat Archaeological Find In Israel

The Jerusalem Post:  2,000-year-old ‘Freedom to Zion’ coins found in biblical heartland   

The two coins, one from the First Jewish Revolt and the other from the Second Jewish Revolt against Rome were found during archeological exploration in the northern Judaean dessert.

The coins were found in two separate locations in the region.

Finding the Bar Kochba coin in the northern Judaea is significant.  It;s apparently the first time such a coin has been found in the northern region that used to be the 11th District in Judaea.

Back then, the area constituted the 11th district of the province of Judea. Its capital city was Aqrabat; a modern Arab village with the same name still stands on the same spot.
“The coin from Wadi Rashash indicates the presence of a Jewish population in the area until the end of the Bar Kochba revolt, in contrast to what was previously believed by researchers: that the Jewish settlements north of Jerusalem were all destroyed during the Great Revolt and the area not resettled afterward,” Raviv said.
“This coin is in fact the first proof that the Akrabat region, the northernmost of the Judean districts during the Roman period, was controlled by Bar Kochba’s administration,” he noted.

 A very neat find that's going to change our understanding of history in the region, at least a little bit.

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Flying IFR - Lesson 12 - IFR To Lansing And Back

Well, lots of news to report from this lesson.

I filed my first IFR Flight plans today.  Kevin talked me through it as there are a few interesting steps and idiosyncrasies, but I did all the work.

I arrived early and did the flight planning and chose the appropriate departure, arrival and approach.  I then completed the flight plan and filed it via Foreflight.

I then did the return flight and again filed via Foreflight.

Both plans were accepted and I got the clearance and had a perfect and organized read back, had everything loaded in the Garmin 430W exactly as I needed it, and then we were in the air at 10:45.  I got everything I could pre-loaded on the ground and that paid off in organization and reduced workload in the air. 

We went up and were almost immediately into the soup.

Actual IFR.  It's lovely grey/white clouds with no horizon or nothing.

Yes, spatial disorientation sets in and happens very quickly with your body telling you one thing and your instruments another.  

Believe the instruments.  My body was telling me we were descending in a right turn - no such thing was actually happening.  It went away as I concentrated on the instruments, but it is quite a feeling when that happens.

We then contacted Detroit Approach and got a vector to Lansing via our plan, and then got a change to direct to avoid some weather that was moving in.

I did the ILS 28L approach into Lansing and did a nice breakout with the clouds above minimums, and landed just fine.

Then we activated the plan for the return to Pontiac, loaded everything up on the ground and then got cleared to take off.

We hit a fair bit of weather and again got vectored around some but got into some light precipitation and solid IFR on the way back.

We then had to get vectored due to other traffic and then were again on the RNAV approach to Runway 27L which is out of service for construction.  We then circled to Runway 27R and landed.  Right after we landed, we heard some thunder come in.  Excellent timing.

My first IFR Cross-Country Flight. Lots of effort involved. Lots of radio work, setting the GPS for changes en route, and checking over plates etc.  A lot of fun and very satisfying to do, but I do need more practice for sure, even as I'm grasping the concepts and steps a lot better.

That's 2.1, 2 landings; 1.0 actual IFR; .6 simulated; and .5 VFR.

Monday, July 12, 2021

Vice President Que Mala To Visit Detroit To Try To Reverse Some of Her Prior Fearmongering

Que Mala is coming to visit Detroit and fund raise for governor half-Whit and stump against Voter ID  requirements and for vaccinations.

The Detroit News: Vice President Harris plans to visit Whitmer fundraiser on Detroit trip

 While she's here, she going to push for Covid vaccination.

Harris also has been traveling the country to encourage more vaccinations to fight the coronavirus and its variants. 

Detroit has among the state's lowest vaccination rates with 38.3% of residents 16 years and older having received at least one dose of COVID vaccine compared with 62.2% statewide, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services website. About 31.5% of Detroit's adults are fully vaccinated compared with Michigan's 52.3% rate.

