Biking, Odd Sermon, and Errands in Vienna

Posted by barb on Jun 27, 2004 in Around DC, Biking, Pictures

We went out on the bikes again today, though this time just up to Vienna for a few errands (a stop at the bike shop to get Andrew a kick stand and me a small bag to carry an extra inner tube and a few tools).

On the way, we took a picture of a sermon title Andrew had spotted earlier in the week:
Odd sermon on a nearby church

(I googled “+cat +bedpost +tie” and found the origin of this sermon title on several pages. Here is one called, The Center of Your Home. Do a search for “cat” on the page if you don’t want to read the entire sermon.

Andrew pointed out that this is similar to another urban legend where the bride cuts off the ends of the brisket because that’s the way her mother prepared it.)

Total miles: 8.0 miles


Pandamania, Trip 2

Posted by barb on Jun 26, 2004 in Around DC, Pictures

Our bike ride today took us directly past the Reagan National Airport, where there were four of the Pandamania pandas.

I’ve posted pictures on Flickr, but here’s my favorite panda not only at the airport, but so far in our hunting:
William Shakesbeare



Posted by barb on Jun 20, 2004 in Around DC, Pictures

Andrew and I decided to head out to DC this morning with our bikes and the map for this year’s city-wide art installation of Pandamania. So, we hopped the Metro to the Farragut West stop, with the intention of seeing all the panda’s in the northwest part of central DC.
I’ve posted pictures on Flickr, but here are a few of my favorites from our first trip out:

Kung Pao Panda

Kung Pao Panda

Bearra Cotta Bear

Bearra Cotta Bear



Pandragon I

Pandragon I

Pandora’s Panda

Pandora's Panda

Total distance: 7.2 miles


Alexandria, Again

Posted by barb on Apr 10, 2004 in Around DC

Andrew and I took the Metro down to Alexandria to visit the Torpedo Factory. My hope was to pick up something that I’d seen last week, but didn’t buy. Unfortunately, the artist wasn’t in the studio today. Sigh.

We did play around a bit, though. Andrew quite liked the Torpedo Factory, and has seconded my motion to save up next year (after the wedding expenses have disappeared) for some original art for the house.

(Funny comment from a boy, probably 10-12 years old, as he was walking past the sculptures on the stairway railing from the second floor: “And here we have a city of ugly people. And here’s a naked girl.” I wish I could have followed him around a bit longer…)

We stopped at the Olsson’s near the Torpedo Factory, and I found an entertaining book from 1936 entitled Back to Newton. In the introduction, the author, George de Bothezat, writes:

The generalization advanced by Einstein, as rigorously shown in this Essay, is most extravagant, being based upon a set of misunderstandings. Einstein’s fantastic conceptions have only involved Science into disconcerting sophistry based upon ill-founded arguments. It is with the thorough discussion and clarification of these misconceptions of Einstein that this Essay is concerned….

….It is only on account of a few weaknesses in the fundamentals of science that the erection of such a fallacious theory as the Einstein theory of relativity was rendered possible….

The Author of this Essay after mediating for more than twenty-five years over the fundamentals of Newtonian dynamics — one of the greatest cognitive creations ever conceived by a human mind — was able to eliminate these weaknesses, one by one. This once achieved it becomes evident — as was always felt by sound minds — that the whole of Einstein’s theories of relativity have no ground to stand on and really are but a stupendous delusion.

Hmmm…ever heard of de Bothezat? Me neither.

From the Torpedo Factory, we walked down King Street back toward the Metro, stopping in a few shops on the way. Just a couple blocks from the Metro is a used bookstore that we often forget about, since it’s off on a side street. Today we remembered, and popped in. Turns out they were having a moving sale — they’ll be moving around the corner onto King Street. That will probably be very good for their business (and very dangerous for Andrew and me).


DC’s Big Flea

Posted by barb on Mar 6, 2004 in Around DC, Pictures

I went the the DC Big Flea Market at the Dulles Expo Center today. I was expecting a flea market — mostly filled with other people’s junk where it takes a bit to scour through the booths and actually find something you like. Instead, I found what would be called an antique sale in Minnesota — what fun! (Here, in Virginia, it seems that an antique sale has to be hoity-toity stuff that no one actually buys.)

The flea market took up both of the buildings, which means it was HUGE! I found lots of things I could have bought — slide rules at several booths, a Pigs in Space lunch box, Empire Strikes Back thermos (though I don’t have the lunch box yet, so there’s still hope I could get the two together, and a few gifts for family (which I can’t mention, in case they read this).

In the second-to-last aisle, though, I found the piece du resistance. An armillary sphere. Andrew and I have looked at these before, but they are generally prohibitively expensive, so we figured we would have to wait until we were wealthy. I decided to look at the sphere, though, just to see how far out of my budget it was. But it wasn’t! I thought I had to be missing a number, but I wasn’t. I could afford it! Yay! Needless to say, I got it, and here’s a couple pictures:

Armillary Sphere


Yet Another Craft Show

Posted by barb on Nov 16, 2003 in Around DC

I got a post card from Moonlite Air Krafts , a vendor who makes very cute kids clothing, that she was going to be at a craft show at the Fairfax High School this weekend. I was a bit surprised, because last year I had seen her at the Dulles Expo Center (the show we went to yesterday). I love her clothes, though (and so do Dave and Jen and Mom and Dad), so I knew I had to go get something for my niece, Kira.

The show was a lot bigger than I was expecting. Since it was at a high school, I expected something relatively small, but the web page says that there were over 200 crafters there! I found an outfit for Kira, but also found something for my sister-in-law, and for a graduation present for my good friend Suzanne (who successfully defended her PhD dissertation last Monday). Andrew didn’t find anything to buy this time, but did look carefully at some oriental paintings.


