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My home bee yard as of August 4th, 2010

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Brown text indicates personal ramblings that have little to do with bees and beekeeping.

Sunday August 1st 2010
August past: 2009,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999

Civic Holiday Weekend

It's August.  How time flies!  I didn't get around to checking weather or making entries this morning.  We packed, left Sault Ste. Marie around 10 and spent the day wandering along the North Shore towards Sudbury.

We stopped in Desbarats, Bruce Mines, Blind River and Spanish to check out marinas and activity.  The day was dull and although this is the August long weekend things were petty quiet.

We arrived at 1207 at five, showered and had supper, then spent a quiet evening at home.

The last few days, I have spent some time at BeeSource trying to deal with some comments posted by a member who uses BeeSource to promote his pollen supplement business by frequent mentions and by repeatedly implying that other products are inferior.

I normally avoid BeeSource, since there are some snakes there and because the 'moderation' distorts discussions by editing it after the fact, making the flow seem to be something it was not.  Although there are some smart, honest people there, the board is slanted against direct and open full-disclosure discussion when the chips are down.

Sometimes truth is not "nice" and trying to make it  so is simply dishonest.  Sometimes the cards need to be laid in the table and a mother hen moderator just facilitates deliberate misdirection.  Truth is not decided by a vote or by niceness.  It is decided by fact.  Sometimes disingenuous comments need to be confronted.

At any rate, I really do not know how good or bad this fellow's product is or how much he sells.  I do know that he has put a lot of thought into it and got as much info from others as he can without giving any in return.  At any rate, he uses quite a few ingredients and does not reveal what they are, and I gather that "Open Source" products using inexpensive and effective ingredients which are clearly stated by the manufacturer are affecting his ability to charge the prices he would like to.  I would think that if the product was head and shoulders above others, that beekeepers would notice and be willing to pay his price.  Apparently not, and he has to rely on negative digs and fearmongering.

The supplement business has gotten to be a gold mine for some entrepreneurs and a target for snake oil tactics.  A supplement can only do so much.  It can bring nourishment up to the highest possible standard, but there has to be a natural limit beyond which nutrition cannot be improved and any extra expense is wasted.

If a hive of bees is optimally nourished, then feeding a supplement cannot further improve the state of the hive.  The provision of protein in-hive could alter the foraging behaviour a bit, but otherwise to increase bee performance beyond that of a well-nourished bee, a feed would have to be classed as a stimulant!

After years of thinking that we could come up with an ideal bee diet, I now suspect that for free-flying bees, supplements approached the the limits of efficacy some decades back.  There is such a thing as the law of diminishing returns.  Since then, the real challenges have been to improve price, design, manufacture, warehousing and delivery.  Some small improvements in content have been attempted using various refined products and sometimes they seem to be superior, however the payback for added cost in real-world situations has been hard to prove.

Pragmatic beekeepers stick to the tried and true while others are seduced into paying higher prices by clever marketing and FUD campaigns.  FUD campaigns are amazingly effective and can convince people to abandon sensible and economical products in favour of costlier ones without any proof. 

After all, any nutrients beyond the bees' actual requirements are simply wasted, no matter how wonderful or expensive they may be.  Unless the bees are really on bad pasture or weak in population, the amount of supplementation needed could sometimes be minimal.

Beyond what good nutrition can do, we are talking stimulants, and that is a whole different topic, both practically and philosophically.

Outfits like Global Patties which provide a good product for low price really annoy the snake-oil guys promoting imaginary improvements.  I personally like the people at Global and their philosophy of being the low-price supplier and I help them when I can.  They are not slick marketers, but rather plain, honest people who want to do the best for their customers.

Global drove down the price of supplement when they entered the market, and some suppliers hate them for that.  Up until then, supplement was very a profitable specialty product.  I'd like to help them drive the prices down lower.

