Tuesday, September 17, 2013


Why can medical science make it possible to change your gender, but it can't cure cancer?

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Made a Visit to Fort Monroe & the Casemate Museum

I won't lie...I went to the Casemate Museum and Fort Monroe in Hampton, VA just because it was free. It was kind of like an unofficial, non-listed entry on my bucket list.

"Completed in 1834, Fort Monroe was originally designed to protect the Hampton Roads waterway from an enemy attack and is the largest stone fort in America. Within the fort is the Casemate Museum, which chronicles the military history of Fort Monroe from the construction of Fort Algernourne, the first defensive fortification at the site in 1609, through the last major command to be headquartered at Fort Monroe, the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command. The museum features the room where Jefferson Davis’ was held briefly as prisoner following the American Civil War, highlights Major General Benjamin Butler’s Contraband of War decision that granted refuge to 3 escaped slaves, and tells the history of the US Army Coast Artillery Corps. No longer an active military base, Fort Monroe is open to the public and admission to the Casemate Museum is free."

The whole area is just gorgeous, the architecture is amazing, and the museum is actually pretty cool. I was glad that I went.

There was a sign in the museum that said the archways were actually built according to the average height of men back during the Civil War. It was about 5'8", in case you were wondering. Not a whole lot of head room here, and I'm 5'5".

It took a lot of self control to not steal one of these possibly authentic bricks for my own rock garden. But it felt wrong so I didn't try.

I thought this little theater was just beautiful and so well maintained. Who knows what it looked like on the inside, but I would have loved to gone in. It was locked up tight.

Still Working on the Bench

Because I'm still in a bit of a bad mood lately (still from my family's overall health situations), I hadn't been working on the bench lately. I've been sulking in the house. But I'm trying to get over that the best I can, so I've started back on the  bench again.

I bought some twisted looking wood trim for the front and sides, to hide those raw plywood edges somewhat. I'm also doing some additional re-staining in some spots, right over the last coat of poly. I'm going to poly it again once I'm satisfied with the new stain. Because the trim is a different kind of wood than the rest of the bench, it came out as dark brown once stained, but I think that's still looking alright. Also, for some weird reason, the underside of the bench lid, open there in the second picture, came out brown there too, even though the top part of it, in the first picture, came out red.

Wood and stains are an interesting combination. It's like the butterfly effect. :) "In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions in which a small change at one place in a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state. The name of the effect, coined by Edward Lorenz, is derived from the theoretical example of a hurricane's formation being contingent on whether or not a distant butterfly had flapped its wings several weeks earlier." Did the underside of the lid turn a different color from the stain than the top part because I let it sit for so long in a non-temperature controlled environment? Or is it just because the new can of stain I bought mislabeled? Is the moisture level in the lid different because of how it was sitting for a couple days? Or am I over thinking all this?