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Rockport Texas


New Rug

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

Teams Location: Rockport, Texas
Lots of fishing today with not even one bite from any kind of fish.  Maybe the prevailing pavement peeling wind had something to do with the bad luck.

The Castle has sheet vinyl for the flooring all through the trailer.  For foot comfort especially in the winter, cheap throw rugs are put on the floor.  When they get too bad in a couple of years or so, the old ones are thrown out and new ones put in their place.
Today a new rug for the living room, dining room and kitchen was installed.  The non-slip back low pile rugs from Wal-Mart are my choice.  The new one was cut to fit with a utility knife.  My straight line metal shears were tried but the knife did a better job.  The cut edge was then sealed with a BBQ lighter.

Next was the fun of man handling that sucker into place. It was amazing that the cuts all turned out to be correct.  A picture of the whole rug is not possible since the Castle is so small.  Here is the living room and part of the kitchen.

It is a little darker than it seemed at the store during the choosing of which rug to purchase.
Rent for the month of May was paid this afternoon so the OFM Teams should be around here for a few more days at least.  Maybe the yak might even get some salt water on it for a change. My new glasses that we are waiting on should be in before too much longer.  These are single vision glasses for use when hitting golf balls.

Golf can be another good way of trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Good and Bad Morning

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

For some unknown silly reason the OFM was up about 0600 this morning.  After breakfast the Walking Team hit the Rockport Beach to greet the sunshine and get some needed gentle exercise.  Here is what a Good Morning looks like.

Towards the end of the walk an ambulance was seen coming into the park.  It is still early morning as in 0735. Now why is an ambulance coming into the park?  My location was near the boat ramp and the ambulance stopped there! Then the trouble was seen.  A man and a boy were helping another man to the ambulance.  His lower leg was wrapped in a cloth of some sort and he was limping mightily.  The EMT folks sat him down and went to work.  Here is what a bad morning looks like.

Since my being in the area could not help in any way, the Walking Team went on down the road and finished our walk on the beach sand.  Walking on loose sand will really increase your effort while taking a walk.
Back at the Castle it was time to change out a failed and expensive to operate fluorescent lighting fixture.  With bulbs only lasting eleven to sixteen months and costing $8 each at Wal-Mart, it was time to eliminate the fixture and replace it with a much cheaper to operate standard to RVs fixture. Light bulbs for this one are 50 cents each and last more than two years normally. The new fixture cost less than two new bulbs for the previous fixture.

Here is the fixture right after the wiring changeover was completed.

Crimp connectors were used for the connections.  Wire nuts, even taped, do not belong in my attic on the Castle.  The fixture went up nicely with screws put into the paneling of the ceiling to firmly hold the fixture in place.

Now that all that hard work was finished, the rest of the day was spent fishing in miserably bad winds until late this evening.  While fishing and visiting down at the pier with Pop, he got a big surprise when the first fish of the day hit his white DOA imitation shrimp.  It was a nice fat speck and Pop headed for his ice chest with the trout.

We fished a little more while we visited.  Then it was time for me to head home to produce this fantastic literature you are reading. Yep, getting in some serious fishing time certainly helps when you are trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Antenna Uploaded

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

It is bad enough that the severe winds were trying to blow the Antenna Installation Team off the roof of the Castle.  Then when the wind was not successful at that, it put the Castle to rocking like a boat at anchor in the surf.  Now we had the Team getting blasted by the wind while on the equivalent of a moving trampoline. But Mother Nature forgot she was dealing with an OFM Team.  We cannot be defeated!
After way too many trips up and down the ladder on the back of the Castle the project was accomplished.  As usual there were a few things that did not go right the first try or possibly even more than once.  Now the ibuprofen is hard at work to keep the knees from getting too sore and swollen.  Getting older is better than not getting older.

The inside wiring was routed on the same route as the previous wiring so that portion of the project was easy (and in the A/C).  The adapter was attached to the antenna wiring and the entire system given a try. 


