County fair

[From our files.]

Gotta admire the hustle

Jeb, get ahold of yourself

"In other words, Trump isn’t really winning the presidential contest so much as all the other candidates are losing it. And no one is losing it faster or with more determination than Jeb Bush."

There's no privacy any more, anywhere

World's oldest wombat joins dating app

And now they have a whole lot of bricks they can't get rid of

The Massachusetts Home Built with 100,000 Newspapers

We feel better already

Donald Trump not a textbook bully, psychologists say

Feeling a little testy there, George?

The havoc that Trump wreaks — on his own party - The Washington Post

"Every sulfurous belch from the molten interior of the volcanic Trump phenomenon injures the chances of a Republican presidency.…"

We knew there was something

Trump's lean campaign structure breaks the mold

"While Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton boasts an army of more than 350 paid staffers, Trump's operation fields less than a tenth that number."

But we'll take one to go

Man tries to copyright a chicken sandwich, learns that that’s completely ridiculous - The Washington Post

"'A recipe — or any instructions — listing the combination of chicken, lettuce, tomato, cheese, and mayonnaise on a bun to create a sandwich is quite plainly not a copyrightable work,' Chief Judge Jeffrey Howard wrote in the decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. "


They did it

Photos: The Real 'Rosie the Riveter' Women - NationalJournal.com

Some days you can't hic win

Woman downs $200 bottle of cognac to beat airport rules - NY Daily News

"The woman — identified only by her surname Zhou — was told she could not take the $200 bottle of Remy Martin XO Excellence on board due to aviation rules.

"Rather than let the booze go to waste, the woman downed the entire bottle in one go — and was then deemed too drunk to fly."

Being mean to Charles Koch

Charles Koch blasts Barack Obama - Mike Allen - POLITICO

"Koch’s blistering comments came as he and his brother David, whose conservative political network plans to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on the 2016 election, have spoken out more frequently in an attempt to blunt Democratic attacks on their political influence and insinuations about their motives."

And insinuations too. Awww.

Wait, what we've been hearing is too cheery?

Inquiry Weighs Whether ISIS Analysis Was Distorted - The New York Times

"WASHINGTON — The Pentagon’s inspector general is investigating allegations that military officials have skewed intelligence assessments about the United States-led campaign in Iraq against the Islamic State to provide a more optimistic account of progress, according to several officials familiar with the inquiry."

And they haven't looked under my bed yet

Thousands of microbes found in house dust - BBC News

"The dust in our homes contains an average of 9,000 different species of microbes, a study suggests."

Food fight today

Tomatina Festival Spain -

A proposal to take automatic weapons away from kids makes news…

Sort of a no-brainer, right? 

Petition to ban kids with Uzis offers different picture of US gun owners - CSMonitor.com

Well, no…

"Efforts to rein in the use of automatic weapons by children already failed in two state legislatures last year."


A minor quote…

…from a novel called Ghost Fleet and certainly not about the Republican primary now afoot:

“We have fed the beast so long, at some point we have to set it off the leash,” responded Wang. “Or it will bite us back.”

The rainy day

We, Bunky, totally give up

Denver Airport discriminates against those with Christian views | RedState

“… Chick fil A is getting blackballed at Denver International Airport."

We are lost

State erects wrong signs for train in Greenfield | The Recorder

"Motorists and pedestrians who have traveled along Deerfield Street, Bank Row and Main Street over the past few days have questioned why DOT would erect signs that not only reference the wrong town, but refer to the John W. Olver Regional Transit Center as 'Olver TC.'"

Dt common streams StreamServer cls

Why you should always keep a book in your pocket

I'm sitting out a rain storm at McD's. My weather app says it should blow over in 30 minutes. The book is "Ghost Fleet."

Stock market rebounds and…

Donald Trump is back to bashing Megyn Kelly | New York Post

Yeah, scattered all over me

Weather Underground

[Also, fallish? Really?]

Who still listens to this guy?

Oh wait…


Who knows, this could happen to you tomorrow morning

Donald Trump Is in My Butter - The Daily Beast

"“It was a brand new tub,” Castellano told The Daily Beast. “It was just staring right back at me.”"

What, this "tween" has some kind of multiple personality disorder or something?

Quinn: Refereeing your tween and their smartphone - San Jose Mercury News

[From Orwell’s rules for writers…"(vi) Break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous.”]

As long as they don't identify as mortgage bankers it's fine with me

A morning walk

Siri is having a bad day*

It's not "grand flakes" I want, it's "bran fakes." Come on. 

And "8:30" is not "eight something." OK maybe it is, sort of, but still. 

Can you say 'Get it together"?

Try again. 

*Also, it seems, the DOW.

Whew…for a minute there…

…thought I was losing it but I got the crossword puzzle done this morning before my walk. I seem to remember, from ancient days, that some days are easier than others in the Times. And one day is hardly a streak. So maybe I’ll have to wait and see what happens next.

Who, moi?

Gunman 'Dumbfounded' By Terror Claims

"According to French officials, the man was armed with a Kalashnikov rifle, an automatic pistol and a knife."


Am I blue

It's come to this (and the election is still more than a year away)

Iowa GOP Kingmaker Has a Slavery Proposal for Immigration - The Daily Beast

"'If you are here without our permission, and we have given you two months to leave, and you're still here, and we find that you're still here after we we've given you the deadline to leave, then you become property of the State of Iowa,' Mickelson modestly proposed. 'And we have a job for you. And we start using compelled labor, the people who are here illegally would therefore be owned by the state and become an asset of the state rather than a liability and we start inventing jobs for them to do.'"

