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Dusty Devil Dale

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Posts posted by Dusty Devil Dale

  1. Had somebody back into my 2001 F150 work pickup, not long ago in a supermarket parking lot.   They had a shallow dent in their rear van door, from their spare tire being pressed inward.  I got a wide, shallow dent in my tailgate, probably from the same tire.  I was sitting in the truck eating a snack at the time.  


    My old pickup has seen 22 years of HARD  use, with 311 K miles on original engine and transm.  Lots of little dents and paint marks and oxidized, sun faded paint.   I told them "no problem", we shook hands and they drove away. 


    A couple days later, I saw the same van parked 1/4 mile away on my street.  Turns out they are a neighbor.   Small world.  Happy ending.

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  2. The day is fast coming when they will fill  the crease with Bondo, sand smooth, and put a color wrap and clear coat on the damaged panel.  Many car repaint places are now using whole body color wraps.  It's a matter of time before you will be able to order a paint-matched wrap, either by factory number or by computer match, and DIY the repair with a squeegee and heat gun.   

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  3. 16 minutes ago, El Chapo said:


    You must have missed the details in my post.   Zero other professions pay like health care.  If anything, your rally should be against health insurance and physicians that support those salaries. 


    It seems that your beef is also with Congress.  You want to blame the recipients of benefits that our government created as a means to get the labor it needs to supply the services the public absolutely needs.  If you don't like their policy choices, you should vote for someone else.  But don't blame those of us who face difficult decisions under the existing policies that we didn't make. 


    In my view, you sound just like the women in my 20s who wouldn't date me because I was in the military because they hated Bush's war in Iraq.  I did not vote to go to war in Iraq.  I answered my country's call and wrote Uncle Sugar a blank check that included "up to and including my life."  Yet they wanted to blame me for a politically unpopular war.  You want to blame student borrowers for bad policy decisions for which they are not responsible.  Your beef is with Congress.  Don't blame the debtors who were forced to make a tough choice under policies they didn't make.


    If the government would end its subsides and meddling in the price of higher education, these problems would be gone overnight.  Universities wouldn't be able to charge monopoly money for education.  But those decisions were made long before I enrolled in college.  By that same token, when I was in high school and working 7 days a week after school for $5.40 an hour, it was your generation who encouraged me to go to school as if it would provide limitless high paying opportunities for work.  That was what we were told.  It turns out that even the highest paying occupations are a scam and the cost of the education to get there is a ripoff. 


    This problem is likely to continue to get even worse in the future because instead of nuance, all we get our politics.  That means nothing will change, the government will continue manipulating the market for higher education, and the prices will soar higher than ever.  There is no reason the future won't resemble the recent mast if no policy changes are made.


    I am not under 40 by the way.

    To be honest, I didn't carefully read the above.  My issue is not with details of individual occupations or contracts.  My issue is with inequity.  Party A benefits, but Party B has to pay for it.  The SCOTUS also saw it that way.  But our President quickly announced he would work around their holding and is making a show of following through.  (Isn't that an "insurrection"?)


    The simple truth is that the President is not intending to actually forgive any loans.  They fully expect to be sued again and be overturned again by the SCOTUS --but not until AFTER they've secured the 813,000 votes of people receiving the hollow promise of a gift of debt forgiveness.  After the votes are cast, they know they can fail on their promise with a good excuse.  

    So we shouldn't get too worked up over the taxpayer impacts.  Rather we should be addressing the dishonesty.   


    BTW, this is a good discussion, but it is drawing very close to a political debate, which is out of place here in the Saloon.  Don't be surprised if moderators close, move, or remove us.   I'll apologize in advance for my part in taking this there.  DDD

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  4. 12 hours ago, El Chapo said:


    At 74 years old, you certainly lived through different economic times than I am.  But since my wife is a medical professional and actually trains those residents, you could say I have a second row seat to it.  First year residents make more than I made for the first 9 years of my professional career, and the average first year physician post-residency makes 50% more than the average attorney (who also has a doctorate degree). 