Well it did and I am still in shock!  The tools were put away and it was time for a cold soda to celebrate.  Working near the edge of the Castle is still an uneasy task for me. Make that two sodas.

In the afternoon the Meandering Teams went meandering.  The town is very crowded today with vehicles and folks all over the waterfront.  It is actually wonderful that the city and navigation district has developed the area so well for the weekenders and their $$$$$$$$$$$$.  The day was beautiful and warm but not really hot yet. It will start to be hot in about three more weeks is my guess.
Its supper time. Having some good TEXMEX is a great way to finish a day of trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.



NON-Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

The story is the excessively strong winds here on the coast.  At least it is not like last spring in Deming when small rocks were being air lifted into windshields and RV siding. The trip to do some wade fishing this morning was a blow out literally. Before the water level got to my knees the wind was giving me fits to stay up right on the uneven bottom.  The tides were out like it was winter time.  All in all, the entire fishing attempt lasted less than thirty minutes.
Back at the Castle the wind was rocking the trailer so much that pouring a full cup of coffee was not wise.  That same wind precluded any sensible person from clambering around on the roof for any reason. The good side of the wind is that there is no way any mosquitos could bother you if you are out trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Stabbed With Steel

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

The big adventure today involved getting steel shoved into me and capturing the blood in a plastic bag.  For that great service to mankind they gave me a shirt.

That means the rest of the day was spent being very lazy to allow my body time to build more blood.  In my ancient old age it has proven worthwhile to take a good 24 hours before getting too active after a bloodletting.
When the Bleeding Team got back to the Castle our new toys were unpacked and inspected.  The antenna that was eaten by a tree in Big Bend NP is going to be replaced by this new improved version.

While wandering around in Andy Baird’s site about antennas this special adapter was mentioned.

Instead of having a special adapter with a plug to fit the air card, this one works by induction without having to actually plug it into the air card. That means that no more additional adapters should have to be purchased.  Of course if antenna eating natural items come back another antenna might be required.  When the wind lets up some, then it will be time to get on the roof of the Castle.  For now the air conditioner is having trouble staying bolted to the roof so the OFM will not be going up there to mess around.
Some gentle exercise was needed and the waves and froth at the beach park is blowing all the way across the walking path down there.  So the Walking Team headed all the way over to the Community Park again.  That is almost a mile from the beach park.

It was nice that there was a bench situated at a nice location for resting after the 2 mile walk.

This is a nice place to wind down from an exciting day of trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Turtle Mania

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

The pollen count finally went down enough that my body could breathe again and it was wonderful. It has been a rough couple of weeks for breathing.  In fact it was so good that a walk at the Community Park was taken.  The wind was ripping the bark off the trees but the mosquitos were blown away from the pathways.

As the Truck was entering the park a sign was straddling the center line.  As the Truck got close it was finally legible to my crummy eyesight.

It is time for some patching of the path.  In the last year a few bad spots had shown up and were getting worse. The spots were still ok but soon would have been trouble.  Here is one of the spots that are getting treatment.  This is too wonderful a facility to let it go downhill.

Part of the pathways was blocked off for our safety but there are still plenty of pathways to wander for a nice outing.  The park is in the slow process of expanding into some adjacent property the city owns. Of course the expansion will be slow but steady as the limited funding allows.  Here is a new facility that has started to form up.  It will be a welcome asset to the park.

The turtle pier on the pond was getting a good business today.  Lots of folks were taking the opportunity to check out the turtles gathering for handouts. As nice as the day was it seemed that the viewers and the turtles were really enjoying weather.

This set of turtles seemed to be intent on improving their suntans.  That is a coated foam float that they are sun bathing upon.  There are several of those kinds of floats anchored around in the ponds.

The city does a great job of keeping the areas very clean.  More water in the ponds would be a welcome event for sure. As usual this park has a very welcoming feel to it and enhances trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Rod Repair

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

The rod repair went well but not perfect.  The plastic cone that screws down onto the reel seat is what is cracked.  The first try of using a stainless steel gear clamp worked but was a constant irritant with its sharp edges. A new more pleasant attempt was needed.
The foam was cut away from the leading part of the cone.  An attempt at doing a winding like on a reel seat was a less than spectacular success.  The plastic of the cone has ridges which stopped me from being able to snug the windings really tight.  They were left on the cone and given a coating of clear fingernail polish. In this picture you can see the crack location. The camera refused to focus on the reel seat for some reason.