Note that those aren't Trump fans denying the efficacy of the vaccines and refusing to get them by any stretch of the imagination.

Detroit went for Biden this year by 94.5% of all voters.  It's a one-party Democrat town, period.

Of course, Que Mala can only look to herself for the blame for why the Democrat Denizens of Detroit aren't getting vaccinated -- they listened to her and followed her distrust of the vaccines:

Kamala Harris says she wouldn't trust Trump on safety of Covid vaccine before election

Well, her supporters in the D listened to her claim to distrust the vaccine because Trump supported it and made it happen. This is what happens when you spread fear and fake news for political gain Que Mala. A bit of an own-goal right there.

A Great BBQ Party

I had 17 people over yesterday, all friends from jitsu and some with their families.

The Brisket, after 14 hours in the smoker came out great.  The Weber Smokey Mountain 18 really makes temperature control easy and the large water bowl keeps the heat moderated perfectly.  It works so much better and more consistent than the Ol' Brinkmann that it's not even funny.

Better than last year, and the guests devoured it.  Tender as all get out and people were happy.

The ribs took six hours in the smoker and were ready by 3:30 with the guests coming at 4.  I had started them in the driving rain Sunday morning and they turned out to be worth the effort.

They similarly were devoured happily, some had them straight, and some added sauce first.

The rain continued on and off all day, which made holding the party inside necessary, but it all worked out.

I also made a double batch of macaroni and cheese which was a hit for the kids some of the friends brought along.  

The kids also played with Jett and he enjoyed that profusely everything from retrieving a ball to chasing each other around.  Jett was tolerant the whole time and had a ball. Jett slept real well last night.

Guests brought dishes to pass including some really good Texas Caviar. This was the first time I've heard of that or tried it. It was a perfect accompaniment to the BBQ.  I need to add that to future BBQs as it works.

Lots of good discussions had an people had a good time.

Great food and a great bunch of people over.

Saturday, July 10, 2021

Of Smokers And Smoke Alarms

It's a do-stuff-around-the-house-day today.

First, I'm smoking a brisket for a party with friends tomorrow.

Its going to be a 12-hour cook, using pecan and hickory wood.

Tomorrow morning, I'm getting up early to smoke ribs to add to the party as well.

As for smoke alarms, did you now they don't last forever?  A couple of ours, both in the kids' bedrooms, died just about simultaneously, both with a weak electronic shriek and then nothing, and no change of batteries did a thing.

Turns out they were manufactured in 2007, and the average detector is good for 10 years, so we're a bit over life expectancy, and definitely got some decent use out of them. 

I switched them out today for combo carbon monoxide/smoke detectors with sealed 10-year batteries.  I then replaced the remaining battery change ones with a couple more sealed detectors.  No more biannual fire alarm battery changes now.


Of course, they had different mounting systems because no fire alarm manufacturer can coordinate on a standard mount. This gets annoying. 

Then, finding out the prior owners of the house, who installed the battery ones just before they sold the house to us did not use drywall anchors, but just screws added to the fun.   Well its done now, and these are now properly installed and anchored.

So that's done,  and its time to check on the smoker again and then to do a little work and some IFR studying for the written test as there's an absolute to understand, know how to apply, and retain.

Friday, July 09, 2021

Flying IFR - Lesson 11 - More And New Approaches, Plus Being Ignored By Detroit Approach

For Lesson 11, I had Reese as my instructor as Kevin was off on a King Air charter.

Reese was rather nice and knew his stuff.

The plan was for a very task-loaded lesson: Kevin had told him, and sent me a note last night that we would do:  Y47 VOR-A full procedure circle and miss; KYIP RNAV 23R full procedure from SVM VOTRAC; KVLL RNAV 9 cir. 27 and land; KPTK Loc BC 27L partial panel.

This would be my first time going to either Y47 or KYIP so that would be fun.

