off the Palantir X 5
I believe the river map is the Columbia river in Washington state or rather the border between Washington and
Oregon. The snake river a part of the system also. Portland is on the Columbia river, I have an uncle that lives
in Portland. He had a nice (thankfully far away) view of Mt. St. Helens eruption back in 1978(?). Even has
pictures. Anyway that is the river. Sort of right in your backyard.
So what wonderful prizes did I win?
Yes, it is the Columbia River system (and some of its major tributaries). From a few miles
below the confluence with the Snake River to its mouth, the Columbia forms the Washington -
Oregon border. Yeah, it is, sort of, in our backyard. However, we think of the Olympic Rivers
as in our front yard.
Will you be satisfied with fame and acclamation for having the first correct answer? Oh, yes,
and, say, ... four points? [TOM]
this one would appear to be the Columbia River, which further upstream is known as the Snake River. You
made it a bit easier by leaving in the box, indicating a north to the top of the page orientation .....although I was
looking at my map of Asia for some time before realising this.
Too easy, huh? In future, I'll rotate the box, then rotate the whole map till the box is top up
again! At any rate, it is the Columbia / Snake system; good for two points. [TOM]
Let me be the first to send in an entry to "Off the Map". Well, it might have been the first, but I just got my
zine today, and I know that it made it to Pennsylvania 2 days ago. Go figure.
The River in question is The Columbia, with tributaries Willamette, Deschutes and John Day coming from
Oregon, the Snake and Clearwater coming from Idaho, and the Okanagon from British Columbia.
On the other hand, if you hold it sideways, it kinda looks like Bart Denny seen through a piece of broken glass...
Sorry, nothing I can do about the relative delivery times... I'm sure the Brits get their's at least
as early as anyone on this continent.
I think you've named all tributaries shown; good for seven points. There are more, of course.
If I'd drawn the map, I'd have put in at least the Yakima and Spokane... Oh, and, let's say, an
additional half point for the chuckle at Bart's expense. [TOM]
Greetings once again from Holland where we are enjoying a lazy Sunday recovering from yesterday "Familie
Fietstocht" - this was a 25km bike ride / treasure hunt organised by Thomas and Hannah's school. It was great
fun and we were amazed by how much beautiful scenery we had missed locally. Definitely time to get out on
our bikes more. The event finished with a large bar-b-q which was very nice.
Of course, I've been rather distracted by events in Japan of late, being the sad Soccer fan that I am. Apart from
England's miserable showing against Brazil on Friday, it's been a wonderful tournament with lots of good
football and plenty of surprises. Italy being knocked out by South Korea was a definite highlight, particularly
with all their complaining afterwards. This coming from a country that introduced professional cheating as an
artform to whole world - crocodile tears or what?
I hope everything is OK in your part of the world. Here are my orders ....
"OFF THE MAP" looks very much like the west coast of France and the River Loire
That's all from me.
We heard on the radio [CBC] this am that Armstrong was lagging by about half an hour in the
early stages of this year's Tour de France, partly due to a pile up he participated in. What's the
fuss? He's a tiger on the mountain stages, and, as I recall, does tend to lag in the early
Anyway, I still have a nice road bike from my college days, but don't get on it much out here.
It's a full third of a mile of unsealed, steep in places, loose rock surfaced road before I reach
paved road. If it weren't for that, I would probably use it a bit. If I went out on it, I could turn
right and go half a dozen miles on National Park road - in adequate repair (I.e., not the best,
but good enough), with light, slow traffic.
Croc tears, definitely. (As you probably know, by now,) I don't go in much for organized (read
team) sports, and less for spectator sports. Soccer (and I use this term explicitly to extinguish
any chance that anyone would confuse my reference as being to that other thing it is often
confused with) is perhaps one that I could find of occasional interest.
Um, sorry, your map guess is about 120 degrees east of the territory depicted. Perhaps my
obliteration of the Straight of Juan de Fuca and Puget's Sound led you astray? [TOM]
OK, I'm going to take a shot that it is the Columbia River. I first thought it was the Congo, but that was quickly
Regarding your comments about the previous round [of BPD], I do know a bit about building houses, but for the
past twenty odd years I've lived in an apartment and haven't worried (too much) about construction specifics.
When I was a kid, my dad had payed [sic] to build three houses we lived in. However, I didn't get much
involved beyond the blueprints/layout. I suppose I'd have a similar situation if I did a BPD on cooking
techniques, herbs and foreign cuisines.
