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Spearfish Lake Tales
Spearfish Lake Tales Message Board
Welcome! This board is intended for discussion of Wes Boyd's writings as posted on Spearfish Lake Tales;
or other message boards. Discussion of other authors that frequent these boards or sites is not off topic.

Please keep it clean and somewhere close to being on topic.
Spearfish Lake Tales

Subject: D-Day


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09:16:03 06/11/14 Wed

Another column lifted from the paper.

----------

I know I’m a little late with this one — it should have been last week — but last Friday, June 6, was a landmark day in that it was the seventieth anniversary of D-Day, the invasion of Normandy that was the beginning of the end of World War II.

Seventy years seems like a long time in the past, and it is. To the kids that recently graduated from high school, it must seem foreign to them indeed, something that isn’t quite real, and at that, something that isn’t really relevant to their lives.

In some respects, it isn’t. Looking at it from a historical viewpoint, World War II — at least in Europe — was an extension of the many unsettled issues of World War I. World War II made a final settlement of many of them, and the half-century that followed put paid to most of the rest of them.

There are not many people left who were present at D-Day, the invasion of Normandy. Just doing the math, the youngest of them would have to be in their late eighties, so it seems likely that the living memory of that pivotal day won’t be around for very much longer.

Over the years I have put many hours into the study of World War II. The amount of effort put into the war was incredible, and the focus was extreme. Yes, we’ve had wars since, divisive wars, long wars, even arduous wars, but never, thank goodness, a war that demanded the commitment that World War II required of the peoples that fought it.

It was a very hard war, especially for those in the front lines. The stress on those brave men of many countries carrying the rifles was extreme, and almost incomprehensible to those more accustomed to easier times. Yet, they managed to do it.

Tom Brokaw has referred to the people who fought the war as "The Greatest Generation" and I wouldn't be surprised if he's right. Could people, could countries put for the effort needed to wage a war of that size today? I have my doubts if the people and the political will could ever be mustered on that scale again. Fortunately, the odds seem in favor of it not being necessary.

To take the U.S. as an example, in 1940 the country had about 250,000 people in all branches of an underfunded, outdated military. In 1945, there were twelve million or so in what was probably the most modern military of all those fighting -- a tremendous accomplishment, one that is hardly possible to imagine repetition on that scale. The country had about 120 million people in 1940, so roughly one in ten was in uniform at the end of the war. The population today is around 300 million, and it's just about incomprehensible to think that the military could be expanded to thirty million people by 2020, even if a desperate need was there. I don't think it could be done today -- but a similar effort was managed back there seventy years ago.

Now, all the effort, the toil, the pain, the fear and the death is fading into history, alive in memory of only a fading few who were there and still live today.

The world has moved past the challenges of seventy years ago. New challenges have come along to submerge the past, but that doesn't mean that we shouldn't keep the past in mind, to learn from it, and to honor the toil and suffering that went on in the past. "Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it." the philosopher George Santayana is famed for saying. I doubt if any of us would care to repeat World War II, so perhaps remembering it will stave off the chances of it being repeated.

So, even though D-Day is now seventy years ago, and living memory of it fades daily. it's something that deserves to remain in the minds of those of us who follow on. I don't think it something any of us would care to repeat.
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Subject: Hiding Patty


Author:
GB34
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 19:59:35 06/01/14 Sun

For some unknown reason chapter 22 cuts off with this last paragraph.

“They used to keep dogs outside, on chains and in individual houses,” Henry explained once they got back outside after a peek in the dog barn. “But the dogs turned the dog yard into a lunar landscape in days. This is better on the dogs and they do

Since starting 22 21 now cuts off early with this last paragraph,

“ . . . well, it wasn’t pretty. It took me hours to get her settled down enough to go to her graduation open house, which only about five people came to, and left before we got there. Of course, her mother lit into her over that and it turned into a hell of a fight, with Cindy telling her it was all her mother’s goddamn fault. She was right

although 20 does not cut off early. I was rereading 21 and it didn't cut off until after starting 22. Very strange.

Using Firefox 29.0.1 with all updates.
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Subject: Problem with your latest post


Author:
Frank Ryan
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 19:58:29 06/01/14 Sun

Perhaps it is just me, but I was enjoying Chapter 22, and it just stops in the middle of a paragraph, just where Henry & Tricia are coming out of the dog barn.

I really am enjoying this story, and hope nothing happened to your posting of it.

Thankyou for all of the enjoyment your stories have provided to us

Frank Ryan
Replies:
Subject: Pizza ?


Author:
Mike
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 16:15:18 05/26/14 Mon

"I happen to think that Parker’s makes the best pizza in town"

A link to a Lazlo Zalezac story, perhaps ?
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Subject: Jack Brabham - Obituary


Author:
A D Haworth
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06:22:16 05/22/14 Thu

No doubt you have read that Jack Brabham died this week. Mostly he is remembered for his F1 career as a driver and builder of cars. But he did start his racing days in the Australian Midget Series.
There is a picture in the following link.
http://www.speedcafe.com/2014/05/19/obituary-jack-brabham-1926-2014/
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Subject: Hiding Patty Chapter 18


Author:
Ian
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 23:37:10 05/22/14 Thu

Same problem as thgere was at first with chapters 16 & 17.

Following the 'to be continued' is a large chunk of the chapter, starting :

“I’m not either,” Tricia admitted. “Finding Heather was one of the luckiest things that happened to me when I came here,

and finishing

“Well, think about it,” Tricia grinned. “Look into it, give it some real study. If you decide you want to do it, I’ll make that phone call.
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Subject: Tricia's Next Door Neighbor


Author:
RustyKen
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 18:07:14 05/21/14 Wed

Without going back through some other stories, I'll ask the question. I presume Tricia's next door neighbor 'Henry' is the same 'Henry' who was in "Starting Late" and a few other stories. In that vein I presume this story takes place after Starting Late.

Just looking for confirmation as sometimes it is hard to keep things in perspective.

Cheers, RustyKen
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Subject: Hiding Patty Chapter 17


Author:
Ian
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01:20:20 05/21/14 Wed

The first third or so of this chapter FOLLOW the 'to be continued' which should be at the end of the chapter.

Ian

PS Chapter 16 is now fixed, with no stray paragraphs at the end :-)
Replies:
Subject: Hiding Patty


Author:
Boyd Percy
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 21:38:17 05/18/14 Sun

Guess you never know who going to move next door in Spearfish Lake.

Tricia shouldn't feel bad about not cooking. Microwaveable dinners get a bad rap. Thirty years ago when I was single, I lost almost 100 pounds over a years time by eating lean cuisine. I didn't gain much back until I got married to a woman who was a good cook.
Replies:
Subject: New Merriam-Webster Dictionary


Author:
George
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09:01:50 05/19/14 Mon

Merriam-Webster has included the word "Yooper" in its new dictionary. So now I guess the term is official concerning the Michigan Upper Peninsula.
Subject: A blast from the past


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11:57:26 05/06/14 Tue

Another column lifted from the paper:

------------------

A friend is looking for a new home that meets several specific criteria, one of which includes space for a large horse. It so happens that one of the houses she was interested in happened to be the one I was more or less brought up in -- my grandparents' house, in fact. I lived there until I was nine, and was in and out of the place until I was seventeen, so I have a lot of memories of it.

