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Sunday, May 24, 2020

Doohan iTank Electric Scooter

Doohan iTank
I really enjoy riding my Vespa Scooter. It is fast - quiet - smooth - dependable. It is just approaching its first 1000 miles. But I have always wanted an electric one. I had one way back in 1975 - but it was not practical - slow and short range.

The Doohan iTank seems like a nice combination for an old rider. It has the added stability of two front wheels that articulate like a Jeep for off-read riding. This also adds braking and stability - something older guys need. It has 3 big disk brakes that are controlled hydraulically - not by cables.

It goes about 40 MPH with a range of 50 miles on a charge. You just plug it into a 110 volt outlet for a full charge in 6 hours.

It can easily haul two adults. The batteries can be charged in the scooter or taken out and charged in the home. The price is listed at $3500. Supposed there ia a company connected with Tesla - renting them out in Vegas.

Saturday, May 09, 2020

Graduation at FSU

She is so busy with other projects - like China - Germany - and her new book - sometimes I forget that Lulu is a full professor at Florida State University. She teaches classes like everyone else. So yesterday she participated in the spring graduation program a bit. Using live Internet - students and faculty celebrated the spring graduation. The professors dressed up in their caps and gowns and saluted their students. It is not the same - but it was very nice.

Lulu will not be teaching in London this summer - but no one else will be at the FSU Study Centre there. She will be doing a little grant work from home - the rest of the time we will be waiting for the plague to lift. This has not stopped Lulu from planning some new exciting projects. She keeps going and going.

Since Lulu started at FSU in 2004 - most of her classes have been taught online and at the graduate level. I have had the pleasure of seeing Lulu teach FSU classes back home from - Germany - Australia - France - Hong Kong - Iceland - New Zealand - Scotland - England - Italy - and Greece. Sometimes we frantically were searching out a free Internet connection to squat on minutes before class started.

No one knows when the plague will lift. Until a vaccine is found - we will enjoy things from the safety of our home. We miss the kids. Lulu had a trip scheduled to London and Paris for May - but it was cancelled by the airline. She was going to take her sister Lori to see the kids and tour Europe for the first time. There will be plenty of time for that later.

Congratulations to graduates all over. I am sorry the plague has rained on your parade.

Friday, May 01, 2020

Lovely Lulu Discovers Thinning Shears

Our Amazon thinning shears - $12
AFTER - Harry after the shearing - 72 is not pretty
I did not have a haircut since January when we arrived home from China. The plague has had us under quarantine. One thing about being an old man - hair grows everywhere - even from my teeth. I could not stand it anymore - so we went on Amazon - and ordered a pair of thinning shears. They are scissors designed to cut only some of the hair - leaving some a little longer to blend in.

Back in 1971 - Lulu tried to cut my hair once - to terrible results. I ended up taking it down to a buzz cut with dents. But now that Lulu's eyes are better - and I am really desperate - I figure that the only difference between a good haircut and a bad haircut is a month.

The worse part was getting Lulu used to opening the shears before she moved back from my head. If you back out with the shears closed it hurts as it plucks the hair. She got good at that about half way through. I kept reminding her to only take 1/4 inch - but I could see 2 inch long hairs falling like white snow.

I honestly think she did a good job - and could probably get better if she wanted to. She seems to like what she did - and you know me when it comes to a bargain.

BEFORE - You can't buy color like that
BEFORE - I may look like a Q-tip - but it is all me
AFTER - Harry the red neck

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

My Summer of 1968 Car - A 1960 MGA Twin Cam

1960 MGA Twin Cam - just like mine

In the summer of 1968 - I had just finished my second year at Kutztown State College. I was a broke college student - and took a job working at a Jewish Camp in the Pocono's. I was the canoeing trip counselor making $800 for 8 weeks. Of course my parents thought it was good to get me out of town. When the job was over they paid me all at once. I never had that much money. You would think I would have spent it wisely. I paid $650 for an MGA Twin Cam.

My car looked just like this restored one - same color - same wheels - same top. 

