Anthem Adrift

18 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
15 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
13 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
12 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
09 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
03 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
23 July 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
17 July 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
16 July 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
12 July 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
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27 June 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
25 June 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
20 June 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
18 June 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
03 June 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
28 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
21 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
16 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
14 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina

Manipulating The Apparati

18 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Friday 18 August 2017

Expectations have been met so Jan feels good after first Taxol and Herceptin infusions. Cool. For testing, probing, exsanguinating and infusing (not necessarily in that order) Jan was at the hospital every day this week but today. Next week is Monday (blood test), Tuesday (drip - every week now for eleven more) and Thursday for Sophia, the chemo doc. After that we're outta here. Plan to go aboating on a small excursion next weekend. Various boat bits need attention such as: Johnson outboard wants operational check, auto pilot computer wants calibration, running backstays want testing and crew wants to get the !@#$%%^&* off dock. All systems need exercise to prevent moribundity (not a real word). And speaking of which...

Anyone who actually reads this twaddle besides me (my contract requires it) may have noticed a certain churlish preachiness recently. This may be due not having much else to write about and ennui from being stuck in one spot for a year and a half. Although admittedly taking the notion of individual liberty quite seriously and being a bit annoyed to watch people willingly give it up for worthless figurative trinkets listening to Newspeak, don't take myself so and anyway, given rampant irony, any proselytizing is likely counter-productive, driving everyone into the deadening embrace of a Wesley Mouch. No worries. Although providing the odd reader with an occasional chuckle is pleasing, my primary purpose for engaging in this exercise is personal amusement and to keep the synapses firing in a semi-coherent manner... hey, I said semi! If you enjoy any of it great. Ignore the parts that suck.


PS The proper word is apparatuses, but that's unwieldy and sounds dopey.

Disaster Down Under

15 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Tuesday 15 August 2017

The Australian government is currently engaged in paroxysms of both righteous indignation and despair. Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce's father was born in New Zealand. Oh, the humanity. Joyce is being called upon to resign. Seems New Zealand has an obscure 1948 law stating that one is a citizen "by descent" if a parent was a citizen. Because a change to the Trans-Tasman Agreement (which created very close ties between the two countries) is in the works the NZ PM had someone perform research that brought this to light. Dual citizenship is not allowed for Oz politcos. Shame and opprobrium descended upon the unwitting minister, the agreement is imperiled, the Oz government may fall. Cool. As an aside, Barnaby was roundly condemned in 2015 after Johnny Depp knowingly brought his dogs illegally into Australia, which currently has no rabies, by suggesting the actor "bugger off back to the United States". One mustn't apply normal rules to major celebs.

In the echo chamber of twenty-four hour news and power accreting politics there are, apparently, nit-picking nitwits who actually care about this sort of thing. On the positive side, this is wonderfully entertaining and, after all, magnifying inconsequential twaddle (along with temporizing) is much easier than dealing with real concerns. Since these people typically handle authentic public problems, which are often the artifacts of similar politicians from the past, by making them worse, we should all indeed rejoice and enjoy the show. By the way, how many of you out there relish having venal morons exercise increasing control over substantial aspects of your lives? Oh!? Huh. Wonder how they got elected then?


Live: Evil In A Mirror

13 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Sunday 13 August 2107

Don't normally check blogsite, but discovered it's been blank for awhile (four or five weeks?) so queried support and learned visit counter, which has never displayed, had defective code that eventually begat mayhem. For those who've enjoyed the reprieve, your luck has run out. While mucking about, have instituted new theme as well. Additional overhaul could occur given current momentum. Pandemonium may persist.