    I don't know what year you're talking about, but if we're talking about 40 years ago, $51k in 1983 dollars is equal to $160,441.93 in today's dollars.  That is over double the median household income in the United States today.  You were rich by any measure and if her salary continued even at that same level, that would create a comfortable early retirement for anyone who was even a little financially savvy.


    I also think you have a very skewed view of what "bookoo bucks" are.  Even family medical practitioners make great money, even compared other occupations with advanced education and degree requirements, including accountants, pharmacists, and attorneys.  Specialists make even more, perhaps much more, but all physicians who are practicing are earning 2-3x the median household income their first year post-residency and it only goes up from there. 

    I wouldn't even be here right now if it wasn't for the COVID pause of payments toward our student loans, which I did not ask for and did not need.  It freed up $300 or so a month that even made it possible for me to do some of the things I had wanted to do for a long time, including cowboy action shooting.


    Given the wide generational differences here, it's no wonder that perspectives are basically missing.  If I made $161k per year after a three year apprenticeship, I would have had no problem paying $230k in student loans in just a few years.  I could have probably lived a quite nice lifestyle along the way, too!  I would have dreamed of being in such a situation.  Nobody I know outside of health care professions is living like that at all, and I have plenty of friends from all sorts of occupations.

    You make a great case for why today's highly paid just-out-of-school folks should be able to afford their own debt.  The salaries are way inflated now too.  It is a matter of personal priority setting and taking responsibility.  They are "loans", not scholarships.  But the loan forgiveness has rendered them as the same.  Never mind that those who received scholarships had to earn them.  


    Not all, but too many in the entitled generations (below age 40) seem to think somebody else is supposed to be responsible for providing their essentials and for assuring their economic comfort and convenience, so that  their own income can be available for discretionary spending.  Mom, dad, the taxpayers, anybody but them should take responsibility for their life.  


    I still have not seen any basis for why those who could not afford to go to college should now have to pay for the debts for others who were lucky enough to attend.   Likewise, I see no justification for requiring folks who worked their way or timely paid off their debt should have to pay for others.  If their education did not equip them to earn enough to pay their way, then perhaps they should have skipped the college, skipped the loans, and gone into one of the honorable trades.  Any economist would recognize their education as a losing business--i.e., where the investment fails to pay for itself.  So bankruptcy may be their solution, but others (creditors) have to pay those costs too, don't they. 


    But it is a rhetorical deception to believe that  borrowers who went into public service are somehow working off their college debt.  They are being well paid for their time and service today, at the same salaries as others with no college debt load, and they have no salary deductions made against their remaining debt.  They received both the loan moneys and their present salaries.  Somebody else is being required to pay for both.






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  5. 7 hours ago, El Chapo said:

    If my profession paid anything like first year MDs are paid, I'd have paid off my student loans a long, long time ago.

    Speaking of being mistaken, do you have any idea what a first year MD is paid? 

    I didn't think so. 

    I will share my wife's experience.


    After high school graduatiIon, she spent 4 years in a Ca State College, majoring in Zoology/pre-med with a minor in Chemistry.  She graduated 4.0, SCL. 

    Then she attended UC San Francisco Medical School for 3 more years, for her MD degrees.   Then she served a 1 year non-paid General Medicine Internship, followed by 3 more years of non-paid Residency to become a Board Certified Specialist in Internal Medicne.  That is 11 years of higher education, during which she had zero income.  (Residents in those days worked 20-hrs on, 8 hrs off shifts. )


    In her first year of private practice, in a small group practice, she made a whopping great $51,000.  We thought we were rich!  Ten years later she was in the $80K range. 

    You see,  Internists are Adult, Non-surgical MDs. They don't do very many procedures, even though they have all the training and credentials.  Instead they see 25-35 patients per day, managing everything from Diabetes to Malaria or genetic disorders,  for which insurance pays them (these days) maybe $70 -$120/ visit.   Insurance paid much less in years past. Do the arithmetic. 

