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Archive for the ‘barneykin’ Category


A Picture from Edna

This is one example of graffiti that occupying Union soldiers left upon the walls of Blenheim in Fairfax, Virginia during the War Between the States. This photograph is from the attic, however when wallpaper was recently removed from the main floors of the old Greek Revival farmhouse, graffiti was discovered everywhere. This “Soldier’s Lament” records:

4th Month

No money

No whiskey

No Friends

No Rations

No Peas

No Beans

No Pants

No Patriotism (underlined)

“Blenheim,” located at 3610 Old Lee Highway, Fairfax, Virginia, is a brick home built by REZEN WILLCOXON about 1858, to replace an earlier frame dwelling. This 12-acre former farm, includes a cemetery for several generations of the Willcoxon family who lived here. Blenheim is renown for its outstanding examples of Civil War soldier graffiti. It is currently being restored. The day we were there, a recent tropical storm had left many downed trees, but no damage to the structures.

The image, Soldier Graffiti, was originally uploaded by Edna Barney. It is posted here from Barneykin’s flickr account.

Visit Neddy’s Archives for more of Edna’s writings.

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The “We” Word


‘WE’ is the word used to steal virtue from the good, to steal strength from the strong and to steal wisdom from the sages.

Ayn Rand in “Anthem:”

For the word “We” must never be spoken, save by one’s choice and as a second thought. This word must never be placed first within man’s soul, else it becomes a monster, the root of all the evils on earth, the root of man’s torture by men, and an unspeakable lie.

The word “We” is as lime poured over men, which sets and hardens to stone, and crushes all beneath it, and that which is white and that which is black are lost equally in the grey of it. It is the word by which the depraved steal the virtue of the good, by which the weak steal the might of the strong, by which the fools steal the wisdom of the sages.

What is my joy if all hands, even the unclean, can reach into it? What is my wisdom, if even the fools can dictate to me? What is my freedom, if all creatures, even the botched and impotent, are my masters? What is my life, if I am but to bow, to agree, and to obey?

But I am done with this creed of corruption.

I am done with the monster of “We,” the word of serfdom, of plunder, of misery, falsehood and shame.

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A Picture from Edna

Bee Kind to Our Earth.

Kara is standing on the bank of Pohick Creek, a tidal tributary stream of the Potomac River. Pohick Creek forms in the vicinity of Burke, Virginia and flows approximately thirteen miles, past Grandma’s house, before emptying into the Potomac River at Pohick Bay at Lorton, Virginia. Pohick Bay empties into Gunston Cove with Accotink Bay.

The image, Poster Child, was originally uploaded by barneykin. It is posted here from Barneykin’s flickr account.

Visit Neddy’s Archives for more of Edna’s writings.

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A Picture from Edna

My Christmas Gifts For You

I made this Christmas card using Picnik. My 2008 Christmas Card, was originally uploaded by barneykin. It is posted here from Barneykin’s FLICKR account.

Visit Neddy’s Archives for more of Edna’s writings.

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Was Alice In Wonderland a “drunk”, or was she in Wonderland merely because she had been drinking a magic potion?

“It did so indeed, and much sooner than she had expected: before she had drunk half the bottle, she found her head pressing against the ceiling, and had to stoop to save her neck from being broken. She hastily put down the bottle, saying to herself  ‘That’s quite enough–I hope I shan’t grow any more — As it is, I can’t get out at the door — I do wish I hadn’t drunk quite so much!’  ~~”ALICE’S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND” by Lewis Carroll, Chapter IV.

Lewis Carroll, the creator of Alice in Wonderland, was born in 1832. He attended Rugby School and was graduated from Christ Church College, Oxford, becoming a mathematician. He also studied for the priesthood. He died in 1898, 43 years before I was born. Yet for some reason, both he and I use the same grammatical verb construction that my erudite children tell me is substandard English.

My sons tell me that “drunk” is a person, not a verb and that is how they learned it at school. I am just as certain that I learned at school that an intoxicated person was a “drunkard” and that “drunk” was the past participle of the verb “drink.” My sons have shown me with the dictionary in my own home that they are correct. They say my sub-standard grammar is the result of my being born and reared in Baltimore, Maryland. Although it took me only 66 years to discover the errors of my ways,  I seem to be in good company if the famous author Lewis Carrol was using the same grammatical construction in his writings. And I doubt that he ever came anywhere near the influence of Baltimore.

Dictionary.com gives this explanation:

As with many verbs of the pattern sing, sang, sung and ring, rang, rung, there is some confusion about the forms for the past tense and past participle of drink. The historical reason for this confusion is that originally verbs of this class in Old English had a past-tense singular form in a but a past-tense plural form in u. Generally the form in a has leveled out to become the standard past-tense form: We drank our coffee. However, the past-tense form in u, though considered nonstandard, occurs often in speech: We drunk our coffee.

The standard and most frequent form of the past participle of drink in both speech and writing is drunk: Who has drunk all the milk? However, perhaps because of the association of drunk with intoxication, drank is widely used as a past participle in speech by educated persons and must be considered an alternate standard form: The tourists had drank their fill of the scenery.

American Heritage has this online:

drunk – Past participle of drink.

Thank you American Heritage Dictionary!

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A Picture from Edna

I purchased the basic gingerbread house as a kit at a local bakery recommended by my next door neighbor, Kathleen. The only thing – it didn’t come with a picture of the finished product. So I sent Grandpa back to the bakery with my camera in tow and he took three photographs of the display house. Wouldn’t you know, when I showed the photographs to my daughter-in-law she said, “oh we would rather use our own creativity.” And so they did. Everyone had a great time putting it together and when finished they all proclaimed it to be the best gingerbread house they had ever seen.

It was supposed to have two large candy canes decorating the front entrance, however, one got eaten by my grandson during the construction phase of the house. He declared that he prefered it as it is now, with the lone candy cane representing a flag pole.

Here is the procedure to create a gingerbread house from scratch, without a kit, for the adventureous: “How to Make a Gingerbread House.” If anyone would like to see pictures of more beautiful houses, or is seeking inspiration for creating one, here is a slide show from Flickr of more than 300 creations: Gingerbread Houses .

The image, The Gingerbread House, was originally uploaded by barneykin. It is posted here from Barneykin’s flickr account.

Visit Neddy’s Archives for more of Edna’s writings.

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We were privileged to be invited to Ocean Tomo’s Gala Dinner held at the beautiful Field Museum in Chicago. It was a grand event to dine amidst elephants, dinosaur skeletons and lovely orchids.

The Slide Show – The Gala

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