To carry on a thought from yesterday, do-gooders (including the power hungry wingnuts and moonbats a majority of you elect to piss away money they have extracted upon threat of force primarily to prevent you from living your own peaceful life) who, while usually admitting they're not perfect without really believing it, force on you their views about how you should want to live your life, remaining blithely unconcerned that everyone might be an individual, not a cog in some tribal machine, and are convinced that chaos would rule without their benign intervention. Stretches the imagination, but most people are not like Moriarty, Batman's Joker or Snidely Whiplash. In fact, lots of folks might not even murder or steal or eat three quarts of ice cream at one sitting even if it weren't for strict nanny state control of their every desire. Oddly enough, it turns out to be advantageous and anomalously common to get along and deal fairly with one's fellow man. Word can get out if you don't and rational self-interest would lead many to avoid interacting with you. Of course those self-interested miscreants are selfish by definition and that's wrong, but despite every effort we seem regrettably unable to prevent human nature. Anyway, wouldn't want to restrict the power of the ruling classes to mess with us because then they couldn't get us stuff from everyone else. Don't worry, you're righteous and they won't mess with you.


Maintain And Control

12 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Thursday 10 August 2017

Today was chockers with excitement. Drove the Ford to Gibbsy's at 0745 for oil change and rego inspection (REH-joe - that's Australian for auto registration, they apparently have some difficulty pronouncing more than two syllables) with folding bicycle in trunk for return to boat, then one or both of us will bike to Dr. Sam's for enlightenment (there's that word again) on cantaloupes.. err, prostates and cholesterol levels, which had not been completed from last week's blood draw.

- Later

All the physiological bits and pieces are within acceptable parameters and no chemistry or sharp object interventions are in the offing. In a related story, old wrist blood pressure monitor died and replacement usually couldn't organize a response until pumping up to 280 mmHg. Subsequent stratospheric readings possibly due loss of feeling and fear of incipient gangrene. New monitor measures on the way up and gives more aesthetically pleasing results. May not be accurate, but blithe ignorance is wonderfully comforting.

Checkup, rego inspection and oil change were almost half cost of car and nothing needed fixing.


Biking around Darwin (today for 25 km with Jan who is feeling delightfully better) is also a thrill a minute. Mandated speed limit on all bike paths is 20 kph. While pretty minor, this arbitrary regulation like most constitutes an upper limit on good things and a lower limit on bad. In open areas with no traffic one is not allowed to get good exercise, but is authorized to endanger children, dogs and crotchety oldsters by passing too quickly. Do not, however, misconstrue this manipulation as wrong. The blessing is that government absolves one of the pesky necessity to think or use judgment. Except for a few minor issues that need trouble only the most selfish, this is great since most people are taught from childhood to remain dependent. Going from parental oversight directly to paternalistic control by politicians and bureaucrats is a facile transition that makes life so much easier. We can all relax, comforted in the perception that these paragons have the expertise, knowledge and wisdom to order our lives better than we can. Not you, of course, everyone else.


A Higher Level

09 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Sunday 6 August 2017

With any luck at all the last several days will be the worst and done. Perkier today Jan drove to meet me biking at the Bat Cave (Lucky Bat Cafe) for coffee and a stroll through Nightcliff Sunday market. This was the high point of our day and no more need be said about it.

There has been some loose talk about going to the pool tomorrow for laps. Despite days in the upper 30s (around 90 F) pool water has been low twenties. Having sworn off anything below 28 , will hope Jan changes her mind, take shorty wetsuit or fake anthracnose (Jan may not realize this is not transmitted to humans from avocados).


Wild tittle-tattle blossomed into reality yesterday morning as we got another punch on Casuarina Public Pool cards. Water was 27.8 C, dramatically below personal cutoff, but, not wanting to look like a sissy, jumped in without wet suit. Heart attack averted, extra adrenalin helped with first few laps, but dangly bits became a misnomer. Oh, the price paid to be a stud muffin.

Speaking of sacrifice, awoke at 0630 this morning then actually out of bed by 0645 to get Johnson outboard to shop near Palmerston by 0800. Then, not satisfied with level of personal abuse, rode bike into Darwin to replace iPhone battery that would last for about 10 minutes under use. For $79 it should now do at least 20.


