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Moth Metamorphosis

May 25, 2017

24May17poplar4wpOn 3 Sept. 2016, as I was driving along a country lane, I spotted a huge caterpillar lumbering along directly in front of my vehicle, so I stood on the brakes, parked where I had stopped, got out and checked the specimen, and decided it was worth keeping. I brought it home.

First thing I did was identify the caterpillar: a big poplar sphinx. I’m familiar enough with caterpillar behavior to know that this one was wanting to pupate, so I set up a container for a burrowing caterpillar and left it alone to do its thing. It created a circular space in the material I had put in the container and pupated. When it was appropriate, I packaged the pupa up and put it in the fridge for winter storage.

It was still very much alive when I took it out of the fridge at the end of April. I just left it sitting around in its packaging for a couple weeks, but finally created a shallow burrow for it in a flower pot and covered it with a few layers of paper toweling. I put all that in a wire cage, because I did not want a messy moth flying around my house. They are very messy when they’re fresh!

The photo shows the results, an impressive big poplar sphinx moth, a female. Poplar sphinx coloration is mostly earthy, but then there’s the striking crimson underwings. She’s huge. Below her is her discarded pupa skin in a pot of dirt.

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Beating Samsung Smart TV/ATT Incompatibility

May 23, 2017

Have you ever tried connecting a Samsung Smart TV to an AT&T internet connection and failed miserably, no matter what you tried? Did you call customer support only to have them fail with you? Did they finally tell you to buy a service contract, and then they would come over and fix it for you? I’ve been through it, recently, when I switched to ATT because my experiences with TWC/Spectrum had been endlessly dismal (mostly having to do with fees), and it was past time to end it.

My TV is a series 6300, and maybe the problem is peculiar to that series. Or not. The internet connection is a type that allows automatic detection, and the TV did that, and the network numbers it detected matched those of every other device in the house that we had successfully connected, which was all of them except the TV. Only thing that changed was the IP number, which has to be unique to every device.

I tried different IPs, and I tried using an IP some other device was using, and I rebooted, and I reset, and I manually entered. I tried wired, wireless — nothing worked. And customer support had me repeat everything, endlessly.

One guy said to me, “Might you have tried DNS 8.8.8.8?”

To which I said, “I don’t understand. It automatically detects, and the DNS entry is the same on everything else in this house, and it’s all working!”

He didn’t explain further but routed me to the next tier, and that guy wanted to sell me a year’s worth of service contract for $180, to which I said, “No! I NEVER use customer support! I’ll live without the internet connection on the TV if I have to!” We only use it for Netflix anyway. Big deal!

He then offered me a one time visit for $50, to which I said, “No! Someone’s going to come here, change one little number setting on the TV, because I can’t figure it out, and I’ll have paid $50 for that! No!” We parted company.

The next day I was still in fail mode. I decided to spend some time in the Lord’s presence, not to whine about the TV but just to be with Him. And so I did, and He dropped in the obvious: “Do a web search.”

Oh! Duh! Why didn’t I think of that??? I searched, and I found the solution immediately. It seems the Samsung thing is a common problem, and the fix is to override the auto detect for the DNS entry and manually set it for 8.8.8.8 instead. I did that, and the TV has worked perfectly ever since.

If that ATT support guy hadn’t just alluded to it but explained that it’s a Samsung quirk, I would have done it promptly. It just didn’t make sense to me, so I was questioning. The online forum, by contrast, included that little bit of info. Besides, the Lord had just told me to do a search, and He ALWAYS knows what He’s doing. (-:

Settings for Three Gemstones

April 14, 2017

12Apr17gemsettingswpI decided to set/wire-wrap three stones from my gem collection, clockwise from upper left: Labradorite, Lake Superior agate, Australian opal. Settings are gold filled wire.

Hand Painted Cap

March 11, 2017

BryanHat1wpJust finished painting this cecropia moth today. It’s for my business partner; we sell these moths. I figure a guy who’s so good at raising such creatures ought to have some sort of advertisement, so this is it. It’s painted with acrylic paints on a generic cotton baseball cap for “Moth Guy Extraordinaire.”

Boggy with One Sleeve

January 19, 2017

Boggy sweater with one sleeveI had daughter do a fitting of my hand knitted “knockoff” sweater, having added the first sleeve, so I could see how that change would work on a human. It works fine. Dale of Norway’s machine made Bogstad sweaters were my inspiration for this hand knit having a similar style. I’ve made changes, both to convert it to a hand knit and also to personalize. The Dale sweaters are assembled from flat pieces of machine knitting, but this hand knit is worked in the round and steeked, for cutting. I’ve extended the horizontal bar of the yoke into the sleeves, which Dale’s style doesn’t do. The embroidery on the Dale sweaters’ placket borders¬† is added as machined ribbons; however, my garment is hand embroidered directly onto the placket borders. Closures will be traditional Norwegian pewter buttons and a clasp — when I get that far. This sweater is destined to be for a daughter-in-law. Daughter has already received hers, a Peace knockoff, my first attempt at one of these conversions.

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Boggy on a Human

January 8, 2017

Dale Bogstad inspired hand knitDaughter came over today to eat our food, blacken our fry pan, claim our apple cider vinegar. Under the circumstances, I decided the least she could do as recompense was to temporarily donate her body as a living manikin, so I could determine whether or not the DIL sweater fits a female humanoid. She insisted I chop off her head, ’cause I couldn’t get her out of silly-grin mode, which looked quite silly on the photos.

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Boggy and Pauper Hand Knitted Sweaters

December 18, 2016

18dec16awpAm using daughter’s Pauper sweater as a template for DIL’s Boggy. Daughter did not cough this up without some resistance, and I have to make good use of it quickly. It’s sweater weather, and she wants it back. I get that. I was desperate.¬† The whole story of this sweater is documented in my Bogstad Journal on my website.