After a lot of thought it finally dawned on me to use a plastic wire tie or ties to hold the cone from cracking any more. There were two black ties in my tool box so they brought out to be used.  After installing the first one, the cone seemed very solid so the second one was put back in the tool box.  The junction of the tie was oriented to my finger rests on it in a very comfortable position.

Next, of course, was to go try it out.  Amazingly it works very well.  The water is very rough in the winds today and no fish were landed. But this is a good beginning to a day of trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.



Adventure Location: Rockport Harbor Pier, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

Some things that have been on order were back ordered and will not be in by the end of the month.  That means a choice had to be made and the choice was to add another month to this stay in Rockport. That will take the Teams through the nice spring weather into the hot summer weather.  With a little luck we still have two or three weeks more of decent weather.  However the MOSQUITOES have hatched from the rain of last week and they are pissed and hungry.
The adventures have been small but nice.  Several nagging chores were completed and are out of the way now. One cute item noticed while out and about was this fisherman’s car at the Whataburger. That is a pretty neat strap on rod rack.

After the chores were finished it was time to fish a bit.  It turned out to be a decent catching day for a change.  The speckled trout in this picture are all about 17” and very fat bodied.  There are three in the cheat but immediately after the picture was taken another was added to the chest.

My fishing rod is having a failure situation so it was taken back to the Castle.  Repairs should be accomplished tomorrow morning.  The repair, whatever it turns out to be, will be covered in the blog tomorrow night.  In the meantime, it was supper time then a few minutes rest and thinking.  The evening was cooling down nicely and the wind was calming so the Truck took us back to the pier in case there was somebody there to visit.

Sure enough “Pop” was there.  He is always a nice fellow to visit.  We visited while he fished.  One time we were so deep into a subject than when a fish hit his lure it scared him so much he jumped three feet in the air which caused me to jump a half mile.  We both burst out laughing at that.  As the evening wore on this is the sunset we were rewarded with.

Of course that was not enough. Pop had to catch another nice fat trout.  It was dark enough that the flash had to be used to get the picture.  It was another 17” like the ones earlier.

In a couple of months he will be headed back to the Dallas area to harvest a mess of crappie.  That sounds pretty good to me.

As you can see it was not high adventure at all but it was fun adventures while trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Ugly Stik

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

The Shakespeare Ugly Stik has been my fishing rod preference for several years because they work well and are very tough.  As clumsy as my actions and mis-actions are a tough rod is required.  How tough are they?  Check out this video to get a good idea of why they are my choice.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZo7c1eQhYk
Dizzy Dick asked a question in the comments from yesterday’s blog. He was wandering about tying things down in the yak in case of upset. There is very little carried in the yak to lose.  The paddle is tethered to the yak with a tough lanyard.  The seat is strapped in with four straps.  Water is carried in two bottles.  One is stored inside the yak and the other is loose or sitting in the bottle holder molded into the area between my legs.  Only one fishing rod is carried and it is carried captive in the rod holder installed between my legs.

The tackle box is very small and fits in a shirt pocket normally.

 My time in the yak is usually less than three hours in a session. Therefore my load of stuff is fairly minimal. Any snacks are usually kept in the center hatch with the spare water bottle. My eyeglasses are tethered to my head.  The hat worn uses a chin strap to keep the hat with me. My camera rides in my PFD pocket. THE PFD IS ALWAYS WORN ON MY BODY IN THE PROPER MANNER.
My fish gripper and long nose pliers each have floats attached to them so they are retrievable if they fall out of the boat.  The anchor line has a float at the boat end.  The anchor is only attached to the boat on the very rare instance that the Yakking Team has any reason to anchor. On Falcon Lake we used the brush gripper that BillyBob made from a jumper cable clamp.  It worked very well and is tied to the yak by a short rope.

