May 16, 2003

RunnerDuck Home

WELCOME BACK:  What a fun weekend we had up at Port Susan. For those of you from places outside the Seattle area, Port Susan is a camping club where you have a piece of land on which you can park your trailer and enjoy the great outdoors without the hassle of reservations or first come first served. The little camping spot has been in our family for over 25 years and it's just a great place to get away from the rat race and relax. Relax? You have to be kidding me. Ken spent the majority of the weekend washing and waxing the trailer while Marilyn cut, sawed, and beat back the plants that had decided to encroach on our space. While it was a lot of work it looks great and now it's ready for a summer of fun. We did manage to build a camp fire each night and stare into the flames melting away the day's aches and pains. Everyone should have a special place where they can get away and enjoy some quality time even if part of that time is spent working.

Last week we mentioned that the Abraham Lincoln was returning to port in Everett Washington. To much fanfare it did and everyone is glad they are home. The town of Everett planned a welcome home ticker tape parade for the troops with an anticipated crowd of 10,000 people. It turned out that 30,000 people showed up to greet them and was a spectacular event. One interesting side note, during a television interview, a person said that they were really looking forward to the "ticker take" parade. Since there probably isn't a piece of "Ticker Tape" in the city of Everett why would you expect someone to know what the heck it is? Any how 7,500 pounds of confetti was shot into the air by seven confetti cannons and the good folks of Washington welcomed their heroes' home.

We are continuing our search for crafters who would like to sell their creations through our web site. We currently only have one persons crafts on display, Ron Godin, but would love to add more. We are talking with a couple of people right now but the more the merrier. Drop us a line and some pictures of your art and we'll see if we can work together.
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Thank you,
Ken and Marilyn

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What's New This Week? Wow, Memorial Day weekend 2003 already. This is what we consider the first real holiday of the year. It always seems like such a dry spell from New Years Day until Memorial Day. We think there should be more holidays in between but maybe that's just because we really like the time off. We're being a little flexible with our plans this year but you can bet that we'll be kicking back and taking it easy.

We hope you are making plans to get away or at least take a break and enjoy the holiday. Everyone needs a little time to catch their breath. If you don't want to fight the traffic and crowed camp grounds there are usually lots of events in your local area that provide family fun. Go take advantage of them and have a great time.


      Have you heard about the new wireless Internet toilet interface device from Microsoft? It was announced a week or so ago from the British Microsoft office that they were working on a toilet that would allow you to connect to the Internet. It would be used at public places and events to allow people to surf while doing other business, jezz what's next?

As it turns out this is a well orchestrated hoax (sort of) and none of it is true. They were actually looking into the possibility but had dropped it. Unfortunately the word got out before the project details got squelched. We're telling you this so that you don't take your laptop computer to the restroom and become disappointed when you can not logon to the Internet. We're also telling you this so that you don't spread one of those silly emails that perpetuate stories and hoaxes like this. If you want to read about hoaxes you can always go to our web site and click on "QuickLinks" and then the big pink banner with "Hoaxes" in the middle.

If you want to read a really funny story about this go to and see how silly a subject can really get.

One footnote to this story, a local radio station here in Seattle has commissioned a portable toilet company to set up an Internet ready portable at a car show this weekend. I wonder where it will all end?


     This probably belongs in our question and answer section but there was a lot more to it then just a question.

They write: "Hello! I found your website while searching for toy boats (lifeboats), scale sized about 8 inches for our 20 foot model of the RMS Titanic!

We are the Canadian Titanic Society, the only one in Canada and the only Society in the world to have placed a plaque on the Titanic in her final resting place 2-and-a half miles beneath the ocean, in memory of all the lost souls of that disaster. There were 130 Canadians on board and only 48 of those survived that fateful night.

Do you have any idea as to where we can find 20 lifeboats about 8 inches in length by about 2.5 inches across and about 1.50 inches depth?? Or plans on how to make them, relatively easily and inexpensively??? I read where you are into woodworking!

Thank you for any assistance or advice you can give us!!"

Well unfortunately we didn't have much advice for them but maybe you do. Please drop us a line with any suggestions you might have. You can check out the Canadian Titanic Society at They have a lot of interesting links and some really good information on the Titanic.


Coffee Cup Bird Feeder

     This project can be a little tedious but the results are well worth the effort. You may break a couple of cups and saucers before you're done so be sure to use old cheap ones. These make really wonderful gifts.

Since this project uses a hammer and does some chipping it's best to wear safety glasses and do it with adult supervision. We wouldn't want any of you getting hurt.