Since I began the push for using supplements and better supplements almost a decade ago now, the price, quality, packaging and delivery of supplements has improved greatly, but we have seen little real increase in efficacy.  At least three  major competing feed products and perhaps more are a direct result of my early efforts and enquiries, including possibly the one I mention above one, since I recall stimulating interest on BEE-L early on and supplying him with info on several occasions.

Initially, I approached a number of scientists and institutions in an attempt to have them work on an open-source, improved product, however each was seduced by the idea of making big bucks and made up secret formulas.  It seems to me that when it turned out that all their efforts produced only marginal results, the response was employ marketing tricks to suggest superiority where science had failed to generate a real economic benefit.

My message is that all the products I know about at present are effective and that the question for buyers is freshness, delivery and price.  There may be some differences, and possibly some poorer ones, but there is no clear-cut winner, and the results of comparisons depends on the test method and environment chosen.

May be this will change.  We'll see.

Anyhow, I just burned some bridges at BeeSource, I expect.  Oh, well.  It really is a waste of time when anything the moderator does not like is cut out, not because it is wrong or even irrelevant, but because it is "confrontational".

They have a lot of happy people there.  They are happy because everybody has to be happy.  Anyone who protests or upsets momma gets their message altered.  What can be wrong with that?

What worries me is that some of the BeeSource forums demonstrate the worst of what was predicted for the Internet, namely misinformation, speculation and FUD achieving equal credibility with fact and reason --  and no way to address it because everyone's expressed opinion is of equal weight, no matter how disingenuous or uninformed.

Many parts of BeeSource are excellent, but some moderators value peace and tranquility over allowing members to hash things out.  Other moderators seem to understand that friction and confrontation within bounds result in understanding and bring out facts which would otherwise be concealed.

Oftentimes, a little heat between well-mannered, well-matched opponents can be a good thing.  The most recent debate was civil and germane, with -- AFAIK -- no cries of "foul" from the participants.  Everyone involved was cool, and good information and ideas were being exposed, so why interfere?

I have the entire unexpurgated text of the exchange, so maybe I should post it here?  I have so many better things to do, though.

I probably should post Barry's rather personal and intemperate letter to me about my objections to having my comments altered and the suggestion we take the discussion to BEE-L where it could proceed without censorship.  His email demonstrates how he does not practice what he enforces on others when it comes to confrontation

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Monday August 2nd 2010
August past: 2009,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999

Civic Holiday Weekend

Ellen & I thought we'd go shopping, but virtually all the stores were closed, including Wal-Mart, so we gave up.

When we got back, I sent some pictures to Wal-Mart via the web for printing and a few hours later I got an email saying they are ready for pickup tomorrow early in Parry Sound.  Cool!  This is the first time I've tried this.  The price is very reasonable, amounting to somewhere around 20c each.

Mom took us out for supper at the Fish Bowl.  We drove around and looked at the neighbourhood, then we returned to pack for an early departure tomorrow.

I sent an additional, smaller last-minute photo order in a few minutes ago, before I wrote the last two paragraphs, hoping that it might be ready tomorrow, too.  An email came in just now saying the second batch is ready for pickup, too!

I asked for them all to be done in Parry sound, since we stop there anyhow.  I guess that store is open today.  We expect to be there around 8, and they open at 7.

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Tuesday August 3rd 2010
August past: 2009,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999

We left at 6 and we're now on the road south.  The Rocket Hub works well and provides good Internet on the move.  Mom is behind us and our first destination is Pine Hill.  From  there we drive to YYZ to put Ellen onto the plane for home.

We stopped in Parry Sound for a break.  The pictures were there and ready and I am quite pleased with the quality.

*    *    *    *    *    *   

OK.  Ellen is on the plane and I am back at Pine Hill, living on my boat.  It was a long day.  The drive was hot and muggy.  Air conditioning helps, but only so much.  We were concerned about traffic and the delays at security, so Ellen arrived two hours early for here flight.  She has some good books.

