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Life and Times of an itinerant slacker in Sacramento. Thrills, Spills Galore coming soon. Not to mention lots of opinions.

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Thursday, January 01, 2009

New Years This Time Around, Fireworks, Finances and Forests


Welcome to 2009, the year that promises not to be 2008. That’s good enough for me. At the very least, we’ll see a president who won’t make me feel ashamed in front of foreign visitors. I fear history will sum up our nation’s last eight years with the image of a flying shoe.

We celebrated New Years at our neighbor’s place with a couple of mutual friends. We ate some party sandwich type hors d’oeuvres, drank a few too many Champaign cocktails, and, in the local tradition brought from the southeast, did fireworks. The fireworks you can buy here sit on the ground and shoot out sparks and whistle. We placed them on a ladder, since looking down at fireworks just doesn’t feel right. Anyway, here’s what you missed.

Our neighbor is a pyromaniac, so she always buys a ton of fireworks in June, in the couple of weeks when youth organizations are allowed to sell fireworks in parking lots (obviously, what could make more sense in a state that doesn’t see rain between May and November). I will never understand California laws. Never. I digress.

When one of the biggest fireworks (these big things cost $30 or more each) failed to ignite after the fuse burned down and fizzled, that wasn’t going to stop the show. Why not rip open the top, stick in the lighter, and light something in there that looks like a fuse?


We did our annual year end accounting of financial assets. Thanks to the magic of the internets, you can actually get that done on the morning of New Years day. We saw only a modest (at least relative to current conditions) percentage decrease in assets. This is one of those times when having only slightly more risk tolerance than Casper Milquetoast and the positive outlook of a hair shirt wearing millenialist pays off. Who knows what next year will bring?


After lunch today, we went for a walk in the Effie Yeaw Nature Center, which is a cool little riverside forest a couple of miles from our place. The nature center is part of Ancil Hoffman Park, whose history is associated with Max Bear Sr. in this somewhat convoluted way. In addition to being an elected county supervisor, Hoffman was Max Baer’s manager. Go Figure. Apparently the relationship was very good for Baer, Hoffman, boxing and the local community. I took the opportunity to use the new camera to annoy the local fauna.

Now I need to work on taking more flattering pictures of humans.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

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I must enjoy shouting into a vacuum, but I think about getting my act together one of these days. My mom says I am very handsome and intelligent.

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