Here is a list of the things you will need.
  • Cups and saucers. Do not use porcelain because they break too easily. Use cheap cups that you can get from a thrift store or discount store. You'll probably need a few since breakage is possible.
  • 1/4" thread stock 3' long
  • Two 1/4" nuts
  • Two 1/4" flat washers
  • Silicone sealer
  • Large pattern 1/4" rubber washers (optional)
Mark the center of the cup and saucer with a permanent marker.
Using a hammer and philips head screwdriver lightly chip away at the center of the cup and saucer.
First you'll want to chip away the glaze and then the ceramic underneath. This takes a little practice and patients so take your time and be careful.
Once you get a hole through size it so the threaded rod just fits through it.
Put a nut and flat washer rubber washer (optional) onto the threaded rod and run it down about 1".
Add the Silicone to the bottom of the cup and glue it to the saucer with the threaded rod through them both.
Add the rubber washer (optional), flat washer and nut.
DO NOT TIGHTEN the nuts with a wrench, finger tight only! Unless you want to go buy some more cups ;-)
Put some bird seed in them and set them around the yard. They look great and the birds will love you.

     We hope you enjoy Marilyn's Corner and look forward to all the fun things she brings you each week. If you have a fun project that would be suitable for our newsletter we'd love to share it with our readers. Just contact and we'll do the rest.

Remember we have all of our past projects archived on our web site at Just click on the Projects or Kids Only Eggs.

Sand and Garden

      It's time to get out in the garden and help with the spring planting. It's also coming up on Memorial Day weekend when you might go to the beach and need some great tools for playing in the sand. Check out these specials that include Free Shipping.

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The Tempos
News and CD of the Week

We're sorry for the slightly off color joke last week. We had a word in it that actually caused a few filters to stop our newsletter from being delivered. If you didn't get your newsletter last week then you can blame our mistake for it.

You can check out our summer schedule at the Tempos web site If you are making plans to visit Seattle this summer try to fit in one of our fun concerts.

     Don't forget that The Tempos big swing band is available for hire. If you have a special event that could use the wonderful music of a classic big band be sure to contact

      It seems like every other week we are telling of another famous musician that has passed away. While we are not huge country and western fans we do enjoy good music in any form. June Carter-Cash passed away this week and will surely be missed. She and her husband Johnny Cash collaborated on many songs and performed together for many years. While some people thought she rode on the shirt tails of her husband she was actually a very substantial force by herself. She received several Oscars and several nominations. She will be missed in the world of music.


Remember, we have a link on our web site,, to our ever popular Grammy® Shopper site. If you haven't been there yet just click HERE to see all the 2003 Grammy® winners complete with links to purchase any one of them.

Questions and Answers

Welcome to our Q&A center.
Got questions? We've got answers.
Got answers? We've got questions.

Q: We had several responses this past week to Curt's question about attaching the clothes pin to the Toy Rubber Band Gun.

A: Stu wrote: "Drill two holes in the clothespin, glue and screw it to the handle." That's what worked best for us.
Another reader wrote: "I found an old rubber band rifle at a thrift store ($ kidding). The clothes pin was missing...probably why it was so cheap huh? Anyways, I found that superglue was the best fix-it. The gun has since been broken in 2 places (rough boys) but the clothes pin is still in tact." We haven't tried this but it sure does sound like it works and would eliminate the drilling of the clothes pin.


This weeks joke was sent to us by JoAnn G. Thanks for the humor.

Children's Science Exam Answers
These, supposedly, are real answers given by children.

Q: Name the four seasons.
A: Salt, pepper, mustard and vinegar.

Q: Explain one of the processes by which water can be made safe to drink.
A: Flirtation makes water safe to drink because it removes large pollutants like grit, sand, dead sheep and canoeists.

Q: How is dew formed?
A: The sun shines down on the leaves and makes them perspire.

Q: How can you delay milk turning sour?
A: Keep it in the cow.

Q: What causes the tides in the oceans?
A: The tides are a fight between the Earth and the Moon. All water tends to flow towards the moon, because there is no water on the moon, and nature hates a vacuum. I forget where the sun joins in this fight.

Q: What are steroids?
A: Things for keeping carpets still on the stairs.

Q: What happens to your body as you age?
A: When you get old, so do your bowels and you get intercontinental.

Q : What happens to a boy when he reaches puberty?
A: He says good-bye to his boyhood and looks forward to his adultery.

Q: Name a major disease associated with cigarettes.
A: Premature death.

Q: What is artificial insemination?
A: When the farmer does it to the bull instead of the cow.

Q: How are the main parts of the body categorized? (e.g., abdomen).
A: The body is consisted into three parts - the brainium, the borax and the abdominal cavity. The brainium contains the brain, the borax contains the heart and lungs, and the abdominal cavity contains the five bowels, A,E,I,O and U.

Q: What is the fibula?
A: A small lie.

Q: What does "varicose" mean?
A: Nearby.

Q: Give the meaning of the term "Caesarean Section"?
A: The Caesarean Section is a district in Rome.

Q: What does the word "benign" mean?
A: Benign is what you will be after you be eight.

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Southwestern Pork Salad
      This sort of reminds me of the old song "Pork Salad Annie". Well at least that's what it sounded like to me ;-).
This is really a tasty salad with a touch of the old west that goes good without just about any meal.


