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Deluxestogie Grow Log 2019

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deluxestogie

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Another Auction

It wasn't exactly a whole leaf tobacco auction.

I saw a tiny notice of an auction in a tiny, local paper. There would be "bales" of Persian carpets that had been seized in 2009. I searched for other notices of the same auction, hoping for some clarification, but that one notice was it. It was held at a local VFW hall. So I drove over there this afternoon.

During my two tours of duty in Saudi Arabia, in the early 1980s, I often went to the rug markets, the souks. I spent a lot of time reading up on the intricacies of location of manufacture, quality of manufacture, typical motifs, etc. These are all made by hand in small villages across south Asia. I enjoy looking at them, and guessing their origin and value, even though I no longer purchase any.

This auction turned out to be small potatoes. That is, I had seen a greater number of hand-knotted rugs jammed into a single stall in a souk than what was on offer here today, but the quality of the rugs today was just spectacular. And there were many huge rugs (the kind that take decades to make) in the very finest quality.

RugAuction20191123_4877_front_600.jpg


I was more accustomed to seeing fine carpets spread out on the sand, in scorching sunlight. But these still looked mighty nice. Many of these were 20 to 70 years old, and showed absolutely no wear. There was one from Karabakh, Armenia, with the date, "1904" knotted into it. It still looked nearly new.

RugAuction20191123_4876_distance_600.jpg


Iranian, Caucasian, Turkish. They were all represented. Hamedan, Kashan, Heriz, Sarouk, Isfahan, Bidjar, Kazak, Nain, Herati, in assorted sizes and shapes.

RugAuction20191123_4878_front_closeup_600.jpg


The finest hand-knotted rugs (often 400 knots of wool pile per inch) look just as vivid and crisp on the back side as the front. After 30 minutes of inspection time, the auction lasted only about 45 minutes. The Iranian rug expert who was conducting the auction was like listening to a TED Talk on the economics of tiny villages, many of which can no longer produce large rugs.

The audience was quite small. The final bids were shockingly low. Some of the rugs sold for prices similar to what I might have paid in the rug souks 36 years ago. Alas, I left empty handed, since I really can't use another rug. (I did carry some money with me, just in case.)

Bob
 
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deluxestogie

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The Final Installment of Star Wars!

The very first Star Wars film, in 1977, was subtitled, "The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Part IV". The "A New Hope" subtitle later replaced it. I was 29 years old. Now, 42 years is a long time to get to the end of a story.

Today, I was able to purchase a ticket for Thursday night, the night before "opening night". First, I had to purchase a new toner for my $89 laser printer, in order to print my ticket. Since the image drum is part of the toner cartridge, the new toner, with shipping, cost me about $100. That arrived late yesterday. So today, I was able to go on-line to Fandango, and purchase a Senior ticket for the 9:45 pm showing on the 19th of December. Just like a simple coffee at Starbucks, this movie came in 4 different flavors: 2-D or 3-D, and with or without some 3-letter abbreviation for yet another sound enhancement technology. I ordered the works. The movie is 155 minutes long.

Ticket:......................$14.00
Fandango Fee.......$ 2.00
Card Fee.................$ 1.50
Toner....................$100.00
________________________
total......................$117.50

$117.50 / 155 minutes = ~76 cents per minute

On a happier note, my toner is still good for another 2999 pages.

Bob
 

deluxestogie

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It's December. Time to make decisions about what to grow for 2020!

I'll put in a max...MAX of 6 varieties.

Definite:
Corojo 99
Piloto Cubano
Olor

Maybe:
Machu Picchu Havana or Vuelta Abajo
Prilep 66-9/7 or Bafra
Little Dutch or PA Red
Glessnor or Swarr-Hibshman

Bob
 

deluxestogie

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Star Wars

I'm exhausted today. I returned from the movie at 1:00 am--wide awake. Went to bed finally at 3:30 am. I enjoyed the cinematic conclusion to decades of story.

Rant: The theater! The ticket taker failed to provide me with the required 3D glasses. I didn't realize this until after walking to the specific sub-theater, climbing the steep, stadium steps that reached to my assigned seat, and seating myself. I got up, descended the stadium steps (assisted by my cane), walked all the way back out to the front, and was politely provided with the 3D glasses.

This theater (a Regal Cinema mega-theater) has been re-engineered to accommodate the preferences of overweight Americans today. Think "modern living room". Quite comfortable theater seats have been replaced by giant-butt-size, overstuffed Lazy Boy recliners. To fit a giant butt, the arms of the seat are way too far apart to be comfortable. The seat height in its upright position is too high for my feet to rest on the floor. If I sat that way--legs dangling--for over two hours, my legs would be numb and swollen by the time the film was over. So I had to raise the footrest to its horizontal position, and sink into the unsupportive back cushion like a snow angel. About a third of the new recliners had apparently been previously used so little that their thick, vinyl upholstery groaned like a long, slow fart, whenever their positions were adjusted. Nice.

Haptic output is built into the giant-butt-size, overstuffed Lazy Boy recliners. Every time the film wanted to impress me, the seat would wildly rumble, like suddenly driving over a gravel road with 4 flat tires. The rumble really did not even vaguely resemble what one might realistically encounter from whatever happened to be occurring on-screen. I found that horribly distracting for at least the first 20 minutes. On the bright side, a moron college student was in the seat adjacent to mine, and had been rocking his foot for the duration of the previews. This oblivious behavior caused my seat to rock, since they were attached to one another. (It's like a child behind you in a good old theater, kicking the back of your seat.) So the haptic rumble dulled my annoyance with his persistently rocking foot. (I won't get into his browsing on his cell phone.)

I've left out the greatest annoyance, and one that nearly caused me to walk out and demand a refund. When the feature film first began, it was out of focus. I found myself flipping and rotating my 3D glasses every which way, attempting to get it into focus. This continued for 15 minutes. I believe all of this stuff is digital, and that a multiplex does not have a "projectionist" watching over each of its simultaneously running movies.

Mere moments before I was about to walk out, the film went blank, then restarted from the beginning--now in proper focus for the 3D glasses. Yay! But I was watching 15 minutes of action that I had already seen, albeit blurry. I stayed.

Summary: Movie is a fun Star Wars film. The theater is unlikely to see me again...ever.

Bob the Fatigued
 

GreenDragon

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I haven't been to a theater in two years. And don't anticipate going again anytime soon. If I can't stream it, I don't see it. Can't stand the rude people, gross seats and floor, overpriced "food", etc. I guess I'm just an old fart at heart. I'm 46, but my Mom says I was born 30, so that makes me about 76 in grumpy age? :LOL:
 

Charly

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Good news the movie is good, I will watch it next week !

I agree with you about the cinema theatres, I don't like those places.
I prefer watching movies in my home, it's far more comfortable ! And quiet, with nobody kicking my seat !
 

deluxestogie

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The plot, the writing, the quality of acting, and both quality and quantity of special effects are way better than all but the most recent Star Wars installments.

Bob
 
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