Mar 242012

Today has been all manner of awesome:

1) A few days ago I traded my 6-yea-old cel phone for a new model. Which was good… the old one was buggy, and the battery was bubbling outwards, I had every expectation of it bursting into flames one me. But this morning I discovered that the alarm on the phone does not go off every day, only Monday through Friday. I of course discovered this an hour after I was supposed to wake up.

2) The effort to install cats into boxes for transport to their boarding location resulted in bloodshed. Fingers knew something was up right off, and put up a valiant struggle.

3) ULTIMATE BETRAYAL: That, I believe, was the look I got from Fingers and Raedthinn as I left them in their temporary steel cage accommodations. Fluffy was just a terrified black dot in the back of the cage; Buttons, as always, was excited for a new grand adventure.

4) Checked in and got through security no problem. My flight was to stop in Houston before transferring to another flight to Reagan Intl near DC. There was only a 35 minute layover between flights; I was assured that this would be time enough. However: the flight to Houston has been delayed by forty minutes. Do the math. So, I had to get another flight. A grand total of *one* seat was available, on a different airline going to a different airport (Dulles). I’ll get to Dulles at 11 PM, then have to take a shuttlebus to the motel. I expect, if *nothing* *else* goes wrong (I’m fully expecting that my checked bag will go to Sydney, Australia), that I won’t actually get to the motel until well into Sunday.

I’m glad I thought ahead far enough to put some buffer here. Losing part of Sunday doesn’t cost the expedition too much, but losing part of Monday would be biting into the point of the exercise.

At least this terminal has free WiFi and numerous power plugs.

 Posted by at 1:47 pm
Mar 232012

Why does the killing of Trayvon Martin merit Presidential attention, while this story gets… well, I heard of it through the *British* press.

Couple met and married within a month and stayed together for 65 years… only to be parted after home invader beat wife to death

I just did a Google News search for “Tyrone Dale David Woodfork” and got a whopping two hits. But when I first pulled up Google News, the very first thing was this inevitable story from Time:

Can Trayvon Martin’s Death Alter Our Race and Gun Cultures?

And so it has begun: an opportunity has been found to try to strip hard-won basic civil rights for the American citizenry, by exploiting a local tragedy.


Witness: Martin attacked Zimmerman

Unlike the other witnesses who merely heard the incident, this feller claims to have *seen* it, and claims that Martin was on top of Zimmerman, beating him.

 Posted by at 11:07 pm
Mar 232012

According to simulations… if a binary star system, with one or both of the stars bearing planets, swings too close to the giant black hole in the center of the galaxy, the end result could be planets zipping outbound at 30 million miles per hour.

Runaway Planets Zoom at a Fraction of Light Speed

Here’s the thing, though… the acceleration and tidal stresses would probably be pretty spectacular. I’d bet that in many, if not not, cases, the “planet” would be converted into a cloud of rubble that would then, over time, reform into a world.

The radiation environment at the center of the galaxy would be pretty harsh, too. No real way that anything resembling an ecosystem could survive the close passage by the black hole. And apart from geothermal heating… if the planet is torn from its star, it would quickly become an extremely cold and dark planet, doomed to exit the galaxy in fairly short order. Taking the long way out, though the galactic plane of the ecliptic, such a planet might exit the galaxy in a million years or so. Going straight “up,” it’d get out in a timespan measured in a few dozen millenia.  And once out, it would almost certainly never encounter stars again.

 Posted by at 7:50 pm
Mar 232012

Obama  has officially made one relatively mundane homicide into a matter of utmost federal interest with his reply to the *one* question he took today when introducing Jim Yong Kim as his choice to head the world bank. In the midst of his reply, he made this extremely telling statement:

“My main message is to the parents: If I had a son he’d look like Trayvon. I think they are right to expect that all of us as Americans are going to take this with the seriousness it deserves.”


If I had a son he’d look like Trayvon.

So… is it racist if someone makes it plain that the reason for his interest in an alleged crime is because the victim “looked like me?” If you think no, consider this: assume Newt Gingrich had spoken out on the attempted murder of Allen Coon , and he made it plain that his interest was what Allen “looked like.”

[youtube -rPO0QV97OI]

Given that Obama spent twenty years willingly, intentionally and openly attending an avowedly racist church, it hardly seems unreasonable to assume some racism on his part. However, I expect the bigger goal here among Obama and his ilk isn’t so much racism, but they’ve detected an opportunity to roll back the right to self defense in general and the Second Amendment in particular. There are a *lot* of homicides in the US, many substantially and objectively more spectacular than  this one. But this one can be – and has been – spun as an example of why Americans should be forced to retreat or cower in the face of a threat to their lives. And thus… 24/7 news coverage, with the usual pack of rabid mouthpieces yammering on about how horrible it is that the law in Florida allows mere citizens to defend themselves.

Still and all… never forget that you are more important to the President if you look like you might be related to him.

 Posted by at 1:30 pm
Mar 232012

Went out to get the mail today and found not only Fluffy’s brother, but his mother One-Eye. One-Eye disappeared more than a month ago (I think the last time I saw her was in December or January), so it was a surprise to see her. More… she’s *pregnant.*

So, the local cat population may be in for a recovery.  Since I last saw One-Eye she’s become extremely skittish, so the kittens will be born and raised at a distance… but even if they’re unfriendly they’ll be nice to see running around.

 Posted by at 10:05 am
Mar 232012

A few weeks back I tried to take some photos of the Pleiades, with results best described as “meh.”

Both photos show a satellite drifting above the Pleiades. Perfectly normal… these things show up all the time as simple white streaks. But on further review another satellite is visible. This one, though, appears to be spinning or tumbling, since instead of a solid white streak it left a series of dots.

Aircraft leave vaguely similar trails… but I’ve never seen an aircraft trail that had the “dots” this close together. And aircraft dots are red and green flashes, not white.

 Posted by at 9:06 am
Mar 222012

An update: I just sent a few minutes ago a group email to the investors in my little archive expedition. If you have invested and *didn’t* get the email, let me know.

 Posted by at 12:44 pm
Mar 222012

A little black girl goes missing: the mainstream media yawns. A little white girl goes missing: the mainstream media sits up and takes notice. A hot white chick goes missing: Nancy Grace goes bonkers.

Similarly: a possible race-based “hate crime” of a hispanic (??) watchman against a black kid: the media goes bonkers, protest rallies, Al Sharpton shows up.  But two black kids set a white kid on fire with gasoline *explicitly* for being a white kid? The national media pretty much ignores it.

Teens set kid on fire for being ‘white boy’

 Posted by at 11:58 am