Monday, May 31, 2010

Stuff below the fold

The ancient Egyptians just used skill to keep their monuments in place; the ancient Romans used a type of cement, the Sumerians used sticky tar that oozed up from the ground, but the Chinese used....sticky rice to glue their mud bricks in place.

Hirsi Ali's Anne Coulter moment.

Hobbit trouble: First, MGM going bankrupt so the filming is delayed, and now Del Toro is exiting, blaming the delays.

Shrek beats the Sluts.

Factoid for the day: Birds prefer regular wheat, not the fancy organic product.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Yum. Red Velvet Cake

cute food photos - Classic Red Velvet
see more

and Bakerella has the recipe. Icing is Cream cheese dressing.
You Yankees need to try a bite

Speaking of Southern recipes, Chano and Joy brought back some krispyKreme donuts from Manila.

Ah, heaven.


Saturday, May 29, 2010

Egyptian stuff

Dr. Hawass has his own website if you are into Egyptian archeology.
probably worth an RSS feed,

although if you are really into Egypt, he even has a link to his fan site.

Talking about fansites, Professor Bob, as at "History according to Bob" podcast, said one of his fans has a facebook page on his podcast, but I can't find the link.

Right now he is podcasting on Napoleon, the Civil war, and Ancient Rome...


Summer is icumen in Lhude sing cuccu!

Two posts Link link2 on the song, the cookoo and cukoo spit...

Froth on a tansy plant in Bonnefont garden on a May morning. In the Middle Ages, this foamy substance was believed to be the spittle of the cuckoo. The froth is secreted by insects known as spittle bugs

and speaking of bugs: YUM!

and no, I've never eaten bugs...raw oysters, yes. Guinea pigs, yes. Bagoong, patis, and other delicacies, yes, but not bugs.

The Sistine Chapel

I was telling Ruby the story of how the Sistine chapel was painted the other day.

Well, go to THIS WEBSITE, turn up your speakers, and enjoy!

Headsup First Things.

Stuff below the fold

Webecoist has photos of the world's most colourful SeaSlugs

Father Z writes about Garum, that classical Roman condiment that is made from rotted fish, guts and all...

And he notes you can buy it at Amazon...which describes it as:

Colatura di Alici is an ancient convenience food (thought by most to be what ancient Romans called garum) that adds great anchovy flavor to a dish without having to fillet, rinse and chop the fish. It's essence of anchovy. Our Colatura comes from the enchanting little fishing village of Cetara on the Amalfi coast. When the fish are caught in the summer, the Cetaresi throw them into wooden barrels, alternating layers with handfuls of sea salt . Then the fish are pressed down with a lid weighted with rocks. By December, the anchovies have produced a fragrant translucent amber juice. A hole is poked in the bottom of the barrel and the colatura is drained.

which sounds suspiciously like how Asians make Patis.


Cute photo: An Osprey in a nest at the Kennedy space center

Friday, May 28, 2010

Remembering Dunkirk

"Can you imagine? With all their ammunition, their arms? It's incredible," said Palacio.

The hastily arranged fleet of about 700 vessels, ranging from pleasure craft to fishing boats and paddle steamers and lifeboats, worked under a hail of German bombs to take the troops off the beaches and ferry them to larger ships.

Wartime prime minister Winston Churchill called it a "miracle of deliverance" and the evacuation is seen as one of several events in 1940 that determined the outcome of the war.

No, I'm not old enough to remember Dunkirk (and my Filipino Husband was just a kid here at the time).

The evacuation prevented a quick and easy German victory.

and no, it's not about Dunkirk per se (although the husband was involved in the evacuation), but when I think of the Battle of Britain, I think of Mrs. is on line at youtube:

Free Tolkien lectures on line

via the OneRingNet:

Harvard has a Course on the anthropology of Tolkien's languages

alas it has streaming videos which is almost impossible for me to follow...guess Harvard has never heard of youtube or Itunes U...