    And out of that subtract office rental, medical supplies, staff wages and malpractice insurance costs.)


    After 31 years in practice with a larger group practice, she finally retired at about the $105K range.  Then she took a retirement job for another 12 years working as a State MD.   The State salary was about 10% higher than her take home from private practice.  


    I wanted to clarify for you the misconception that first-year MDs get paid boocoo bucks.  Some specialists  make very good money, but not all specialists do --- and all of them have extensive training costs and more than a decade without any income. 


    But reality is that I'm not going to convince you, and you certainly aren't going to convince me.

    So I think I'll sign off here and get some sleep.  It's way past my bedtime, and at 74 y.o., I have to work tomorrow. 

    Somebody has to pay the cost of all this vote pandering.  



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  6. 2 hours ago, El Chapo said:
    6 hours ago, Eyesa Horg said:

    I mean no personal insult to you El Chapo and applaud your public service. If public service was the deal you made for schooling, that is fine. My issue is this vote getter of Biden's to pay off 813,000 loans don't appear to have the same conditions or he wouldn't have had to make the offer or get it approved by Congress, it would have happened automatically as yours did. Veterans aren't even a comparison. Veterans put up there lives for the few benefits they get. They didn't borrow funds agreeing to pay them back and now whine that the govt. should take care of it because they can't find a job doing whatever it was they spent time getting a degree in. So many kids back in my day went to college for the sole reason of avoiding the draft and now I/we should have to pay that debt.

    Again, my sincere apologies if I insulted you, it was not my intention.



    The 813,000 number was created by the media.  It includes a considerable number of people whose loans were discharged by operation of laws that far predate Biden's presidency.  The media 1) wants you to be angry and 2) wants Biden to get political credit from his supporters.


    Student borrowers do not borrow the funds "agreeing to pay it back."  They borrow money under conditions that are more like a social welfare program than a debt.  The government created these policies.


    I'm not insulted one bit.  I think you and a lot of other people are under the misconception that a student loan is like a mortgage loan or a car note.  It isn't.  A student loan is nothing like those things, because it comes with all sorts of terms that could result in you not ever having to pay it back (e.g., disability).  Tell your mortgage company you're disabled and see if they still collect.  Then tell the judge the same thing when they foreclose.  You will get nothing.  Yet being disabled wipes your student debt.  And that's just one example.


    5 hours ago, Dusty Devil Dale said:

    I agree perspective is important.  So why is it better for me to pay someone else's highly inflated education costs, via my taxes every year, than it is for the person who received the benefit paying those costs? (My taxes are also excessive and inflated).


    If the borrowers majored/minored in a marketable field, and not some idealistic fad, and they took real classes, rather than international (travel) studies,  and they went out and got real a job afterwards, and not just a convenient one,  their college funding obligation should be fully payable.  If not, they made bad decisions and choices along the way, either about their education curriculum or about how they spent their money afterwards.  


    But regardless, their obligations are theirs.  They signed the line, not me.  Seeing 30+% of everything I ever earned go to an insatiable governmental appetite for tax money, I don't feel charitable to cover for  poor, downtrodden individuals who bought showy new houses and BMWs and incurred huge credit card debt, instead of first paying off their loans.   


    For 15 years after I finished my graduate degrees, I drove an aging Datsun pickup and lived with my MD wife in a 1,200 sf house on a $900/mo State salary, while we paid off her 7 years of medical school loans.   Been there, done that.  I guess we should have just stiffed the government and taxpayers.  

    I apologize here if I am being unnecessarily abrasive and hard-hearted, but like many, I am a paying victim in this vote buying scharade.  




    I never said it was "better."  You're arguing with a straw man there.  Congress decided these policies for everyone.  I didn't decide them and I wouldn't have voted for any of them.


    Your second paragraph is, in a word, wrong.  The price of higher education is ridiculous these days.  My degree is in economics.  Short of a few types of engineering, economics is the highest paying college major for initial entry salary.  I have serious doubts that I would have ever been able to pay my undergrad loans with the salary from my economics degree.  If I hadn't gone to graduate school, I would have gone to work for the fed or something to try to pay them or counted on them being forgiven after 25 years.  The government subsidized education to much and for so long, college is simply unaffordable to those who don't have their parents' money to attend.  