Another Craft Sale

Posted by barb on Nov 15, 2003 in Around DC

As far as gifts are concerned, we did a lot better than the craft sale we went to last month. I found something for Grandma Mattson and Kira, and Andrew found some things for his parents. That means my list is just down to Kevin, David, Jennifer, Brock, Sweetie, and Melissa. Cool!

I, of course, found some things for myself, too. One thing was a folding table made of oak. It’s perfect for doing crafts, sewing, or wrapping presents, and then folds up and is quite portable. We also got a set of cat ornaments personalized with the names of our cats on them — a black one for Ares, tabby cat for Duncan, and a gray cat for Artemis. I’ve actually wanted these for a while, so it was nice to finally find ones that looked reasonably like our cats (usually I can’t find a solid black cat — they always have white “socks” and nose).


Craft Sale

Posted by barb on Oct 18, 2003 in Around DC, Pictures

I nearly fell over when Andrew said that he wanted to go to the craft show with Stef and me. I figured he’d be bored out of his mind, but he did want to look for a magazine basket for our living room, and thought he’d keep an eye out for gifts for his mom. So, Stef, Andrew and I went off to the Craftsmen Classic Craft Sale at the Dulles Expo Center this weekend. I spent way too much money, and only came home with one gift (unless you count the rest as a gift for myself).

Stef and I mostly led the way, with Andrew trying to keep track of the both of us. Stef was looking at pottery, natural wood items, and jewelry. I jumped from jewelry sites to wood furniture and painted items to anything that caught my eye. I hoped to find a cute outfit for my niece, since her birthday is in a couple weeks, but the lady I’ve bought from in the past was not at this sale — I think she might be at the one next month, so I can get a Christmas present.

The most fun item I found was a CD rack painted with stars and moons, by Sassafras Designs. This, I thought, would be the perfect thing to keep my data CDs in for my thesis. After traversing the rest of the sale, I dragged Andrew back, and we picked it up. He also got me a clock there, which was what had drawn me to the booth in the first place.

In the end, I don’t think Andrew was too bored, and I walked out with a fun haul. Andrew also found a nice basket and some hazelnut hot chocolate. Stef bought a few things, too, but I forgot to make her show me everything….oops, what kind of girl friend am I??

Here’s a picture of the CD rack, complete with my data CDs:
Cool CD Rack I bought at a craft sale


Arlington Planetarium

Posted by barb on Oct 11, 2003 in Around DC, Wedding

We went to see Just Imagine, a show at the Arlington Planetarium. I frankly wasn’t expecting much from such a small planetarium, but the show was quite good! It is broken up into four parts, each asking the viewer to explore different areas of astronomy.

The first section, Just Imagine A Sky Full of Stars, talks about the stars in the night sky, and the constellations. It points out that the pictures seen in various star groupings vary from place to place, and that no one way of describing those constellations is better than another. Astronomers have chosen 87 standard constellations, but only for convenience.

The second section, Just Imagine The Earth Without the Moon, discusses the effects that the moon has had on the Earth over it’s lifetime. The Moon caused the Earth’s rotation to slow, and also causes our tides. In addition, the Moon was our first target for extraterrestrial travel — perhaps without such a close extraterrestrial body, we would not have been so driven to travel off of our world.

The third section, Just Imagine The Last Days of the Universe, introduces the two main theories of the fate of the Universe: infinite expansion or eventual collapse. In the course, dark matter is briefly discussed, and a picture of what the night sky might look like in both scenarios is presented on some future world 15 billion years from now.

Finally, the fourth section, Just Imagine Our sun as a Different Star, talks about the different classes of stars, and how life might be different if our sun was not a run of the mill yellow star.

Overall it was an excellent show.

It also gave me the idea to explore how to fund a planetarium show that either focuses on women in astronomy or somehow relates to the missions I work on. I’m certain there could be a way to develop such a show through an E/PO grant through NASA.


Maryland Renaissance Faire

Posted by barb on Oct 5, 2003 in Around DC, Pictures

We decided to skip last year’s Renaissance Festival, because we’d burned out a bit the previous two years. But this year, we were ready to go back! Mushi brought along a new costume that she had sewn, and the rest of us wore our old costumes.

We didn’t end up spending as much time at the shows as we have in past years. I was worried that this would bore Andrew, but he seemed to have a good time shopping with us. The shows we did see were Renaissance Man: Stand-up Tragedy – Act I and Hilby the Skinny German Juggle Boy. I recommend both shows, but particularly Hilby. I think the best part of his act were his facial expressions — they reminded me a bit of my brother David when he and I used to practice funny faces together in front of the mirror. His finale was on a 9-foot tall unicycle, juggling a knife (with gum on the end that he was supposed to grab at some point and chew), a plunger and something else (can’t remember).

Melissa had never seen a joust, so we also went to one of the three jousts. The MD Ren Fest’s jousting arena is far from ideal, though. It’s only about two-thirds as long as it should be, causing the riders to have to stop short at either end. Of course, I love watching the horses — I’ve been a horse lover (though without the means to actually have horses, or the time to take care of any) for as long as I can remember.

Much of the day was spend shopping. We bought Andrew a print of an old map, which even I thought was really nice. The map is done in the shape of a lion, with the eastern-edge as the lion’s back (so north points to the right). We also got a new lamp for our guest room — the base has stars and moons carved into it, so will fit in with the decor perfectly. I got a new barrette for myself at a brass dealer, with a fairy and moon on it.

Mushi and I also catapulted frogs in one game, and threw knives at another game. Though, frankly we weren’t playing to win anything — just for the joy of throwing things.

I took only one picture the entire day — here is Mushi getting burned at the stake:

Mushi burned at the stake

Copyright © 2023 My Silly Life All rights reserved. Theme by Laptop Geek.