Latest articles

  • A kink in the National Road

    Last year I wrote on my Roads pages about a trip I took with a friend down US 40 and the National Road across western Indiana. We enjoyed finding forgotten and sometimes abandoned segments of the road’s original alignment. Since then, thanks to the gang at the American Road forum, I’ve discovered the Automobile Blue […]

  • School speed limits

    This is where I went to elementary school. James Monroe School, built in 1931, was probably a model of modern school buildings in its day. Its slate roof and copper gutters had to cost a fortune. It was built anticipating growth on South Bend’s south side. I once saw a 1941 photograph of a class […]

  • The existentialism of the Coyote

    I read several webcomics every day and one of them is xkcd by Randall Munroe. I like its engineering/math/geek bent, imagine that. Last Friday, it intersected neatly with classic animation space, another favorite place of mine, and asserted that an engineer with all the supplies at the old Coyote’s disposal could have caught that Road […]

  • A very important Plymouth

    I’m a bit of a car nut. Last week I was surfing around Dailymotion looking at old TV spots for cars and found this one for what looked to me like a 1966 Plymouth Fury, but was called the Plymouth VIP instead. I’d never heard of the model, which surprised me, because I’m pretty on […]

  • Shopping in the suburbs

    I’ve always lived in cities. I groove on grids of streets with curbs and sidewalks. So when I moved to Indianapolis, I didn’t consider living in the suburbs for a minute. But to get a better school system, I did buy an older home in the old suburbs outside the old city limits. (The city […]

  • Find joy where life is

    In the few months before I went on the mission trip to Mexico last fall I started a new job, my divorce became final, and I left a one-room apartment and rented a five-bedroom house. I grieved my marriage (and tried to be a good dad to my sons as they grieved the changes in […]

  • Adventures to come

    I watch 6News Good Morning Indiana while I get ready on work mornings. Weather guesser Paul Poteet has a sharp, fast wit, and I can usually use a laugh at 5:30 in the morning. (I would have killed for Paul’s wit when I did radio years ago.) I think I’ve left more comments on Good […]

  • On the small screen

    I debuted on TV in 1976, back when stay-at-home moms were still called homemakers. There were enough of them then that locally produced homemaker shows aired in the morning on stations across the country. A woman named Betty somethingorother hosted South Bend’s homemaker show, The Betty Somethingorother Show, live each weekday on WSBT-TV. It was […]

  • The National Road in Illinois

    A long trip down the National Road in Illinois, with plenty of old-alignment goodness. They built a new road and left the old one behind, right alongside!

  • What’s the use?

    In 1989 I bought my first brand-new car. I had just graduated college, gotten a job, and moved into an apartment when Dad said, “Enough freeloading; I’m coming in two weeks to get my car back.” I looked for a used car, hoping to save money, but nobody in town would lend me money because […]

  • Brownie Reflex, Synchro Model

    A quick look at the 1941-52 Kodak Brownie Reflex, Synchro Model, a pseudo-TLR for 127 film.

  • Old US 36 in western Indiana

    A short drive down old US 36 in western Indiana — its current and old alignments. There’s plenty to see here for every roadfan.

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