Stuff below the fold

US papers have the oil spill being plugged by the government ordering the fix but the BBC says it's the company who did the work:

and one suspects it wasn't scientists as much as engineers and oil hands...
Wikipedia has summary

If I have time I'll have to read it, and check the industry stories and tech blogs instead of the political spin in the press.


France is trying to ban Burkhas, and Switzerland may ban Naked Hikers.

Guess there isn't any poison ivy in Switzerland.


Guinness is good for you
...really: it works as good as low dose Aspirin to prevent heart attacks.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Family news

we went to a party two days ago for AnneVincent's Christening (and to celebrate the defeat of the previous mayor's wife in the election).

I have been a little sick for a few days with a cold/GI upset but that didn't stop me from eating the lechon and other treats.

Lolo however started with a cold, and then started to wheeze...I tried my old inhaler but it didn't work, so I gave him some Prednisone, and the next day bought a new inhaler which did work. He is also on antibiotics.

Today he's feeling better, still wheezing a bit but energetic and managed to jog.

Very hot here, but it rained last night and we are hoping the monsoon has arrived.

Joy is still with her family in Capiz, will return home Friday. Ruby didn't go with her because she has the same cold as the rest of us.

Stuff below the fold

VDHanson, classicist and farmer, notes what happens when reality hits utopia.
Great depression 2 does put a dent into Obama's plans..

Corn dates back 10,000 years.
Freepers have posted related links for further reading (not work friendly political site).

Does the oil spill mean Hillary in 2012?
Well, James Carville is ticked off about that oil leak,
and Gov Jindal is criticizing both big oil and the federal red tape that delays protection for the shoreline...
I wrote about the "new" Republicans HERE...
Art Linkletter has died, aged 97.
He made a lot of us smile...

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

News you can use

Winner of the ugly fish of the week contest:

this is a pink Handfish.

Headsup BoingBoing.
the ""It's an ill wind that does no one good" story of the week:

also from BoingBoing:

"...When the flood waters of Hurricane Katrina receded from New Orleans, some of the city's dangerously high lead levels washed away, too. Prior to the Hurricane, 15 neighborhoods had soil lead levels higher than the federal standard. Tests done in the same places post-Katrina found only 6 neighborhoods exceeding the limit. ... On average, New Orleans' children under the age of six experienced a 30% drop in blood lead levels..."

Dave Barry asks: Missing something? and links to the DailyRecord (UK):

A PAIR of breast implants and a stuffed seagull are among the astonishing haul of lost property found on buses. Drivers also discovered a robotic talking monkey and tailor's dummy head, complete with wig....

So if you see a flat chested Scotswoman, send her to Lost and found...


History trivia of the week: What really stopped the ice age

also from Dave Barry.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Trivia for today

Golden robots in the ancient world?

Right now I'm reading the Iliad while listening to podcasts about classical Greece, and although the professor doesn't notice, the blacksmith god had two golden maids:

"Thetis of the silver feet came to the house of Hephaistos [on Mount Olympos] ... [and Hephaistos came] to the doorway limping. And in support of their master moved his attendants. These are golden, and in appearance like living young women. There is intelligence in their hearts, and there is speech in them and strength, and from the immortal gods they have learned how to do things. These stirred nimbly in support of their master, and moving near to where Thetis sat in her shining chair, Hephaistos caught her [Thetis] by the hand." - Homer, Iliad 18.136

Thereby predating Metropolis...

(Or C3PO)

Craft item of the day

crochet your own Koi...

Francis the Fish

(Free Registration required).

Monday, May 24, 2010

Stuff below the fold

History undercover:

Is guilt the reason that the real VietNam war history is distorted?

Remembering Stalingrad.

Czech radio remembers the Czechs who died in the Katyn massacre.
They also remember the Brno death march, which was the result of the expulsion of several million Germans from that country after World war II..
And they wonder why no one remembers the crimes of communism.
All links have podcasts to download.

Chinese archeology update.,.

Librivox has an audiobook on orchid cultivation

Reports that the English Catholic mass translation stresses God, not celebrating ourselves...stress beauty, not "Sacropop"..
heck here they are all over the place...