Jan continues to feel much better and went to yoga class this morning. Every time I've looked in they're lying still on the floor with eyes closed. Who knew enlightenment could be so easy? In fact, had already discovered that higher consciousness is all about relaxation. Have no problem with laziness, but suspect this isn't the intent. Tried Transcendental Meditation for a number of months several years ago and was nearly torpid with enlightenment. Gained insight that no further incentive to lay about was necessary and that my Tao tends more toward confusion and bewilderment, so gave it up.


Stalling Not Appalling

03 August 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Wednesday 2 August 2017

Decided after dragging Johnson outboard around since New Caledonia to install gear seal kit. It's been a smidge over two years - haste makes waste. Youtube doesn't have a demo of same motor, but what it shows are special tools, expert knowledge and a great way to drop wee, irreplaceable parts into the murky, marina water. Rethink. There's an outboard service, In and Outboard Marine, next door. Having already heard that it was the most expensive place in the territory discovered it charges $140 an hour for work by students. Mate Geoff took his Mercury in for carburetor work just before heading out to Kupang, Indonesia, where he discovered that it doesn't run. Hmmmm. After much searching, finally found perhaps the only other shop in NT near Palmerston, which charges $120 and may even use professionals. Helpful and friendly on the phone, receptionist took a reservation for next Tuesday. Couldn't go in Monday because they're closed for an NT holiday - Picnic Day. Expect the following Monday to be "Let's Shut The Territory Down Because We're Just Not In The Mood Day".


After parting with generous amounts of bodily fluids for testing, saw Dr. Sam yesterday pursuant (cool word, huh? - sounds like something a cop would say on the witness stand during your trial) to a health check. Only items that jumped out were: normal, but suspicious thyroid levels; attempted blood pressure check causing automatic monitor to go schizo (manual check, after having arm ineffectually crushed three times, was a skosh high, but bpm 48); and good PSA number that was nevertheless a fair jump from previous. She subsequently applied the fickle finger of fate to an appropriate orifice to confirm prostate the size of a cantaloupe. Foregoing is slightly misleading because 1) it's not quite true and 2) Australians have no idea what a cantaloupe is. To be safe, not sorry and following fasting and drinking a ton of water, noon trip to the lab today for ultrasound of applicable area was organized. Highlight of day through 1300 was breakfast at Coffee Club.

At 1530 went to Jan's chemo doc for evaluation eight days after fourth and final round of Adriamycin and Cyclophosphamide. Except for having virtually no white cells and generating less energy than a sleeping koala, she's felt pretty good this time, probably due lots of rest. After years of striving to be a bad influence finally got her to appreciate the value of sloth. It wouldn't be a sin if it didn't feel so good.


Going Nowhere Fast

23 July 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Wednesday 19 July 2017

Busted Jan out of the ER before noon yesterday. They cut her loose as fever was down and initial blood results showed no pathogens. She slept all afternoon and, after short wake-up for belated dinner around 2200, all last night. Expect she'll be on game before next poisoning in six days. Although all her beautiful, thick, waist-length, red tinged, light brown hair came out a couple weeks after beginning treatment, what were merely white streaks are made of stouter stuff. When she ties the scarf just right enough hair peaks out to fool you. Gorgeous.


Back on her feed, Jan along with entire crew will be oot and aboot, eh (she's Canadian you know) shopping, breakfasting, shopping, farting around and shopping. Excursion will utilize our estimable, 180,000 km, 2001 Ford Falcon. She goes, she stops, she burns a pant-load of petrol. Weekend markets will receive the brunt of our attention, but tools and boat crap get consideration as well, maintaining a chipper attitude amongst the engineering staff which is plotting devilishly complicated logistics for the upcoming adventure.


Entire complement woke up chipper and keen for biking to the Nightcliff market. Must do as we had run out of bush honey, produce of Humpty Doo. Those Humpty Doo bees do damn fine work. Sourcing is uniquely there short of an odyssey to Humpty Doo itself, 36 km away. Although driving to Humpty Doo takes only 29 minutes according to Google Maps, we have yet to go. Similar to ancient mariners heading toward the edge of the earth where dragons be, Humpty Doo is at the limit of civilization and one does not proceed further (nothing but outback 'til Wak Wak and beyond) without trepidation. This entire tedious explanation was perpetrated for the sole purpose of making you say Humpty Doo six times and outback 'til Wak Wak twice. We accomplished the twenty kilometer return (more energetic crew did an additional 20) followed by bupkis. Ah, the beauties of sloth.