There you have the details for fishing/sightseeing from the yak. The yak is a great asset for trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Wrapping It Up

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

It has been a bland day at the exciting moments and less for the rest of the day.  Here is a picture of the most exciting event of the day.

Part of my yakking preference is to have positive flotation inside the innards of the yaks.  Most yaks just rely on not getting a crack to leak water into the inner hull. That has proven to be a false security from what I have seen in the past. It occurred to me that instead of having to purchase pool noodles like has been done in the past, soft drink bottles could do the same job. So it was time to calculate how many bottles are needed to do the job.
After lots of research on flotation for boats and folks, it was finally determined that the Mini-X needs six bottles inside it.  Each bottle provides 4.3 pounds of flotation. That will be easy to achieve tomorrow.  Now my emotions can rest at ease knowing that a crack in a scupper will not sink me in the middle of the ocean or more likely creek.  Of course that flooded yak will take a long time to paddle back to the launch point but it beats swimming along dragging a yak across the bottom of the ocean or creek.

One other mildly exciting event has happened. Oh WOW can you wait?..........

The golf club grip that was used as a repair item on a fishing rod butt has proven to be an unworthy repair.  It still gets slippery so a new repair has to be attempted.  How about a cord wound butt?

The nylon cord has been sitting around the Castle waiting for some use for several months.  Tonight it was put to work.  The cord was tightly wound onto the golf club grip. Actually my hands got tired before it was finished since I was compressing the grip some with each wrap of the cord.  After the cord was finished off, the assembly was sprayed with some clear exterior coating of some sort that was in the cabinet.
That is a nice nautical treatment isn't it? It is hoped that the cord wrapping will provide a firm grip even under wet conditions.  Just because you are next to or in the water is no reason to expect your rod grip or hands to get wet is it?????

After it is dried well tomorrow the rod will be given an opportunity to help in the task of trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Rock Balls

Adventure Location: Port Aransas, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

Between the winds and the thunder storms it is difficult to run around having safe adventures.  A drive out to the Port Aransas jetty was made to check on the seaweed status.  As the Truck meandered along the beach on the way to the jetty, it was noticed that some serious beach seaweed clean-up was in progress. Apparently it was part of some kind of sand castle contest was in progress somewhere along the beach.  We stayed clear of it.
The jetty parking was not crowded so the Trucked parked close to the beach/jetty junction.  My sore legs needed some decent workout effort so we headed out onto the jetty for a long walk.  The first thing noticed was all the seaweed piled up on the jetty.  In fact way up onto the jetty.

That mess is way above the normal high tide level.
Then the Jetty Walking Team noticed that the Gulf side of the jetty had some larger than normal waves pounding the jetty.  The wind was strong but not that strong.  The channel side of the jetty was relatively calm.  The partial walkway on the jetty rocks is failing fast.  The waves today were making a good attempt to cross over to the channel side without going around the end of the jetty.

In fact we cut our walk short because at several spots from about the midpoint of the jetty seaward the waves were washing across the jetty.  Navigation of wave action while on slippery rocks is not part of our plan.
On the way back some rock decorations were noticed.  They are cute.
When they were close enough for my bad eyes to see them well, they looked like sand balls. Did they have something in them to hold them together??

The trip back to the Castle was uneventful.  The Team told the Truck to head over to the new pier and check out the fishing.  When we got parked and the OFM got out of the Truck the first thing noticed was the black nasty clouds to the west.  Then a fellow that had just arrived told me that we were supposed to get some nasty weather in about an hour.  He was right.  But before we left there was time to see the nice three fish a fellow had caught.

After the storm was finished, we headed back over to the pier to fish.  There were a couple of folks there that had caught four more nice fish.  So the OFM Pier Fishing Team went to work.  Sure enough an hour and a half later we had no fish as usual.  The weather was nice and the breeze gentle so it was a good way of trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Staying Dry

Adventure Location: Between Aransas Pass and Port Aransas, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

After lots of preparation the OFM was finally ready to get after the wade fishing. My fear of stingrays is still very strong so lots of careful sliding of the feet was done.  The chosen location was at the Light House Lakes Park on the shrimp boat channel. Yep it really is for shrimp boats and here is one.

