What are you doing to celebrate Black Friday?



Bullet Points:

** Believing is seeing.

** Watch out, guys. When you visit family over the holidays, there will be charming, flannel-wearing women who never left your hometown and will attempt to swindle you into quitting your high-paying city job to rope you into a boring, traditional small-town relationship.

** “I think we have more machinery of government than is necessary, too many parasites living on the labor of the industrious.” —Thomas Jefferson (1824)

** Gladiator 2 – I don’t know if I’d pay to sit in a theater and watch a Pedro Pascal film. The problem with actors who identify themselves politically is that I struggle to choke off that public personification from their role. Its release is a year off, so there’s time to wait and see. I wouldn’t pay to see Fonda, Oprah or Streisand either.

** From HaroldM – Ride the Wayback Machine to the 1950s, Cessna acquired Seibel Helicopter Co. and began work on the CH-1 Skyhook.

** It’s a lighter article with a few interesting points (h/t Claudio) that cover submarine computing and weapons systems. It’s worth a read, but for old squids, there’s always an interest in more red meat.

** AP reported, “Federal authorities in New York announced on Wednesday the largest-ever seizure of counterfeit goods, consisting of handbags, shoes, and other luxury merchandise valued at more than $1 billion.” That’s good because when New Yorkers loot a store, they should get the real thing, not some cheap knockoff.

** “An army marches on its stomach,” Napoleon is supposed to have said. Unfortunately for the armies of his time, the food available to the stomachs of those hungry soldiers was neither appetizing nor nutritious–consisting primarily of hard bread and salted meat. Napoleon wanted to feed his army better, so he offered a prize of 12,000 francs to anyone who could invent a better way to store and preserve food.

The chef, Nicolas Appert, rose to the challenge. After years of trial and error, he eventually perfected a method of putting food in jars and submerging the jars in boiling water to preserve the food and seal the jars. In other words, he invented canning.

Appert won the prize and the fame that came with it. The process he invented is essentially the same process we still use today.

Appert is still celebrated and well-known in France (where “canning” is called “appertization”). Still, he has faded into obscurity in the rest of the world despite being responsible for one of humanity’s most important inventions.

** Connected to the point above – Chicken Marengo – Chicken sautéed in oil with garlic and tomato, garnished with fried eggs and crayfish. The dish is similar to chicken à la Provençale but with the addition of egg and crayfish, which are traditional to chicken Marengo but are now often omitted. The original dish was named to celebrate the Battle of Marengo, a Napoleonic victory of June 1800.

According to a popular myth, the dish was first made after Napoleon defeated the Austrian army at the Battle of Marengo at Marengo, south of Alessandria, Italy when his chef Dunand foraged in the town for ingredients (because the supply wagons were too distant) and created the dish from what he could gather. According to this legend, Napoleon enjoyed the dish so much that he had it served to him after every battle. When Dunand was later better-supplied and substituted mushrooms for crayfish and added wine to the recipe, Napoleon refused to accept it, believing that a change would bring him bad luck.

This colorful story, however, is probably a myth; Alan Davidson writes that there would have been no access to tomatoes at that time, and the first published recipe for the dish omits them. The more plausible explanation for the dish’s origin is that a restaurant chef created it to honor Napoleon’s victory.

** Dutch Support for Ukraine – h/t Claudio – The Netherlands is making €2 billion ($2.2 billion) available for military aid to Ukraine in 2024, the Dutch Ministry of Defence said. One can only wonder if the Ukrainian oligarchs would liquidate their billions in graft for the nation’s good if the flow of funding started to dry up. The cynic in me says no.

** CNN reported “what a CNN reporter saw inside hospital basement in Gaza.” He saw proof that Palestinians use the hospital to shield its Hamas military arm, a war crime. CNN must be feeling the heat for using Hamas terrorists as photographers. I mean, showing the other side of the story is just not done by journalists in the 21st century.



Gaza Map

The IDF advanced deeper into the center of Gaza City from the Southwest and advanced up to the Indonesian Hospital and the Northern edge of the Jabalya camp. When the IDF finds an opening to a tunnel system, engineers use explosives specifically designed to over-pressure the system. Other exits and entrances are found when the tunnel is over-pressurized and doors blow here and there. Those other points of egress are foamed closed.


Identify the Aircraft




hint: The gun in the nose is a 57mm cannon.


Identify the Tank






  1. Identify the Aircraft:
    1. Let L-410 Turbolet
    2. Loire 210
    3. Kawasaki Ki-102 ‘Randy’

    Identify the Tank:
    1. Pionierpanzer 3 Kodiak
    2. T69 medium tank

      • That’s good. I wouldn’t want to hear that you were trampled to death or shot struggling over the purchase of whatever toy is popular this year.