    You can say I made a "bad choice" if you want to, but any other businessman who made a failed investment with other people's money in hopes of earning a greater income is allowed to file bankruptcy and get a fresh start.  Student loans are generally non-dischargeable, so not only did we get a raw deal where we're unable to pay, there is no relief available by the mechanism our society has for failed business decisions. 


    FWIW: I am still driving the truck I bought on March 18, 2005 (it's the second longest relationship I have ever had).  To date, I have never had a secretary who didn't drive a newer car than I do, not in private practice and not in government service.  The nature of your comments suggests that you have no clue how insanely expensive higher education is now or why these forgiveness programs were even enacted.


    If my profession paid anything like first year MDs are paid, I'd have paid off my student loans a long, long time ago.

    I don't think you're abrasive or hard-hearted at all.  I do think you're sorely mistaken if you think we would have many basic government services that require higher education without these programs, though.  If you think somene would go to school and hitch up to a 1/4 million in debt to earn less than a first year nurse, I'm sorry to be the one to inform you that we wouldn't have any prosecutors from my generation without these programs.

    I wasn't really referring to your situation or document commitments, of which I admit I am unfamiliar.   

    But I'm not "wrong, in a word",  about big numbers of college students who take out loans that they don't intend to ever repay, to attend college for the social life or for something to do, and so they take minimal, easy course work for extended times (some never even finalize on a major course of study), or who sign up for multiple international travel "Cluster Courses" which are offered only as an excuse for overpaid professors to travel on salary with tax-deductable expenses.

    All of that is all on taxpayers' backs.   


    Regardless of Congress' lawmaking irresponsibility, there really are no free lunches.  If services or goods are being received by someone, then somebody IS paying for them.  If not the recipient, but others, like taxpayers, then you have a wealth redistribution regime that is more like Communism.  


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  7. 3 hours ago, El Chapo said:


    I don't think "decided" is the right word.  The government has subsidized education for 50 years, which drove up the cost to a ridiculous rate.  I guarantee you if we poll the posters in this thread, the ones who say they were able to pay their way through school will trend toward much older than those who have loans.


    The Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, for example, was created about 15 years ago because the government realized that it cannot afford to pay the kind of salaries that it takes to obtain the talent it needs.  It doesn't pay enough to be a teacher, a cop, a prosecutor, etc., but these jobs require degrees.  The PLSF was a compromise.  I'm sure every cop on the street would gladly trade the PLSF for double their pay, but since that isn't coming, PLSF remains one of the benefits of their employment.


    The loan forgiveness provisions that forgive all student loans after 25 years have been part of the deal for much longer.  Since student loans rarely are dischargeable in bankruptcy, the compromise was that if someone cannot figure out how to pay their loans after 25 years, after which they'll be closer to retirement on social security benefits than they are to their college days, then the balance should be forgiven.


    The idea that this is just younger generations pawning off the costs on the taxpayers is simply not reality.  I'm sure all of us would be happy to pay cash at inflation adjusted 1980 prices for our education.  Broken policies by the government in the last 50 years have caused higher education to go up in cost more than almost anything else, even eclipsing the increases in prices of health care in that time.  If they reduced the price to a sane rate tomorrow, I'd write a check and call it a day.  Instead I attended two state universities and went to class in the same buildings my parents could have gone to school in and you and others want me to hitch up to the plow for literally the rest of my life for the privilege.


    Obviously we need to figure out how to make education affordable.  I do not think there should just be blanket forgiveness in exchange for nothing.  But lumping all forgiveness into one bowl doesn't tell the whole story.  I wouldn't have spent the last 10 years in public service if not for PLSF, not because I wouldn't have wanted to serve my community, but rather because without PLSF, I would have no hope of ever paying my loans back with what the government pays.  I would be forced to try to seek a high paying job elsewhere to be able to pay it back.  PLSF is a deal that Congress made with us that if we dedicate 10 years to public service, we can get our loans forgiven.  And when mine are forgiven, which will be soon, I have every intention of staying in public service even though people are offering me big money to go to the private sector. 