I hadn't been in the house since I was seventeen -- fifty years ago -- so when I was asked if I would like to go along on the showing, I didn't turn down the opportunity, just to see how much had changed, and how much I remembered.

Now, this is an old farmhouse. Part of it was built in the 1840s, and the newer section is, at my guess, still over a hundred years old. If I recall correctly, my great-grandparents bought the place in 1912.

Much had changed, of course, but much was the same as I remembered it, and I was surprised at how much I remembered.

For instance, being that the house was built in sections separated by more than half a century, the basement was also in two sections. The realtor leading the way led the group of us into the lower section, and couldn't find a light switch. He was feeling all over in the dark, when all of a sudden a memory from half a century before came to me -- for some reason, who knows why, the light switch to that section was at the top of the stairs. I quickly went up and found the switch, amazed that I'd remembered such a mundane thing at all after all the years that had passed. Why had that memory lingered unused for so long?

Some of the house had been modernized -- and some hadn't. I was not very surprised to discover that the linoleum on the floor of one bedroom was the same as I remembered from my youth -- and it wasn't new then, either. The pattern was archaic, and I wouldn't be surprised if it had been laying there for a century. Needless to say, while I wasn't up to date on the changes that had taken place in the half century since I'd been there, there was much that hadn't changed.

The kitchen, for instance, was much the same as I remembered -- the same cabinets, and pretty much the same layout of appliances. It didn't take much to think back to many of the family dinners I remembered there as a kid, with many relatives around. Most of them are gone now, but they remain fond in my memory. The kitchen was really the center of the house, the meeting place, the common room, and the place I remember most fondly.

Hanging from a rail at the peak of the barn was the old pully arrangement that my great-grandfather had once used to get hay up to the hay mow, still in the same place I remembered. I never saw it in use; it had been abandoned before I came on the scene. It most likely had been hanging there like that since before World War II, and has likely never been touched in all that time. I always thought it would have been fun to see it in action, with a horse or two providing the motive power to life the hay, but I never did.

I don't know if our friend is going to wind up buying the house, or what. It would be nice if she did, but there are other things she has to be concerned about. In any case, I really enjoyed going through the house, touching the past, and discovering some of the things I remembered from my youth. I guess what I can draw out of that is that many things can change in half a century -- but many things don't.

In a way it's sad to think that those days are gone, for those days represent a time when my life lay before me, instead of largely behind me. But still, it was a blast from the past that touched me more than I would have believed.
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Subject: Offenhauser 97-110 Series Midget Engine


Author:
Jon
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09:31:53 03/09/14 Sun

Power for one of Mel's cars in the Bradford Speedway Museum?

From Hemming's Motor News.

link (with photos): http://www.hemmings.com/parts/item/Engine//NOS-Offenhauser-Midg/4639.html

This is a very rare opportunity for a serious collector or for historic automotive museums.
I have for sale aOffenhauser 97-110 Series Midget Engine . This engine is Brand New Old Stock. It has never been started. It is a true time capsule. This is one of the last engines produced by Drake Engineering. It has all the latest style parts that were being used at the end of the Offenhauser Legacy. To my knowledge every part is brand new. With the exception of the rebuilt Hilborn fuel pump and the rebuilt Joe Hunt Magneto. It is fit with a Moldex crankshaft and Carrillo connecting rods. This engine was assembled by the late Bob Nowicke . Bob was a successful USAC Midget car owner from the 1950"s and on. Bob had a long list of USAC notable drivers including, Mario Andretti, Gary Bettenhausen, A J Foyt, Elmer George, Parnelli Jones, Lloyd Ruby and Bob Tattersall. He accumulated numerous USAC victories. He was also well known in the Indy 500 circles as the representative for the Primmer Hardware Co. providing fasteners to the Indy 500 teams for years.
As you can see the engine is complete right down to the Kurtis Kraft style throttle linkage.
I have been involved in rebuilding Offy Midget engines for over 30 years and have never come across such a butiful Midget engine. It is a true collector"s piece. I don"t think you will find a more complete NEW NEVER STARTED OFFENHAUSER ENGINE in existence. I also have other Offy midget engines and parts.
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Subject: Jon and Tanisha strike agaimn


Author:
Jim Wickman
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 22:27:12 05/07/14 Wed

Seems like the world is always a a little behind Jon and Tanisha at Lambdatron. Check this out:

http://www.nbcnews.com/tech/innovation/gone-30-seconds-prototype-killer-laser-takes-out-boats-mile-n99836
Subject: Jon and Tanisha


Author:
Boyd Percy
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 00:08:05 04/20/14 Sun

I saw an article recently about a couple that had been married 70 years who died 15 hours apart. The thing that reminded me of Jon and Tanisha was that the real life couple still held hands all the time, even while eating their breakfast together.
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Subject: Patty seems like a nice story so far


Author:
Hal
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 15:32:38 04/21/14 Mon

I like what I've read.
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Subject: Hiding Patty now being posted


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 19:54:53 04/13/14 Sun

I just posted the first chapter of Hiding Patty. There are 33 chapters.

Sales on Lulu for hardcovers and PDFs have also been enabled. I've run into a technical glitch with epubs on Lulu and will enable epub sales as soon as the glitch is resolved. RTF files, mobis, epubs, and PDFs are also available from the Spearfish Lake Tales Store.

Preorders have been shipped. Very often when I put up a new story there are html bugs that don't show up when I tested it locally. I will be up until around midnight EDT to deal with any of those issues that you bring to my attention. I'll also be available until then if you want to order a book.

Have fun reading Hiding Patty!

-- Wes
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Subject: Hiding Patty


Author:
Skip
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06:20:19 04/14/14 Mon

Still shows as Coming Soon. Goes directly to store, doesn't open story.

Skip
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Subject: Lulu epub glitch fixed


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 21:04:57 04/13/14 Sun

The glitch on Lulu took some tracking down but I now have enabled epubs on Lulu. Sorry if this has caused anyone any hassles. Thanks to Doug for sticking with me on this!

-- Wes
Subject: Bullring Days 3: Banners Flying


Author:
Brian Jones
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11:13:12 04/11/14 Fri

Greetings Wes

Thank you for another good story. Your writings are much appreciated.
Replies:
Subject: Next book, Hiding Patty, now available for preorder


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 16:57:32 04/06/14 Sun

The next book from Spearfish Lake Tales, Hiding Patty, is now available for preorder.

Many will remember Peppermint Patty from Square One. A suggestion from reader Mark Farmer got me to figure out what happened to her. Thanks, Mark!