The Truck was backed into the needed position for easy access to my equipment and the water.  TheOFM took his sweet time getting all his gear in place but sooner or later the procrastination had to stop.
That belly is better than a life jacket!
 From earlier experiments it was already known that mid-thigh is about as deep as is reasonable for me and my balance.  My actual goal was to have the waves hit me mid-thigh and stay shallow. Mostly it was a successful time.  Successful means that I did not fall down.

Fishing was great.  Catching was pitiful.  In the three hours of wading there was only one bite.  A strong pull and then slack resulted in a lure bit off as if the fish knew exactly where to bite and be safe.

When my body was tired enough the Team headed for the Castle.  It amazes me how worn the constant small wave action coupled with the uneven footing makes me. A very hard core totally passed out nap after lunch was wonderful.
Of course we went back for a second session in the afternoon.  This session was only an hour and a half.  Still not fish bites at all to interrupt my wading efforts. This second location was on down the road a ways from Light House Lakes Park. It is on the road to the barge terminals.  The Truck was backed in through a large mud puddle and parked. It was time to suit up again and get with the program. Here is the start point on the shore.

Just before the Teams gave up for the day, a picture from out in the channel was taken.  This was in a little deeper than mid-thigh water. Yep the deeper water gave me balance trouble but at least a good picture was taken.

Then it was back to the Castle and rest.  Even without catching any fish, the new experience of wade fishing proved to be another good way of trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Fishing Day

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

Here is a great reference site for all sorts of Texas and Gulf of Mexico critters. http://txmarspecies.tamug.edu/ .  It has already proved useful to me today.
Finding out what you are playing with adds to the pleasure of trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Exciting Fish

Adventure Location: Rockport Beach Pier, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

Some white butterflies were really getting with it today near the Rockport Beach Park pier. There were a few dozen of them whizzing around causing me to waste a lot of electrons trying to photograph them.  Eventually a decent picture of a few of them was obtained.  Perseverance paid off for the Photography Team.

A long time ago a wild urge hit me and some fish bait was purchased. It has languished in the large tackle box since then. In fact half of it about a year ago was given to BillyBob. A choice was made to try it out for catching fish today.  It is bait called GULP.

The fishing line was rigged up with a float, split shot and a circle hook.  Then a piece of a Gulp Shrimp was put on the hook.  A gentle toss into the water and the Fishing Team was ready for action.
Suddenly the float went under and then tore across the water.  The line was leaving a wake to make an aircraft carrier proud.  The fish jumped out of the water shaking its head.  Then tore around the area like a JATO pack was on its back.  A couple of more jumps and some tail walking kept the excitement at a high level.  Suddenly it headed for a piling next to the pier.  There was not stopping this freight train.  The Fishing Team got lucky and the rod tip, with a lot of stretch on my part, was able to reach past the piling and keep the line from being cut. A couple of more screaming runs then it was game over for a moment.

From the minute the fish hit the pier deck it was blinding flopping action again for at least a minute.  But when it was mentioned to the fish that if it calmed down it would get its picture on the internet, it was immediate stopping of all the action.  My foot was placed near to give perspective.  The picture was taken.

Here is the promised picture of the Ladyfish.  It was then gently tossed back into the water to fight another day. After a few more hits the action died down to nothing.
However a pelican starting putting on the next show.  It kept at it for over a half hour.  The show was lots of zooming around and dive bombing fish in the water.  Some of the passes came very close to the Photography Team to make it more exciting.

On top of all that good time, a nice fellow came along to visit.  We must have talked for an hour.

Randy was relatively new to the area, so he was filled in on lots of good places to fish. He lives in Kerrville. The next time he is bringing a yak down so he can get really serious into chasing the fish. So if you see Randy around your area be sure and say HI.  You will enjoy the visiting.