I wouldn't know...mass here is in Tagalog...

Archeoblog remembers the Armero tragedy, in Colombia, when a town was covered by lahar in 1985, and wonders if a thousand years from now it will be a new Pompeii?
Orealis has written a song about it...

Musical interlude of the day

Headsup the Anchoress...

Sunday, May 23, 2010


JamieOliver's site has the recipe on how to make British Bangers from scratch.
The ingredients include:
1kg pork shoulder
300g pork fat
3/4 breadcrumbs
150ml of iced water
1 1/2 tsps of white pepper
1 tsp of salt
1 tsp dried sage
1 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp mace
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp ginger
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder

go to link for full recipe.
of course, in the "good old days", sausage was made from the leftover meat, and was often the only cheap source of protein for poor people...

And once you have them made, make them into Bangers and Mash:

Stuff below the fold

Podcast of the week :All About TIME...

Audiobook of the week: On the Shores of the Great Sea
History of the Classical Mediterranean world for kids.

If you prefer the "R rated version, try Suetonias instead.

Up to ten percent of those who climb Mt Everest die, so why did these California parents let their son risk his life? Publicity?

Of course, one could say the same thing for those teenagers who travel around the world on a small boat alone.

and the really important question of the day:
Is the British Banger Dangerous?

The "Banger" is a type of sausage, and the BBC lays out the "risks" but then notes that a lot of other things get ignored in the study (i.e. genetics, age, dietary habits, exercize, class)...

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Family update

I changed the hard drive and the computer is working again.

(We "fixed" it several times with chkdsk but this time it didn't work...easier to replace...luckily I had everything downloaded, so no problem)

Family news

I'm having problems with my laptop hard drive, so am busy running chkdsk to see if I can fix it.
Mama cat is getting "fixed": 24 kittens in four years is enough.

And it rained this afternoon...maybe the monsoon is starting

Friday, May 21, 2010

Family news

Chano and family back from Baguio with lots of nice fresh strawberries.
Hot thundered and lots of lightening last night, but no rain. Sigh.
Cleaning and shopping, mainly for cleaning supplies (new mops, wax etc.) for spring cleaning.
You know you are retired when your "Big outing" is shopping for Johnson's wax and eating spaghetti at Jollibee as a treat.

Planting a Sequoia

Planting A Sequoia

All afternoon my brothers and I have worked in the orchard,
Digging this hole, laying you into it, carefully packing the soil.
Rain blackened the horizon, but cold winds kept it over the Pacific,
And the sky above us stayed the dull gray
Of an old year coming to an end.

In Sicily a father plants a tree to celebrate his first son's birth--
An olive or a fig tree--a sign that the earth has one more life to bear.
I would have done the same, proudly laying new stock into my father's orchard,
A green sapling rising among the twisted apple boughs,
A promise of new fruit in other autumns.

But today we kneel in the cold planting you, our native giant,
Defying the practical custom of our fathers,
Wrapping in your roots a lock of hair, a piece of an infant's birth cord,
All that remains above earth of a first-born son,
A few stray atoms brought back to the elements.

We will give you what we can--our labor and our soil,
Water drawn from the earth when the skies fail,
Nights scented with the ocean fog, days softened by the circuit of bees.
We plant you in the corner of the grove, bathed in western light,
A slender shoot against the sunset.

And when our family is no more, all of his unborn brothers dead,
Every niece and nephew scattered, the house torn down,
His mother's beauty ashes in the air,
I want you to stand among strangers, all young and emphemeral to you,
Silently keeping the secret of your birth.

Dana Gioia

(The poem about planting a tree in the memory of a stillborn son.)

Gift item of the day

Plant your very own Giant sequoia.
seeds here...or seedlings...

And then wait a couple hundred years for it to grow.

Instructions HERE.
they probably won't grow in the Philippines, but there are private folks planting them in Vermont.