Wednesday August 4th 2010
August past: 2009,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999

Ellen sent me some pictures.  The scale hives have put on a bit of weight. (63.5-31-5)/4=8 lbs per hive since last measure on July 18th.  That is roughly a two-week period.  The skunks continue to be a problem.  Maybe supering will help, but I am starting to wonder.


Speaking of skunks, I dropped by BeeSource to see if the thread had continued, but it seems to have died.  It also looks as if I am effectively banned from posting on BeeSource since anything I post is subject to alteration before publication and we know how that works.  They do not ask my permission first or respond to objections that I have been distorted.  If I post, I get to have my words massaged into someone else's point of view.

I asked Barry to remove my account at one time in the past and to delete all the posts attributed to me and he has not done so, yet at least.  I have not asked again, since some of the material IS my opinion or contribution and I don't want to be silly and petty, but I concerns me that I my context has been distorted in some cases.  How does one find balance?  Escalating conflicts is not very mature and I try to avoid that.

Personally, I think that by editing all the posts and deleting context that Barry leaves himself wide open.  If he did not, he could claim, like BEE-L, that the posts are the opinions of the person posting and not the board.

BEE-L does not edit and either rejects or accepts posts on the basis of format or for for what amounts to irrelevance according to published explicit guidelines.  In the case of BeeSource, the opinions on the boards are actually those of the moderators.   Otherwise one can assume they would be deleted.

"Hi Allen, I thought it was rather funny that you referred to (the moderator) as a "Mother Hen", since one of the commercial beekeepers from here went out to CA and worked for them during the last Almond season and also referred to her as a "Mother Hen". So I suppose you got it right. But I would like to see the entire nutrition discussion as I was reading it with some interest before it began to get dismembered. I would not mind seeing Barry's comment to either. Thanks

I really do not have the time to find, assemble and format this now, but someday...  I have started to organise it.

And I don't want to be too picky, but for the definition of "commercial", I suppose BeeSource and I will have to differ.  I know a lot of big-time commercial people and they are not so sensitive or petty.  They can't be or they would not be big-time.  They'd still be small-time. The successful operators have their eye on the larger picture and are used to conflict, and comfortable with confrontation when it is called for.

Everyone has to start somewhere, though, so who am I to judge?  I've had 100 and I've had 4,500.

In the meantime, does anyone know of a legitimate forum where the moderators routinely alter the posts of members and routinely delete posts for "off topic" even when they are part of the flow of discussion?

Today, we had a memorial for my Aunt who passed away in February at the age of 96.  We had about twenty family members over on the veranda and had a pleasant gathering.  We followed that up with some tubing on the Lake, then I sailed around Tobin's Island alone.  Tomorrow, the other side of the family is coming to visit.

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Thursday August 5th 2010
August past: 2009,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999

This was a busy day, with Neal, Jack, and Gordon  and their families up for the day.  We visited, did some tubing, then had supper on Ron's veranda.

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Friday August 6th 2010
August past: 2009,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999

I slept in until almost 9.  The day turned out to be sunny, breezy, and cool.  After the events of the past two days, this was a quieter day except that my sister had breathing difficulty and had to go to a clinic.  The doctor diagnosed a chest infection and the prescription seemed to have things back closer to normal by mid-afternoon.  I sailed up the Lake to see if using the foresail from Chris' boat would be practical, since it is smaller and more suited to the high, gusty winds of the day.  I worked, but  I need to figure out how to rig it better.  Lindsey and Andy rented a car and left for Ottawa to attend a wedding.  Sid went to Sudbury, leaving just me and the three ladies.  Since it turned cool, we lit a fire in  the evening.  I turned in early, down in the cozy V-berth on my boat..

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Saturday August 7th 2010
August past: 2009,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999

Some time back, I fixed up the Honey Bee World Forum.  It used to be quite active, but I had some technical problems and let it die when I took a year or two off from the diary and actually deleted the diary entirely. 