So I reviewed the associated plates and prepared for the lesson.

I had a good pre-flight brief with Reese where I went over what I had prepared and I got a few questions answered, and then I did the preflight and started up.  He had filed an IFR flight plan, even though we would likely stay VFR the entire time, but that would come in handy later.

Right off the bat things got interesting.  The big runway at Pontiac is closed for construction so everyone is using 27R.  We now do the run up at the ramp before calling ground as a matter of course.  As you might expect, being down to one runway caused some congestion.

We finally got a takeoff clearance and I took off and followed instructions to contact Detroit Approach.  We then got vectored to the Y47 GPS-A approach as the VOR-A was not available for Detroit to give us, and that worked out ok.  Overlal pretty good, the airport is ridiculously hard to find and you see the hangars long before you see the small and very narrow runway.  Managed to finally find it, corcled in and did a missed approach.

Then off to KYIP, Ypsilanti for the 5R as the 23R was not being used due to the wind.  I did that one ok, and we did another missed.

Then to KVLL and while we planned a circle to land for 27, the wind was for Runway 9 as it was blowing from 110 degrees, so I went in and I did a short field landing there and then a takeoff from Runway 27 as the wind shifted just as I landed to 300.

Then we took off and maintained runway heading and called Detroit Approach.


Called again, still nada.

Flew a bit more and listened to them ignore 88J  completely, and listened while Approach was talking to some business jets.

Called them again and got a heading, but then didn't hear back form them for a very long time. We ended up on that headin way out of the way south and west  of the approach back to KPTK.  In short they either forgot about us or decided to ignore us for a bit.

We flew that for quite awhile and then they finally remembered us - asking again what approach we were wanting to do - and finally got vectored back to the approach. We flew East to catch the Kuhna waypoint and then turned north to get to the Initial Approach Fix. They out and out refused 88J's request to fly the approach, so 88J did it VFR anyways which was kinda funny.

I then flew the approach and it went rather well, doing a sidestep to Runway 27R.

I'm still feeling pretty behind and need to work on my radio communications a bit.  Biggest problem is tracking courses while doing everything else.  Reese noted I'm doing the complicated things right and planning ahead and setting things up properly but as I do that,  I tend to stray off course (especially as there was quite a bit of wind and chop up there)  and I need to work on that.

Overall a very good lesson and I learned quite a bit.

That's 1.9 with 1.6 Simulated Instrument and 2 landings.

Dear Media: No, That Word Does Not Mean What You Think it Means

To the leftist media, everything they disagree with is depicted as far-right, with no other possible explanation even when the reality is staring them right in the face.


 Given Atittude is a British left wing media rag, it of course depicts the attackers as "violent far-right homophobes".

Let's note that Tbilisi is in Georgia, but not the Georgia you're thinking of when you normally hear the word Georgia.  Think right beside Russia and not containing  Atlanta.

Little problem with the description is the ones attacking the pride parade there aren't you typical right-wing extremists so stereotyped by the media, instead they're Muslims, wearing easily identifiable Muslim garb as can be seen in the video.

But, the left can't bring itself to say "Muslims Attack Pride Office", nor bring itself to identify the actual makeup of the attackers, considering Muslims are an important component of their rather shaky coalition and must be presented at all times as part of a peaceful religion and certainly not as perpetrators of violence against another favored constituent group. 

Instead, it needs to be the amorphous threat of far right extremists.

Not what the facts actually are, but they need that construct to keep together a rather shaky coalition composed of those who would be thrown off buildings for being who they are by certain others with a certain religion in the same coalition should they get their way.

Kinda like how the Orlando Pulse Nightclub shooting has a narrative set and is  being depicted in our media and by Biden as a hate crime against gays by a religion-and-ideology-not-mentioned-attacker, while instead the attacker clearly was and self-declared to be an Islamic extremist bent on killing Americans and apparently didn't know at the onset of his attack the nature of the nightclub.

