Dec 292010

Seems the Chinese have been busy lately, building their very own stealthy fighter (possible a strike-fighter, from the apparent size of the beast), the J-20. Currently undergoing taxi tests, with almost hourly updates with improved photos, indicating that the photos are so much leaking out, as being leaked out.

 Posted by at 12:06 am
Dec 272010

How a Quiet Suburb’s Police Force Drove Out Latinos

Short form: the police in the city of East Haven, CT, have driven about half of the Latinos/Hispanics/Chicanos/Whatevers out of the town through harassment. This will, no doubt, be used as a whip to beat up on Evil Racist Republicans.


East Haven’s mayor: April Capone Almon (D)

East Haven is within CT’s 3rd Congressional district, represented by Rosa DeLauro (D)

New Haven (of which East Haven is a suburb) is represented in the CT State Sentate by Martin Looney (D) and Toni Harp (D). New Haven is represented in the CT House of Representatives by Patricia Dillon (D), Toni Walker  (D), Gary Winfield  (D), Juan Candelaria  (D), Cameron Staples  (D), Robert Megna (D).

According to Wiki: There are 15,925 registered voters in East Haven. 5,683 registered Democrats, 2,544 Republicans, 7,681 unaffiliated and 17 registered to minor parties.[5] The town voted 56% for Barack Obama in 2008

So, yeah. Blame the Republicans.

 Posted by at 3:49 pm
Dec 262010

Armenian police target teenage rock cult

Her offence was simply to be a devoted follower of the angst-ridden punk-rock subculture known as ’emo’, in an ex-Soviet state where pressures to conform remain strong.

Police in Yerevan have been conducting a campaign against the capital’s small but controversial emo community since the recent suicides of two teenagers who were rumoured to have been emo fans.

In a recent newspaper interview, Armenia’s Chief of Police, Alik Sarkisian, claimed that emo could “damage our gene pool”. “We should fight against such phenomena because they are morally harmful to our people,” he said.

Masha and her friend Ani, also 13, say they started dressing in the unconventional emo style in an attempt to stand out from what they call “the grey masses”.


The “emo” sub-culture amuses me to no friggen’ end. A weird-ass combination of trying to turn angst, sadness and depression into a fashion uniform, while at the same time claiming individuality and decrying conformity in others. Snerk. Couple that with the astonishing ease with which “emo” and “Hitler” work together, graphically, and you have the ultimate in ridiculous trendiness. Hell, any fashion trend that tends to involve the males putting on eye shadow and other makeup is headed straight towards mockery.

Still, the Armenian governmental response to this is ridiculous in it’s own hilariously ill-conceived way. Emos thrive on the collective notion that they are outcasts… sending the cops to leer at ’em like TSA junk-jugglers is only going to reinforce the belief.

Hey, kids, a little advice from your uncle Scott: if you want to be all sad and depressed, go for it. Life, after all, is pain… a series of failures and disappointments, crushed dreams and lost opportunities, that stack up until you finally keel over with a last thought rattling through your head “well, that was a waste of time.” But focussing on all that as a *negative,* while it may provide amusement for others, is going to stand in the way of making fun of all that and laughing  in the face of doom. So go wash off the black makeup and have a Happy Meal. At the end, when the wings fall off your jetliner and all the other passengers are screaming in terror, be the one throwing your hands in the air and yelling “Wheeeeeee!!!!”

 Posted by at 3:23 pm
Dec 262010

The cats caught *two* more mice today. Raedthinn caught the first, and was in no mood to share; attempts to separate him from his mouse led to much growlings, and eventually three cats and one human running around like idiots to re-capture it. It got trapped under a cup, and expired almost instantly… heart attack, I guess.

The second one was caught by Buttons. Buttons displayed more ingenuity that I would have expected… he took the mouse to the high-walled litter box and let it go… then played with it among the cat poop. Buttons knew that the mouse would not be able to escape from that enclosure. Clever. This one is now in an inflated Zip-Lock baggie, awaiting his doom… which will be to experience the magic and mystery of a freezing night outside in Utah.

These mice have been, I’m reasonably sure, younguns. No idea how many more might have gotten caught that I didn’t see.

While I’m sure a baby mouse would be an awesome cat treat, who knows what biological horribleness they might have rampaging through their systems. So, out they go.

 Posted by at 2:11 am
Dec 242010

I stepped into the kitchen and saw a standoff between Fingers and Buttons. Turned out Buttons caught himself a mouse, and didn’t want to share.

I got to the mouse before Buttons managed to puncture it… but not before he managed to put a really good scare into it. For a plague-bearing, disease spreading harbinger of famine and death, it was kind of a cute little bugger:


It got dumped out on the back deck; the cats got themselves a bunch of treats and congratulations for a job well done.

 Posted by at 6:28 pm
Dec 242010

Yesterday I got the Saturn V original re-scanned at higher resolution. The resulting file is noticably too big for my system to handle (Windows will only let you work with images 32,767 pixels or smaller, and this was bigger). I was only able to open it enough to crop out small sections, which I could then tinker with. The original scan would look ok printed out “full size” (3 feet by more than 21), but a little bit of processing would make it look a lot better. So I’m passing it on to someone with a better graphics system.

I printed out at full scale a number of my experiments with making it better, on my 8.5X11 photo printer. The result is an F-1 engine that pretty much fills the page. Here’s a photo with an industry standard feline scale reference:

How can you say “no, I won’t pay $200 for a 21-foot-long Saturn V blueprint” to a face like that?

 Posted by at 6:22 pm