Due to public demand, I brought the diary back and then began writing again.  For a while, the forum, unknown to me was locked and no one could post.  I thought I fixed that, but no one posts there.  People write me from the link next to the forum link, but I am wondering if the forum works. If anyone is reading this, please try posting at the Honey Bee World Forum and write me if you cannot register or post.  Thanks.

As I write this morning, I am sitting on the veranda, looking down on the Indian River upriver from Port Carling.  Today is the antique boat show.  The event attracts to many old wooden boats from around the lakes and they are funneled down the River past our dock, coming and going.   The boats vary from small economical runabouts to long, sleek racers from a century back and elegant, sedate touring boats.  All ar4e shined up and the pride of their owners.  We are treated to quite a parade.

I have edited the following to remove personal identifying details, but offer it here because the question is one which always comes up, but cannot be answered simply.  I also prefer to write for an audience greater than one if the topic takes time and effort.

(Note: If it seems that I am sucking and blowing at the same time by altering a message sent to me, my defense is that this message is not attributed to anyone, and the writer actually does not want to be identified or take credit for his writing, so these are actually my words, using his as a framework).

> Hello Allen, I have been helping a commercial beekeeper this year. He sets the flails on his uncapper as close as he can, perhaps a half inch gap. He runs 8 frames in his honey supers, and he says that by running 8 frames and using the uncapper to hog away so much comb, he is able to get 2 pounds of wax per every 100 pounds of honey produced. He says that it is normal to get 1 pound of wax for every 100 pounds. After uncapping, his old combs are thin in the center, almost down to the foundation. The cells will be a little deeper near the top and bottom bars, because the bars prevent the flails from removing more wax.

It is my understanding that the amount of nectar to produce one pound of wax is comparable to somewhere between 7 and 11 pounds of honey, and 8 pounds of honey is the number commonly thrown around. This is the reason drawn comb is so important, because drawing comb reduces honey yield. The commercial beekeeper normally produces 3 tons of wax a year.  He sells the wax for $4-$5 a pound. It doesn't make sense to me. What am I missing?

You are not missing anything, but the question and the answers are complex, depending much on the time of year, rate of flow, size of colony, etc..  I was given the same advice by a commercial beekeeper many years ago.  He ran a large operation and founded a beekeeping dynasty, so he was not stupid and I can assure you that he pinched every penny twice.

What he told me is that in a good flow, bees are making wax anyhow, and if they have no place to put it, it winds up making burr comb, ladder comb, fat combs or in scales on the floor. That results in waste and added work for the beekeeper and a plugged-up hive.

 At the time, the ratio of wax price to honey price favoured wax more than it does today.  He felt it did not affect honey production, but added steady and immediate profit, especially when the honey market dried up temporarily as it does periodically.  So, what I am saying is that this approach is not atypical.  There are other advantages to uncapping deep, too, especially if the honey is thick or partially granulated.

> If he uncapped like most folks, he would get less wax, but he should also get much increased honey production.  It looks to me like he is losing a minimum of $29,400 if one pound of wax is equivalent to 8 pounds of honey.

There is the weak point in the reasoning.  There is no equivalence.  The number widely bandied about is merely a guess.  It may actually be approximately correct when bees are fed to produce comb, however we have no real way to know what the cost is, if any, during a strong flow.

I suspect that it may be zero.  The need to draw some comb may be stimulative and cause more bees to do more work than they would otherwise, especially if there is a surplus of bees of the correct age for wax making and they are already secreting wax.  It has been shown that bees typically spend a lot of time resting and doing --apparently -- nothing.  If they are inspired to a building project, perhaps more of them get involved.

Moreover, the thinner combs occupy less space, so the empty supers provide more room for the bees.  Additionally, bees do not regard thinned combs the same way they do foundation, and re-draw it very readily, and the amount of wax required to finish the tops of cells is less than that required for midrib and bottoms.