    • That sounds like a wonderful plan. May buy something on line but that is about it. Won’t leave my little corner of the universe.

    • I’m with you and the others. Plus, had a few Thanksgiving guests stay over last night as Winter weather came in sooner than predicted with 12 degrees of ice then snow (already plowed 8” of the predicted 2”-4”). Waiting for Yellen to say there’s no cold and snow, that it’s only my imagination and that it’s actually sunny and warm. So it’ll be an inside day. Besides, UPS delivers, why do the “Jingle All The Way” crazy.

        • But, but, but, global warmering …or something. If a model cannot accurately Paul M’s 8 inches of snowfall just a day in the future it seems just a tad insane that anyone would think the model can predict weather and climate several years from now.

          • “light snow throughout Friday” is now a foot and comin’ down…or as they say in Minnesota, “Up n Still…up to your butt and still coming.

            But it is Thanksgiving in the Rockies, old timers say this is nothing, one year a few decades back had 30” of snow ON Thanksgiving. Lot’s of stay over guests then.

            Apparently protesting (successfully) for the Tax Assessor’s property valuation scummy “insult to injury” money grab (in a declining market that is around 2012 levels now) means I didn’t pay my fair share of weather taxes. Later I’ll go out to the – now frozen and half buried – Paul M Pasture Cove sign in my Speedo and lay prostrate to the Climate God’s, hoping that Gaia shows some mercy. Will let you know what’s not frost bitten after 10 minutes…or maybe not as a real man just takes it in a t-shirt while saying “it’s not cold”.

    • I just scored three boxes of 500 rounds each of 22 long rifle jacketed hollow point for $22 a box. I just happen to be out and about and near the place so I thought I’d stop in. Dunham’s.

  2. So my commitment to this blog is such that I must do my due diligence before commenting.
    I have little interest (at this point) in Gladiator 2, but it seems to have Denzel, so, I’m sure I’ll end up seeing it. So now i have to find out who Pedro Pascal (he/him) is and why there would be an objection to watching the film because of him. I watched the video twice (the lengths I’ll go to !) to see where I missed it. I don’t think he was mentioned in the video except the youtube sub-header.
    I had to search (VM search tool) to discover his/hims character is undefined.
    Maybe, if as rumoured, he gets to be The Spaniard, and we get to watch he/him die.

  3. This Black Friday (capitalized for the right reasons) I trying to get a reliable politician. Anyone know where I can get an affordable one of those?

  4. Normally we too would shy from leaving the house today but, unfortunately, the over-the-range microwave has chosen this weekend to exhibit signs of dying…probably from exhaustion…so we will armor up, grab the mace…both modern and medieval…and sally forth at some point to do battle with the masses.

  5. Counterfeit luxury goods are, like drugs and cars stolen to order, just another black-market funding source for …mostly, but not always, non-state actors. So, good for seizing the shipment.

    My only question is if they wildly inflated the value of said shipment by giving the retail price for the genuine articles, or if they gave the street price at which they’d be sold. Knowing bureaucratic agent’s desire for glory, promotion, and funding… not gonna bet on the latter.

    • I recall when I seized an entire warehouse full of counterfeit DVDs and DVD fabrication equipment used in counterfeits and how upset the government was that I’d done it. Now, the evidence needed to be stored (somewhere). The PR team said it was worth $12 million but they counted the “street value” of unformed plastic… Organized crime was behind the operation and we could tie them in.

      I ended up securing the warehouse until it went to trial and the government never did pay the rent bill.

      Such are the games people play.

  6. “ I wouldn’t pay to see Fonda, Oprah or Streisand either.”

    Really? Depends on what was being done to them, I guess.

    I’m celebrating Black Friday by being out of the country. In Peppi Panini in Sudbury (Ontario) waiting for the Sudbury Wolves (hockey) game to start. The food was pretty damn good. The service enthusiastic but untrained (IMNSHO). Sitting on a chintz sofa in the “lounge area” eating soup from a bowl on my lap because I gave up my barstool seat so that two dads and their four boys (all decked out in their hockey-fan gear) could sit together. A reasonably attractive but VERY twitchy brunette social worker is on the other sofa. We are both glowing because for some dang reason there’s a black light fixture overhead; I’m wearing a white pinstripe Oxford shirt and she’s in a white sweater. After some awkward conversation we are studiously ignoring each other. Hahaha.

    Sudbury Friday Night! 😀

    Why am I here? (Specifically in Peppi Panini in Sudbury, not metaphysically.) Blame Jared Keeso and his “Shoresy” TV show.

    Update! She asked me to watch her bag while she runs to the bathroom. Prolly those two mixed drinks she just downed.


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