    These discussions need perspective, not just politics.

    I agree perspective is important.  So why is it better for me to pay someone else's highly inflated education costs, via my taxes every year, than it is for the person who received the benefit paying those costs? (My taxes are also excessive and inflated).


    If the borrowers majored/minored in a marketable field, and not some idealistic fad, and they took real classes, rather than international (travel) studies,  and they went out and got real a job afterwards, and not just a convenient one,  their college funding obligation should be fully payable.  If not, they made bad decisions and choices along the way, either about their education curriculum or about how they spent their money afterwards.  


    But regardless, their obligations are theirs.  They signed the line, not me.  Seeing 30+% of everything I ever earned go to an insatiable governmental appetite for tax money, I don't feel charitable to cover for  poor, downtrodden individuals who bought showy new houses and BMWs and incurred huge credit card debt, instead of first paying off their loans.   


    For 15 years after I finished my graduate degrees, I drove an aging Datsun pickup and lived with my MD wife in a 1,200 sf house on a $900/mo State salary, while we paid off her 7 years of medical school loans.   Been there, done that.  I guess we should have just stiffed the government and taxpayers.  

    I apologize here if I am being unnecessarily abrasive and hard-hearted, but like many, I am a paying victim in this vote buying scharade.  


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  8. 8 hours ago, El Chapo said:


    I don't know where you got the idea that the loans are "contracts" like any other kind of debt.  A great deal of these loans were forgiven on the Public Service Loan Forgiveness or on the provision of the law that all student loans are forgiven after 20 or 25 years.  Those provisions were passed by Congress a long time ago, and they were always part of the "deal" struck by borrowers with the government for the loans.  The loans are not like a car loan where you are told what the payment will be and the terms up front.  Student loans are totally different in that these conditions of potential forgiveness/discharge are built in to the terms from the very beginning.  For example, all federal student loans are discharged if you become "totally and permanently disabled." 


    The suggestion that these things "cost" the taxpayers anything is also misleading.  The government owns these debts and expects repayment of some of them.  But unlike a home mortgage or a car note, there exist many legal reasons why the loans may not have ever been repaid.  As such, the "cost" was the government loaning the money under those terms in the first place.  That the person exercises their right under a statute (Like PLSF, or disability, or after 25 years) to discharge the debt is part of the terms of the loan.  It's not as if it's a new cost to forgive the loan when the government agreed up front to forgive the loan if you satisfy its conditions.

    Any way you can bend the logic, the taxpayers are still paying for somebody else's education who decided not to pay for it themselves.  And if the loan recipients honorably repaid the obligation, the cost to the taxpayers would be limited to the admin costs. 


    And loan forgiveness only comes up at election time.  Vote for me and I'll save you lots of money.   Totally predictable vote buying.  

    And, let's not forget the inequity between the forgiven ones and those who paid off their loans.   There is nothing fair or equitable about the loan forgiveness proposals, which is why the SCOTUS determination was against it -- or so everyone thought. 

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  9. On 11/8/2023 at 2:16 PM, Griff said:

    I tried the Hornady Sonic cleaner on a batch of .32-40 & .30-30 brass today.  Smokeless rounds and deprimed before tumbling.  I gotta say, looks better than new brass!


    I'd say the primer pockets look as good as the outside!  Thanks for the idea!

    One advantage is that without ss pins, the primer pockets are not getting abraded and loosened.  I have always deprimed after wet tumbling for that concern.  Steel on brass has to be removing a small amount of brass with each cycle.  

  10. 21 hours ago, Hardpan Curmudgeon SASS #8967 said:

    Any lapidarists in our midst?  :rolleyes:


    I know a family who has four little girls - ages about four to twelve.  With Christmas on the horizon, I had a thought about a "collective" gift for them - a tumbler type rock polisher, thinking it might be something they could enjoy together.  