Here's the summary:

Dr. Tricia York is a woman with a secret -- one that could blow up her medical career. Worse, by sheer bad luck she's not the only person in Spearfish Lake who knows about her dark past, and her future could depend on him keeping his silence. With hope her past will remain a secret, she begins the enormous job of taking over an aging doctor's ailing practice in the remote northern town -- and then meets a man whose past has secrets of his own.

There are a total of thirty-three chapters.

You can preorder Hiding Patty for as little as $19.99 through the Spearfish Lake Tales Store or through the web page. Preorders will be sent sometime on the afternoon of April 13, Eastern Standard Time.

-- Wes
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Subject: Spearfish Lake Tales site not working right ?


Author:
Ian
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 20:47:17 04/08/14 Tue

I decided to re-read Stray Kitten. For the last couple of days, when I select Stray Kitten, to continue reading, from the page I get to by entering www.spearfishlaketales.com in my browser, I get the 'orders' page for Stray Kitten, not the 'text and chapters list' page. If I then select Main from the top of *that* page, and select Stray Kitten again, I get the text.
I haven't tested this with any other book.
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Subject: Forum working all right -- for now


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 17:38:28 04/08/14 Tue

The forum is back to working more or less normally, I think. I'm still going to leave it on moderation for a while, but I haven't had to block any spam messages for a few days.

I don't know what happened to the message database, but apparently it's back to normal, too.

However, since the forum has a tendancy to be a pain in the neck from time to time, I'm considering going to a server-based service that I would have a little closer control over. I am investigating them but have not yet come to a decision. The one that I'm most familiar with has some useful features, but it also looks like it's much too complicated for the relatively simple task I'm asking of it -- it would be something like using a pile driver to crack an egg. There are also many issues I don't understand and the documentation is written in pure geek, which leaves a lot of questions open in my mind.

It's pretty clear to me that if I decide to go that route it will have to wait until my son-in-law finishes his semester -- he's geek enough to be able to perhaps make some sense out of the documentation and explain it to me. In the meantime, I'm going to look for simpler, more understandable software.

So anyway, since the forum is back to running more or less normally for the moment, I'm not going to rush into things. Let's just say that I'm aware of the problem, and just trying to figure out the best way to deal with it. I went to using the voy.com setup many years ago because it was a simple answer to a simple problem, and it has more or less worked ever since. I really don't want to change, but if these problems continue I may have to.

I will keep you posted.

-- Wes
Subject: Patty


Author:
Mark Farmer
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 18:21:14 04/07/14 Mon

Wes, thanks for the recognition. But, I just asked about her because she has fascinated me. I admired her determination. You gave us the basis for wondering about this complex lady who dreamed big.

With personal hope & some pride at being credited for sparking one of your tales, I hope Patty's story will garner you even greater recognition.

Thanks for the work & creativity.
Mark Farmer
p.s. you are about to be swamped with suggestions. Good luck.
Subject: Lap Record


Author:
Doug Strong
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 07:19:28 04/07/14 Mon

According the the Miller/Offenhauser book I have, the last of the turbo Offy's were at about 1500hp in race trim, and 1700hp in qualifying trim. You might be a few hp short.
Subject: Poem on SOL


Author:
wexwiz543
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 17:20:45 04/06/14 Sun

For those interested, the poem Eskimo Nell was just posted on SOL

Wex
Subject: Lap record


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 16:50:37 04/06/14 Sun

Doing a 11.87 lap on a three-eighths mile track like the fictional Bradford Speedway is fast -- but after all, this story is set thirty years ago. A couple of years ago I watched a guy in a very high powered late model try to get into the nines on a supposedly "three-eighths mile" track (it's actually a little undersized.) He didn't make it, but got the time down to 10.01. Let me tell you, it was quite a sight!

-- Wes
Subject: Wes is front running again!


Author:
georgethecar
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10:33:11 04/04/14 Fri

In Bullring Days Wes writes about the rogue manager ar McDonalds forcing employees to work off record and threaten to withhold wages and low and behold this breaking news

http://mobile.bloomberg.com/news/2014-04-01/former-mcdonald-s-store-managers-say-they-withheld-wages.html

Well done Wes!
Subject: March 31st Photo Post


Author:
Boyd Percy
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 15:49:10 03/30/14 Sun

What a creative use for old CDs!
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Subject: Banners Flying chapter 29


Author:
Mike
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 03:20:14 03/26/14 Wed

Wes talks about the Offy engine. I grew up in Indiana, just north of Indy, and the 500 was a part of my life as well. In 1967 and 1968 my High school marching band went to Indy to march in the parade. We even marched around the track and were given infield tickets for the race. I saw the gas turbines dominate the race only to fail at the end. Those things were magnificent. Changing the rules to keep out 4 wheel drive killed them though. The other odd engine I can remember was the Novi. The sound from that engine was distinctive. It was fatally flawed and never won either, but there were people who dedicated blood to get them in the race.
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Subject: Moderation enabled


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11:14:37 03/24/14 Mon

Because of spammer activity, I've changed the forum over to being moderated. That means that new messages won't be posted until I approve them.

I will try to check for new messages several times a day and approve the legitimate new ones.

This is a pain in the neck all the way around, but I guess that's the way it's going to have to be. Sorry.

-- Wes
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Subject: Dawnwalker (the song)


Author:
Jim Moore
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 21:09:45 03/27/14 Thu

Listening to some celtic music on YouTube and heard this Scottish song that's very close in feeling to Dawnwalker https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_Kf_Xxroow
Subject: Yooper Recognition


Author:
Bob Haeffner
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 13:44:47 03/26/14 Wed

Merriam-Webster is recognizing "Yooper" in their next edition, coming out next month. See

http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2014/03/yooper_to_be_added_to_merriam-.html

This reference and several others easily found googling "yooper" only says it is being defined as a term for Upper Peninsula residents. It will be interesting to see if a second definition as a dialect will also be included.
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Subject: Carbon fiber ships and iron men


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 19:06:52 03/24/14 Mon

Another column lifted from the paper.