Thursday, July 08, 2021

Stormy Weather

Had a lot of rain and thunderstorms yesterday and all through the night.

As an opener, we got an inch of rain in less than 10 minutes in the first downburst along with some hail.  Quite the storm rolled through.

My office lost power, just as I was working on a brief that was due yesterday. Didn't lose anything as I was working on a laptop.  But I couldn't print or do other things so I headed out back home through a fair bit of traffic that was slow as heck as the traffic lights were out and people couldn't seem to remember that when the lights are out it's treated as a 4 way stop.

That forgetfulness on their part got sporty on occasion especially when one lady in a larger SUV decided to barge her way through the intersection out of order.  Good times had by all.

Got home to the sump pump running like mad and the intake pipe looking like Niagara Falls.

The house had power so the work got done and all was well.

Power is still out at the office and it may not be on until midnight tonight or even later.  Lots of areas with downed trees and power losses.

Just another Michigan summer storm.

Wednesday, July 07, 2021

This Is Going To Get Much Worse

Take a pandemic, mix in an overreaction with excessive lock downs and reduction in medical and mental health services and availability,  and add in social isolation and you get a perfect storm for a major increase in mental health issues: 

The Detroit Free Press: Mental health crisis: Children at breaking point during COVID-19 pandemic

It's not like there were plenty of beds available for mental health treatment before the lock downs hit, and now there's a skyrocketing demand and not nearly enough facilities. 

Expect more violence from the untreated mentally ill, especially from those who should have been in in-facility treatment but are not and are going about untreated and unsupervised.

Add in all those teetering on the brink of needing in-patient treatment due to the anxiety, lack of access to care and the associated problems caused by the lock down polices in terms of unemployment, unavailable medical procedures, and social isolation and the problem gets even worse, especially for teens and adolescents. 

Teen suicides are way up in this state since Covid and Whitmer struck, which is frightening.

Add moronic requirements like Whitmer forcing 2-year-olds to wear masks and we're now raising a whole new generation on social anxiety.

This crisis is not going to be solved anytime soon.

Tuesday, July 06, 2021


The next morning we had breakfast and checked out of accommodations. It was still quite overcast with the promise of more rain to come.

We then decided to spend some time in Harbor Springs itself.

It's a very nice resort town with a  nice beach and everything you might need for a peaceful summer vacation.


Lots of nice shops to browse.  We headed into the bookshop and bought some summer reading and then stopped for ice cream at a local ice cream parlor, because why not?

The people there are very nice and it has a very posh, clean,  resort-town feel without being pretentious.

Aha! I see something.

Right by the Lake is a most peculiar-looking ship:

It is indeed the Aha

A 130-year-old historic steamship, beautifully restored and on display.   As you can see from the articles, it was a very extensive restoration of the ship built in 1891.  The students of the Industrial Arts Institute and others did a very nice job on it.

After that we headed homeward, stopping at Birch Run Outlet Mall for a bit of shopping and lunch in the driving rain, and then home.

While the Weekend trip was marred by constant rain, fog and overcast, we didn't let that stop us from having a good time and seeing some of the many sights of northern Michigan.

Mackinac Island - Some Of The Sights

By the end of our perambulations around the fort, the rain was picking up and we were getting rather soaked to the skin.

So we went to lunch at Millies on Main - after a bit of a wait as just about everyone else had the same idea, we had the absolute best Fish and Chips I've had anywhere!

So fortified we headed out along main street and then as the rain picked up even more, decided it was time for a Mackinac Horse Carriage tour.

We saw the Governor's summer residence.


The sign reads:

Good to be the Governor, neh?

We then wheeled by the Grand Hotel, which is very posh, and super-expensive and with which Tash,  Murph, and I have history:

We then went outside the town proper on the narrated carriage tour to see the historic cemeteries - one Protestant, one Roman Catholic,  divided by a road, and then to historic skull cave, and then to the scenic Arch Rock.

