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My crew found an old bottle.

So, we're excavating away up here on the Gold King project, building an improvement to the water-treatment plant. The plant is located smack-dab on top of the old mining town of Gladstone, Colorado. Today my foreman handed me this old bottle -- & now I'm obsessed with learning more about it.

Happily, I'm not alone. There are superb internet resources for dating old bottles. I'm mostly using the Society for Historical Archaeology's Historic Glass Bottle Identification & Information Website. But I'm not doing well with my bottle.

Here's what I know. It's a round/cylindrical bottle made of clear glass, approximately 6 1/2" tall & with a diameter of approximately 2 1/2". It has a very short neck. Two side seams run from right under the top (the "finish") of the bottle down onto the base. Since the side seams don't go up onto the finish, the SHA website says this is likely "'mouth-blown' or 'hand-made' and typically date prior to 1915, though could date back to at least 1800. The vast majority of U. S. manufactured, mouth-blown molded bottles were made between about 1820 and 1915."

The finish seems to be a "tooled finish", which means the top of the bottle was shaped with tools but no extra glass was blobbed onto the neck after the bottle was blown. The SHA website says: "The changeover from applied finishes to tooled finishes appears to have been in the 1880s, with a large majority of bottles produced after 1890 exhibiting this finishing method. Hand tooled finishes largely disappeared between 1910 and the early 1920s with the ever increasing dominance of fully automatic bottle making machine." So this bottle was likely manufactured some time between 1880 & 1920. But then, the SHA website says, "As a general statement about the transition from applied to tooled finishes, it is clear that the smaller the bottle the earlier that tooled finishes were first used." My bottle is fairly small, so it could be older.

There is another seam around the base of the bottle, on the side but near the bottom. I can't see a "pontil" scar on the base of the bottle, which means it very likely dates to after the Civil War.

The seam around the base means the bottle was produced in a "cup-bottom mold". These normally date to between 1860 & 1890.

The bottle has six mold-formed air venting marks on its shoulders. SHA: "Mouth-blown bottles with air venting marks typically date from, or after, 1885-1890."

The base of the bottle has the raised outline of an "H" with a "3" inside each section of the "H".
H33 on base of bottle

I'd really like to find out what the "H33" means!

Seolta, still.

I found myself thinking about Sarah today. A co-worker mentioned her father-in-law's passing in hospice care & it made me remember when Sarah was dying & I was reading about it on LJ, from New Orleans, while working on Hurricane Katrina. That was not a good time, my friends.

Sometimes I still wonder what Sarah would be doing if she were alive. I've made up very interesting life stories for her. In most of them, she leaves Edinburgh - sometimes for the US, sometimes for the Antipodes, sometimes for Europe. She takes to Twitter & Facebook like a fish to water. She meets a guy, some guys, has good relationships, & bad. She keeps Poppy with her to a ruinous old age & then starts accumulating cats in a bid to fulfill her threat to become a crazy cat lady. She rides her motorcycle, even in the rain. She visits me frequently & I visit her. She & Shay become buddies.

I wonder if Sarah knows I still wear her necklace almost every day. I wonder what it's like to be ... dead? Post-living? Shuffled off? I wonder if she had any expectations of an afterlife, & if so, if they are being met. I wonder who she's complaining to if they aren't.

I wonder what she thinks of those of us who are still living.


Lenten fast, Day 28.

Sleep: broken by shoulder pain & dog snuffling. My whole left arm was numb when my alarm went off. Treatment is not going well.

I went to OA this morning & someone quoted a line from Mary Oliver's amazing poem, "Evidence":

"...I believe in kindness. Also in mischief. Also in
singing, especially when singing is not necessarily

As for the body, it is solid and strong and curious
and full of detail; it wants to polish itself; it
wants to love another body; it is the only vessel in
the world that can hold, in a mix of power and
sweetness: words, song, gesture, passion, ideas,
ingenuity, devotion, merriment, vanity, and virtue.

Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable."

God, this was the message I needed this morning.

Breakfast: before OA I made a cup of Irish breakfast tea w/collagen powder, half'n'half, & a bit of sugar. It tasted terrible. Have I really gotten used to black tea? Weird. Once I got to the shop, I had a cup of black coffee (which tasted great) & a slice of sweet potato casserole.

Lunch: salad (deli turkey, lettuce, radishes, cherry tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers, & Tessamae's ranch dressing), leftover beef & turnips (so good), strawberries, & a lime LaCroix.

I went to Denver Sports Medicine & got a chiropractic adjustment & 20 minutes in neck traction to try to relieve pressure on my radial nerve. I've been getting electrical shots down my arm for days & my grip strength is gone. Sigh.

Dinner: Salmon a l'Afrique du Nord & Brussels sprouts with bacon.

Snack: cherry pie Larabar.... & then a whole sleeve of cookies. FAIL.

Lenten fast, Day 27.

Sleep: mixed. I was in bed for a long time but I woke up a lot. My shoulder is hurting again, even through a solid dose of Tylenol.

Breakfast: leftover shakshuka over the last of the spaghetti squash. Delicious.

Lunch: strawberries, pickled beets, & a big lunch salad (deli turkey, lettuce, carrots, radishes, bell peppers, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, & Tessamae's ranch).

Dinner: I salvaged that boring Balsamic Beef by using it in this dish. It went from blah to yum! I also made Beet/Carrot/Apple Salad, which I am re-naming ABC Slaw (obviously). It was OK, but I think it will be tastier with a day or two to flavor-mingle in the fridge.

Snack: chamomile tea w/collagen powder & an apple pie Larabar.


Lenten fast, Days 25 & 26.


Sleep: awful. I had something in my eye & I could NOT get it out. Didn't get to sleep until almost 2 AM. Up around 6:30 AM.

Breakfast: made shakshuka. While chopping the onions, my eyes started watering & got the eyelash out of my eye. Ahhh, blessed relief. I ate shakshuka (two eggs' worth) over reheated spaghetti squash, 2 slices of bacon, & 2 cups of coffee. I think I will next try shakshuka over a mixture of red potatoes & spinach. Maybe with mushrooms.

Exercise: working in the yard, raking gravel, pulling weeds, cleaning up leaves, etc.

Lunch: leftovers EXTRAVAGANZA. Tuna salad, Asian cauli-rice, & the last of the lamb meatballs on more spaghetti squash. I may not be doing great on veggie variety, but I am crushing veggie quantities.

Went grocery shopping & started up the slow cooker with Balsamic Beef with Rosemary.

Dinner: spring roll & pho at Pho Real in Littleton. Not Whole30 because of the rice wrapper & noodles, but still - lean meat, bone broth, fresh veggies. It was a nice low-key date night with HPG.


Sleep: decent.

Breakfast: went out to Breakfast King. Coffee, two scrambled eggs, link sausage, half an avocado, & skillet potatoes. Eh meal.

Exercise: more yard work, planting stuff before the rain started.

Lunch: Balsamic beef over spaghetti squash & spinach. Eh. The beef is surprisingly tasteless & I put too much arrowroot powder in the sauce when I was thickening it, giving the whole dish an unappealing gelatinous texture.

Snack: bag of donuts. FAIL.

Dinner: N* & R* had us over for dinner to try out their new 50,000-BTU outdoor wok. They made a delicious Thai red curry (chicken, several kinds of peppers, bamboo shoots, pea pods, coconut-based red curry). It was HOT! Served over rice (non-Whole30). Then we played Cards Against Humanity - N* poured me a bourbon without asking (he's my Scotch-drinking buddy) & I drank about two sips of it.

Lenten fast, Day 24.

Sleep: decent. The temperature plummeted last night & I always sleep better when it's cold. 10:30-6:30, a couple of interruptions.

Breakfast: sweet potato casserole, black coffee.