In any case, I didn't mind your comments about the categories when presented. I'd have been much more
confused without your clarifications! And I learned a tad more with your commentary in this issue.
The black ants remind of some of the ants back home in Michigan. They must be a northern insect as I've not
seen any since I've moved to Texas (just the smaller "sugar" ants and, of course, fire ants). I hope that you're
able to win the battle with them, they don't sound like welcome guests.
I recently got involved in a community sustainable agriculture farm. I'd heard about them, most recently when
Alice Waters (Chez Panisse) was in town, but really didn't know that much about them. What it is, basically,=
you "subscribe" to the farm during the growing season and, in return, receive fresh produce. The idea behind it
is that the community and the farm partner to allow the farmers to have a known, steady, income and the
community to get fresh produce.
Well, last month's COOKING LIGHT magazine had an article about them and a couple of websites to check out.
One had an index function and I found six farms in the Austin area doing this. I checked out their websites
(most of the information was limited or out of date). However, Emailed one of them to get a current update. I
received an enthusiastic response, so a friend of mine and I joined up.
The farm (Hairston Creek Farm - organic since 1993) is in Burnet, but they have a couple of Austin drop-off
sites so I don't have to drive out there. One is just down the street from where I work and is just a short detour
on Wednesdays on my way home. This farm works on a weekly payment ($25, with discounts if you pay in 8 or
16 week increments) with a weekly drop-off of roughly a 1/2 bushel of produce. They also have a "plus" option,
for an additional $3/week, you receive a dozen fresh farm eggs one week alternating with jams, honey or pesto
(from their commercial kitchen) on the opposite week.
The first week's box included Romano Green Beans, Dill, Baby Carrots, a small Watermelon, a bunch of small
Yukon Gold Potatoes and yellow Onions, Dandelion Greens, Swiss Chard, Sungold Cherry Tomatoes (YUM!),
Blackberries and Squash. This week had more Beans, Onions, Squash, Cherry Tomatoes (still YUM!), two
small Cantalope, Okra, regular sized Carrots, an Heirloom Tomato and another large Tomato, four Cucumbers
and six Red Potatoes. I just found out on Friday that I'm going to get a "Plus" share starting this coming week
(Eggs!) as I've moved up the waiting list.
I'm very pleased with the program. Heck, this farm even washes the produce before putting it into the box!
Plus, they encourage a return of the packaging material (twisties, waxed boxes, pint containers, etc) the next
week for reuse. I'd encourage other readers to see what's available in their area as this is a wonderful program.
Again, sorry for the short cancellation of my trip to the west coast. I certainly would have enjoyed meeting you!
A point for the river. What about all those tributaries, begging for identification?
Hee, hee.....yep, it was a nice soccer ball sized watermelon. It was enough for two desserts and quite tasty, I
must say. But, you definitely are right about the growing seasons. This farm runs a 32-week season starting in
April and going through (roughly) Turkey Day. I suspect that the May deliveries were heavy on greens and I
got in near the tail end with the Swiss Chard and Dandelion Greens a couple weeks back.
If it was mere a question of numbers, we'd have been evicted aeons ago. But, we're bigger
and smarter than the ants! Or, maybe, that should be bigger and nastier!
Watermelon? In June? And cucumber? We won't get any watermelon - ever - and it'll be mid
or late August before we'll start seeing cucumbers or tomatoes. So far, it's been greens.
Including early cole crops: the weather's been perfect for broccoli - and radish. Collards for the
first time. They like it here.
Well, that's the difference in weather.
We wash everything at Salt Creek Farm. It's delivered in a plastic crate, which is returned and
refilled. The crates are 7 x 14 x 22, just over a bushel. Other than that, the only packaging is
plastic bags (not recycled) which the mixed salad greens (washed three (3) times) are put into.
Oh, and we usually put green beans and snap peas into bags. Other than that it goes directly
into the crate next to whatever else is in the delivery. Doug has a limited area in stawberries
and raspberries - on a U-pick basis.
*I* certainly was disappointed! For them to make it up to you, you should make sure they give
you a one day layover in Port Angeles on your next trip this direction... (Yes, Port Angeles has
an airport!) [TOM]
I checked on an Email newsletter that I get (and recently started saving) from Boggy Creek Farm (they were
recently featured on Food Channel's "Food Finds" for their smoked, dried tomatoes). They have a small farm in
town and a much larger farm somewhere to the east of Austin. They open up their farm stand on Wednesday and
Saturday mornings selling what they picked the day before and the day of. As I work on Wednesdays and,
generally, am volunteering at the Cooking School Saturday mornings, I don't get out there as much as I would
The one newsletter from April I had and it was heavy on greens being available that week (including French
Sorrel!). The May ones also had lots of green (I picked up some Lamb's Quarters or Lamb's Breath (can't
remember) one week). However, both also list cukes as being available.