> When I ask him why he does it like this, he says this is always the way they have done it.  I brought up his comb honey production. His bees can fill a medium super of drawn comb in an extraction hive in one week, but it takes almost 2 weeks for his comb honey hives to draw out and fill a shallow box of comb honey.

That is interesting.  I found that my yields in comb honey were not much different from the yields on extracted hives.  It is hard to compare, though.  It seems, too that my experience differs from that of other reporters.

Consider, too, that in the comb hive, they may be plugging the broods before filling the comb boxes unless he uses single broods for the comb.  This can  fool people into thinking that the amount brought in is different. It may not be.  With no ready comb above, bees do tend to store in the brood box before they work the comb boxes.  Besides, they do not like comb boxes and, especially for the first comb boxes, before they get used to them, bees delay working in them.

In the case of the thinned down extracting combs, though, they are familiar and even though the cells are shallow, they can store thin nectar there immediately,.  As a result, the broods are are not plugged.   Incoming thin nectar is normally spread out over an area of comb to dry.  With foundation, they cannot spread out nectar or store there at first.  If there is no place for nectar, they must stop foraging or fill the brood cells, or both.  With even thinned down drawn super combs, they can temporarily store and dry nectar above, especially if they are supplied several supers at a time.

> You mentioned that you used to be a big Ross Rounds producer. Did you ever figure up how much honey production is reduced by wax production? Is the 8 pound number realistic? (I seem to remember you saying something once that bees could handle drawing 10%-20% new wax a year with no noticeable honey loss, but over 30% impacted honey production.)

I think I answered that above, but as for the amount of brood comb I can draw and replace in an extracting hive, that is a very different question from what happens in a comb hive.  Also there is a huge difference between what bees can do in a good year and what a beekeeper should consider a safe expectation.  A smart beekeeper is quite conservative because losses can cost far more than what can sometimes be gained by luck or by gambling.

Our limitation for brood comb replacement here in the north is that bees do not winter reliably or well if they are given too much new brood comb to winter on.  I do not know the reason.

As for the impact on production, that depends very much on the year.  Some years, bees willingly draw lots of super comb from foundation with apparently little cost, but other years, they may not draw it at all well, and become plugged below. (This is with multiple brood chambers, not single broods, which function more like comb honey hives and can draw more comb).

The techniques and hive configuration for comb production are often much different from those chosen for honey production.  Reliable maximum comb honey production requires single brood chambers, whereas extracted producers typically run multiple broods.  That is changing, though, and some extracted honey people are adopting comb techniques to maximize their crops.

The downside is that comb colonies winter much more poorly than hives which have been run for extracted honey, due to having been crowded and plugged at times.  They are often unable to raise the same numbers of young bees and achieve maximal populations.

Spring and fall management, also, becomes more tricky and timing becomes very important since singles swarm or starve in a short time frame compared to doubles, and singles are harder to winter.  I always add another brood under singles as soon as supers are pulled and feed like crazy.  Then they winter like doubles.

>What am I missing, or have I simply picked up on a management method that has room for improvement?

What I always say is never be too critical of a successful system or an operator who has survived in beekeeping over time.  Theory is just theory, and although it makes a good guide, nothing succeeds like success.

Too many young guys take over farms which have provided a good livelihood for generations and immediately apply all the ideas they learned in school and in books.  Within a few years, those operations -- far more often than not -- are up for sale, busted.

My advice to aspiring beekeepers is this: Find a business which has been running for years and has an honest owner with honest tax returns showing steady profitability.  Arrange to buy it out over a few years from the profits and insist the owner continues to advise, and DON'T CHANGE A THING.

We often don't understand why things work and all too often, people buy a goose that lays a golden egg and then try to improve it.  They seldom do.

> side note> I am trying another batch of queens using the Hopkins method - I made the hive hopelessly queenless first, and moved the hive in the yard this time to get rid of foragers to prevent them from plugging everything up with honey like they did last time. Thanks for your tips. I'm trying to make a YouTube video too - so if it works out I can teach others how I did it.

