Thursday, December 29, 2011

Tab-Clearing

Some good stuff in this one:

There's a new indoor range in town! Not huge and hours are somewhat limited, but hooray nonetheless, and a big welcome for Indy Trading Post! Quite a remarkable achievement to get all the permits for an indoor range inside the Indy metro and they are to be commended for seeing it through.

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Y'know who was a complex, self-described "difficult man?" Big-band leader Artie Shaw -- left-leaning in politics, a sharpshooter and the man who made Cole Porter's Begin the Beguine a hit. (He came to dislike the song.*) Throughout his career, he tended to take long sabbaticals whenever the mood struck; reportedly, he once did so in the middle of a performance. He did some writing, too, which I'd like to have a look at.

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Dija know Charles Ponzi wrote an autobiography? Yep -- and it's in print. But Congressbeings, please remember it's not a "how-to" book.

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Last but not least, Autovon. It's gone now, leaving a few bunkers in various places. (Indiana colleges had SUVON, a private phone system of sorts, without actual bunkers [mostly!]. Widely abused, it's long gone, too.)
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* Joanie Mitchell may have made the definitive statement on the performing artist's dilemma; asked to play one of her hits for the umpteenth time, she laughingly remarked, "Nobody ever said to van Gogh, 'Paint Starry Night again, man.'" But she played the song.

7 comments:

Divemedic said...

I remember using something called "satellite numbers" when I was in the military. You would dial a special local number from any phone (including pay phones), the number would ring twice, and then you would get a dial tone. You could then call any number in the world, no charge.

This was handy when you needed to call someone from a payphone and didn't have enough change for a long distance call. It was supposed to be for official business only, but it was frequently abused. I am not sure what phone system that was.

MSgt B said...

I remember being allowed to use the Autovon network for free calls back to the states while I was stationed overseas.
You got one call a month. It was supposed to be five minutes, but the AV operator would let you go longer if it was a good conversation (they were always listening)

Nathan said...

I remember SUVON well from my days at old Youipewi. Although I never had any reason to abuse it, it was certainly handy when I had to call the other campii for this, that, and the other thing.

At my current job, I remember some of our DoD customers accidentally giving us their AUTOVON numbers when asking for a callback...hilarity invariably ensued. :)

Ed Skinner said...

Lounge musicians call them $100 songs as in, "I've played/sung that so many times I now hate it, but for $100 I'll do it."

Panamared said...

Ponzi was an armature compared to Congress.

Gewehr98 said...

I don't miss AUTOVON at all, especially when going secure on a STU-II or STU-III. Call quality was so poor that the semaphore version of Wuthering Heights would probably have conveyed more information between sender and recipient.

The Iridium secure satellite cellphone was a godsend, even if it was akin to toting around a brick all day.

Anonymous said...

Man, I miss The Bullet Hole in Indianapolis, fond memories.

Shootin' Buddy