If you're interested in their newsletter, go to www.boggycreekfarm.com and there is a sign-up area. The
newsletter is mostly commentary on farm goings-on, the adventures of the chickens, weather/insects and how
they are effecting the produce, etc. It's a nice, weekly, break to read it!
Time to finish chores before I go into the Cooking School. We're giving a "hands-on" Mexican Seafood class
Thanks, Andy; I was going to write up a long epistle on CSAs, but didn't get to it... Here are a
few brief comments for anyone interested. The Farm where I work harvest crew is called Salt
Creek Farm. They have a web site at: http://www.homestead.com/saltcreekfarm/csa.html
Further information about CSAs may be found on the internet, just get on your favorite search
engine (I usually use Google) and enter "Community Supported Agriculture". You'll find more
than you wanted to know and there will probably be one near you! [TOM]
I'm not surprised you found a mint oil product to keep ants away, mint is very effective against them. It also
grows very easily and propagates well. We have an ant invasion every spring and we've started to plant mint all
around the house, starting with those areas where we see the ants coming in. I'll let you know how it works out,
it's suppossed to be quite effective. There are a number of other spices they don't like as well, so we figured
why not stop the ants naturally and get something useful out of it as well?
I've never seen a bobcat around here. We have seen a couple of fishers lately, they seem to be making a
comeback in the area. We've got lots of downy and hairy woodpeckers, the pileateds are around, but much rarer,
I've only seen on in the 3 years we've been in our house. We have a large population of whipperwills though,
and we hear their very distinctive call every evening. Seems counter-intuitive to be a ground bird that is out at
night, then throw away the advantage by loudly and continuously announcing your presence!
Keep those early orders coming in! Thanks a bunch!
map: that river in Ordegon near Protland or is it Vancouver? The colombia?
Yes, mint propagates well! Some might say, too well! Barb's fanatical about not introducing
non-native plants into our forest, but now you've got her talking about planting mint around the
I think we're out of whippoorwill range, here; but, see IMN for our latest sightings! [TOM]
hello from normanton, Qld, 70km from the gulf of Carpentaria. hot, dry. mid winter. About to ride 120km
railmotor to Croydon and back.
Yes, the Columbia. It flows between, and separates the city Portland, OR from the suburb
Vancouver, WA. That's good for a point.
Your trip report isn't quite up to your usual standards, but then, I imagine you usually write
them up afterwards, instead of during. Look forward to reading what interesting little tourist
traps with their "Biggest whatever" you found this time out! [TOM]
The map of course is the Columbia/Snake River system, with the Snake entering the Columbia just above the
elbow that sends the river west. The Columbia flows north into British Columbia and was fully mapped by the
last of the great Northwest Company explorers David Thompson. The name however was given by the first
American ship to explore around the west coast of North America, the Columbia. I know that two of the three
tributaries joining the Columbia from the south are the Willamette and the Klamath, but can't remember which is
which or what the third is. The Columbia represents most of the border between Oregon and Washington State,
although if the British had pressed the USA a bit more in 1844 it would have been the border between Canada
and the United States (the USA said 54 40, the Hudson's Bay company said the Columbia River, and the British
Foreign Office said to continued the border across the prairies through to the sea, which led to the anomaly that
is Point Roberts.
Speaking of the Columbia brings me to the subject of solar panels (oddly enough). The river is heavily dammed
for hydro-electric power -- this apparently explains why Boeing is in Seattle -- but it causes me to wonder what
Washington State policy is about making utilities buy excess power from homeowners. I know (thanks to "This
Old House") that in some US states utilities will buy excess power from private citizens who generate their own
power through solar cells, wind generators or, in a few cases, water powered generators. If Washington makes
utilities buy this sort of power (sorry, I'm not sure how things work down here -- my power is generated and
supplied by a government owned Crown Corporation) then surely front end costs of electrical generation could
be offset by sale of excess power, while the power generated would significantly reduce if not eliminate monthly
power company bills.