Headsup RGS

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Musical Interlude of the day

how to make biodiesel

Video of the day

Egypt uncovered is now on Youtube.

Stuff below the fold

Walmart jewelry found to contain cadmium, including Disney themed charms:

For reasons that are not fully understood, girls ages 6 to 11 — an age range that includes many fans of Cyrus' "Hannah Montana" TV show, movies and CDs — appear to be more at risk from cadmium.

and yes, the jewelry was made in China. It seems that they are substituting Cadmium after being caught putting lead into childrens items.

Wikipedia article on Cadmium poisoning HERE


The Archeology of Neutrinos.

Old fashioned lead from shipwrecks don't have radioactive isotopes like modern lead, so is better in the hunt for neutrinos.


Obsolete skills.

Hmm...moustache waxing, anyone? Sharpening a quill? Programing in FORTH? Setting a timer for your VCR?
(headsup Archoblog)


When animals are more important than people:
On Google News:

Times Online - Jonathan Clayton - ‎3 hours ago‎
Zimbabwe is to send pairs of endangered wildlife, including baby elephants, to a zoo in North Korea, in a bizarre version of Noah's Ark condemned yesterday ... - CNN (blog) - BBC Sport - Voice of America

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

your words of wisdom for today

from Dave Barry

Computer generated ads

I usually ignore the sometimes humorous links of ads place by GoogleAds.

But today's feed from Improbable research includes:

A link to where to buy antique silver on an article about a man who ate silverware

and an ad for Celox (which stops bleeding in trauma patients) on an article on the caustic problems of fingernail glue.


Green item of the day

A model wears Triumph International’s “Grow-Your-Own-Rice bra” in Tokyo on Wednesday. The bra, which transforms into a rice growing kit, allows the wearer to cultivate rice anytime, anywhere. It was created in hopes that more people will become familiar with farming and develop awareness of the importance of agriculture, the lingerie maker said.

(headup daveBarryBlog)

Stuff below the fold

Ah, Berkeley, famous for radical chic, free speech, and...DNA Checks?
No, they aren't checking for sexual predators, it's the nanny state:

"...The confidential process is being overseen by Jasper Rine, a campus professor of Genetics and Development Biology, who says the test results will help students make decisions about their diet and lifestyle.

I wrote about the trouble with those "scientific" studies that plan to tell docs how to practice HERE.

Well the NYTimes magazine points out the problem too...

"...Because so many criteria can be used to assess effectiveness — median or mean survival times, side effects, quality of life and the like — there is a case to be made against mandating that doctors follow what seems at any given time to be the best practice....A squishier analogue for the field of social measurement would say something like this: No method of measuring a societal phenomenon satisfying certain minimal conditions exists that can’t be second-guessed, deconstructed, cheated, rejected or replaced...."

Or, as geeks say: Garbage in, garbage out...


Do pesticides cause ADHD?

There are reasons to think so, but I remember the "preservative" hysteria in the past.

Ah, but who made the diagnosis of ADHD? Yes, there are severe cases, but it is overdiagnosed, especially in poor kids...who often eat fast foods, have high lead levels, have an increased prenatal exposure to drugs and alcohol, and who live often live in chaotic family situations...


The "Dirty Harry" gambit: You want to boycott Arizona goods, then fine: we'll keep our electrons.

Actually, the law doesn't seem much different from what is being son used to carry his passport with him because he got stopped so often for minor traffic violations and they always questioned his citizenship...

My opinion is that they need an amnesty for those who can prove they have lived and worked in the US for years, while being strict against newcomers and suspected drug runners.



did vaccination for Smallpox keep HIV from spreading?
no, it spread due to social changes, but it might have kept the disease a milder form that was less prone to spread because the immune system kept it from multiplying.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Science stuff below the fold

"a clue to explain existence"...well, not quite. It is merely a scientific clue why we have more matter than "evil" anti matter, based on recent experiments at FermiLab...

"...Physicists at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory are reporting that they have discovered a new clue that could help unravel one of the biggest mysteries of cosmology: why the universe is composed of matter and not its evil-twin opposite, antimatter..."