  • 2 Cups cooked Pork Strips
  • 1 16oz. can Kidney Beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 Cup sliced ripe Olives
  • 1 medium chopped Onion
  • 1 large Green Pepper, chopped
  • 1 large Tomato, chopped
Mix everything together.


  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 1/4 Cup Vinegar
  • 1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Dry Mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Parsley, minced
Mix together with salad and chill 4 to 6 hours.

Serve cold.

Remember, if you have a recipe you'd like to share please send it to

     Every month we post a new recipe on our web page. Be sure and check out the May recipe at the RunnerDuck Kitchen Store.
We'd be happy to post your favorite recipe there or in our newsletter and give you credit. Just drop a line to

GREAT DEALS FOR RunnerDuck SUBSCRIBERS is one of our favorite shopping places for unique kitchen tools at really great prices. If you've never been there before we'd encourage you to check them out. They just may have that special kitchen tool you are looking for.

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"Southwest: The Beautiful Cookbook" by Barbara P. Fenzl

      Here's a marvelous cookbook to complement this weeks recipe. From all the reviews this is one of the "must haves" for you cookbook collection. N. David Guarneri reviewed this cookbook and wrote the following: "This was my first cookbook, and I loved it. I usually eat on the go, and I wanted to buy something for special occasions. Most cookbooks I saw seemed to be aimed at housewives or low-fat faddish consumers. When I saw this book, the huge pictures and great presentations convinced me to take it home, but the fun began when I began to use it. The glossary of ingredients at the end was very helpful for a beginner like me. I did my own variation of the Guacamole recipe and combined it with my own variation of the green salsa recipe for an office pot-luck. (I am a musician, I can't help but tinker with things). I even used the molcajete. (I think the variety of fresh vegetables combined with the non-blender approach really did it here). I never heard the end from everybody on how they loved the guacamole. (It was gone in about 10 minutes even though I made quite a bit). I also tried dishes I never had before, such as the Jicama Salad. That was great. Also, the smoked salmon enchiladas were awesome. I tried the chimichangas, but I think that was a little advanced for my level (especially since I tried to use tamale flour mix)....they did not hold together very well, although they were still delicious. I did better than most restaurants, and I've been to quite a few good ones."

Be sure and visit the RunnerDuck Cookbook Store for other great savings on cookbooks and cooking supplies.


Chorreador de café

     A what you say? A Costa Rican coffee maker. It's funny how some of these projects are developed but this one came to us in a round about way from one of our readers, Michael O'Reilly. We were exchanging emails about Costa Rica, since we own a little piece of property down there, and he sent me a web site to check out. While surfing around that web site I stumbled onto an interesting site about Costa Rican coffee. We are coffee drinkers, roast our own beans and often buy coffee beans from Costa Rica. Any how we took the picture they showed and made our own coffee maker.

Here's what you'll need:
  • 5" X 18" X 1/2" Maple or your choice of wood.
  • 6" X 8" X 3/4" Maple or your choice of wood.
  • Finish nails
  • Glue

Cut the base out of 3/4" maple, 7 1/2" X 6".
Chamfer a 45 degree cut 1" in from each corner.
Cut the two short sections, one on each end, 15 degrees.
Cut two supports from 1/2" pieces 9" long at 5 degrees on each end. Make sure the angles go the same direction on each end.
Cut the top out of 1/2" maple, 6" X 4 1/2".
Chamfer a 45 degree cut 1" from each corner.
Cut a notch on each end of the top and base to fit the 1 1/2" supports using a dado blade. Set up the miter with a small piece of wood at the base to give the notch a 5 degree angle. Use a piece of backing on your parts to keep them from breaking out.

Mark the center of the top and draw a 4" circle.
Cut out the circle with a scroll saw or saber saw.

Glue and nail the pieces together and you are almost ready to start making coffee.

The Basket

Make the basket from a stiff wire like a clothes hanger and a piece of cotton.
Bend the wire to make a handle and a 4 1/4" circle.
Cut out two of the pattern from our web site at Sew the two halves together and the top folded over for the wire to go through.

You should now be good to go brew a great cup of coffee. For instructions on how to use the coffee maker go to and enjoy.
Thanks a million Michael for pointing us to this site.

If you have a project that you would like to share please drop us a line and we'll help get it published in the RunnerDuck review. We are looking for woodworking, gardening, crafts and kids projects so send us your thoughts at .

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      It's coming up on the watering season for your lawn and garden. Many people over water or water at the wrong times. It is best to only water about once a week unless it's really dry and then no more than twice a week. Give it a good soaking when you do water. Water in the early morning and not in the heat of the day. A lot of water is wasted by running a sprinkler when it's hot out and the sun is beating down. A large percentage of the water just evaporates and never makes it deep into the soil.
Remember that these guides are for your lawn and garden, pot and planters may need watering much more frequently.

If you have a conservation tip please send it to and we'll post it in our newsletter.

     If you want to talk about something just drop us a line at any time, we like to talk about most anything. We are always looking for content for our newsletter so if you have something to add we'd love to publish it. Assuming it meets our strict family oriented requirements!

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