The rumor mill has it that BMW might bring back it’s Isetta micro car as a challenger to the Smart brand. When I was a kid, this was about the cheapest “car” you could own. In Ireland, where the taxes on cars were very high, the three-wheeled version was licensed as a motorcycle which made it even more inexpensive to run. The local bank manager owned one. ISO (the original designer of the car, based in Spain), Velam (in France), Romi (in Brazil) all produced an Isetta. BMW bought the rights to produce it from ISO and then added their own BMW drivetrain from their motorcycle. Heinkel (these were even produced in Ireland for a short time) and Messerschmitt also produced tiny, motorcycled engined cars. The cars had only one door and it encompassed the entire front. The Bruce Weiner Microcar Museum has the world’s largest collection of microcars and is based in Madison, Georgia.
Archive for January, 2010
It’s the 100th anniversary of the passing of Mr. Thomas Crapper. While not the inventor of the toilet (by John Harrington in 1596), Mr. Crapper is known as the grandfather of toilets. He did much to revolutionise the indoor convenience. Surprisingly, the term “crap” did not derive from his name but from the Dutch word “krappe,” which came into use centuries before the birth of this savior of our nostrils.
The company has been reborn and is now based in Stratford-upon-Avon.
All in a days work at the Crapper factory.
Some people just can’t stand creepy crawlies. Whether it’s a mouse, a roach, or a bee, it can send an otherwise tough guy or gal running for cover. But there’s always someone around who can save the day.
It’s that time of year for college students (and professors, including me), break’s over, back to school. Most of my students are really interested in the class as it is vital to their future career. There is the occasional exception . . .
We interrupt this blog to bring you an important message:
Do you know a college student that enjoys cartooning? Take a moment to send him or her the link to the National Cartoonists Society Jay Kennedy Memorial Scholarship, http://www.cartoonistfoundation.org/jay-kennedy-scholarship.html. They don’t have to be an art major to apply!
One of our cats hates the weekends. That’s because, during the week, she gets something to eat at about 5:30 a.m. On Saturday or Sunday, she has to wait until 8:30 or 9. She expresses her displeasure with an initial tap on the nose with her paw. If that doesn’t have the desired effect, she comes leaping onto the bed. If you’re on your side the leap is not too much of an issue, but if you happen to be lying on your back, having a 15 pound cat land directly on your stomach does tend to awaken you.
A few years ago, neighbors of ours were burgled. The next day, two detectives arrived at the door to be greeted with the barking and howling of three dogs. When we were asked if we had heard anything during the night, we responded, truthfully, that we hadn’t. With our dogs persistent barking, I don’t think the police believed us. I’m sure they thought we didn’t want to get involved. But the burglars had parked their van in the driveway and entered through the neighbor’s garage which was on the opposite end of the property. Besides if the dogs had barked, we probably would have told them to be quiet.
I know where Doctor Frankenstein went wrong. He should have known better than to use a human brain. He should have brought a golden retriever’s brain back to life in the monster. Friendly, supportive, a great protector and all too willing to please. Something along the lines of Lon Cheney Jr. in My Favorite Brunette (about 5 1/2 minutes into this clip).
Working around the house can be more dangerous than you might expect. There are times when it’s much better, and cheaper, to call in a professional.
Normally, around here, the pets get fed before the humans. On the odd occasion when the reverse is true, they start to panic.