It is easily the prettiest car I ever had. The Twin Cam engine was a limited edition. They only made 2000 in 3 years. They built enough to qualify to race it at LeMans. It only made 115 HP but it was a very light car and was capable of 147 MPH when tuned to race. I remember getting it up to 110 MPH once right before it burned a hole in a piston. I learned really quickly how much a $650 sports car really costs you. It cost $235 to replace that piston - after spending weeks trying to find one. 

The car had 4 disk brakes - way ahead of its time. It sounded great and had a poor heater. It did not have seat belts or head restraints. One thing I really liked - you could hand crank start it. I would do that in crowded areas and in 1968 - it drove the old guys wild. I got lots of stories from guys and their old Model T's. 

My friend visited yesterday in his MG Midget. It certainly jogged the good times - and bad times. 

I drove it in 1968 and 1969. The next summer after 3 months of being a life guard at the Bungalow Pool and meeting Lulu - I bought a brand VW beetle. I went from 110HP to 50HP. That summer I took that Beetle to Woodstock and Miami Beach in August. 

Knock off disk wheels with disk brakes

What a pretty body

The Twin Cam engine looked like a V8 - but it was just a 4. 

The Twin Cam badge - a status symbol

Nancy's New Book Will Be Released in September

My lovely wife Dr Nancy Everhart is a professor of library science at Florida State University. Her latest book is being released this September.

Nancy started her career as a school librarian in the Tamaqua Public Schools. She went on to be a professor in library science at St Johns University in New York City for 10 years. When I retired from teaching - she was recruited by FSU - and in 2004 - we started our new life in Tallahassee.

In January - we just returned from a 6 month stint in China - where she was a Fulbright Scholar teaching at Beijing Normal University. Three years before that we spent 3 months in Berlin where she was a DAAD Fellowship Scholar at Humboldt University. We have spent 8 summers in London and 7 summer in Hawaii where she taught summer courses in library media.

A rolling stone gathers no moss.

Everhart Book on Amazon

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Today JP Visited With His 1963 MG Midget

JP took this picture with the drone

My friend JP owns an MG Midget. Today he visited. We sat on the porch - at a distance - and had take-out lunches. It was such a pretty day - great weather for this tiny convertible.

In 1964 - one could buy a Midget for $2400. It weighed 1600 pounds and had 60 HP. This gave it a top speed of 80 MPH. The top was a frame that you would snap on a canvas cover. The windows were sliders - there were no door handles.

This car was produced during the years of the Beatles invasion. If you look carefully you can see a British flag on the side of the car. In 1963 I was 15 years old and eagerly waiting for my chance to drive. When I went to Kutztown State College in 1966 - there was a sports car dealer there - and I would visit the showroom often. Even though the car was $2400 then - in 1970 I signed my first teacher contract for $6500 a year. When I did graduate I bought a brand new MGB - for $2950. It was like a half year of salary.

A heater was an option - no roll up windows

Monday, April 27, 2020

I Just Sold This Roaster For $20

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My grandmother - Bertha Hontz - was a wonderful lady. We called her Mammy. She married Roy Hontz after her first husband Roy Everhart died. But my biggest memory of Mammy was her making a cooked lunch for my sisters and I while we attended Tamaqua Schools. In those days she lived on Broad Street in Tamaqua - and kids used to rush home for lunch every day from school. I went to North Ward School - the red Junior High on Broad Street - and the old High School on High Street.

Mammy's favorite kitchen appliance was a Roaster like this one. Hers was the floor model that wheeled around on coasters. Westinghouse made them. Mammy cooked everything in hers. I loved the steamed buns for hot dogs and barbecues. I guess the roaster has been replaced by the "modern" crock pot. 

My friend Joan has a whole bunch of household items she wanted to sell. She is cautious about people coming to her house - so I am selling them for her. I have my own little showroom in our detached garage. A lady came all the way from Quincy to buy the roaster. It turns out she is a public school teacher too.

Moon and Venus Lined Up Last Night

Moon and Venus

Here is an iPhone picture of the Moon and Venus lined up above our home in Tallahassee. Since we removed a dozen pine trees - we have some pretty views of the daytime and nighttime skies.

Some people ask if we miss the shade. Our wide front and back porches keep the direct sunlight out except for sunrise and sunset.

We also get to see many more birds now. As they say - we could see the forest for the trees.