Good.  I'm looking forward to seeing it.

This was a good day.  I bought some groceries and then went for a sail.  I picked Mom's cousin along the way and we had a good time although it was very gusty and we were overpowered at times.  I turned back early though, since we had company for dinner.  John and Jane came to visit Linda and Sid.  We had a pleasant evening.

The day is over and I am in the cabin of my little boat listening to a party across the River at Sunset, the cottage with a US flag flying below the Maple Leaf.  It is not the usual sort obnoxious party with loud music and drunken laughter.  This one has some fairly loud music, but much of it is the singing and chanting of the young girls having the party.  Seems about a dozen teen-age girls are up for a weekend at the River.  So far, it is charming.  I hope that they have a curfew, though.

Yes, I guess they did.  Just before eleven, the music was turned off and voices reduced to a murmur, then silence returned to the River.

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Sunday August 8th 2010
August past: 2009,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999

We have rain this morning.  Wind is from the east and the weather guessers are saying there is more rain to come.

A reader tried the Honey Bee World Forum and was able to post without a problem.  On completion, he received the message, "This message has been submitted successfully, but it will need to be approved by a moderator before it is publicly viewable. You will be notified when your post has been approved."

I immediately thought that maybe there was a pile of messages awaiting approval, but I checked and there were not.  I guess that there are plenty of beekeeping forums these days and that this one is just one too many.  At any rate, I'd be pleased that if anyone has a question or message that is of interest to others, or which could start some worthwhile discussion, that they would use the forum.  I'll try to check more often.

A few more things from  the same writer as yesterday...

> Hello Allen, Thanks for your thoughts. The commercial beekeeper runs all his hives in single deeps with an excluder. For his comb honey, he places a super with old dark combs over the excluder. When the bees begin to cap the honey in that box, he adds comb honey supers. The super with the old dark combs stays in place all season.

You don't mention what kind of comb he is making.  If he is making cut comb or chunk honey from full frames of thin foundation, then perhaps this makes sense to me, however if he is making Ross Rounds or section comb honey, I would think that the method is far from optimal.

  1. Comb honey production is best done in a crowded hive where all the combs are either brood combs, with brood and a little pollen and feed, or the comb honey being worked on.  Any other combs, including an extra box of full combs above the brood box AND and excluder is a honey barrier and an impediment and will slow the production. 

    The only reason I can see for that box is to make a food chamber to ensure that the bees do not eat the comb honey between flows if the flows are sporadic and the beekeeper is not around.  I never had that problem, but I always visited the hives weekly, removed finished sections, and put the new foundation or unfinished comb down next to the brood

    Perhaps there is a good reason in his system, but I wonder...

    In my experience, colonies which are given two standard boxes of brood combs and then something they don't particularly like above that like an excluder or sections, bees often decide they have enough room in the two boxes, plug them and stop working and/or swarm.  Given a single box of brood comb and then sections or supers, though, they are inclined to work in supers..
  2. I never used excluders for comb honey.  They are unnecessary for section production, but can be required for chunk or cut comb to keep it free of brood.

 The commercial beekeeper told me that in a weak flow, bees build lots of burr comb. In a heavy flow, they just build nice fat combs. I would think that in a heavy flow, bees could produce more wax and burr things up, but who knows.

I'm not sure where he is seeing the burr comb, in the broods, the super, or the comb boxes (whatever type they are) so cannot comment.

After my most recent experience with trying to confront BS on BeeSource, and comment about finding an honest mentor, I received a detailed a account of an aspiring beekeeper's experience with working with a "commercial" beekeeper who is well-known and seems  genuine on BeeSource.  I cannot reproduce the note here, unfortunately, since it is a real eye-opener, but it confirms what I already knew and try to warn people about.

