Thursday, December 24, 2015

Track Santa!

NORAD tracks Santa.

Back when I was in the radar biz we used to do this sort of thing locally, for the families of the guys at the radar sites where I was stationed. Back in the day every radar site had a video mapping device that fed programmed exercise video to Operations; the normal output from the video mapper was "canned" and consisted of video blips simulating actual aircraft. On Christmas Eve we'd load up a special video overlay and route it to the intercept control scopes in Operations. While "exercise" video consisted of fake bogeys (simple blips) and tracks to train intercept controllers and technicians, the special Santa video showed a sleigh and reindeer on the scopes. Not nearly real, but real enough for the kids that saw it!

The kids always got a big thrill out of the radar displays. Doing the Santa video was one of the most fun things I ever did while I was a radar guy.

Updated on 12/25/2005 0215: correct typos and grammar plus add a small amount of content. I shouldn't post after I've been into the egg nog!

Reposted December 24th, 2015... I distinctly remember being one of those kids that saw radar overlays and thinking how cool my dad was cuz he could track Santa.

I hope all "Exile" readers have a warm, safe and very Merry Christmas. 

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack

My dad's favorite carol... repost from Christmas eve, 2013.

It don't get no better than that.  Merry Christmas, everyone!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Time keeps on ticking...

Benjamin Franklin was a wise man... he said many profound things; a few examples below

"In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes."

"In wine there is wisdom, in beer there is freedom, in water there is bacteria."

"Some people die at 25 and aren't buried until 75."

"Dost thou love life?  Then do not squander time, for that's the stuff life is made of." (my favorite!)

"Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us  to be happy." (possibly my father's favorite... despite being somewhat agnostic about religion)

Time is said to heal all wounds... but after a year without my father, I can't imagine ever being well again, not like before.  I spent some time today reading blogs my father visited... and I found some peace in the posts I read; I always worried my father was alone in Portales. But today I realized he had so many wonderful friends that he shared his passion for life with... you all (if you're reading this... you are VERY likely in the group I'm referring to) brought joy and purpose to my father's life. For that, I'm truly and immeasurably thankful.

I added a couple of pics of my Dad with a couple of his favorite motorcycles... or rather mo'sickles.

My brother and I intended to keep the blog going... and more quotes come to mind; the road to hell among the first.  My mother (TFMP) would often say, (when my brother or I asked where she was going) "To hell if I don't change my ways!"  So I am making a resolution to change my ways and begin posting here... I know I can't compare to my father's writing, so I won't even try to do that... my commitment will be to re-post favorite posts of his and to write about things that remind me of him or reflect his colorful personality.

I hope you are all well, warm and enjoyed my brief post... I promise there will be more to come.  In the meantime, have a Merry Christmas and a safe and happy New Year!