Out Of Control

17 July 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Monday 17 July 2017

Reference visit to ER, looks like kindly old Doc Welby will keep Jan another day at least, maybe two, to make sure she's de-infected. Don't understand her disappointment about staying in hospital, what with the comfy beds, quiet wards and delicious food, but there's just no accounting for preference. This allows me to run amok, eat all the lollies on the boat and watch every blood and guts movie on Netflix at full volume. It doesn't get any better.

Biked to hospital this morning (15 KM each way), but should have the car this afternoon to allow greater scope for aforementioned running (amok is from Malay and means "rushing in a homicidal frenzy"... we're seldom homicidal except around screeching children while parents ignore them nearby).

After hearing Jan describe her restful night listening to the constantly retching wally brought into emergency last night with blood alcohol of .22 who may have a concussion from falling off his bike, it occurred to me that Australians seem to imbibe a tad more than your average bear. Checked with WHO (World Health Organization) for per capita consumption rates. Topping the list, not surprisingly, are Russia and many former Soviet Union countries. At the bottom, also expected, are predominantly Muslim countries. Based on 2015 projections of 191 countries Australia comes in at #9, best of the west, well above sentimental favorite Ireland and also France and Germany. America is even further down at #49. Hooray for us. However, with Jeff Sessions as Attorney General cracking down on even legal drug use we may find ourselves on the way up. Hooray for us.


Weak Week

16 July 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Saturday 15 July 2017

Third time not the charm as Jan had a week that was poopy (highly technical medical term). Fourth and last treatment 25 July then done with worst bit. New schedule for second half uses kinder, gentler, but less entertaining poison called Paclitaxel (they've apparently used up all the good names) administered every week for 12 instead of every third week 4 times. It's a good news, bad news kind of deal where side effects are reduced, but we won't have much time to go anywhere while enjoying feeling better. That's OK. We're learning to love Darwin. You believe me don't you?


This biking thing has almost become a fetish. Not only have a ride nearly every day (Jan goes when she's not feeling punk), but have now begun buying bike crap. Jan, a biking aficionado, initially shamed me into getting gloves and padded shorts - you know, those Spandex jobbers that make bikers look a bit fay. Have bike computer to tell how fast and how far, wrist computer to show heart rate, record calories burned and transfer GPS track to an iPhone, vacuum water bottle, air pump (with built-in pressure gauge), repair kit and trick lock that folds into a ball and mounts on the steering post. Now I've ordered two jerseys (besides looking way cooler than T-shirts they have sweat proof pockets), a second pair of shorts to swap out for laundry (one pair gets disgustingly fetid after a week or so), helmet mirror, rack bag and two spare tires. If you have it, you can flaunt it.

- Evening

Saw Sophia, chemo doctor, on Thursday who scolded Jan for not having gone to emergency room with a temp of 38 C (37 is normal and Doc gets twitchy about infections in her compromised immune system), so 38.5 sent us there tonight. Nurses hooked her up to cool electronics, extracted bodily fluids, did a bunch of nurse stuff then pumped her full of antibiotics. Royal Darwin Emergency Center is lovely and she gets to stay over. More fun than Attenborough's, "Meerkats: Secrets Of An Animal Superstar" at 8PM, but we'll try to catch Dave assaulting their privacy in rerun.


Looking At Trouble

12 July 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Sunday 2 July 2017

July. Canada Day is gone and America Day is nearly upon us. Amazing how time still flies when you're not having fun. Saturday was also Territory Day and the skies last night looked like shock and awe as most open spaces and local roads were were aswarm with revelers fueled to the gills with XXXX (because they can't spell beer) playing with fireworks. Expect hospitals had a boom night (stop groaning).