This video discusses the question they are discussing:

Yet, the NYTimes story called anti matter the something "evil".

Then we have this quote:"The new effect hinges on the behavior of particularly strange particles called neutral B-mesons, which are famous for not being able to make up their minds. "

Uh, fellahs, your choice of words implies that B Mesons have minds...

A lot of this reminds me of those who write about how evolution "chose" this or that...

Come on, fellahs, either say: Thank the Creator for arranging the B meson to turn into matter, or say thank the designer for orchestrating the "chances" that will evolve in a certain way.

(Or just quote Einstein: God does not play dice).

But don't use language that implies meaning and choice of some thing (as opposed to some one) who is behind it all.

You are now warned

Coming soon to a theatre near you:

and you thought RobinHood was scary...

Family news

Joy,Chano and Ruby are going to a church meeting/retreat...she has changed from the Baptists (i.e. Chano's church) to the pentecostal church of her cousin this year.

Then they will go to Baguio to check our property and pay the taxes.

In the meanwhile, we are having the Aircons (air conditioners) serviced and the pump/plumbing fixed.

It's so hot that I don't feel like doing anything...
Lolo is feeling better, and we have started jogging again at 5am, when it is cool.

Can't wait for the monsoon rains to start.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Stuff below the fold

Uh OH: maybe that 2012 thingy has something behind it:

That small volcano in Iceland may continue to erupt for months...but several other volcanoes are also threatening to erupt.

Tolkien's music...preview at Google Books
(headsup TORN)

7 best sites to download textbooks.

Or you can just check out the Pirate bay, of course...\
and finally the thought for today:

Remember: The Early Bird catches the worm.

So if you are a worm, sleep late and stay safe.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Robin Hood

Father Z, Harry at AICN and Brian Sibley hated the new Robin Hood...

It must be lousy, because it opened here at the mall the same weekend as it opened in the US...trying to get their money before the news gets around I guess.

Brian Sibley suggests you watch this one instead:
funny pictures
moar funny pictures

Cat item of the day

moar funny pictures

We came home from church, and the man came to clean the's been an exhausting day, not because I had to help him (I didn't) but because I had to keep all the dogs chained inside (so they wouldn't bite him in the garden) and take them out periodically to do their thing.

Oh yes: Mama dog had three puppies. All dark brown.

Family news

this time it's Mama dog having puppies...found her this morning trying to dig a hole under the porch (where she's had two litters in the past, but we filled the hole with stones).

So after she "examined" all the places we suggested, she settled for having them in the side closet where we store the dishes.

So we removed all the stuff on the floor for far, two puppies.

Oy veh. Blackie has five, Angel has five, and now old Mama...

And we had both Blackie and Mamadog fixed, which didn't work...

Saturday, May 15, 2010

No more Law and Order

Yes, it's canceled.
more Chickencartoons HERE

Science stuff below the fold

Explore the moon...virtually...
headsup Spaceshuttleblog.


Hearing test for high tones.

Stem cells (both embryonic and adult) are being turned into cochlear ("hair") cells, so maybe in ten years cochlear implants will be a thing of the past...

Who gets addicted to prescription drugs?
Druggies.(and alcoholics)
Well, duh...the bad news is that often these folks suffer from pain causing illnesses too...

We've know for years that those who take high dose aspirin or Ibuprofen don't get as much colon cancer, but the risk of bleeding is too high to tell everyone to take them.
Now scientists wonder:
Will Celebrex slow down or prevent colon cancer in those with familial polyposis?
Sigh. We had a family with this gene in our practice; we didn't know it until a 34 year old mom died of cancer, and then we had to persuade the rest of the family to get precancerous polyp was found in a 7 year old...that was before they could test for the gene

Moms tend to follow their own mom's advice when they're pregnant, not what docs tell them.
This can be good, harmless, or sometimes dangerous...and is a major problem working in cross cultural medicine.

