Saturday, December 18, 2010

Military Fairy

Bing at HJHOP, who recalls his Monty Python more thoroughly than I do, has this magnificent find to celebrate the repeal of DADT:
I think the thing that really cracks me up is knowing there are many people out there who are convinced that this clip realistically portrays the consequences of today's events.

Ask. Tell.

(Image from Revel & Riot, which also has some good background info on DADT) Between the vote for cloture and the actual vote, I got a little confused about what exactly the status of DADT was this morning. However, the actual vote was scheduled at 3 PM Eastern time, or noon here, and it passed. Obama is expected to sign it next week, and according to WaPo,
The legislation says the president and his top military advisers must certify that lifting the ban won't hurt troops' fighting ability. After that, there's a 60-day waiting period for the military.
So it doesn't go into effect immediately, though I hope the armed services put a moratorium on DADT discharges in the meantime.

It's one step forward, an important step. But in the words of a retweet, "Now give those brave gay soldiers someone to come home to: Legalize marriage equality."

Saturd80's

Joe Jackson, Is She Really Going Out With Him:

Au Pairs, Stepping Out of Line:

Public Image Ltd., Death Disco:

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Thorsday

From Goddess a Day, "Frigg is the Norse Goddess of the sky, marriage, motherhood, love, fertility, and the domestic arts."

Perfect!

For Zappadan Day thirteen, I was privileged to be in the target area for this commercial, shown by PGE to get consumers to find ways to cut their electricity use... I'm thinking 1986.

Nature

News item: The Cancun Climate Conference has wound up, and some sources are trying to paint smiley faces on the fact that we've agreed to agree on ...something ...sometime.
"It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever..."
The quote is from The Terminator, of course, but it could apply just as well to the natural world. That doesn't mean it should necessarily be feared, but respected. It doesn't mean that its endless beauty shouldn't be appreciated, just that it doesn't care if we do or not, and that its just as "happy" with "ugly" as "beautiful." Our values don't apply.

And if we in our greed throw a wrench into its workings, it will have no more regrets than the T-800 about ripping our arms out of their sockets and beating us to death with them. Keep that in mind.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Moral: Extort From Goldman Sachs

In Krugman's Blog today, he points out that in the James Bond film Thunderball, Spectre demands 100 million pounds for a pair of nuclear weapons...
Even the big one — demanding a ransom for two stolen nuclear warheads — is 100 million pounds, $280 million. Adjusted for inflation, that’s about $2 billion — or one-eighth of the Goldman Sachs bonus pool.
Why rob banks? That's where the money is. And it's more true today than ever before.

Being Careful What I Wish For

On Saturday, I expressed some regret that the weather wasn't as "vigorous" as I had been led to believe it would be. Turns out it was much, much wetter farther north, with local flooding in Washington state, as well as problems in the Portland area, and landslides and road closures all over the place. We had unusually warm weather Saturday through yesterday, then last night a cold front moved through. A bit after noon today, Aumsville, Oregon got whacked.

As far as I've read, no one was hurt, but there has been quite a bit of property damage and some families have been displaced.
What a mess. Tornadoes do occur in western Oregon, but they're pretty rare, averaging about one a year. They also tend to be less powerful than the monsters of the plains states and the Midwest. But I'm sure that's small consolation to the people who now need to figure out how to cope with this chaos in the middle of the Holiday season.

Tuesday Tits

Varied tit, Cyanistes varius. (picture from Wikipedia)

Inca Roads


Okay... I'm losing track. Day eleven?

Monday, December 13, 2010

Snow Is Pretty

In pictures, and on the other side of windows. But dealing with it in person isn't my thing, at least these days.From NASA's Earth Observatory, I'm powerfully glad I don't live in Minnesota. It's a beautiful state, and jokes about mosquitoes not withstanding, I've enjoyed camping there during several summers. I think the most enjoyable professional conference I've ever attended was on the philosophy and nature of science in early 1996 (not positive about the year, but about). I wish I could explore the geology of the state more thoroughly. HOWEVER... there are about four to six months of the year I'm really happy to be elsewhere. The following video clip has been all over the place the last couple of days; you're not even safe inside!

Meanwhile, here in my little cowtown, which is farther north than Toronto, Ontario, we hit a high of 60F yesterday, and it has been about 52 hours since our temperature has fallen below 50. So, yeah. I think I'll stay.

Where to Go In Case of Eruptions

Okay, some of what I learned regarding volcanism as an undergrad still holds true. I guess advances in magma genesis by forces of mythological folklore have rendered the whole partial melting and fractional crystallization idea obsolete, but the surface processes of flows and ignimbrites seem to be pretty much unchanged. From I Need It Quickly.

Titties and Beer

A request/suggestion from commenter Wordfalling for Zappadan day ten.

Reviewing The Year's Geology News

The Onion reports on the unpronounceable Icelandic volcano and its eruption earlier this year:
The eruption was initially attributed to Huldufólk elves believed to be angry at mortals for the desecration of their rock dwellings during the winter of 2009. While gifts of sweets to the elves seemed to produce small gaps in the ash that allowed airspace to be briefly reopened, the cloud as a whole lingered. It was only after millions of travelers had already spent days stranded at airports that embarrassed officials finally conceded that another creature was probably responsible.

After ruling out the 300-foot Lagarfljóts worm, investigators concluded that only Grýla—best known for emerging from her cave at Christmastime in search of naughty children to stuff in a sack—possessed the power necessary to generate an eruption of Eyjafjallajökull's magnitude. By then, however, many food items shipped by air had begun to spoil, and a number of world leaders had already missed the funeral of Polish president Lech Kaczyński.
It's official: my understanding of geology and volcanism is out of date.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Traffic Hazard: Wildlife

A sea lion decided to take a scenic drive on Route 101 near Yachats yesterday. I had read about this earlier, but I enjoy the photo. Ahh, the stuff we have to endure in this silly state.

Don't Eat the Yellow Snow

Zappadan Day nine.

Sunday Funnies

Sober in a Nightclub
Bits and Pieces
Cyanide and Happiness
Criggo
Funny Pictures - Cat Gifs
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This Modern World
BEEEEEEEEEES Gif - BEEEEEEEEEES!!!
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“The problem with quotations that you see on the Internet is that it is difficult to discern if they are genuine.”

— Abraham Lincoln

Bits and Pieces
Sober in a Nightclub
Dogs Versus Mail Gif - Dogs Versus Mail
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Cake Wrecks
The High Definite
The High Definite
funny puns-It Fits With McLean's Lyrics
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Sober in a Nightclub
You Got the Stupid Part Right
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Quiet little walk and OMG NINJA STRIKE Gif - Quiet little walk and OMG NINJA STRIKE!
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Blackadder
Calamities of Nature
Frog Fail Gif - Frog Fail
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4 koma comic strip - A Few Good Lies
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Hot Salsa Dog Gif - Hot Salsa Dog
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see more Political Pictures
Or not. Wil Wheaton's Tumblr.
political pictures - COTTON CANDY CANNON
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