Why do people drive like idiots?

Because they are idiots.

Three things to keep in mind when you ride a bicycle on Wichita streets:

1. If there is any possibility that a driver won’t see you, he won’t.

2. If there is no way on earth that a driver can possibly miss seeing you, he still won’t see you.

3. Right-of-way? What’s that?


I’m going to be away from the computer for a few days, so things here will be even quieter than usual.


It’s going to be about two months more and another operation before I have two working legs again. This is just a wee bit frustrating. I’d like to take more pictures, but until I can get down the front steps unaided, there’s no point to getting the camera out. I suppose I could do series of photos of my books, or my vinyl, or the unwashed dishes, or the junk mail an inch deep on the front room floor, but I don’t think there’s two months worth of interesting shots there. I’m considering renting or buying a folding wheelchair and bribing friends to take me out to the botanical garden (which will shortly become a very active site) and other interesting places, but even then that’s something I can’t do every day. It looks like Project 365 will stay on hold until April.

Dear State of Kansas Department of Revenue

You would like me to submit my tax return electronically. I would myself prefer to do my taxes online. Every year I visit your website and try to log on, and every year I end up yelling at the computer monitor. This time, I got this message after filling out several screens of forms:

You are not currently logged in. Please go to the WebFile Home page to login.

On the next screen, I get this:

You appear to be already logged in.

It’s been at least four years now, and you still can’t tell if I’m logged in. The hell with it. You’re getting a paper return yet again, and you will always get a paper return from me until you fix your !@#$ %^&* web site.

Memo to Senator Pat Roberts

When the phone rings these days, I awkwardly rise out of my chair, lumber across the room with the walker and, struggling to not lose my balance, pick up the phone. It is a nuisance. I don’t mind making the efforts for friends and colleagues. However, when I put the receiver to my ear and hear a recording of a politician, I regret that I don’t know more maledictions. If you want to guarantee that I’ll never vote for you or any of your causes again, this is the way to do it.

Miscellaneous notes

An unexpected Star Trek fan.


I didn’t much care for Peter Jackson’s version of The Lord of the Rings, but it did make The DM of the Rings possible. Shamus is about to wrap the story up. It begins here. Shamus’ next project will be here.


The first tune I heard Saturday morning was “Wipeout.” I also heard “American Pie,” some Jethro Tull and an a capella rendition of the riff from “Smoke on the Water.” Where was I?


The Minnesota Renaissance Faire.


Against tidiness

Callirhoe involucrata is a member of the mallow family with brilliant magenta flowers. It blooms throughout the summer, but its prime flowering time is right now through the next week or two. There are some large patches of callirhoe along the bike path in south Wichita, along with some stands of blue tradescantia. I had planned to take a few photos of them after work today and post one of them as today’s picture. However, the City of Wichita, demonstrating its conviction that neatness matters more than beauty, mowed the area, scalping the sprawling plants. Maybe this weekend I’ll find an intact patch elsewhere.