-----------------

When the news came out last week that authorities suspect that the missing airliner, Malayasian 370, was believed to be down in the southern Indian Ocean southwest of Australia, the first thought that came to mind was, "Wow! That's Pete Goss country!"
Every four years there's a round-the-world sailboat race -- solo, and nonstop -- called the Vendee Globe. It's done in very specialized and very fast boats, and the winning time is usually well under a hundred days, northern France through the around the Cape of Good Hope and Cape Horn to northern France. Much of the race is through the legendarily rough seas and storms of the Southern Ocean, where there isn't much to break the ongoing violence of the weather. Huge storms come one after another, with waves forty, seventy, even occasionally a hundred feet high.
Back in 1996, an Englishman named Pete Goss was racing his boat in an area near -- well, within a thousand miles or so -- of the place where Malayasian 370 is believed to have gone down. He wasn't leading the race; in fact, he was back toward the back of the pack, when he received word from race headquarters that another boat, sailed by a Frenchman by the name of Raphael Dinelli, was sending distress signals. No ships were available to go to his rescue; it's not a busy place on the ocean. The one race competitor behind Dinelli wasn't answering his radio: it was broken down. Could Goss help?
"I have no choice," Goss radioed the race headquarters. "I have to do it."
Having to do it and being able to do it were two different things. Goss was a couple hundred miles downwind of Dinelli, in a fragile boat built for going downwind, and not capable of going upwind very well. To top it off, Goss was in a survival storm, running under bare poles. But he rigged a scrap of sail, all the boat could handle at the moment, and turned into the storm to try and go back for his fellow competitor.
Goss's boat was knocked down, mast into the water, a dozen times or more that first night, and he wasn't sure the boat would hold together, but he stalwartly beat his way upwind toward the stricken competitor. While he was trying to claw his way upwind, an Australian airplane found Dinelli clinging to his boat and dropped him a life raft -- which was fortunate as the boat sank soon afterward.
It took Goss two days to battle his way to the life raft, and it still took the help of patrol aircraft to find it. It was still extremely stormy, and the waves were running high, but in an act of consummate seamanship -- and remember, Goss was by himself -- he maneuvered his boat up to the raft and managed to drag a battered and hypothermic Dinelli aboard. Only when Goss had Denelli safe below decks did he turn the boat back downwind toward Hobart, Tasmania, the easiest place for him to reach.
For ten days Goss sailed the boat and nursed Dinelli back from the brink of death. Goss spoke no French and Dinelli only a little English -- but in those ten days, in spite of the language barrier, they became the best of friends, to the point a few months later when Goss was the Best Man at Dinelli's wedding. They remained close friends, and have since sailed long-distance two-handed races together.
Goss, who went on to finish fifth in the race, was rightly called a hero for his rescue of Dinelli -- and French President Jacques Chirac pinned the Legion d'honneur on Goss for it; Queen Elizabeth awarded him an MBE. But the honors weren't why Goss turned his boat upwind -- it was the knowing that someone needed his help. As he said, "I knew I had to stand by my morals and principles. Not turning back would have been a disservice to myself, my family and the spirit of the sea."
There is an old saw about "wooden ships and iron men." They may build boats of fiber and resin these days, but there still are a few iron men.
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Subject: Spam alert


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 22:35:11 03/23/14 Sun

You may have noticed we've been having a spammer problem on here the last few days. I've deleted several messages as a result.

I have the option of putting this forum on moderation, where I will have to approve all messages before they go onto the board. I don't want to have to do it since it slows communication and is a pain in the neck to administer, but I will do if if this jazz keeps up.

In the meantime, if a spam message comes up and I haven't gotten around to deleting it, I urge you to not click on any links shown since they could be links to malware, or worse.

I will keep a close eye on this. Sorry about this, but there are jerks out there.

-- Wes
Subject: The Grand Canyon via Google


Author:
GeorgeTheCar
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09:43:31 03/13/14 Thu

Thanks to Google now we can follow Wes' description of the Grand Canyon with our own guided tour

http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/personal/2014/03/13/google-maps-grand-canyon-colorado-river/6339489/
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Subject: Iditarod


Author:
Montana Old Man
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06:13:37 03/11/14 Tue

Could Wes have written a stranger ending than the current Iditarod? Current leader scratches at Safety; Next leader passed while waiting out 65MPH blizzard at Safety We would have laughed the story off the board. Stay tuned.
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Subject: Photo Post for March 19th


Author:
Boyd Percy
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 00:02:23 03/19/14 Wed

I liked the most recent photo post. You could title it, Cat on a Cold Fence Rail.
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Subject: blind thru-hiker of AT in 1990


Author:
Leo Kerr
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10:23:43 03/17/14 Mon

http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/bill-irwin-dies-at-73-first-blind-hiker-of-appalachian-trail/2014/03/15/a12cfa1a-ab9b-11e3-af5f-4c56b834c4bf_story.html

Sunday's Washington Post had the above obituary for Bill Irwin, the first blind thru-hiker (at least, known) to do the Appalachian Trail. (South to North, by the way.) Not quite solo; he had his dog, Orient.

Eight months in 1990. That's too early for Duane, but how about any of our other hikers?

Leo
Subject: bullring 3


Author:
Mike
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 14:18:10 03/16/14 Sun

In chapter 24 Mel mentions Shae having an older sister and I don't remember any mention of her in "Girl in the Mirror" or "Picking up the Pieces".
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Subject: Banners Flying: correction..


Author:
Walter Robinson
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05:01:05 03/14/14 Fri

The timing on this does not work...
Chapter 24 last page..

"I’m thinking I can drive down early on each Sunday. That way I’ll be here for the racing on Saturday nights."
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Subject: Bullring Days Three: Banners Flying posting starts


Author:
Wes
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Date Posted: 16:13:52 01/19/14 Sun

I just posted the first chapter of Bullring Days Three: Banners Flying. There are 36 chapters.

Sales on Lulu for hardcovers, epubs, and PDFs have also been enabled. RTF files, mobis, epubs, and PDFs are also available from the Spearfish Lake Tales Store.

Preorders have been shipped. Very often when I put up a new story there are html bugs that don't show up when I tested it locally. However, my computer at home is still on the fritz -- the guy who is supposed to be fixing it has the flu -- so I won't be able to do fixes until tomorrow morning.

Also, usually when I put a new book up I stay up late in case someone wants to order a copy. Not this time, due to computer issues again and weather. However, if you want to order a copy of Bullring Days Three: Banners Flying in one of the available formats, I'll be able to ship it first thing in the morning.

-- Wes
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Subject: Nice picture of the day


Author:
K Pelle aka dotB
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 20:25:53 03/11/14 Tue

Love the effect of the setting sun through the trees, but what caught my attention was the effect of the jet contrails against the patchy clouds and sky. Very neat effect!

KP
Subject: Offys in the 80s (Spoiler alert?)


Author:
Greg B.
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Date Posted: 17:28:23 02/27/14 Thu

While we all know Wes can be intentionally vague to avoid people drawing parallels to historical figures, on an "off day" from new chapters, I found myself doing a little research.