It is indeed scenic:

Described in Indian legend as a portal to another world.  

If you leap through it,  you will indeed go to another world, but there's no return ticket.  Formed by erosion of the softer limestone rock below the arch, it is quite an impressive natural sight to see.

The carriage tour was well worth taking, and the guides were knowledgeable and rather funny, with lots of great stories about the island, which made for a nice trip even in the rain.

After that, completely soaked, we headed back to the ferry and made the journey back to Mackinaw City in the fog and then drove back to Harbor Springs for the night.

Monday, July 05, 2021

Fort Mackinac - Cannon Firing Demonstration

One of the many activities the soldiers did in the park was fire cannon salutes for the tourists to the island.

These salutes are still performed today.

We got to view such a cannon firing salute during our visit to the fort. 

A six pounder cannon is used as the salute, just as it was used back in the late 1800s.

The cannon is first checked with a worm to remove any leftovers in the barrel.  In this case a piece of aluminum foil was removed.  Foil, while not accurate to the period, prevents bits of period-correct burning muslin sackcloth from falling on the town and onto tourists' heads below, which they appreciate.

Then a sponge is run down the barrel.

The cannon is then loaded, with the powder pricked through the touch hole, and it is then wheeled into position.

A friction fuse and lanyard is attached.

Then on the command to fire -


It made a most pleasing "Boom" for the crowd.    The crowd was pleased and applauded the fine demonstration even in the drizzling rain.

A very nice and well-narrated cannon firing demonstration indeed.

Fort Mackinac

Fort Mackinac was founded during the American Revolution when the British moved their position from what is now Mackinaw City to the island in 1780.

Americans took over in 1796 and then the fort was taken over by the British in the opening moves of the War of 1812, and remained in British hands throughout the war as the Americans were unable to recapture it. 

The fort returned to American hands after the war and then as its strategic significance dwindled became a National Park in 1875 with the still serving soldiers there acting as park rangers.   The post was considered highly desirable by the soldiers posted there and by 1885 had a bathhouse with hot and cold running water and 6 cast iron tubs to keep the soldiers clean and were required to bathe at least once per week. 

Today the Fort with its original buildings is a Michigan State Park, and well worth visiting.

Interpreters in the uniforms of the day are around the fort for visitors to learn about its history, even in the rain.

The fort offers commanding views of the town below.

Excellent exhibits depict the soldier's life at the fort.

From the barracks with three men to a room:

Sergeants tended to get better quarters.

To the Guard House complete with a cell for misbehaving soldiers.

The cell was later improved to an above ground location, and soldiers left graffiti from their stays in the cell on the windows and window sills that remain to this day.

The fort also had some amenities, such as a bar and lunchroom where beer was sold for 5 cents a glass.

It's a nice walk around the fort.

Next up  - Cannons!

Sunday, July 04, 2021

Happy Independence Day!

May all of you have and enjoy a Happy Independence Day celebration and the birth of the United States of America.

May this nation long remain a shining beacon of liberty, freedom, and opportunity for all its citizens and a model to the nations.



Oh, and for numismatic content, to celebrate this momentous day in history, The Royal Mint is offering free shipping on its coins to the United States today.

 But, being British and still a little miffed, they're calling it Thank You Day rather than our Independence Day.

Still, rather nice of them, wot?

Saturday, July 03, 2021

Detroit Ruinz - Fisher Body Plant 21


It has certainly seen better days

Went to Detroit's Eastern Market today with the family for some produce.  Got to pass by some of the ruins of the city as we went, including the Fisher Body Plant.

Built in 1919 it built Buick and Cadillac bodies. The plant shut down in 1984.  It was then used by the Carter Coat Company for painting from 1990 to 1993 when that company filed bankruptcy.  The property has been owned by the City of Detroit since 2000 and the building has been in constant decline.