    With that, thoughts and advice on how to pursue this without breaking the bank would be welcome.  :)

    Harbor Freight has a tumbler that is actually quite good and durable.  The media compounds can be found online pretty easily.  I have bought many products from Kingsley North.  They have good quality, but they can be pretty proud of some of their products, so shop the Internet.

    Many good introductory kits are out there and most have at least a starter batch of the several media compounds.   

    Be aware that rock tumbling might try a young kid's patience.  It usually takes 5 or 6 weeks to fully tumble rocks to high polish.  


    If you dislike their parents, give them an expresso and a puppy!

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  11. Get the phone to delete the photos.  Just  ask, "can I see the pics", then walk off and delete, delete, delete.  Give him back the phone when he leaves soon afterwards. 

     Worry about the creep interactions after the privacy invading photos are deleted from the phone AND its trashcan. 

  12. Many, many years ago, a group of 7 or 8 of us young adults would drive a couple weekends every month over to the central Ca coast to spearfish and SCUBA dive after then-abundant red abalone, pismo clams, rock scallops, crab, and various fish.  We would camp on the beach at Cayucos, right in the middle of town.  Beach camping was popular then, at least for the first couple years.  We'd have a driftwood campfie, a quiet guitar jamb session, a lot of story telling--some of it true-- and a hearty cast iron cooked dinner. Sometimes a local or two would hear the music or smell the food and walk down and join us for the evening.


    Somewhere, I had acquired a big, heavy, oval +-10x25x5" covered cast iron caserole pan that we used for cooking.  We would dig a sand pit, fill the bottom with hot charcoal, throw a little damp kelp over the coals, then put the covered pan on top, loaded near the top with all of the aforementioned goodies, plus a couple cans of either Campbells tomato soup or Campbells cream of mushroom soup and some water, Sherry and spices.  Another layer of kelp and hot charcoal covered the top.  It would just sit and roast for near an hour. 

    In a separate Dutch oven, I would usually cook a 14x6" round loaf of sourdough bread.   I had to prep the batter, etc in the morning and leave it in the van to rise throughout the day while we were diving.  

    A couple of times, on warm days, I had yeasty dough all over the upholstery.


    You can envision the evening and meal.   Those were some of the best of times.  


    When the City of Cayucos finally prohibited beach camping, nobody told us.  Just as we were opening up the Choppino and dumping out the bread one breezy Saturday evening, two uniformed city officers approached us.  They were entirely decent with us, since we didn't look like deadbeats and the regulation was brand new.  The aroma, plus our friendly  invite overcame them and they sat down for a short time for a plate of choppino.  They let us stay that night, provided we put out the fire, which we did.  


    Again, Very Good Times back then, and great Dutch oven memories. 

    Sorry for rambling.  I got kinda carried away.  The memories are as good as the food!


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  13. We stopped the gift barrage years ago.  Now we make a generous Toys for Tots donation. Those kids really do need some Christmas joy and somebody to care about them. 

     To feel like Christmas, we listen to Christmas music, call friends and relatives, have a good meal, and put empty boxes  under the tree for visuals. 

    The cats love the boxes after they get unwrapped ----- and before sometimes when they do their own unwrapping. 

    Peace on Earth and Joy to the World!

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  14. I didn't use several of my stacking pots for some time, and rust got into them, stored in the garage.  In one big 18" pot, it had corroded pretty deeply.  My wife suggested scrubbing it out with a coarse grade copper scrub pad.  Wow!  It came right back to a shiny iron surface very quickly with only water as cleaning agent.  I re-seasoned by rubbing the inside down with cheap olive oil, then baking it to recreate the patina.  Then I boiled water for a few minutes to pull off excess oil.  That was all I had to do to get back to cooking.

      I've been trying to get up some interest in a Dutch oven pot-luck at our club.  Seems like it would be fun.    