Even in these days of the Wonderful Interwebs (TM), finding anything more than a starting grid for the Indy 500 was something of a challenge, but I was able to find one site that had a listing of the full 1982 entry list. Even in the twilight of its career, four turbo Offys presented for qualifying, although none made the show. Interestingly enough, none were in the Eagle chassis that dominated Indy in the 70s. All of the Eagles entered had stock-block Chevy engines or Cosworths by that time.
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Subject: Iditarod Blues


Author:
Boyd Percy
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Date Posted: 01:17:44 03/06/14 Thu

I just looked at some pictures of the sled race on the internet. Some parts of the trail didn't have any snow. I guess that makes racing very difficult. Alaska probably could use some of the snow that was dumped on the upper Midwest and Eastern U.S.
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Subject: Laissez les bons temps rouler


Author:
Boyd Percy
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Date Posted: 19:45:16 03/03/14 Mon

Happy Mardi Gras 2014 (March 4th)! It's supposed to be around 45° F tomorrow in New Orleans with rain. That's not cold for Spearfish Lake or Bradford but I'm glad I'm not going to a parade in New Orleans. I'll stay home and eat a little King Cake instead.
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Subject: Article on sled dog racing in Md


Author:
Lew
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Date Posted: 13:35:52 02/23/14 Sun

ALWAYS READY TO RUN

FREDERICK NEWS-POST
Sunday, Feb. 23, 2014
By Ed Waters Jr. News-Post Staff The Frederick News-Post


Joe and Debby Fitzgerald are happy to see snow.
The Jefferson couple race sled dogs, and they raise and show Siberian Huskies.
Debby Fitzgerald, 61, grew up in Massachusetts and said she knew she wanted to raise dogs. She liked the looks of Siberian Huskies and, since 1976, has shown dogs year-round. During the winter, when the snow is good, she and her husband participate in dog sled races. She is president of the Chesapeake Siberian Husky Club.
"I probably spend most of the time talking people out of raising Siberians," she said at their home on Catholic Church Road.
If the Siberians get out of the house, they will run.
"They don't care who feeds them. They are not loyal like a German shepherd," she said.
While attending shows, the Fitzgeralds met people who showed Siberians and raced them. The Fitzgeralds bought equipment, from a sled to harnesses, and their friends mentored them on the basics of the sport.
Joe Fitzgerald, 62, said his work at the Department of Energy and the couple's two children getting bigger consumed too much time for them to do racing, so they put the equipment away, though Debby continued to show the dogs.
"It takes a lot of time and commitment," he said. With children now grown, he is retired and has his own consulting business in the health and safety field. "My time is flexible now."
Four years ago, when some friends borrowed their equipment, they caught the "mushing" bug again, he said. They got the dogs and themselves back into racing shape, trained and participated in five races.
"But there have been two warm winters," he said. "This year the low temperatures have been much better."
The Fitzgeralds participated in three races in Michigan and one in New York so far this year. They are looking forward to another race coming up in Pennsylvania.
Much depends on the depth and type of snow and how the temperatures stay during the races. One of the most important pieces of equipment is the snow hook. Carried on the sled, it is pushed into the ground to allow the musher to get off the sled to untangle dog lines or help a fellow musher with a problem. If the snow is not deep enough or too fluffy, the dogs can pull the sled loose and take off.
"You really have to watch out for little critters" while in the race, Joe Fitzgerald said. A squirrel or other small animal darting across the track or nearby will distract the dogs, who may even try to pull off the track to pursue the small animal.
At any point in time, the Fitzgeralds have a varying number of dogs in the half-acre run area beside their home. Some of their dogs may be borrowed by fellow sledders, and they may use dogs from friends for a race or training. Many of the dogs are related to older Siberians they own.
Many mushers use "Eurohounds," which are mixed breeds to create faster sled dogs, but the Fitzgeralds use only purebred Siberian Huskies.
Training begins in November and December with wheeled rigs on dry land. The couple runs four- and six-dog teams. Races are generally run in two heats. The larger teams run a total of 6 miles, the smaller teams 4 to 5 miles. Dogs are marked on their coats to ensure the same dogs are in the second heat and other dogs not put in their place.
Racing the dogs gives the Fitzgeralds more prestige in the Siberian Husky Club of America. Based on the number of miles their dogs have raced, the purebreds, registered individually with the American Kennel Club, can obtain a "sled dog degree." In four years, their dogs have 38.4 miles toward the 100 miles for the degree.
Joe Fitzgerald buys his equipment from a dealer in Pennsylvania, where he got his sled. He also buys equipment from vendors at race events. The traditional wooden sled includes a brake that digs into the ground and flexibility for cornering. Mushers must also take along a "dog bag," a protective, zippered bag large enough to put a dog in and load it onto the sled if it is hurt. Some sledders are using light weight aluminum sleds, but Joe Fitzgerald prefers the traditional style.
The Fitzgeralds are mentoring new mushers, one of which has already participated and won fifth place in a race.
Becoming a good musher involves more than just standing on the sled and yelling commands at the dogs. It takes time and commitment, weeks of training with the dogs. One has to recognize which dog should be a leader, learn the attitude and abilities of the dogs.
"You can't be afraid of speed. The dogs take off like a rocket (hitting about 20 miles per hour). You have to watch for lines tangling or other problems. It's like driving, you keep focused, but it becomes natural to you after a while," he said.
"These are athletes," he said of the dogs. "They are always ready to run."
The dogs naturally love the winter.
"But they don't like the middle of summer, and I really have to worry about the older dogs in the summer," Debby Fitzgerald said.
Learn more at www.isdra.org, the website for the International Sled Dog Racing Association.
"Sled dog sports have a long history in North America and while the landscape of the sport has changed dramatically since the early 1900’s, sled dog sports are alive and well and continuing to evolve," according to the website.
The sports most recognizable race is the Ididarod. The race is a reconstruction of a commercial route from Anchorage to Nome, used to carry mail and supplies. The 650-mile direct route actually takes about 1,150 miles as it is not a straight trail, according to the Ididarod's website. The race will take place March 1.
A survey by Dave Steele of the International Sled Dog Racing Association shows the sport typically has more men than women participants, average age about 49, married, college graduate, income in the $40,000 to $60,00 range and has been mushing for about 13 years on average.
Alaskan Huskies lead the most popular breeds, followed by Siberian Huskies and Eurohounds (the mixed breeds). The survey showed most participants became interested in the sport through friends or while attending a sled dog race or exhibition, according to Steele.
The Northeast and upper Midwest areas are the strongest geographic sites for dog sled races for members of the Minnesota-based International Dog Sled Racing Association.
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Subject: The music from Hat Trick


Author:
K Gray
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Date Posted: 09:21:34 03/02/14 Sun

I came across this article, and immediately thought of Hat Trick. Those who are interested in the music from that might want to take a look. While the article itself is clean, it does come with a warning that it links to video and audio that is very not safe for work. Kind of like Sandy and Dayna's music at times.

https://medium.com/the-magazine/1108e6a5748
Subject: Today's Grouch


Author:
Jon
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Date Posted: 19:21:46 02/08/14 Sat

Post from a friend who lives in Marshfield, WI.

It seems weather forecasting is similar all over the US.

The reference to "Windy" or "Windy Prognosticator" is another list member who is a minister here in the upper Midwest. His self applied handle is "The Windy Preacher" or a derivation thereof.

----------------------------------------------

Today's Grouch
Date: Sat Feb 8, 2014

I can see I should have been a Weatherman. You get all these neat,
expensive toys to play with, stand in front of a green-screen-generated
weather map, and, in accordance with your college education in
Meteorology, get to prognosticate YOUR take on what the weather will or
won't do. If you miss, you can come up with Plausible deniability by
making "educated excuses" that most dumb people won't argue with because
they don't know and, in truth, don't care. Essentially, you can be WRONG
and keep your nearly 6-figure job.

