Happy Thanksgiving!

From the only Thanksgiving Hymn I know:
Come, ye thankful people, come, 
raise the song of harvest home;
all is safely gathered in, 
ere the winter storms begin.
God our Maker doth provide 
for our wants to be supplied;
come to God’s own temple, come, 
raise the song of harvest home.

All the world is God’s own field, 
fruit as praise to God we yield;
wheat and tares together sown 
are to joy or sorrow grown.
First the blade and then the ear, 
then the full corn shall appear;
Lord of harvest, grant that we 
wholesome grain and pure may be.


A Sheepish Admission, Outback Style

After nearly six months as a Subaru owner,  I’m still tickled pink with it. Its overall gas mileage approaches 26MPG;  my prior concerns about the 4-cylinder engine’s not providing enough acceleration have been dispelled.

The only nit I’ve had with it has been its apparent lack of a cargo light.  I leave the house at Oh-dark-thirty, and I’ve missed having a cargo light for the last few weeks. 

Our sales lady did a thorough job of reviewing the features of our vehicle; I don’t recall her mentioning such a light.  So, tonight, I was trolling  Subaru forums to see if other owners were similarly vexed, sure enough, I found this comment:

It has a light, you just need to flip the switch to “door”. It is right in the middle on the cross beam.

It’s dark here now, but I had to see this. Grabbing a flashlight, I went outside, opened the back lid,looked in the middle of the cross beam, and sure enough, there was the light!  A flip of the switch to door, a close and reopen of the lid to test it, and I’m happy.

I only wonder how much longer it would have taken me to discover this feature on my own.  At least, I didn’t make a service appointment to have a light installed. That would have been funny, after I recovered from initial embarrassment.


Wreaths Away

Our Christmas Buddy wreaths are on order again.  This is a tradition that was started the year after Ryan died, and our list of recipients has grown a bit over the years. We’ll keep doing it as long as QVC stocks ‘em, and we’re able to type in the orders, and can afford same.

For those on the list, watch for the UPS driver the week of November 28th. Have some cookies ready for the driver if you want.

Merry Christmas in advance!


The Title Explained

I’ve been typing on tbbs here for nearly six years, and in all that time, I don’t think I’ve ever clarified the blog name ten billion butterfly sneezes.  It’s a line from the song Higher and Higher, from the Moody Blues album To Our Children’s, Children’s Children.  It was 1969, the trips to the moon captured my imagination, and in my college hippie days, this song fit right in.  I found the following on YouTube, the presentation captured many of the visions I had when listening to the song. Look at mission control; it looks primitive today.  In 1969, though, it was state of the art.  Enjoy!


Tablet Thinking

Lenovo Thinkpad Tablet

It seems I can never have only one of any given type of device.  So, after getting an Android-powered Samsung Galaxy Tab and a Nexus S phone,  I decided that my prospects would be enhanced if I had an Android Lenovo Thinkpad Tablet.  I ordered it on the day they were announced, and it came on September 30th.  I pulled out all the stops on this one; 64G memory, the optional stylus, and the “keyboard case” folio, which offers protection for the device, and provides an eminently usable keyboard. A Tom Bihn size 5 Cache  that I had lying about fits perfectly over the folio keyboard, and affords extra protection.

There’s lots to like and little to dislike about the tab. First, the likes:

  • The screen is sharp, bright, and clear.
  • Bunches of expansion slots; full-sized USB slot, a SIM card slot, and a full-sized SD card slot.
  • HDMI output connection.
  • Headphone/earbud jack.
  • The onboard speakers are good enough for my moderately tinny ears.
  • Nvidia 2-core 1GHz processor.
  • Wi-fi enabled.
  • Android 3.1.
  • Neat storage compartment for the stylus in the tablet case.
  • Battery life is 8+ hours.

The full-sized USB is a great thing. Plug in your thumb drive, an app comes up displaying internal storage and the thumb drive. Drag files between the two as required.  The neat thing is, that you don’t have to eject the thumb drive when you’re done – just remove it.

The Notes Mobile app that comes along lets you use the stylus, and does a passably good job of translating handwriting into legible text.  I haven’t used this a lot, but I was duly impressed.

It weighs about 1.5 pounds or so, which sounds heavy.  When used with the docking keyboard, it’s no matter; when undocked, I find that it is sufficiently  well balanced that it doesn’t feel that heavy.


  • Like all screens, this one is a smudge magnet. A screen protector helps.
  • It seems to go into a very deep sleep and requires a reboot after the screen locks. Near as I can tell, it happens most often when you’re connected to wi-fi and the charger is disconnected. It doesn’t always happen, but it’s occurred enough to be noticeable. and somewhat of an irritant.
  • No 3g. That’s coming in future models.  I guess I don’t need yet another data plan anyhow. Lack of 3g hasn’t bothered me … yet.

I bought this in pursuit of the grail of having all my vendor manuals and nerd-books on one portable device.  I’ll write more about this later; for now, I’ll just say that I’ve been tickled pink with the Lenovo’s performance in that area.


Almost Six

I’ve been puttering around this afternoon.  A WordPress version update should be accompanied by a new header graphic, and thanks to those photographers who use Flickr and a Creative Commons license, tbbsLand’s autumnal header graphic is in place.

I also noticed that this old blog is nearly six years old.  With my dearth of postings for an extended period it’s reasonable to question whether it has been six years of continuous blogging.  Without going all meta, or blogging about my lack of blogging, I’ll just say that I plan to be a little more regular with the drollery that this place is noted for.