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    9 minutes ago, Pat Riot said:

    Like a Gun Tattoo.


    Except the gun won't get old and all wrinkly-flabby-saggy with this not-so-pretty-anymore picture stuck on it.  

    I actually thought about investing in tattoo removal technology-- huge market upcoming!

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  16. There are a lot of good recipes books out there.  Very little beats a cast iron cooked outdoor meal.  I have about ten of different sizes that cook everything from sourdough bread to rib roast, to chile, to pineapple upside-down cakes.  Great eating and a lot of it!


    Boy Scouts do a lot of cast iron cookery and there are a number of their very good cookbooks available online.  Take a look at Troop 204 Cookbook. 

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  17. 22 hours ago, Subdeacon Joe said:

    Scrounge junk yards and yard sales.  You might have to strip an reseason one, but it's a fairly simple, if time consuming, process.


    Other than that, I would go with Lodge.

    Be real careful in your scrounging!  Many people, including me, have used cast iron cookware in the past for lead melting/casting.  The hot molten lead and lead oxides penetrate pores in the cast iron.   I got curious once and filled a cast iron pot used for lead melting with water for a couple days, then tested the water for lead.  The lead content was very high.  So I torch cut the bottom out of the twp pots I had used with lead to prevent them someday being used again for food preparation. .  

    During the Gold Rush, cast iron was also used for Mercury handling.  So as above, be careful.  

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  18. Here in Californasylum (at least the San Joaquin Valley area), the local Air Quality Control Board now prohibits putting wet food garbage into the garbage can.  Instead we must put it in the garbage disposal/drain, drop it into the green-waste recycle container, or toss it in outdoor garden compost.  

    That's hilarious, because they are trying to comply with the new Federal EPA methane standards at their regulated landfills.   But the green-waste recycling locations are not EPA regulated, so methane produced there somehow doesn't matter.   

    Previously, we were prohibited from disposing of garbage waste outdoors (as if they could enforce it) but now we are required to.  The neighborhood coyotes and raccoons are rejoicing for the holidays.   But they are not rejoicing because the planet is being saved. 


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  19. I've been professionally hand engraving jewelry for nearly 30 years and it naturally carried over to engraving some guns brought to me, usually newer guns brought by new owners. With hesitation, I completed the work as people requested. 

     But none of my own guns are engraved. 


    It is very difficult to design a piece of artwork that has what is called 'mystery of effect' that persists through time.  Often a design looks very appealing early on, but as months go by, the newness and appeal wear off, unless there is some personal attachment to the design.  It is really hard to embellish the looks of a finely made firearm beyond the appeal of its original fit and finish.  (Upgrading the wood is usually an exception). 


    The Brittish mastered the art of very fine gun engraving on fine guns by Purdy, Holland and Holland, and others, many decades ago.   But those guns' value supports that quality of hand work.  Few engravers will spend that kind of time for $1,500  on an $800 gun.  Laser engraving is a much cheaper substitute and it has its legitimate place, but it usually looks like ---well-- laser engraving.  As with music, computer perfection is not a substitute for artistic character.


    Engraving an owner's name is a sure way to reduce the value of any future sale,  unless the owner is Ulyses S. Grant or George Custer.  Phrases like "Don't Tread on Me" or "Semper fi"  or "Give me liberty or give me death" are different.  They have broader appeal, even with passage of time. 


    My advice to anyone contemplating a gun engraving job is to PAUSE and LOOK first.  Once it is done, it is permanent.  You have to like it after looking at it thousands of times.  It is very hard to do artwork that can satisfy that.  Appeal isn't just about precision.  It is much easier to reduce gun value by engraving than it is to increase value, regardless of the artwork's cost. 

    • Like 1
  20. For my home protection, I took the advice shared here in the Saloon a couple years ago.  I picked up a couple more cats at the shelter and bought an extra laser pointer for my wife.  Anyone breaching our front door is going to find a red dot on center mass, shortly followed by lots of claws. 

    Go ahead-- Bring it!

    • Haha 2
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