Kinda like Windy does in his position of being the Windy
Prognosticator of God's word, 'cept he don't have all the nifty space
gadgets and two different types of Radar.

Anyway, today the weather forecast on Charter's Homepage says, very
simply, "30% chance of snow". For a larger explanation, I usually go to
WEAU Channel 13 out of Eau Claire. Most everyone in Marshfield
eventually learns that to get an "accurate" forecast, you turn to
Channel 13 out of Eau Claire. Channel 13 says, "accumulations of about
an inch SOUTH OF I-90"; I-90 for me is a two-hour drive at Tomah. So,
what this tells me is that we'll probably see flurries, no real
accumulations.

So this morning for the heck of it, I decided to raise my bleed
pressure, and I toddle over to WAOW Channel 9 in Wausau. Channel 9 says,
"accumulation of up to an inch in AREAS SOUTH OF THE HIGHWAY 29
CORRIDOR". Well, Marshfield is south of the Highway 29 corridor.

Hmmm. This presents an interesting conundrum. Two Weather
departments with access to nearly the same technology, but one tracks
the storm moving farther north than the other. Who to believe?

I'll do what I always do, wait to see what it actually does. One
station will be closer to the truth than the other.

It never fails to amaze me that they've sent up all kinds of
"weather satellites" (so they say), they invented "Doppler Radar" (which
I refer to, sarcastically, as "Dopus Radar"), and all the hoopla that
was associated with it, like, "increased accuracy right down to your
street", which, in fact, is simply not true. Just more propaganda to
increase viewers. Although things have improved from the days of Ken
Chapin at Channel 7 (it used to be WSAU, now it's WSAW), its not that
much improved. Technically, you get just as accurate a forecast as
watching Don Knotts as the "Nervous Weatherman" on Youtube.
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Subject: Bubba Winslow


Author:
Boyd Percy
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 17:01:38 02/20/14 Thu

I guess Bubba winning in Potterville was the beginning of his climb to NASCAR and winning there under the sponsorship of Jenny Easton and Blake Walworth. I enjoy it when Wes throws in these crossovers.
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Subject: Back up and running


Author:
Wes
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Date Posted: 20:27:25 02/09/14 Sun

I think I have finally got the new computer tweaked enough to be able to use it. There are still a few bugs to work out but I'm getting them chased down.

It feels very good to be able to work from home again, rather than have to upload posts at weird times from the office or nudge my son-in-law off his computer for a few minutes. He's a computer science major and that is not easy to do.

Also, I'll be able to answer e-mails without having to hunt and peck on the tablet.

This whole thing has been a pain in the neck and has taken much longer than it had any right to. Now maybe I can think about writing again.

-- Wes
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Subject: Grand Canyon as you've never seen it


Author:
GB34
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 13:15:24 02/19/14 Wed

It may take a little time to load but it is definitely worth the wait.
Absolutely breathtaking!!!!
The (TRULY) Grand Canyon--As you've NEVER seen it before!

http://prometei.livejournal.com/87247.html
Subject: For the Racing Fans


Author:
Boyd Percy
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02:16:31 02/06/14 Thu

I saw the following on gocomics.com on 2-6-14. In Ripley's Believe It or Not, they claimed a Formula 1 race car creates so much aerodynamic downforce that in theory it could drive upside down along the roof of a tunnel at high speeds.

Does anyone think that this might be plausible?
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Subject: Grand Canyon Ages


Author:
Jim Wickman
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 15:41:38 01/26/14 Sun

Apparently there's an on-going dispute among scientists about how old the Grand Canyon is.

Now we can go back and re-read parts of Wes' wonderful stories and readjust out time frames -- or not.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-25881953
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Subject: Server to be down Sunday night


Author:
Wes
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Date Posted: 17:13:36 01/25/14 Sat

I was just informed that the server will be down for about an hour somewhere from 10 to 12 PM Sunday night. Sorry about this but I will try to get the update made early.

Wes
Subject: Sidewalk astronomer - John Dobson


Author:
Jon
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Date Posted: 23:45:37 01/24/14 Fri

In "Rocinante" Mark & Jackie Gravengood meet Dobson at the Texas Star Party.

Randy Cassingham’s Honorary Unsubscribe Recognizes the Unknown, the Forgotten and the Often Obscure People who Had an Impact on Our Lives

link: http://www.honoraryunsubscribe.com/john_dobson.html

Sidewalk astronomer
John Dobson

Born in China — his grandfather founded Peking University — the family fled political unrest in that country and settled in San Francisco, where Dobson couldn’t reconcile his personal philosophy. “I could see that these two notions cannot arise in the same being: ‘do unto others as you would that they do unto’ and ‘if you're not a good boy, it’s into hell for keeps.’ They must be spoofing us,” he said years later. “So I became an atheist — a belligerent atheist.” But after earning his Master’s degree in chemistry, he became a monk — following Ramakrishna, a Vedantan Indian who had also studied Islam and Christianity and declared that all religions led to the same God. With his science background, the Order asked Dobson to reconcile its teachings with the advances in astronomy. To help with this task, he needed a telescope, which were too expensive for a monk to afford — so he designed his own. He called the result the “sidewalk telescope,” because he would set them up on sidewalks so that passersby could look through them and see the stars, nebulae, and other objects in the sky. Everyone else calls the design the Dobsonian Telescope, and it revolutionized astronomy, bringing tens of thousands of amateurs to the hobby. “He really wanted to just share viewing the sky with people,” says astronomer Anthony Cook of the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles. “He created a hobby and a type of telescope that ensured that people could build their own and look farther across the universe than was possible for most people before his time.”

The less costly design of Dobson’s telescope made it all possible. He started with a classic Newtonian design, and figured out where he could save money: the mirror, the tube, and the mount. He used a lighter mirror, which needed less expensive mounting hardware. His tube was plywood, or even cardboard. And the mount? “for hundreds of years, wars were fought using cannon on ‘Dobsonian’ mounts,” he once said. Manufacturers quickly adopted the design. A friend said he should patent his creation, but Dobson refused. “These are gifts to humanity,” he retorted, and even today the Dobsonian design is still “one of the most popular telescopes on the market,” according to Dennis di Cicco of Sky & Telescope magazine. But Dobson was thrown out of the monastery: ironically, they thought he spent too much time looking through his telescope, and helping others to build them. With his time freed up, he spent even more of his efforts into promoting astronomy, and explaining the cosmos to anyone and in any place — “where dark skies and the public collide,” he would say. He founded the Sidewalk Astronomers, which now has chapters around the world with around 10,000 members. A documentary of Dobson’s life, A Sidewalk Astronomer, was released in 2005. He had been in poor health after suffering a stroke several years ago, and died in Burbank, Calif., on January 15. He was 98.

