The title of this blog was inspired almost 40 years ago when I drove into West Virginia for the first time. I was on my way to check out an apartment that had been rented on my behalf near WVU, where I would finish my undergraduate degree in Chemistry. After I entered the state, I hopped on a 10-mile segment of the then unfinished I-79. A sign near an unfinished Rest Area said “Welcome to West Virginia” with “No Facilities” on a small sign that was screwed onto the bottom.

The sentiment of that phrase has morphed from the whiney complaint of an 18 year old student who didn’t fully appreciate how lucky he was to even be attending college, to a badge of honor. In fact, “no facilities” has dominated my life and livelihood. As a systems developer, I have made my living creating what wasn’t included by the architects and builders. The systems that could be but weren’t, are the things I have spent 30+ years designing and building. Outside of work, I enjoy making things; furniture, cabinetry, new spaces in and around our house are all fertile ground for my hobbies.

I have other blogs, technical work-related things, but I’m not going to point them out here. This blog is for the stuff that doesn’t fit over there, the things that stir my interest but can’t be precisely packaged, categorized or targeted to a specific audience. I hope this blog attracts some of my existing readers, but I am not trying to build an empire of influence. As I mentioned in my profile, I enjoy woodworking, cycling, and photography. Previous hobbies have included a 30-year love affair with a Triumph Spitfire and routine maintenance of a couple of Dodge pickup trucks. Automotive work is a hobby I set aside as the Triumph aged and cars became more sophisticated. I still enjoy building and maintaining mechanical contraptions

I have also come to associate “No Facilities” with people, towns, countries and situations which can be described by a lack of resources, attention or opportunity or those situations where the status quo just doesn’t include everyone.

I have a small but loving family that I introduce over time. They are important to me, but they share information about themselves, or they choose not to share and I respect those choices. The topic I started this blog with, influence, is centered on this family, they are the people who consistently influence the course of my life.

121 thoughts on “About

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  1. Dan,

    I like the concept of your blog. I find a wry irony in the statement ‘ “No Facilities” screwed onto the bottom.’ How often the necessary is overlooked and out of budget. This is for your use and convenience. It will just be not quite so useful and perhaps very inconvenient. Especially if one follows the instructions from the GPS and turns into the river….

    “Welcome to West Virginia” with “No Facilities” screwed onto the bottom.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks for the comment John, and for following. It’s hard to describe how depressing it was to see that sign. I didn’t understand how minor an inconvenience it was and I try to focus on that. Still, I get sad when states (like CT) close rest areas (or close the building and drop in a porta-potty) to save money.

      I love your blog. So much beauty, so much to understand and you explain it all very well.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for connecting. I don’t think I followed a blog as quickly as I followed yours after first seeing it. My father was in the Pacific in WWII but he didn’t share much information and he died way too early. I have always enjoyed learning more about that region.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. You have really interesting diverse life.. Chemistry and contraptions eh?

    Spitfire! Really? Wow.. lol

    It’s wonderful to meet you (and any members of your family I may also encounter)
    Thank you for taking the time to participate in conversations taking place in my posts too! I greatly appreciate that!


    Liked by 3 people

      1. Thank you very much for your kind words.

        Sometimes I am introverted and don’t enjoy the company, virtual or otherwise.

        Most times, I love to talk to people about their lives and their journey and how they got the point they tare at.. and where they are going… and all that business!

        Thanks for the link to your daughters blog, I will travel over and take a looksies!


        Liked by 1 person

  3. A thoroughly interesting page. I wholly endorse your decision not to share your entire family life here as well; whilst my family are without doubt the most important thing in my life, I don’t see that as sufficient reason to make their lives entirely open to the public, other than the occasional reference to them when and where appropriate or such time as they want to share more in my writing.
    I see you had a Triumph spitfire? I was lucky enough to own a Triumph Stag many years ago, and I swear it got more admiring looks than many of the much more expensive and flashy Porches that were so beloved of young city business men of the time (I was of an age when that sort thing was quite satisfying for me). Nowadays I drive a big old Land Rover 110.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I always wanted a TR6 but they stopped making them before I could afford to buy anything. It was a 79 Spitfire and it was fun but unreliable. I kept it long enough for my daughter to be able to drive it.


  4. Hi Dan,
    There’s something so satisfying about working with our hands!
    My dad was a plumbing contractor and I learned to drive in a 1962 Dodge pickup truck on the old road that led to the dump! Dad never worked on cars, but he said a good mechanic was worth his weight in gold. I grew up around men of the trades and spent many Saturday mornings with my Dad on job sites. He had a lot of respect for framers and finish carpenters. He said most of his work was underground or hidden inside the walls, but the cabinet makers work would be seen every day by the people who’d live in the house. He said no woman he knew ever liked a kitchen with uneven cabinet doors or hard to open drawers. The details mattered.
    Your Tag cloud shows your wide range of posts and I spot a few common interests. I’m checking out a few selections from your blog roll too, so thanks for including that.
    Have a great weekend.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks Kelly. I spent tine working alongside plumbers and electricians, it takes them all to make a house work. I hope you do find some interesting bits out here, it’s a little random, like my desk and workbench. I’ve just peeked at your blog. Don’t be surprised to see me following.


  5. The title of this blog stopped me in my tracks and made me laugh. When we made a cross country move from the midwest to New England, the first thing that was an abrupt change was that so many places do not allow use of their restrooms. You buy gas, you buy snacks and you are greeted with a sign no public facilities. To this day I don’t understand it, but then then there is always Dunkin Donuts and McD where I can find facilities for the price of a drink. :-)

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thanks Judy. I think you might be the first person to comment on this blog’s name. There is something distressing about not being able to take care of business. Dunkin Donuts is always a good place to stop. Recently in CT, they finished construction on an express busway into Hartford. The state announced that none of the stations would have bathrooms. It’s seems crazy and I can’t even see how they can legally do that, but… Thanks for the comment and for following.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for stopping by Jessica. I did eventually learn to ski. I enjoyed the sport for a few years, but after moving to New England, the crowds and conditions got to me and I gave it up.


  6. Nice to find your blog and meet you, Dan. I follow Norm, and his latest post was a beeline here. Then I read that your roots, at least college roots, were in West Virginia. Doesn’t get much better than that. I grew up there, yet now live in New England. Culture shock! Thirty years later, still here with family, and thirty years of teaching preschool. Looking forward to reading your posts. Happy 2017.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thanks Jennie. I grew up in Pittsburgh. I bounced around a bit but ended up in Connecticut about 35 years ago. I took a quick look at your blog. I’ll be back over tomorrow to poke around. Thanks for following.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Nice to find your blog and meet you too, Dan. Congratulations on your awards and nominations too. I agree with all above, this blog is quite charming. Very “drawing in”, your writing is. Will have me a looksee around. Cheers!

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Love your About, and the brilliant blog title, No Facilities–it describes so much and so many. As I cruise toward 65, I’m thinking my next blog may be No Faculties…:) Take care, God bless you and your family.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Found your blog through Almost Iowa. I love your philosophy about blogging – ‘not building an empire.’ So much pressure these days to do that and lose the joy of the journey. Anyway, I’m from Maine and I’ve seen that sign, too, on interstate 95. You better visit the local gas station before you buckle up for an four hour trip up the highway or you’ll be sorry! -Molly Stevens

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Molly. I haven’t driven so far up in Maine to worry about gas in a long time. Our daughter has camped/hiked in Acadia several times, so she knows. I’m glad you connected. I’ll be checking your site out soon.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s not just gas you have to worry about – also limit fluids while driving unless you want to get well acquainted with a Maine pine tree. Haha! Acadia is fabulous. I live about an hour away during the off season but that translates into an hour and a half between Memorial Day and Labor Day.


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