Leftover Pasta Idea

I had some nice tagliatelle and spinach pasta left over in the fridge for a few days. I was wondering how best that I could use it. Then the idea struck me -- I could make a luncheon soup out of this. I heated up some chicken broth and dumped the pasta leftovers in. After letting it come to a boil to let the flavors come together, it was an amazing soup! Great way to use the holiday leftovers.

Dr. Murray Gell-Mann in Nassau

I have been invited to listen to a talk by Dr. Murray Gell-Mann in Nassau. Dr. Gell-Mann won the Nobel Prize in Physics for discovering the quark. Unfortunately, I will not return to Nassau in time for the talk. This would have been the second Nobel Laureate that I would have met in the Caribbean. The first was Dr. Derek Walcott who won the Nobel Prize for Literature.

Canoes in Hibernation

Even the canoes go into hibernation in the cold boreal forest winter on the river. This photograph was shot in the Gatineau Hills of Quebec on the Gatineau River near Chelsea Quebec, in Canada.

A Yuletide Pine Tree

I took this photo on Christmas day under a pine tree in the Meech Creek Valley of Quebec. Hope that everyone is having a happy holiday season.

Retro Comics -- The Teenie Weenies

This reference material comes from Wikipedia:

The Teenie Weenies, a comic strip about two-inch tall people living under a rosebush, created and illustrated by William Donahey first appeared in black and white in the women's section of the Chicago Tribune on June 14, 1914. The comic strip ran as a one panel story with a picture until 1923.
Donahey drew the comic strip until October 26, 1924 when it was then temporarly discontinued. Donahey's comic characters then went into advertising when the newspaper feature was stopped.

On September 24, 1933, the daily comic strip was added again to the Chicago Tribune newspaper. It went then only for about a year and was suspended again on December 2, 1934. On May 18, 1941, the Sunday comic strip feature came back permanently.[4] It continued until Donahey's death. Donahey retired in 1969. The last newspaper comic strip episode appeared February 15, 1970. Donahey died February 2 of the same year and never saw the last episode published.

Retro Comics -- They'll Do It Every Time

According to Wikipedia: They'll Do It Every Time was a single-panel newspaper comic strip, created by Jimmy Hatlo and distributed by King Features Syndicate. It first appeared on February 5, 1929 and ran until February 2, 2008. The title of the strip became a popular catchphrase, still used today by many people who have no idea of its origin.

Since Jimmy Hatlo died in 1963, and this one is from 1964, it was drawn by Al Scaduto and Bob Dunn.

Retro Comics -- Ripley's Believe It or Not

Ripley's Believe It or Not started in 1919 by Robert L. Ripley. Ripley died in 1949 of a heart attack (believe it or not) but the franchise continues today with books, radio, TV and other media. This panel is from 1964 when Ripley himself was already dead for 15 years.

Retro Comics -- The Flibbertys

Usually I am able to find entries on Wikipedia about retro comics. This one, The Flibbertys has no Wiki entry. There is not a lot of information about it on the web. I did find one site:


and this is what they had to say:

"Born in New York, Ray Helle worked in the type design department of Mergenthaler Linotype. He attended the Pratt Institute and did free lance gag cartoons until 1941. He served in Europe during the War. He continued to do gag cartoons until 1954. He created the strips 'The Flibbertys' and 'Box Seat' for the Chicago Tribune. He self-syndicated the strip 'Sam & Ellie'. He also did 'Pet Parade' and 'Life With Lucky' for the National Enquirer. He semi-retired in 1989."

Programming Computers Back in the Day -- Flowcharting

When I started programming computers, it was using the language COBOL. We had to draw a flowchart of each program before we could begin coding. This is my flowchart template from back in the day. Flowcharting is no longer used, because programs are not one long linear program, but broken down into smart objects, units and methods. The programs today are more complex, but are written in smaller chunks or functions.

Retro Comics -- Sideshow

Sideshow was a panel cartoon drawn by Bill Keane, the same cartoonist who does Family Circus -- see entry below. It consists of puns sent in by readers. In 1975, Keene was getting 25,000 entries per year. The name Sideshow is also a pun, because it appeared beside his main cartoon Family Circus.

Retro Comics -- The Family Circus

The Family Circus made its first appearance on February 29th (a leap year obviously) in 1960. It is still in production and it appears in over 1,500 newspapers. This one is from 1964 (again).

Retro Comics -- Henry

Henry was another comic strip started in the 1930's. Carl Anderson was 67 years old when it began. In 1942, Anderson was too old to draw and it was turned over to Don Trachte and John Liney. Anderson died in 1948, and this 1964 version is drawn by Don Trachte, who continued the strip until he died in 2005. The strip is still in syndication. Henry is a mute and never says anything in the strip.

Retro Comics -- Nancy

Nancy is a classic comic that I followed as a kid. It started in 1922 when the character appeared in a Fritzi Ritzi comic and in 1925 Ernie Bushmiller took it over. In the 1970's it was in over 880 newspapers and the US Postal Service created a stamp with this comic character. This particular strip is from 1964 (again!).

Retro Comics -- Mandrake the Magician

Apparently Mandrake the Magician is still going strong. It first appeared in 1934. Both Falk and Davis who did this 1964 version are both dead. Falk died in 1964, the same year as this cartoon, and Davis died in 1999. The strip is currently written and drawn by Fred Fredericks. I must admit that I haven't seen it lately.

