Posted by: David | July 23, 2007

Late July Already

Sunday’s bike ride started at 3:30 p.m. It would be the Henniker-Hillsborough loop, and I promised to be back by 5:30, 6:00 at the latest. It was a lovely sunny afternoon. So I stopped to shoot the Route 114 cairn again.

So it’s not changed at all, has it? It looks the same.

Began to wonder what the heck made me think that this thing looked like it was changing in the first place. I decided that it was its socio-existential randomness that, in my mind, conferred upon the rockpile a changeability that is not really there. Guess that’s better than hallucination, hmmm? And yet, I want to take the series of images that I’ve gathered into Photoshop (or ImageReady) and layer them to see if someone, somewhere, is moving the stones, even just a tiny bit … am I insane?

My ride continued to Henniker and Hillsborough on the way back along the river I found this object.

In my youth BIC made nothing but ball point pens. Now they make the Pyromaniac’s Pocket Friend.

And a little further up the road a sign that just scares me. On the hill to the right out of frame are a few cows. They’re watching too. Don’t commit any crimes around here.

If you see a crime out here in the middle of nowhere, please call us. Strictly Anonymous.

A couple miles north of Henniker I got a flat tire.  I called the wife on the cell phone and she came to my rescue. I fixed the flat tire, mind you, by the time she arrived. It was my back tire and it was a patch that I’d probably done last year and forgot about. It let go. D’OH!


One of my favorite flowers in the garden are those of the leeks. We usually have leeks that re-seed themselves and do their second year flowering act. They look like fireworks.

The leek bud opens …


Gotta love that flower. Enjoy.



  1. Whoa. Leeks are cool. Great photos.

    Bic’s been making lighters for quite some time now. Remember “”Flick your Bic”? They also make razors. Couldn’t figure out the history of when they started each product, but I think the company existed before they bought the ballpoint patent from László Bíró, so that would imply that either the lighters or razors preceded the pen. Either way, I learned something new today. Bic now makes surfboards, kayaks, sailboards, and dinghies. Pretty cool, huh?
    Have you considered committing a crime near that crimeline sign, just to see if anyone is really watching? Nothing too major; maybe some jaywalking? Or find one of those cows and walk it across the street without a pooper scooper device attached. Or look up on Sunday whilst relieving yourself.

  2. I didn’t so much consider committing a crime as I wondered whether in fact some heinous crime may have occurred in the vicinity and inspired the placement of the sign. Possible crimes for the area would have been underaged drinking, underaged smoking, and underaged, well, pretty much anything, in cars, by the RIVER.

    But your idea is provocative, even to a non criminal like me.

    I assure you that the Bic pen was the predecessor of All Things Bic. It was the classic, clear, stick model with the blue cap, available EVERYWHERE in the 1960s for nineteen cents. Not erasable, and prone to leaking in the pockets of white shirts. The Bic Clic was their first retractable pen. Flames and shavers came later.

    Help me out here old folks.

  3. I believe I read recently that “bic” invented the ball point pen, and that bic marketed the first ball point pen in 1951.

  4. The aforementioned László Bíró invented the ball point pen. He patented it in Paris in 1938 and started producing them in Argentina in 1943.

    BIC’s first product wasn’t the ballpoint pen, but the pen did predate the lighter and shaver.

    Marcel Bich bought the patent from Bíró in 1950, five years after purchasing a factory with Edouard Buffard, where they apprently manufactured fountain pens and mechanical pencils until deciding it’d be a hoot to flood the world with ball points.

    I’m still obsessed with the folding kayak though.

  5. Thanks Keath, for your research.

    I’m not sure how I feel about the fact that the M10 Clic Retractable pen was born in the same year as me. Somehow I thought of it as “modern”. Check out Bic’s “Corporate History” page. Marcel Bich’s vampiric gaze and 3-piece suit really creep me out.

    But then I find relief in the history entry for 2006 …
    Separation of the functions of Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, …blah, blah, blah …. In shavers, BIC continues to invest in the new product development activity and launches the triple-blade BIC® Pure 3™ Lady.
    Something intrigues me about the “BIC® Pure 3™ Lady”.

  6. Even I, self proclaimed geek of all things Health and Beauty aisle, have not heard of the BIC Pure 3 ™ Lady.

  7. Oh well, sorry. It was probably superceded by the BIC Pure 4™ Lady. Not much of a shaver, me. But my daughter got me a Quattro which has four blades, and I use it on my upper cheeks where my beard hairs stray, trying to take over my entire face. TMI- sorry.

    Bic, maker of all things plastic, your website is, uh, oh nevermind, bored already.

    Know what’s worse than a crappy, dated website?

    A crappy, dated website that takes over a minute to load.

  8. Is 1956 in Spanish for a reason?

  9. By 1956 I meant 1959. Literacy is tough.

  10. Ooh, nice catch their Keath. But it’s translated into God’s good English in the “Print Timeline” link. There we can find, in plain English, the Ballograf® story of ’59. Not much of story is it? Swedish ball point pen company … yawn … cough.

    Now, mind you, I might actually consider buying anything named Ballograf®!! I could say this at work on Monday morning:

    “Hey, check out my new Ballograf®!!

  11. The stack of stones that hasn’t moved seems to be a trend. Not the stones not moving, that is too common to be a trend, but the stack of stones itself. On our way back from a weekend in Rhinebeck (about 20 min north of Poughkepsee ((sp)) ), I spotted a field with ten or even 15 kairns. Some were 8 or 9 feet. None were beautiful, the their cumulative effect was curiously dramatic. Misquoting my friend David quoting Karl Marx (or was it Stalin), “Quantity has a quality all its own.”

  12. If quantity DOES have a quality all its own, then non-moving stones definitely constitute a trend. A significant geologic, asymptotic, and decidedly undramatic trend, but a trend nonetheless.

    But roadside cairns are another matter. Thanks to this blog, and its astute commentators, we can now attribute the rising incidence of roadside cairns and the continuing trend of lithostasis to none other than Baron Marcel Bich! And possibly those asshole tax evaders in Plainfield, New Hampshire. Those freakin conspiracy theorists are behind the whole thing!

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