From This is True for 19 January 2014
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Subject: Stray Kitten


Author:
RustyKen
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 21:57:32 01/16/14 Thu

Just finished reading the last Chapter in Stray Kitten. Great story and a perfect ending.

Nicely done!!!

Cheers, RustyKen
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Subject: timeline


Author:
bigolal
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09:19:30 01/18/14 Sat

I wonder - would it be possible to create a timeline for all of Wes's stories. I think there are adequate clues to make it possible. Justn a thought.
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Subject: Stray Kitten Cliffhanger


Author:
Mark
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Date Posted: 17:33:38 01/15/14 Wed

By creating such a cliffhanger with all of us fully engaged on the penultimate chapter, Wes has created a need for those of us who didn't buy the book at the start to do so right now just to read the last chapter sooner than Friday morning. It would be less than optimal for posting of the last chapter to go awry.

Good one Wes! I'm enjoying this immensely!

In keeping with my budget, I'll be buying the next Bradford Speedway book this weekend; I alternate between purchasing the book to read right away and drip feeding them a chapter every other day. Like any other dog, I'll read the entire book right away instead of metering it out...
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Subject: Photo Post Anniversary


Author:
Dang Fool
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 13:39:51 01/10/14 Fri

One year (and a week or so) ago, Wes started his Photo Post feature. It was a New Year's Resolution and by far one of the best kept ones.

While I've enjoyed them each week, they also make for a fascinating review when I looked back over the past year. I'm sure I'm not the only one to enjoy them. Maybe others will want to mention their favorite of 2013?

The only New Year's Resolution I managed to keep was the time I vowed to not make anymore resolutions. Gratz Wes!
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Subject: Pat Roberts


Author:
bigolal
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11:21:25 01/11/14 Sat

OK, I give up. Who is Pat Roberts (Stray Kitten, Chap. 36). I looked in the Wiki, reread parts of Stray Kitten, but nada.
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Subject: Bullring Days Three: Banners Flying is now available for preorder


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 20:00:24 01/12/14 Sun

The next book from Spearfish Lake Tales, Bullring Days Three: Banners Flying, is now available for preorder.

Here's the summary:

Ginger Marston had a very bad day when a crooked auto mechanic tried to rob her -- but it was also a very good day when she met Ray Austin, son of Bradford Speedway owner Mel Austin. Their meeting propels Ginger into being a part of a world she hardly knew existed. From a budding romance to the thrills of short track auto racing, from trouble with her family to a small part in a historic moment at the Indianapolis 500, Ginger is off on an adventure that will change her life forever.

There are a total of thirty-six chapters.

You can preorder Bullring Days Three: Banners Flying for as little as $19.99 through the Spearfish Lake Tales Store or through the web page. Preorders will be sent sometime on the afternoon of January 19, Eastern Standard Time.

-- Wes
Subject: Grand Canyon History


Author:
mismanager
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 07:05:46 01/04/14 Sat

On the BBC website, a piece about John Wesley Powell.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-25491932
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Subject: enjoying


Author:
Mark
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Date Posted: 00:19:32 01/08/14 Wed

I'm enjoying Stray Kitten. Who is the artic explorer in the blue coat?
Is the snow up to his shoulders?
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Subject: Stray Kitten - The Meth Lab


Author:
Andrew
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Date Posted: 04:17:54 01/08/14 Wed

Ever since the meth lab came into the story way back in chapters 2-3, I have been wondering who customers could have been. I'm assuming that Jack+Bobby Lufkin will have wanted to share the love a bit.

With chapter 34 on Monday two names crystallised: Dick Hamilton and Allen Untermeyer - Untermeyer turns out to have known Bobby. At this point I started speculating on drug tests for Football players. Now I'm a bit surprised that chapter 35 ran in a different direction.
Subject: Oops, server down?


Author:
K Pelle aka dotB
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 16:04:25 12/31/13 Tue

I finally got a few minutes and was going to read Monday's chapter of 'Stray Kitten' - unfortunately it seems spearfishlakes.com is unavailable. I guess the storm was bad enough to cause problems or something.

I hope Wes and his family are okay.

kp
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Subject: In the Rose Parade... Shades of Nellie Fedewa...


Author:
Mike
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02:08:09 01/04/14 Sat

Nellie is a former WASP ferry pilot and appears
in Hannegans Cove, chapters 4, 5, and 6...
She and her colleagues were honored in the
Pasadena Rose Parade on Jan 1.

>
>Pioneering WWII Female Pilots Honored
>
> http://video.msnbc.msn.com/nightly-news/53960378

Too bad that most of the WASPs aren't around
to see it.
One of them was a friend of my parents. She
and he husband (whom she met while ferrying
P51s) were flying a V-tail Beech Bonanza out
of El Monte airport in the Los Angeles area.

She quit flying in the late 1970s when she
just barely didn't pass her medical. Her
husband quit at the same time and they
sold the Beech.
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Subject: PhotoPost and Miss Muffett


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 20:12:58 12/31/13 Tue

Tonight's post marks an end and beginning. While the post is dated January 1, it actually goes up on December 31, so it's either the first or the last post and PhotoPost of the year.

PhotoPost has been fun, and I'm going to keep it up. However, I'm going to do things a little differently this year -- I may post more than one photo of the same subject, and there will be a few times, especially with the next book, where I may post archive and out of season photos of interest that are vaguely related to the story. On top of that, I may miss updates from time to time -- I had to do it while in the hospital last fall for example.

The final thing I plan to do is try to be a little more liberal about telling stories, at least when there's a story to tell. A lot of these photos come from driving down the road and spotting an interesting looking tree or landscape or something, so obviously there aren't many stories growing out of them.

But sometimes there are, like in this PhotoPost. My wife and I happen to like cats, and while we have several inside cats, there are some more-or-less feral ones that hang around outside as well. Last fall one of the outside cats had a litter of kittens; by Christmas only two were left. I had named one "Ford," and my daughter named one "Miss Muffett."

It was both rainy and cold back before Christmas, and neither of the two kittens was doing well with respiratory problems. My wife asked, "Isn't there any way we could bring them inside to get them out of the weather?" We didn't just want to bring them inside for a number of reasons, so I conceded that they could join me in the shop where I do most of my writing.

Unfortunately we were a little too late for Ford; he was in by far the worse shape and died the first day in my shop, but Miss Muffett recovered. We still didn't want to expose the inside cats to her, so she stayed my shop cat for a few days while I was writing furiously to make my quota for the year. It was an interesting experience to have kitten help writing, and she loved to walk on the keyboard, as the photo shows. The little cat also showed great interest in my writing, often sitting right in front of the screen and intently following the sentences being typed out or chasing the cursor. While she held up production from time to time, it was also relaxing to pet her and listen to her purr while I was trying to think what to say next.

Miss Muffett turned into quite the snugglebug while in my rather cramped and disorderly office in the shop where I've turned out the vast majority of over seven million words. In fact, she forced me to clean up some of the area so she'd be less likely to get into things she shouldn't.