Mr. Hobbes came to work with me this morning for the first time. He enjoyed: 1) going up & down stairs for the first time; 2) meeting all the guys; 3) seeing himself in a mirror for the first time; & 4) playing with Lucy, our shop dog.

Lunch: tuna salad, blackberries, strawberries, & pickled beets. This was entirely insufficient for lunch.

Snack: mixed nuts.

Headed home: donuts. FAIL. Sigh.

Exercise: took Shadeaux on the Pokemon loop, ~1.5 miles.

No dinner.

Lenten fast, Day 23.

Breakfast: sweet potato casserole, blackberries, strawberries, Constant Comment tea.

Lunch: lunch salad (no meat, lettuce, carrots, bell peppers, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, Tessamae's dressing), pickled beets, lamb meatballs on spaghetti squash, & ginger kombucha.

Exercise: took Shadeaux on the Pokemon loop, about 1.5 miles.

Dinner: tuna salad (canned tuna, cucumber, tomato, radishes, celery, avocado, lime juice).

Snack: apple pie Larabar & chamomile tea with collagen powder.

I read an article on Mark's Daily Apple that talks about the need to eat a wide variety of vegetables. I swear it said to aim for 30-40 different types per week! Anyway, with my usual obsessive over-focus, now I'm wondering how to get a wider variety of veggies on my table.

Today: sweet potato, spinach, green onion, blackberry, strawberry, green leaf lettuce, carrot, bell pepper, cucumber, cherry tomato, beet, onion, pine nuts, spaghetti squash, radish, celery, avocado, date, apple, almond, walnut, raisin. 22 types, if nuts count. Wow, pretty good!

Lenten fast, Day 22.

Sleep: Glorious. 9.5 hours? Woke up only once & fell right back to sleep.

Breakfast: sweet potato casserole & Bloodless coffee.

Lunch: salad (deli chicken, lettuce, carrot, cucumber, cherry tomato, bell pepper, Tessamae's dressing). Kombucha.

Snack: lamb EPIC bar & cherry pie Larabar.

I had my first meeting with my OA sponsor. It was less than thrilling, but baaaaby steps.

Dinner: lamb meatballs, spaghetti squash, cumin-roasted carrots.

Lenten fast, Day 21.

Sleep: OK. At least I didn't have to take any painkillers. I got about 7.5 hours, woke up twice.

Breakfast: sweet potato casserole, Constant Comment tea.

I went to OA this morning.

Snack: cherry pie Larabar, handful of golden raisins.

Exercise: I took Shadeaux for a walk on the Pokemon route, about 1.5 miles.

Lunch: huge lunch salad (deli chicken, lettuce, carrots, cucumber, bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, Tessamae's ranch dressing).

Dinner: OMG, so good. I made curried lamb meatballs, cumin-roasted carrots, & spaghetti squash & topped it with chopped fresh mint & parsley. It is greasy (too much oil in the meatballs) but still light-tasting because of the herbs. Delicious.

Curry, mint, cumin, oh my!

Snack: chamomile tea & cherry pie Larabar. I also took 800 mg of Advil because my shoulder flared again.

#Whole30 #WholeLent Day 7b.

Sleep: Good! About 7 hours, only woke up once. I feel pretty rested.

Breakfast: sweet potato casserole, Bloodless coffee, blackberries & strawberries. It's berry season!!!!

Lunch: work meeting at a Mexican restaurant. Ordered three tacos (carne asada, chicken tinga, & al pastor) on lettuce, hold the dairy. There were probably trace ingredients that were non-compliant, but in general, good meal. Great tacos.

Snack: a bag of donuts. Whole30 fail.

Snack: tortilla chips. Whole30 fail fail.

I've figured something out - working a full day & then knowing I have to go home & cook a whole dinner from scratch causes blowouts. It's like I can't face a second shift.

Tomorrow I will continue with a Lenten fast without calling it a Whole30 any more. Same rules though.