On the edge

The campaign that just keeps on giving


Like the auto wreck you can't keep from watching

Page 5 of Inside the GOP Clown Car | Rolling Stone

"At the event, [Huckabee] was glowingly introduced by Iowa Republican Congressman Steve King, who revved the crowd by bashing the Supreme Court ruling clearing the way for gay marriage. King had apparently been told on good authority by a lawyer friend that Obergefell v. Hodges meant that only one party in a marriage had to be a human being. 'What that means,' he said, 'is you can now marry my lawn mower.'

"A reporter next to me leaned over. 'King's lawn mower is gay?'

"I shrugged. In the modern Republican Party, making sense is a secondary consideration."

[Noted by our Midwest and Elsewhere Bureau chief.]

[WARNING: Reading this whole thing may crack you up. Or make you think. Or cringe.]

The takeaway

Hillary’s e-mail defense is ‘total BS’: former State Dept. officials | New York Post

"'Anybody else would have already lost their security clearance and be subjected to an espionage investigation,' Mrozinski added. 'But apparently a different standard exists for Mrs. Clinton.'"

The post is a notoriously right-wing publication, not expected to be sympathetic to a Clinton presidency. But still.


Stuff we hadn't started to worry about yet

Vertical Video on the Small Screen? Not a Crime - The New York Times

"John Whaley, co-creator of Vervid, a new app that aims to become a showcase for tall videos, argues that many of life’s events are focused on one or two individuals, and because people are taller than they are wide, shots of individuals tend to look best in a vertical frame."

[We recently were treated to video showing a wind turbine being built that would have been just plain dumb shot horizontally.]

How to make a bad thing worse

Florida ex-con gives cops fake name that turns up warrant - NY Daily News

"McClain, of Lake Hamilton, said he didn't have his driver's license on him and gave cops his brother's name and birthdate along with a social security number belonging to a white man born in 1969, according to police."

In Toledo, free fun

Giant art ball breaks free, rolls down Ohio street - NY Daily News

"The 15-foot tall, 250-pound inflated ball, sponsored by the Toledo Museum of Art, broke free from an alley installation and did its best pinball wizard, hung a left at a three-way intersection in downtown Toledo and then rolled over a row of parked cars."

The Times on the Square

Shirtless Bodies in Pointless Times Square War - The New York Times

"On Thursday, Mr. de Blasio suggested one solution: eliminating some of Times Square’s pedestrian plazas, apparently on the theory that if you can get tourists to go away, you reduce the topless-woman threat. Other officials suggest creating a pen for the women and costumed characters — sort of a panhandling zoo — or turning this great bustling commercial zone into, of all things, a park."


The DPW Tango

The Department of Public Works came this afternoon and painted stuff like this all over our street. I think it's a dancing lesson. We're having a party!

Where is Thursday Next when you need her?

Russian Police Get Tough on Illicit Cheese - The New York Times

"MOSCOW — One of Russia’s tabloid TV channels began a news bulletin Tuesday with a breathless report about a major 'international criminal gang' freshly rolled up in the Moscow region."

The first U.S. president without a college degree was…wait for it…

…George Washington. Wow.

This and a great trove of other totally useless information here, on a web site called “Inside Gov."

Wait, what?

Helicopter pilot loses license after dropping rose petals at lavish mafia funeral | New York Post

"In addition to the flower petals, the funeral Thursday of Vittorio Casamonica featured a gilded, horse-drawn carriage carrying his casket and a band playing 'The Godfather' theme outside the church."

Are you kidding me?

[No –ED.]

Sure, blame the cats

Carly Fiorina did a 4-minute riff on climate change. Everything she said was wrong. - Vox

"A recent peer-reviewed survey of bird mortality studies found that wind turbines kill between 214,000 and 368,000 birds a year, compared with 6.8 million that die from colliding with cell and radio towers and between 1.4 and 3.7 billion killed by cats."

The problem with these little hot spells like we've been having…

…is not that it gets too warm during the day, it's that it stays that way overnight. Too warm.

But this morning it's nice and cool outdoors, and raining just a bit. So a quick walk downtown and back – couple of miles – leaves me feeling fresh and crispy, like a head of lettuce.

Dude, I'm sorry, but this is just too good to pass up

Anna Duggar will ‘absorb blame’ for cheating hubby: report - NY Daily News

"'Anna will not leave him,' the source claimed. 'As with her in-laws, she is turning more to her faith than ever. She and Josh are probably praying around the clock right now, I would assume.'"

Is this the greatest summer ever or what?

Topless in Times Square: A Legal View - The New York Times

"So complex is the issue that Mr. de Blasio, who has angrily vowed to put a stop to the practice, suggested on Thursday that one option would be to simply tear out the pedestrian plazas where the women operate."

Maybe The Donald could build a wall in Times Square, work up to Mexico from there.

Mean old newspapers, always trying to spoil the fun

What Donald Trump Could Learn From the Korean DMZ - The New York Times

"Another hitch Mr. Trump will appreciate, as a businessman, is that Mexico buys more American products than any country but Canada, is our third-largest foreign oil provider, and reigns as the top tourist destination for Americans. Telling the Mexicans they’re ‘fired' might therefore not be as consequence-free as saying it to contestants on 'The Apprentice.'"

The Rs may have their Trump; the Ds have Bern

Bernie Sanders Draws Big Crowds to His ‘Political Revolution’ - The New York Times

"He would invest in enormous infrastructure projects that he said would create more than 10 million jobs. He would expand, not shrink, Social Security, and move the United States to a single payer health care system. Legislation that he intends to propose or already has would automatically register anyone older than 18 to vote, kick private corporations out of the prison business, make public college tuition free, guarantee sick and paid family leave and a 'couple of weeks paid vacation' to workers.

He would break up the banks that are too big to fail, keep us out of any more wars and pay for much of his spending program with a tax on Wall Street trading."