Although primary winches are now primo, ceilings under both remained open. Delaminated plywood-backed headliner over port pooper, damaged by same leak that created a rust ball of previous motor, is being rebuilt. Starboard overhead remains open to repair switch panel excavation (destruction) attendant to making room for installation of secondary winch motor. Masterful, restoration plan in early developmental stage.


Mates bound for Indonesia have moved around to Cullen Bay slipway for bottom work and to anchor just outside Cullen Bay lock, respectively. They head off in a week and a half. We'll see them a few more times. Using financial acumen acquired at Uni, struck a bargain with Geoff from Miranda to acquire his car, a Ford. Since we could already use it anytime we wanted, we will now not only pay for petrol, but will shell out a lump sum to own the thing so we can spend even more money to register, inspect and maintain it. Guess that MBA came in handy after all.

Wednesday 12 July

Around 1960 Mary Ellen was the first girl in her grade at Brookland Cayce Junior High to evidence nascent changes that would effect us all. It was quite an epiphany to pubescent male brains to realize that girls their own age would soon all have similar appurtenances. Little did they realize the peril that was represented. To be clear, INDs (infant nutrition devices) are dangerous. They are, as we've recently seen, a common location for tumors to develop and potentially metastasize, but that merely scratches the surface.

For women, depending on apparatus size, extra off-center weight can cause skeletal dislocation, back pain, clumsiness and double take whiplash. Stiletto heels do much the same, but are self-inflicted and beyond the scope of this idiotic polemic.

To prevent them from flying about and possibly hurting someone or at an age getting caught in belt loops, elastic and/or wire buttressed housings (sometimes known as titslings or over-the-should-boulder-holders) are often brought into play (as it were) that, while increasing perkiness, crush lungs creating mild hypoxia causing women to frequent antique shops, tea parties and shoe stores where they buy stiletto heels (there may be other reasons as well). Many women exacerbate the problem by surgically stuffing in heavy sacks of silicon or saline (see above). Ouch!

Soft and jiggly, these protuberant appliances are enticing and even, shall we say, titillating to males, particularly in larger dimension, but for no obvious reason. They're just bags of fat. Oddly many women desire this attention (see above and below). This effect often results in a condition called love (or lust - for teenagers it's the same thing). Life rule #3 is: Love makes you stupid. This causes men to say things they don't mean and women to believe them. Chaos ensues.

Many women conclude there is no reason to have them if they're not utilized, other than as playthings (see above), so feel obligated to produce small models of themselves which make use of the excreta therefrom. These painfully delivered little airheads (trying to have a decent philosophical conversation with one is hopeless) cause decades of misery for their parents. Besides the noise, mess and outrageous cost of having one then watching it become an insufferable jerk a decade plus after the fun part, it will move back in at 30 with its own crumbcrunchers or induce Grammie to force her spouse, who is torn from a wonderful retirement in Florida, to move back to Cleveland so she can babysit.

As an aside, for some inconceivable reason people will pay big bucks to buy one. My excellent if seldom followed advice may be read in the sailblog from 14 May 2017.

To prove the point, even the United States government is fearful of these devices as you can see for yourself by checking Youtube for: "The government hates boobs".

Last piece of advice: Guys, be safe. Don't just pretend you're not staring at women's cleavage, actually look into their eyes. They have two of them and they come in different colors. I kid you not.

Vessel Name: Anthem
Vessel Make/Model: 1997 Hylas 46 - MMSI xxxxxx750
Hailing Port: Weeki Wachee, FL
Crew: Jack Warren, Janice Holmes
Jack: Formerly productive member of the community as a Northwest Airlines Captain who retired to become a drain on, and embarrassment to, polite society. [...]
While I will be delighted if anyone else enjoys these excursions into semi-intelligible foolishness, the primary purpose is personal amusement. This is not travelogue, cruising guide or philosophical exploration of anything in particular, merely random musing of a slightly twisted mind. Despite [...]
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S/V Anthem

Who: Jack Warren, Janice Holmes
Port: Weeki Wachee, FL
See profile for information on why this mess is being foisted upon an innocent world and, despite what is probably your better judgement, how to make contact.
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