Retro Comics -- Terry and the Pirates

Continuing in my series of retro comics from 1964, above is Terry and the Pirates. It was started by Milton Caniff on October 22, 1934. Caniff left the strip in 1946 to create Steve Canyon. The strip is based on Terry Lee, and American boy in China. By the time of the strip's end on February 25, 1973, Terry had grown up, joined the military and achieved the rank of Colonel.

Retro Comics -- Steve Canyon

Continuing my 1964 series of retro comics in the weekend supplement of a major newspaper, we have Steve Canyon. The strip was created after Milton Caniff left Terry and the Pirates to have more creative control over his cartoons.

Steve Canyon was an air force type and this was an adventure strip. Steve Canyon ran from January 13, 1947 until June 4, 1988, shortly after Caniff's death.

Top Yahoo Searches

Yahoo published its top ten searches for 2010. Here is the canonical list:

The top Yahoo searches of 2010 are:
1. The Gulf of Mexico oil disaster
2. The World Cup soccer tournament
3. Pop singer Miley Cyrus
4. Reality TV star Kim Kardashian
5. Singer Lady Gaga
6. Apple's iPhone
7. Actress Megan Fox
8. Singer Justin Bieber
9. "American Idol"
10. Singer Britney Spears

It shows you exactly what society is interested in the most. It's not a very promising list in terms of how enlightened society is.

Updated: One of the top searches anywhere is for pictures of Jared Lee Loughner, the Arizona shooter of lawmaker Giffords, posing with a red G-String. So here it is:

Retro Comics -- Moon Mullins

I never did follow Moon Mullins as a kid. From Wikipedia: "Moon Mullins ran from June 19, 1923 to June 2, 1991. Syndicated by the Chicago Tribune/New York News Syndicate, the strip depicts the lives of diverse lowbrow characters who reside at the Schmaltz (later Plushbottom) boarding house. The central character, Moon (short for Moonshine), is a would-be prizefighter—perpetually strapped for cash but with a roguish appetite for vice and high living. Moon took a room in the boarding house at 1323 Wump Street in 1924 and never left, staying on for 67 years."

Apparently this comic had great success, but I wasn't a fan.

Classic Retro Comics -- Little Orphan Annie

Little Orphan Annie ran from 1924 to 2010. This sample here is drawn in 1964 by Harold Gray who was the originator of the cartoon.

Retro Comics -- Prince Valiant

Prince Valiant is next in my series of 1964 retro comics. The story line was ongoing and continuous and you needed to follow it from one week to the next. I never did, and maybe the lack of continuity is why it was never popular for me. The comic had exquisite quality, but it was maybe unsuited for the slap-dash newspaper medium. This particular comic was printed blurry on my paper copy. Maybe the detail was too fine for the printing press.

Classic Retro Comics -- Buck Rogers

Again from the April 1964 series, this is the classic Buck Rogers. I do admit that hockey-playing Martians stretched the credibility factor.

Retro Comics -- Bringing Up Father

This was a comic that I never got. "Bringing Up Father" didn't appeal to me. However it was in the 1964 weekend supplement, so it is part of my display of retro comics.

According to Wikipedia, Bringing Up Father was an influential American comic strip created by cartoonist George McManus (1884–1954). Syndicated by King Features, it ran for 87 years, from January 12, 1913 to May 28, 2000.

Retro Comics -- Abbie 'n Slats

I am bent on digitizing an example of every comic that appeared in the weekend supplement in April of 1964. Today's comic is "Abbie 'n Slats" featuring Bathless Groggins by Raeburn Van Buren. This is one comic that I didn't follow back in the day.

Retro Comics -- Mr. Abernathy

Continuing in my series of documenting what the colour comics weekend supplement was in April of 1964, we have the toon, Mr. Abernathy. This was one of my favourites.

Retro Comics -- Right Around Home With Myrtle

I scanned the whole color comics weekend edition from April 4, 1964 and this is one in the continuing series. It is Right Around Home With Myrtle. It is a very busy comic -- just one panel.

Facebook Bug Disabling Accounts

Facebook has announced that they have had a bug that disabled accounts, mainly female. The bug manifested itself by locking users. I have an idea what this may be about. For the past few days, I have been getting messages from women, new users directing me to an email address and website. The profile pictures were of nude women in seductive poses. I kept reporting these to Facebook as I suppose thousands of others did. My guess is that the introduced bug was to block these spammers.

Retro Comics -- The Heart of Juliet Jones

I remember this series in my local hometown newspaper. It was just "Juliet Jones" in the daily strip, and the big event for me was when Juliet got married to Owen Cantrell the lawyer. Google informs me that Owen was murdered in the strip in 1985. By that time comics were no longer of interest to me. This one is from the 1964 series.

Retro Comics - Scamp

Continuing in the series what cartoons appeared in the comics section of 1964, we have "Scamp" drawn by Walt Disney. It was a particularly clean, high quality cartoon with great attention to detail.

Retro Comics - Dick Tracy

Continuing in the series of retro comics from 1964, we have Dick Tracy. The comic strip made it debut on October 4, 1931. It was created by Chester Gould who drew it until 1977.

Retro Comics - Blondie

I found an old Sunday supplement of comics from April of 1964, and this is the Blondie comic strip as done by Chic Young. I believe that it still continues today and is being drawn by Chic Young's son. Click on the image for a larger version.

Retro Comics -- Lil Abner

This is what the April 4, 1964 Li'l Abner comic by Al Capp looked like in the weekend supplement to the newspaper.