Thanks for the details. What can I say? This is not the kind of person you want to be anywhere near.  Your story is shocking, but not surprising to me after I spent some time on BeeSource.

That is the sad thing about BeeSource. They do not permit anyone to confront the bullshitters, so they all congregate there and tell their lies, sucking in the unwary newcomers. BeeSource has a large fantasy component.

All I can say is try to save up and attend ABF or AHPA and meet some real commercial beekeepers. They are not at all like this guy.  Also talk to your state apiarist and those in nearby states for references.  You deserve better.

I should add that there are many honest, helpful people on BeeSource, too.  I can tell the difference, but less experienced beekeepers and newbees cannot.  Even then, I have to confess that I was influenced by some of the BS there myself, gave some of the ideas the benefit of the doubt and and it took a good dose of AFB to bring me to my senses.

The problem is that people want to generalize and universalize the results of a limited experience which is in fact special.  The fact that some can do some things some places and for a period of time, even decades, does not mean that everyone can do them everywhere and for more than a short time.  Nor does it necessarily make them able to plausibly explain their success.

It seems that many people do not understand that and say, "So and so does this or says that he/she does this, so it works and everyone can/should do it".

As someone who has kept a public diary for almost a decade, let me tell you that it is very difficult to report everything material in regard to anything we do. Here are a few reasons why:

  1. We take some things for granted and think them unworthy of mention

  2. We don't know what the reader does or does not know

  3. Some things are hard or impossible to explain

  4. Some things we overlook or forget to mention

  5. Some things we don't know

  6. Some things we think we see we actually have misinterpreted

  7. Some things are embarrassing or illegal or libelous so we gloss over them .

  8. We get busy and things get omitted

  9. We confuse coincidence with cause and effect

  10. We don't understand how chance works

  11. We draw conclusions from unrepresentative samples

  12. We ignore evidence which might bring our beliefs into question

  13. We invest money and our egos in a process or result and refuse to see contradictory evidence

  14. We hate to admit we were wrong, especially where we took a strong or controversial stand

  15. Etc.

All the above assumes the intent is to be honest and forthright.  In this world there are people who lie for profit and people who lie for fun and people who just have problems distinguishing truth from fantasy.

Maybe you remember the kids back in grade school who had a limited grip on reality and told you things that were just unbelievable.  They are still out there, grown-up, still pretty weird, but looking like everyone else.  The much more polished in their delivery and normal-looking, but just as delusional or psychotic.  For some reason, it seems that more than one would expect are small-time beekeepers.

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Monday August 9th 2010
August past: 2009,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999

Another day with cloud and rain is forecast.  Yesterday, we had a heavy downpour which lasted for hours.  My boat is pretty dry, but I had left the sail cover off and water ran inside the sail, under the boom tent which I had rigged, and onto the pop-top.  The pop-top is not quite watertight and drips; some of my things got a bit damp.  Otherwise, no problem.

John Pat and his girlfriend came over mid-day as did Ron and family.  John and Diane came by open boat, and when they left, it was in the middle of the heaviest downpour.  John is a water person and does not mind getting wet.  I guess she is too.  Ron and family are flying back to the Left Coast and were here to say their good-byes.  They came over by car, so the rain was no problem for them.

This is my last day in Muskoka for now.  I head home at 8:30 tomorrow night.  Mom drives north first thing tomorrow and I have not decided when to make the drive.  Linda is better and we arranged to have Mark come down to back Kyla up for a few days, so Mom is free to get back to her garden.

As for me, I have a week at home and then it is off to Laguna Beach for me, to see Jon and the kids.  I had a cap come off a molar some time back, so I plan to hit Tijuana for a trip or two to the dentist.  The savings in dental costs more than pay for the trip plus car rental, and there is no waiting.

*     *     *     *     *     *    

Graham came over late in the afternoon and we put some fascia onto the boathouse.  Later, after supper, Graham, Andy and I went tubing.  We gave Graham quite a ride.

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