Caspar World

Posts from Home in Potsdam, NY

What to Do with Extra Tacos

It's been the week of the cold that wouldn't quit. I thought I was getting over it the end of last week, but it's still hanging on, mostly as what seems like a permanent low-grade sinus clog. (That's probably more than anyone wanted to know.)

Accordingly, I've kept a low profile. There were a couple church meetings in Norwood, and a couple on-line meetings around 2 different websites that are in development.

On Thursday we were scheduled to have college kids from church come for dinner. 5 had said they'd probably come, and 3 RSVPd that they were definitely coming. We got together all the fixin...

Oct 13, 2018

The Big 5 - O

So Tuesday I hit the big 5-O.

For my birthday I got a set of Men's fragrance, Calvin Clein Eternity from my sister-in-law, and silk pajamas from Brooke. I spent the morning programming a website, then spent most of the afternoon standing around in the rain at a Cross Country meet. The kid beat his personal best time for the 3 mile course by nearly a minute. We went to dinner down the street at Maxfield's.

Wednesday morning I woke up with a cold. Not the worst cold I've ever had, but runny nose and scratchy throat. Then, on Thursday morning I realized I now qualify for membership in the AARP. S...

Oct 06, 2018

Diet and Exercise

The Potsdam Church ladies did have sausage links at their pancake breakfast last week.

Over the past 3 weeks or so, I've been experimenting with food and exercise. I've never been much for minding either of these things before now. And, while it might have to do with my impending 50th birthday, I came to it by way of one-book-leads-to-another.

More than a year ago I'd seen several references to Daniel Kahneman's Thinking, Fast and Slow. Kahneman had won a Nobel prize in Economics a while ago, and this was his latest, a kind of validictory of things he'd learned during and after the research he...

Sep 29, 2018

Hot and Cold

This week has been as variable as the weather: hot one day, cold the next.

First, I got to be a domain broker for a week.

I also got to wear my Cross Country parent hat on Tuesday. The kid ran a good race. Not quite enough to beat his personal best, but came close, and it was a hard course.

Silas finishes cross country race in Gouverneur

Also on Tuesday, I launched a new website. The design is another from Kelly's team at (Digital Canvas). It's for a Stark County, OH non-profit that recently took over a lot of county services for people with disabilities: TWi. There will be more to add to it in coming months, but getting a new site off the...

Sep 22, 2018

Quiet Time

One week into school, when I ask the kid what happened, he says, "The usual."

So I asked him if he learned anything. He thought about it for a moment, then said, "Not that I can remember."

I'd suspect that he wasn't actually going, but they'd probably call and ask where he was if that were the case.

With the return to school, there's more quiet time at home. I've been reading more. Nassim Talib, The Black Swan and now Atul Gawande, Being Mortal. Both good reads. Since the beginning of the year I've been keeping a reading list with short commentaries on my other blog.

Besides reading, I've been...

Sep 15, 2018

High School

It's official: High School.

First Day of High School, 2018

For comparison, here's 9 years ago on the first day of Kindergarten:

First Day of Kindergarten

On Thursday, he ran his first Cross Country race. 3 miles. Here he is, crossing the finish line:

Cross Country Finish

Sep 08, 2018

Back from Retirement

Since the beginning of the year, I've been filling in on Sundays at two churches in Norwood, a village 6 miles north of Potsdam. The Methodist church and the Congregational church have been worshiping together for the past 4 years, alternating between their 2 buildings month by month. They're both small churches, and finding one person to fill in on any given week is hard. Finding 2 is nearly impossible.

We have experienced this first hand. There have been 2 Sundays we would have liked to be away, but finding 2 people to fill in, one for Brooke in Potsdam and another for me in Norwood, has not...

Sep 01, 2018

Summer's End

Last week seems to have flown by. On Thursday we had "Chromebook Orientation". Each high school student this year is getting their own Chromebook, for which we had to go sit through a 20 minute presentation by the Principal and sign for.

The school picked Chromebooks, he said, because the school can control and monitor "every keystroke, minute by minute" of what happens on them. They're all tethered to the school network. They can be shut down or over-ridden by "the authorities" at any time.

On the one hand, I get that they want to be careful. On the other hand, it sounds a lot like Big Brothe...

Aug 25, 2018

Long Odds

We have been doing some cleaning out over the summer. There are a few things (more than a few things) that we don't use or have never used. Those that are gently used we've accumulated into thrift-shop bags. Those go once in a while back to Wilmington, NY. The church there has a thrift shop we're familiar with, so we feel better about sending things there.

There were also a couple summer dresses that just don't fit. They still have the tags on them. We decided to give those a try on Ebay. Brooke bought them for a pretty penny, but after looking at similar items, it seemed that the going rate f...

Aug 18, 2018


That's the word of the week.

On Tuesday the movers came to take our friend Deb, the Presbyterian, to New Jersey. They arrived late. Apparently, they left some furnature and clothing at her house here. Maybe someday they'll deliver it.

Also, on Tuesday, we decided it was time to get Brooke a new car. We'd been on the fence about it for a while. We looked at some cars online. We decided a Toyota Yaris iA would be about right. I went to the Toyota dealer down the street. The website said it was $15,000 and change. Turns out, that's if you can find one with a standard transmission. Automatic is $1...

Aug 11, 2018