New addition to the family.

My Family got a new addition, and my little cousin Cyrus is offically a big brother.

Carl James McCoy was born at 8:44 pm, January 16, 2005, at Lawrence Memorial Hospital. He weighed in at 8 pounds, 10 ounces and was 19 1/2 inches long.


Crazy weather

On New Year’s eve, it was sunny and hospitiable enough that I took a roadtrip to the BETO Junction/Emporia area.

Last Night, we get hit with an ice storm, which also caused power to go out on us for 12 hours (and we’re lucky it only took 12 hours, some houses in southern Kansas are still dark.

Writeup from the National Weather Service in Topeka

Next week, tempatures will once again become palletable, though not as warm as last week.


Radio changes

Quite a few changes have been happening at local AM radio station KLWN.

Yesterday, they unleashed their new news-talk lineup. One of the things Hank Booth commented on was that “If you don’t like one program, wait a couple hours, you’ll probably enjoy the next one better.” In any case, the linup is anchored by Neil Boortz, Bill O’Reilly, and Ed Schultz. Shultz is leaning more to the left, Boortz appears to be an essentric libertaerian, and I don’t think I have to describe O’Reilly :). 6-9 has been unaffected, and the local sports talk show has been streamlined to 4-6.

I’ll be re-writing the history of KLWN to reflect the changes, but will likely hold it until Febuary 22nd, which is the station’s anniversiary.

Also, Jerry Zimmer, one of the brothers who purchased the station from the Booths several years ago, is in the processes of purchasing station KKYD, licenced to Osage City and purported to serve the Emporia area, though.


What did Santa leave….

Merry Christmas,

Under the christmas tree this year, besides the traditional train that I run (this year, a Life-Like Proto 2000 ATSF GP30 with 7 older Athearn cars and a Atlas RTR cabbose), was a CD changer for my stereo system here in the basement, so I cna enjoy these CD’s I have stashed down here while working on the computer…. I also got gift cards for Hastings and Target (which will likely go towards CDs and picture frames, respectively), plus some cold hard cash (to be deposited in my checking account to be used against a future purpouse)

For my young cousin Cyrus, I got him a couple books Downtown: one with trains, the other with fire trucks. For Cyrus, I’m preety much associated with “choo choos”

For Rylie, I got her a Corduroy book, a raggedy ann doll, and a little picture frame shaped like a pink handbag (the latter may be more for her mom….)

I drew my uncle Jim in the gift exchange drawing: he’s easy to shop for, as he’s a NY Jets fan. I got him a “throwback” hat and a winter cap.

My brother has the weirdest taste in Music, I got him a gift card from Hastings, not knowing my dad did the same…. 🙂

My mom got soap and shower gel from the Crabtree & Eveyln collection.

My dad got a set of golf gloves.

I almost don’t want to look at the totals for the gifts I bought, but they came to about $150 over two paychecks, plus my other expeses for the week. No leaving Lawrence, and NO shopping at Wal*Mart.



The Harvard Road egg squad did their random attack and struck my car. I had to go over to the car wash (in sub-freezing conditions) and get it off.

Damage to the paint appears to be minimal. The paint came off in a couple of small spots around where one of the eggs struck on the rear quarter panel. I had other spots on the doors and roof before the egging, and was already planning a session with the touch up paint….


Manual Adjustment

On my way home from Union Station (see yesterday’s blog entry), I jiggled around with the wire running between the swith and the cruise control on the PA. I set the cruise at 65, and lo and behold, the darn thing finally works (and I located the “Cruise” light that turns on with the cruise control)

One less thing to worry about. I think I got most of the “kinks” out of this car. The paint job still needs to be touched up.

Personal railroad

Weekend of trains

I seem to be blogging once a week…

Saturday (12/18), I went with my brother, grandmother, and my cousin Cyrus to see “The Polar Express.”

As my cousin Cieara (Cyrus’s mommy) is in her third trimester on her second pregnancy and can’t really stand sitting for extended period of time, we decided to use this opportunity to give her some time to do other things.

Cyrus was a good boy during the movie, and he seemed to enjoyed it, though he had significant trouble sitting in the theatre seats (and therefore, sat in my lap for significant parts of the movie)

Today, (12/19) I went to Union Station to see and photgraph the KCS Holiday Express. Union Station has also brought in (because of the “Polar Express” movie) quite a few model railroads, including a large one on display in the main hall. There were other layouts operated by assorted model railroad clubs, including on by a N-scale club which invitied me in to take pictures.


What they don’t want you to know

George W. Bush, Sadaam, Bin Laden, Mullah Omar, et al. are all borne out of genetically enhanced embryos. They have a superiority complex and an enhanced thirst for blood. There are more embryos in refrigerated storage under the Hills of Holliday.

The project that created these embryos was financed by a group of shape-shifting aliens from the Gamma Quadrant who wish to conquer earth — for the express purpose of controlling the planet, for what you control cannot hurt you. There is currently a large fleet of war-bugs surrounding the planet. When the time is right, the ships will disengage their cloaking devices, and beam down the Jem’Hadar storm troops who will exterminate any and all who do not pledge loyalty to their “founders” and leveling entire cities with their phased poloron rifles.

There is currently a rebellion going on against these shape shifters, but they do not appear to be much of a threat. They are led by a young man who trusts his instincts into something called “the force,” and an older gentleman called “The Doctor,” who appears to have a vessel that can travel to any point in space and time in a device that seems to resemble a “blue phone.” The shape shifters, however, believe that this resistance is futile.

[if you’re still reading this crap – I’m making all of this up… I cannot really comment on all the talk on Larryville about our standing POTUS without causing my BP to spike by 15 points]


The holy grail

I would call this the Holy Grail of Roadmaps….

Sunday, I was going through the Kansas Map collection at the TR Smith map library and found what I would call the “holy grail” of Roadmaps…. A 1918 Hockaday roadmap of Kansas. In the days before numbered routed, F.W. Hockaday marked the major trails with direction signs with the distincitve red “H,” conviently centering on his home of Wichita, where he had a auto repair dealership. When the state numbered their highways, they allowed Hockaday to give one of them a number — He chose the number 96


First fall

Last night brought us quite a bit of wet snow…. 5-6 inches. The PA had to have half an hour of work just to get it out from under the snow (enough time, of course, to warm the cockpit.)

Anyway, the first snowfall to me means a trip to the railroad tracks. I went out to Bismark Grove, in North Lawrence, to catch a couple trains. And I wasn’t alone, either. Bob Olmstead, a fellow railroad enthusiest who has been shooting trains for half a century, happened to pick the same crossing.

In any case, I’m scanning the pictures as I’m writing this blog piece