Wow, all this excitement proved this was a great day or trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Street Flooding

Adventure Location: Comfort Castle and Rockport Harbor Pier, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

It is time to report on the low glycemic load diet I switched to five months ago back in November of 2011 and talked about in the blog entry of Nov. 9, 2011.  As mentioned then, “The basic principle is drop all white processed foods, bread, rice, corn and potatoes”. Also included is all beer, ale and drinks like that.  Wine is not in the diet by my choice either.  Distilled beverages have not been part of my diet in years. This is not for weight loss but rather to get control of my blood sugar swings. This is working out much better than my wildest dreams. Of course forty pounds of weight loss would help also.  It seems that this will be continued for the rest of my life.  Now if I can push back from the meat and green vegetables a bit sooner.

A spice that has proven to be very good to me is this one.

It is used on a lot of my meats and vegetables.  A great feature of it is that it can be put on the item to be cooked before cooking, during cooking and at the very last according to your preference in taste.  That gives a lot of range of “density” of flavoring for my cooking.
We had severe weather from around 0200 this morning until around 1200.  This included a tornado about ten miles away near Aransas Pass.  The weather.com site kept broadcasting a flooding alert.  After lunch a short trip out to the harbor area to check for flooding yielded on one spot where a stopped up storm sewer had flooded an intersection.  The crews were diligently busy emptying the intersection to get things back to normal. 

 The tides are running high and a main area of sand and grass near the fishing jetty was under water after lunch.  This is where the Photo Team was standing to take some pictures yesterday.

 The wind was from the north this evening but some fishing was attempted anyway.  Nope not a single bite.  This bird seemed to be enjoying its time out in the choppy waves.

The stormy weather seems to have moved on and things are getting cleaned up here in town.  The mosquitoes should all hatch in about three to four days then we will have some trouble.  Until then the Teams will continue to try to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.


Bed Testing

Adventure Location: Comfort Castle and Rockport Harbor Pier, Texas
Teams Location: Rockport, Texas

The wind has not let up yet.  Hopefully tomorrow we will get some respite.  The wind is pushing the bay waters very high and flooding some of the low lying areas.  In fact over on highway 361 where the Truck normally parks were small waves frothy on top from the wind.
Meanwhile the first chore for the day was to finish the bed modification.  It was a nuisance to do but the whole top section had to be unscrewed from the lower part.  Then the small remaining board was taken outside and made smaller. The board was returned to the proper location and everything screwed down as it was required for over the road travel. Finally the mattresses and bedding was put back in good order.  Of course there was a short tryout to make certain the final product worked correctly.

My early activity was a little much for less than 24 hours after the migraine attack yesterday so much of the late morning and early afternoon was spent in recuperation mode.  But at least there was a wonderful bed to have horizontal time upon.
Late afternoon brought out the move around urge hiding in my body.  The wind was rocking the Castle enough that stirring your coffee was not necessary.  A ride around to check out the wind miseries was made.

Down at the harbor jetty/pier the waves were way too active for me to be out on the pier.  However the new camera got a chance to show off its ability to catch waves in action.  It performed very well.  This picture is from the bay side showing the waves breaking up the rocks to douse any folks foolish enough to get out there.  It is not really dangerous but you will get wet.

A friend of mine was there walking his dog.  He told me that early this morning the waves were running a good bit higher.  This is high enough for me.
A walk out to the backside of the pier was taken.  There is a large area of vegetation and sand out there.  Several shots were taken to attempt to get some good action shots.  Packery Channel jetties and Aransas Pass Jetties were probably a lot more exciting today. Here was one of many that were shot.  This gives you the idea very well.

Near where the pier joins the bulkhead and parking lot is a small shell beach where you can launch a yak or walk out into the water. At least on most days there is a beach there.  Today the wave action was a little too brisk for my liking.  Can you imagine the fun of swimming, wading or paddling a yak through all this exciting water action? This picture was taken between the top and mid rail of the handrail on the pier.

No thanks.  The OFM will stay on the pier for his effort at trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.