They're shooting a TV series here in Saskatoon for broadcast on something called the PAX network in the
United States. Since I subscribe to the rec.arts.tv newsgroup on the Internet I know that PAX has fair
penetration but is generally not highly thought of. The series, called "Body and Soul" wills tar Daphne Zuniga
(just wait till my spell checker gets hold of that name -- it came out as Zuni) and Peter Strauss, and will be
directed by Anson Williams. A few weeks ago they put out an open call for extras and as a lark I went down
and signed up. It was a pretty quick procedure once the line got moving. We were given forms to fill out
asking for name, address and phone numbers, as well as chest and waist measurement, whether we'd had acting
experience, if had any special skills and when we were available. Then we went into another room for a mug
shot (done with a digital camera). By "we" I mean the 2,000 or so people from around the city who showed up
hoping to get cast. My main reason for wanting to be on the show is simple -- extras get paid $140 a day for
every day they work. For that amount of money I'll do anything they want for as many days as I can get. I
haven't heard anything from them yet, so wish me luck.
Well, the Columbia flows south out of British Columbia into Washington, and the Klamath
originates in southern Oregon and flows through California into the Pacific Ocean; still, your
answer is worth seven points.
Looks like the Columbia River, maybe not at present but during the last ice age? Some details of your map and
the ones I found online are different.
Hmm. I should ask. I suspect that Washington isn't that advanced. Nevertheless, now that
you mention it, perhaps it would have made some sense. In order to get enough solar power
in the winter (we have cloud cover about 75% of the time), we'd have had to buy enough solar
panels to be able to sell lots and lots of electricity to the local Public Utility District in the
summer. But, in order to do so, we'd still have had to install the power line.
Luck with the movie company. The CS Monitor had an article last week which said, in effect,
that you extras are not paid nearly enough. [TOM]
Between my map predating satellite images and my obliterating the Puget Sound, I'd expect
some differences. Sorry, it's not from the Ice Ages. One point! [TOM]
Unfortunately real life has caught up with me. I cannot get "I Digress" out any time soon. I am in the middle
of moving & changing jobs. I have a pregnant wife I have to take care of. So ID is on hold.
I have run all the games. What I am going to do is the following:
1. Give "Goofy Golf" back to Scott Morris to GM. He may just run it faster than I can run mine, and may
publish faster than I could.
2. Try to get all the files for the next "ID" to Scott to publish as a part of a temporary "TFES".
3. Try to get back on track when things settle down.
I apologize for holding the games up. I know that I *hate* that as a player. I don't much like it as a GM either.
"ID" will rise again. It might not be for 6 months. If you can't be that patient, please let me know, and we'll
make some arrangements.
Also, I have a new email address. The firstname.lastname@example.org will go away around 1 August. By 22 July you
should be able to reach me at:
I'll keep everyone updated as I can.
Sounds like you are in major life-upheaval these days. Hang in there, friend, we're all behind
you! Given the cause of the changes, the end results will be well worth the present hassles.
Just watch out for stress breakdown! Congratulations on the impending "daddyhood"! [TOM]
Yea! for Good, Tim and Vince, well played!
I turned good for several reasons. First, I read the rules about the advantages Saruman gets for using the ring.
Not too hot, I concluded -- could be useful if I get a lot of centers. The only way I could see getting to that size
would be for me to join the good camp. The elves, Gondor, and Rohan didn't want anything to do with me as a
neutral and would have attacked to neutralize me if I had done anything suspicious, which would have thrown
the game to Mordor. I realize that the Saruman character should be a real pain in the butt, and that's how I
would have liked to play him, but circumstances wouldn't allow that in my opinion. Even if I had found the ring
while good (and I had hordes of half-orcs out searching with Whites Spectrum metal detectors), I doubt I would
have told anyone I had it till things got really dark ("It must be up in the Ice Bay of Forochel. I remember
reading somewhere that Isildur participated in a dog sled race before taking that short cut through the Gladden
Fields..."). It's just what Saruman would do. Further dampening my enthusiasm for the dark side was the memory
of Bellagonna, in which Saruman found the ring, stabbed, and got clobbered by Good. If memory serves me,
that variant had an even more attractive ring use package than does Hardbop Downfall, and Saruman still
couldn't pull it off.
Once I did go good, the first thing I was told was that Good had the Ring. Even with that advantage, it was still
going to be a tough fight once Umbar went evil and Gondor collapsed. Thankfully Bart concocted the Plan to
Destroy the Ring and solved the problem.