After a few days of improvement, we took Miss Muffett to the vet, and after he gave her the normal shots and an otherwise clean bill of health, we brought her home and converted her into an inside cat, although she's still my shop cat from time to time. I have to be honest and say that I more or less expected that to happen when my wife leaned on me in the first place, but darn it, it gets lonely down here sometimes when I'm writing and she takes away some of it. She's not down here with me all the time any longer, but I plan on bringing her down here for company every now and then.

So, Miss Muffett and I wish you all a Happy New Year!

-- Wes
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Subject: lake superior surfing


Author:
dave avery
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11:45:08 01/04/14 Sat

http://gearjunkie.com/lake-superior-surfing-minnesota

surfing @ -13 degrees


:)
Subject: Re: Shades of Myleigh


Author:
khms
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 17:30:49 12/31/13 Tue

>Somebody has been reading Spearfish Lake tales...
>
> >href="http://www.harptwins.com/">http://www.harptwins.c
>om/

>
>:-)

Here's another one:

http://www.mariemariemusic.com/
Subject: Oops, server down?


Author:
K Pelle aka dotB
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 16:03:08 12/31/13 Tue

I finally got a few minutes and was going to read Monday's chapter of 'Stray Kitten' - unfortunately it seems spearfishlakes.com seems to be unavailable. I guess the storm was bad enough to cause problems or something.

I hope We and his family are okay.

kp
Subject: GOOAAAAALLLL!


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 17:34:31 12/25/13 Wed

A couple of months ago I was way behind on my writing for the year. I had little hope of getting to my goal of 624,000 words a year, or the slightly more important goal of getting to 156 chapters a year, which is what is needed to maintain the website. I was something like 280,000 words short of the goal, which is a heck of a lot to have to do in two months.

The only hope remaining to reach the goal was to do an aggressive NaNoWriMo project in November, but the only idea I had just wasn't ready to write yet. So, in desperation, on about November 7 I turned to a project I'd started on last spring, but had lost interest in because I detected that it needed one more theme than it had, but I didn't have an idea of what it could be. Then I realized that a short story I'd dreamed up while in the hospital in October could be that missing theme. It was, and in a few short weeks, I'd added 120,000 words to the story -- a good one, too.

Heartened by this success, I turned to another story I'd started in 2011. It was a good start, but the story didn't want to go in the direction I wanted to take it. I decided to just write on it a little, and see what direction it wanted to go. On December 11th, I finished it -- another 100,000 words toward the goal, and also I think a pretty cool story.

In the second story there was a character I needed to do some research on as she needed to have some special attributes. (I'm deliberately being vague as I don't want to let any spoilers loose.) A news story caught my eye -- a woman in the story had those attributes and inspired an inspiring and memorable character. Even after I finished the story, I felt like there was more story to be found there. I thought about it a bit, and realized it was an interesting story but needed a different focus. I had an idea how to start the story, and wrote the first chapter on December 15. I finished it, 80,000 words later, late on Christmas Eve, which is something of a record for me.

GOOAAAAAAALLLL!

If I recall correctly, I did Alone Together in fourteen days, but the power was out due to an ice storm for two of them, so I'm rather happy at the moment, and I wanted to share it with you.

It's been quite a seven weeks, needless to say. I have to write these stories when inspiration comes, and it took its own sweet time getting here this year. I sure hope I can be a little more organized next year.

Happy New Year, everyone!

-- Wes
Replies:
Subject: Photo Post Archive


Author:
Boyd Percy
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 22:01:52 12/29/13 Sun

On the Photo Post Archive in the SLT Wiki, Wes resolved to post a photo he had recently taken above the News Box every time he posts a new chapter starting in 2013. He has done a great job in keeping his word. There's a great variety of photos. I like to look at the pictures and ponder what was going on behind those photos. I bet a good writer like Wes could write several paragraphs based on one of his photographs. I like the most recent posting of the guy using a leaf blower to clear snow off his driveway. It's been many years since I've had to deal with snow, but I assume it only works when there has been a light snow overnight.

Wes, I hope you keep posting photos in 2014. I also wish all the readers of this forum a healthy and prosperous 2014.
Subject: Dec 11 photopost


Author:
Leo Kerr
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 14:07:22 12/12/13 Thu

what is that tree with the orange (colored) fruit?

My first thought from the size was, "maybe it's an osage orange"? Except, well, at least in this area, the tree looks nothing like that! But the fruit are suitably large.
Replies:
Subject: Chapter 29


Author:
Boyd Percy
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 19:12:31 12/25/13 Wed

What a great and life re-affirming chapter as a Christmas present!
Subject: Google maps the Grand Canyon!


Author:
byte mangler
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 20:58:33 12/22/13 Sun

From the NY Times mag last week:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/15/magazine/googles-plan-for-global-domination-dont-ask-why-ask-where.html?_r=0
Replies:
Subject: 23 Dec photopost and best wishes


Author:
Emm Sea
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06:51:04 12/23/13 Mon

I just logged on and couldn't help smiling at today's photo post (the skid steer in the snow).

Where I live (near Brisbane, Australia), it's about 21:45 on Monday evening. I'm sitting here in shorts, all the windows & doors are open, and it's about 23degC (about 74degF).

It is indeed a wonderful world!

Wishing Wes and all my fellow readers a safe and happy holiday period, and I hope it doesn't get either too cold or too hot wherever you are!

Emm Sea
Replies:
Subject: Happy Holidays


Author:
Wes
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09:27:21 12/25/13 Wed

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Wonderful Winterset, A Joyous Yule to all of you!

Hope everyone is having a good one.

-- Wes
Subject: Merry Christmas to all!


Author:
Greg B.
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 20:48:12 12/24/13 Tue

Season's greetings to everyone, regardless of the holiday you celebrate! I'm winding down the last couple of (very slow) pre-holiday hours at the store and was hoping for an early posting of tomorrow's chapter of Stray Kitten to help relieve the tedium. No luck, so I thought I'd send out some Yuletide warm fuzziness instead.

To Wes, thank you again and always!
To everyone, stay warm if you're in the environs of Spearfish Lake and have a safe and happy holiday season!
Subject: Dutiful Daddy


Author:
Boyd Percy
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 22:15:10 12/18/13 Wed

After reading your Newsbox entry of December 19,2013, I realize that your stories are also your children. Fortunately, your real life daughter won't have to share any estate you leave her with all those other "siblings".
Subject: Pinning down Spearfish Lake location


Author:
kilobytemangler
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 21:22:51 12/08/13 Sun

Years ago, it was determined that Spearfish Lake was somewhere in Wisconsin, Michigan, or maybe Minnesota.

Since then it seems to have been narrowed down to Michigan.

However, SK20 seems to make it fairly clear that Spearfish Lake is actually in the UP [unless a reread of Dawnwalker suggests otherwise].

Do we have Lat-Long coordinates yet [just kidding]?

At any rate, keep up the excellent work!
Replies:
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