Monthly Archives: February 2011

Arkansas earthquakes

They’re blaming it on natural gas fracking, but there’s a far scarier explanation than that: the New Madrid Earthquakes of 1811-1812. We discussed these quakes when I was studying geology back in college. At least in 1975, there was no good plate tectonics explanation for them but they were huge. Had anyone lived in the area back then, losses would have been enormous. Well people do live there now, from Tennessee and west and north. This series of three quakes made anything that’s hit California since look like child’s play.

4 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Better than real estate or Wall Street fraud

Scam a $1 million from a bingo game, do not  go to jail. Walt, if you aren’t too busy these days, I sense a profit opportunity here.

Comments Off

Filed under Uncategorized

If Malloy wants other people’s money to fund rebuilding the New York-Boston corridor, I know where he can find it

Danno is hoping to glom onto Florida’s share of railroad money now that that that state has rejected it. Why not kill the railroad to nowhere and redirect funds from the New Haven – Hartford line to where there is a demand? Why is this so difficult to understand?

13 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

If you enjoy this kind of humor

 Then I highly recommend this review of Harlem’s Sylvia’s Chicken joint, written by a white liberal tourist.

ALL I CAN SAY IS YUMMMMM

 I had always known about Sylvia’s but heard mixed reviews. I must say that the food was scrumptious. I had fried chicken, barbeque ribs, macaroni & cheese, candied yams, and collard greens. HAVE MERCY. Loved the fact that I met Sylvia’s daughters and even grandsons. I definitely loved it. Loved the pictures lining the walls showing the history of the restaurant and all who have visited. A REAL Harlem Establishment. Must support family owned business…a dying breed. Especially ones that stay true to their cause.

 

And again, if you like this stuff then you must, absolutely must read Red Sky at Morning, set in New Mexico during WW II, depicting charming southern women joining in Negro spirituals, waving their arms in the air and shouting “hallelujah”.  Have mercy indeed.

8 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Nice guy

Soccer player kicks other team’s wounded owl mascot. Hang ‘em high.

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Carbon footprints are for little people

Obummer and Michelle have been flying their Chicago personal trainer into Washington once a week for at least the past year. Doubtless he’s fed those locally – grown veggies from Michelle’s back yard, so I guess it’s alright, eh?

It’s not just the hypocrisy I find galling; it’s also that it never occurs to people like this that the rules they prescribe for the rest of us could possibly apply to them.

14 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Jimbo Himes to take on IBM’s Watson tonight

He’s asked for brain limbering exercises. I’d suggest he quit the Demmerkrat party this afternoon but I’m sure the damage has been done. Maybe he should go hide in Illinois.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

When Irish eyes aren’t smiling

Irish real estate developer shut down in Belle Haven. This was a pretty standard trick in town for years, exceeding your renovation specs. I’d like to think the town has finally gotten wise to it but more likely, it’s just a lesson not to mess with rich Belle Haven neighbors.

22 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

While I was away

14 Baldwin Farms South, that foreclosed spec house off Round Hill Road, went to contract. It started at $9 million plus, dropped down substantially after Patriot Bank took it over, but none of my clients could get over the swamp in its front yard. Still, it was nice enough once you got inside, and I guess the price was right for someone.

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

What are sellers thinking?

There’s a new listing posted today at a couple of hundred thousand (around 10%) more than the sellers paid for it in 2006. No mention of any improvements, so I assume that the sellers and their agent think we’ve bounced back from 2006 and are off to new highs. I bet they’re wrong.

6 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Only in San Francisco do they think their s’**t doesn’t stink

“Low-flow” toilets causing sewage pipes to clog in the people’s republic. So now they’re dumping raw bleach into San Francisco Bay. These folks are steadily destroying an infrastructure built over a hundred years, and I couldn’t be more pleased. But let’s not let them escape California’s borders.

Comments Off

Filed under Uncategorized

So here’s a cheery solution to global warming

“Small” nuclear war would cool the planet for decades. I don’t think even Al Gore would go this far, would he?

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

The answer is, authorize private citizens to shoot them on sight

Washington plans on doing nothing about pirates. Okay, if governments are helpless to do anything, amend the laws on piracy to allow ships to carry deadly armaments and to employ those weapons whenever they encounter Somalis 1,000 miles offshore armed with rocket grenades. These aren’t fishermen: kill them.

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

No wonder my ancestors fled Holland

The NYT writes about a “hamburger”chain in Holland that features a six-inch-thick contraption, replete with truffles, sixteen kinds of cheeses and a wooden shoe. And it costs $2o bucks. And no french fries! Whatever it is they’re selling over there, it’s not a hamburger.

A hamburger, to riff on that old joke about Queen Elizabeth, must fit in my mouth. If you need a knife and fork to dissect it, you’ve moved into the category of pot roast, or something. The best hamburgers I make involve the use of a hamburger press and an 85/15% mix of ground hamburger, served on a sandwich-sized English muffin, a slice of red onion, salt, pepper and ketchup. That’s a hamburger. Anything else is some effete version of Dutch/New York Times food.

Not a "hamburger"

5 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Here’s a ray of hope

Al Qaeda has played no part in the current revolutions.

For nearly two decades, the leaders of Al Qaeda have denounced the Arab world’s dictators as heretics and puppets of the West and called for their downfall. Now, people in country after country have risen to topple their leaders — and Al Qaeda has played absolutely no role.

There’s still time for Al Qaeda to worm its way back into the chaos, but some folks are cautiously optimistic that the murderous thugs are increasingly irrelevant. Hope so.

4 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

More on Bernie Madoff

New York Magazine is out with a nine-page article on Madoff, including interviews with Bernie himself. The man is still lying, and still without remorse, which comes as no surprise.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Cos Cob comes to Old Greenwich?

All winter there’s been a big, bright yellow earth excavator machine parked in the back yard of a house across the creek. At first, I thought its owner was waiting for the dirt to thaw before performing whatever job needed to be done and then moving on, but as the months have dragged on, I’ve begun to wonder.

It’s been a long time for that expensive machine to sit idle, and perhaps a denizen from across the Mianus hit the Lotto, bought a house among his betters and is now busy decorating it so that he’ll feel at home. If a couple of broken-down boat trailers and an RV join the backhoe, I guess we’ll know. Regardless, welcome to the neighborhood!

26 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

The state of the market

I was out showing houses today (actually, my partner Cathy Farricker was doing the showing while I just tagged along) and I was impressed by what we saw. More important, so were our clients. We saw a number of houses that had started out at $3 million or so and are now down below $2.5.  That’s pretty good, especially the one that sold for $3.2 at the height of market, had $600,000 in renovations performed as is now at that magic 2 1/2 million figure. (I’d give its address but my clients really liked it and i don’t need the competition).

There’s probably still more room for price reductions but it’s been heartening these past couple of weeks to have a pretty good invemtory of reasonably-priced houses to show clients. Buyers want value and if I can show them that then everyone’s happy. I’m cautiously optimistic that we’re going to have a good spring market.

15 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

I’ll order a dozen with a double arsenic topping

People of the world donate pizzas to striking Wisconsin teachers.

47 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Look, get a big dog

Five-pound Pomeranian serves as an appetizer for two coyotes. What use is a bitsy guinea pig? Our wonderful Lab, Casey the Wonder Dog , weighed in at over 100 pounds, kept burglars away, protected our children  and would have eaten these predators for lunch.

14 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized