Dennis E. Powell's View from Mudsock Heights

Dennis E. Powell is crackpot-at-large at Open for Business. Powell was a reporter in New York and elsewhere before moving to Ohio, where he has (mostly) recovered. You can reach him at

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The View from Mudsock Heights: The Supernatural Aspects of Computer Parts Justify a Big Collection

By Dennis E. Powell | Nov 08, 2009 at 4:07 AM

My little scribbling this week comes to you from a 20-year-old, pristinely restored Northgate OmniKey keyboard. Back when the crust of the Earth was cooling and computing was young, the Northgate company was one of many upstarts that made very good personal computers. What set them apart, though, were their keyboards. They had a pleasant, clicky feel that many users loved. Northgate sold their keyboards separately, but apparently few people then bought their computers, too, so they went out of business. This made having a Northgate keyboard even cooler.

The View from Mudsock Heights: The Change of Seasons Reminds Us We Need to Change Our Spirits, Too

By Dennis E. Powell | Oct 30, 2009 at 4:51 AM

It was the first gray, windy, wintry day, a day that could be in November or February. Such days can chill one to the bone, physically but spiritually, too.

The View from Mudsock Heights: Woodland Isolation Leads to Affection for Odd Foreign Television Show

By Dennis E. Powell | Oct 23, 2009 at 6:36 AM

Out here in the woods, if you’re going to watch television chances are you’ll get it via a satellite dish.
This has its annoyances — the “local” stations the satellite company chooses are in West Virginia, for instance. I wonder what television news covered there before they had meth lab explosions to lead the newscasts, but never mind. There’s no television at all when it is raining.

The View from Mudsock Heights: I’m in a New York State of Mind, But Recovery is Certain

By Dennis E. Powell | Oct 11, 2009 at 4:27 AM

Sitting on a back porch in upstate New York, having coffee and enjoying a beautiful morning, it is as if I’m on a different planet.

The View from Mudsock Heights: Well, I Think She was a Real Folksinger, Anyway

By Dennis E. Powell | Oct 01, 2009 at 5:08 AM

The story has it that Townes Van Zandt, the folksinger, was asked how many kinds of music there are. “Two,” was his reply.

Asked to name them, he said, “The blues and Zip-a-dee-doo-dah.”

The View from Mudsock Heights: Autumn Moves In, Pushing Away the Summer that Wasn't

By Dennis E. Powell | Sep 20, 2009 at 3:59 AM

Pity the poor person who doesn’t live in or near a college town. Autumn arrives and all that changes is the weather. In a college town, there is an air of excitement. The energy level increases. It’s exactly the opposite of the normal order of things, where spring is the time of rebirth. For a college town, it is the fall when everything, yes, springs back to life.

The View from Mudsock Heights: The Dust Around Here Proves that Nature Abhors a Vacuum

By Dennis E. Powell | Sep 03, 2009 at 3:38 PM

As a public service, I would like to let everyone know that the source of all dust in the universe is apparently somewhere near me.

The View from Mudsock Heights: Old Stinkpot was a Turtle, and He Briefly Was Mine

By Dennis E. Powell | Aug 24, 2009 at 2:37 AM

The shape was tiny but unmistakable to anyone who has spent years watching for turtles while driving.

The View from Mudsock Heights: Woodstock, the Legend, Isn't Much like the Festival as Experienced at the Time

By Dennis E. Powell | Aug 17, 2009 at 8:43 PM

Somewhere, deep in a box someplace, I have an original, unused ticket for all three days of the “Woodstock Music & Art Fair,” held 40 years ago this coming weekend. I think I still have it, though I haven’t seen it for years. I hope I do, because I paid for it.

The View from Mudsock Heights: Hoping that It was Just One of Those Weeks, Not One of Those Months

By Dennis E. Powell | Aug 07, 2009 at 10:14 PM

Every so often it seems as if the universe is sending a little message. You never know when it will happen, nor is it easy at first to recognize. In my case, it all began last week when the car started malfunctioning.

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