The Biden Admin's Latest Bit Of Cringe, Now With An Ex-Michigan Governor

A cringe-worthy propaganda piece from the Biden administration trying to push the bipartisan infrastructure bill (A bill that sis neither bipartisan anor solely about infrastructure), featuring Michigan's 2nd worse governor in recent history and a Chevy Bolt has gone viral, and it's as bad as you think it would be.

The Detroit Free Press: President Biden surprises GM's Barra by using a Bolt in video gone viral

Very cringe-worthy, and I doubt Granholm's solar panels alone are recharging her Bolt.  You can also hear her stumble on a few of her lines, which is hilarious.  The dialogue does tend to be rather stilted and shows Boomers trying to speak Millennial at times like its a foreign dialect.

Also did you notice that our former Governor Granholm doesn't seem to know how to wear a seatbelt?

Does anyone wear a seatbelt like that when they are actually in a front seat of a vehicle? She'd get a ticket if she was in Michigan wearing a seatbelt like that.

Did you hear where they talk about how excited they are at 2:23 when they talk about electric transit buses?

Well Granholm was certainly excited, all the way to the bank:
Granholm questioned about potential conflict of interest with bus company

Report: Biden Energy Secretary Receives Waiver to Dump Massive Amount of Electric Bus Company Stock

Ethics, after all, are for the little people.

So EVs are supposedly it, even as some places like California and New York City are requesting people not charge their cars due to energy shortages from a lack of production facilities.  

Maybe an Energy Secretary should look into that?

Thursday, July 01, 2021

Yes, It's Still Happy Canada Day

Despite all the leftist Canadians telling you Canada should be cancelled.

No kidding.  View the front page of the Toronto Star online and view a few of their editorials. and op-eds on this day.

Some of Canada's self-image as a perfect country with no race relations problems where nothing bad has happened (yeah, as if) compared to their nasty neighbors to the south has been shattered by the revelation that conditions at Many Canadian residential schools for Indians in the past were at times dreadful and many graves of residential school students have been found recently.

Apparently this gives license to claim Canada itself is bad rather than the actions of the few operating the schools and failing to properly supervise them.  To the Left in Canada these residential schools are now becoming Canada's original sin, tainting the country evermore.  Verily, the Left loves to try and throw all of Western Civilization out with the bathwater.

Yes, it appears there were some very bad and probably evil or grossly neglectful actors at those residential schools in the past and conditions most likely were indeed awful but that doesn't wipe away all the good Canada has done since its founding.

No country is perfect, and perhaps it is good our often holier-than-though neighbors to the north (or sometimes south if you're in Michigan and Alaska) realize that they to have some skeletons in their past that they should acknowledge. But, Canada, just like the United States, as a nation has been a far more powerful force for good rather than bad in this world.

That deserves to be celebrated.

Happy Canada Day!

Rolling With Boulders

A major part of Jiu Jitsu is rolling.  It's where you get to practice all the techniques.

This can lead to happiness or frustration, especially when rolling with someone younger and heavier than you and you quickly learn your limitations and the limitations of the techniques you know.

Take rolling with Will for example.

Will is in his 20s and weighs in at 275 pounds or so. 

So he's got 20 years and seventy-five pounds on me. Makes a difference. 

He is described by most other people at the center as rolling with a boulder.

I can't disagree.

Here's what it typically looks like when I'm rolling with Will:

 I can often hold him off and defend and fend off a lot of his attacks, I can stalemate him in a roll and stop him from tapping me out, and even sometimes get a submission if I can exploit a mistake, but I often just get crushed even if it ends in a stalemate.  

Doubly unfortunately, he tends to be a little overenthusiastic and loses a bit of control. This happened on our last roll Monday night and sadly I got a good whack to my left eye.  Ouch.

Woke up the next day and the eye was still hurting and it has caused some floaters and the eye doc has said no jitsu for me for awhile due to the accidental hit to let it heal up, and also no contact lenses, which sucks as that means no flying either.

So unfortunately no jitsu for me until this heals up a bit.