Ted’s essays

the good doctor is in

The saga of my back injury continues. Not healing fast enough, I started hankering for a good Chiropractor. Note: I was not wishing for an AMA-licensed drug-pusher or knife-wielder as neither seemed the right prescription for what I am pretty confident is a badly bruised or squished disc and muscular-skeletal reaction to it. I was much more interested in someone who would actually LISTEN to me rather than TELL me. I have plenty of experience with both types calling themselves “Doctor”. One can be quite useful, but the other is worse than useless as they are simultaneously annoying, incorrect and expensive. Speaking of expensive… it will all be out of pocket for me (I’m one of THOSE that your presidente’ […]

Conn 6H … post Brasso

I have been lukewarm about the new old horn I got from The Salvation Army. I warmed up to it a little bit, but the difference between it and the much younger Japanese clone of it that I’ve had for 25 years were subtle. Then there was the cosmetic issue. The ’58 has had a long, perhaps glorious life and showed her age. Lacquer stained from some big, ugly spill around the bell and many spots, streaks and patches of oxidized brass. Research led me to attempt stripping the lacquer off and go au natural, which many brass musicians prefer for the sound. If I don’t like it in unpainted brass, it is the first step in putting a […]


I have invented a new tool. I think I’ll call it “The Bicycle”. Ya’see, I was ruminating on my lack of healing progress when I recalled doing so well a while ago that I began riding my bicycle – up to 9 miles (which I decided immediately was a mile or two beyond ideal). I was better then. What changed? Hmmm… how about if the bicycling itself actually helped? What the heck. Climb on my bike in spite of the back pain. Stop if it gets worse. Continue if not. Movement in that low-back/upper-hip area might just be THE THING. 4.5 miles later I was a whole lot better. I mean, the best I’ve been in weeks. I’m officially on […]

* winners *

Inadequately recovered from my back injury, I am unable to build up my share of the firewood needed to put heat in our workshop this winter. A cold shop is no more useful in a Montana winter than a tool storage unit. Problem! (or three) A recent deal turning troublesome bull into a full freezer has us with so much ground beef that we need to eat 2.77 one-pound packages every week in order to have it gone while it is still fresh. Nuther Problem! My neighbor scratches to feed four hungry mouths doing various odd jobs. This time of year he is delivering cord wood he’s been putting up. This morning I woke up with a happy marriage of […]

healing food

In the category of “note to self” is the article below. I’m nearing the end of my 5th month of back pain and getting darn fed up with the handicap, not to mention the pain. Every once in a while the combination of icing it two or three times a day, a few ibuprophens a day and weeky massage therapy get me to thinking I’m almost good again. Then my empty little head takes that message and puts the body to work … carefully, of course … and, probably much worse, eliminates the icing, ibuprophen and physical therapy. Ouch! Completely useless again … still … more than a little annoyed … and moderately concerned that I’m not making the progress […]


I have several active websites. You have found one or more of them. If you appreciate the value they provide, consider lending your support. Owning, operating and publishing costs money – out of my pocket money. I do it for much the same reasons that chickens lay eggs: I simply am compelled to (communicate). This stuff is inside me. I need to express it. Primarily, I feel it my calling to offer counterpoint to the inane, anti-logic and counter-common-sense that fills the mainstream media today. You and your enterprise can be known for supporting these websites by those who also appreciate them. Expose your business to an interested, thoughtful and intelligent audience. Get your ad seen over 50,000 times […]

autumn planting

May work – may not. Winter lettuce and bok choi in little planters now decorate our entry. Today’s planting project was removing the window boxes still hanging on the sides of our house. Then, what the heck, we have soil, boxes and a crowded patch of seedlings I started in my first three boxes. We filled a fresh one and transplanted into it. One down, three to go. Gotta let tonight’s freeze go by first.

heat’s on

Once upon a time I had a house built to my specifications… on 7 acres, south facing hill, creek optional. Taking advantage of the southern side with plenty of glass, I heated it with the only choice I had built into it – a wood stove. On cold nights (Sonoma County cold where it actually gets TO freezing) I would drink extra water before retiring for the night and refill the woodstove when I got up to relieve myself in the middle of the night… somewhat a semi-auto thermostat. In every house since then, heat has been electric or gas. In every case, I removed the old thermostat and replaced them with programmable ones. In most cases there were other […]

storage unit

In March we accepted an offer to store our stuff in a hanger 7 some miles away from our new home while we got shop space built and organized ourselves in our new world. The offer ran out and we had to move out. It has been a bit of a rush all along, but the last week was a serious push. A huge amount of dry storage has been a prize and a great gift. We will forever be grateful to Merl for what he gave us. We certainly owed him the honor of getting the heck out in the time frame he requested. Yet Ma Nature has a way of wrecking things you don’t protect from the elements… […]

where to stash your cash

In the social media realm, I do spend some time hanging out at The Trombone Forum where I find folks who love The Instrument Of The Gods as much and more than I do. I tend to avoid political and economic discussions as the prevailing mentality is strongly statist, socialist and fascist. Kind of like at the family or neighborhood gathering where you simply don’t discuss politics and religion. But every once in a while my reserve is weak and I kick their comfortable mythology in the teeth. I rarely don’t regret it as the massive dog pile that lands on my post reminds me of just how popular is the faith in Big Brother among music teachers, music professors […]

Ham radio classes – every Saturday in October

Bitterroot Amateur Radio Club is presenting classes in the Darby Library Saturday, October 5, 12, 19, 26 scheduled from 2:00 – 5:00 At the end of the class session, perhaps the following Saturday, there will be FCC license testing for Technician, General and Extra licenses. There are no class fees, but the books cost $29.95 and the testing is $15 to the FCC. The instructors who normally hold their classes in Hamilton and Stevensville are bringing their school to Darby for the first time. This is wonderful for us and very nice of them. Again I mention, they charge nothing for their classes, time or travel. I don’t know, but maybe they like cookies. Anyone attending all the classes AND […]

winter approaches

Autumn weather is here – solidly. Winter is right there on the visible horizon… I wrote that metaphorically, but living in the shadow of the Bitterroots, the snow in them-thar hills put the coming white blanket in the forefront of my mind. It was the end of March when Missy reported her job was untenable. That triggered a MAJOR life change. One more a realization of our deep-felt wishes than transportation to a new life. The results, however, have been dramatic. The pluses are huge. The challenges pale in comparison. We regularly realize our cabin on the river is very much a desirable vacation destination – and we get to live here every day of the year. As busy as […]