On the other hand, considering all the "scientific" advice we gave moms over the last 40 years that turned out to be wrong, maybe I shouldn't criticize...

Anyone out there?
A short film on a Solar System found by astronomers.

Recipes of the day

The King Arthur Flour homepage links to lots of recipes.

ah, Honey Wheat English muffins. and more:

No, we don't get that brand here in the Philippines, but I used to use it when I lived in the US.
When I had the boys, I baked bread a lot, and later, I bought a bread making machine that really simplified things.

Here, we eat rice three times a day, but Chano is on a cooking spree (teaching Ruby to cook, and trying out recipes for our meeting center, where we sometimes sponsor meetings and dinners), so we are eating gourmet food, including bread, cinnimon rolls, etc.
Ah there goes my diet.

and for those who are gluten sensitive, check out their gluten free mixes , ingredients, and recipes.

Headsup from Ender's Uncle Orson...

Puns for Intellectuals

1. The roundest knight at King Arthur's round table was Sir Cumference. He acquired his size from too much pi.

2. I thought I saw an eye doctor on an Alaskan island, but it turned out to be an optical Aleutian.

3. She was only a whiskey maker, but he loved her still.

4. A rubber band pistol was confiscated from algebra class, because it was a weapon of math disruption.

5. No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

6. A dog gave birth to puppies near the road and was cited for littering.

7. A grenade thrown into a kitchen in France would result in Linoleum Blownapart.

8. Two silk worms had a race. They ended up in a tie.

9. A hole has been found in the nudist camp wall. The police are looking into it.

11. Atheism is a non-prophet organization.

12. Two hats were hanging on a hat rack in the hallway. One hat said to the other: 'You stay here; I'll go on a head.'

13. I wondered why the baseball kept getting bigger. Then it hit me.

14. A sign on the lawn at a drug rehab center said: 'Keep off the Grass.'

15. The short fortune-teller who escaped from prison was a small medium at large.

16. The man who survived mustard gas and pepper spray is now a seasoned veteran.

17. A backward poet writes inverse.

18. In a democracy it's your vote that counts. In feudalism it's your count that votes.

19. When cannibals ate a missionary, they got a taste of religion.

your email of the day from Col Updraft.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Gift item of the day

your very own Bronte sisters power dolls.

yes, it's a satire...
headsup First Things.

Insomnia links for today

InOurTime podcast (BBC) discusses William James classic book The Varieties of Religious experience...
I haven't listened to the podcast, but the book is proof that an atheist can understand how religion is different for different folks, instead of the false straw man posited by modern anti religion commenters who seem to be clueless on religion and silly in their arguments.

The book, by the way, is HERE....or buy audiobook at Audible...
The Librivox version is being recorded but not yet finished.

for lighter listening, try King of the Kyber Rifles, and the classic book
Spacehounds of the IPC, by EE (doc) Smith...

and AstronomyCast has 2 podcast about ancient Greek astronomy...

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Brownout time again

Lolo finally had it with the heat and ordered an aircon for the dining room so he can read the paper there instead of having to come back into the bedroom.

Of course, now it's starting to get cooler, but better late than never: He's talked about it for three years.

In the meanwhile, we have a brownout all night and are using our generator (can't run aircon on it, only fans). usually the internet goes out with brownout but it's on right no but I'm on laptop battery because I don't want to blow my computer again.

Ah, living the life in the glamourous tropics.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Cats and dogs and dogs

Not much sleep last night.

First, when the help turned on the outside lights, they must have left the door open too long, and the new black kitten got out...I rescued him from George the killer watchdog at 11 pm...the kitten was behind the refrigerator inside the motor.

Then Papa dog kept bothering Chloe, who is in heat...and fighting with PuffPuff who is so small he can't reach Chloe to mate, but keeps trying no matter what. So verbal dog fights on and off all night.

Then Blackie's puppies kept crying...she didn't have enough I fed them with a syringe and they went to sleep.

I figure I had four hours in between all the noise.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Coming attractions

not only do we get asequel of Ironman (I2) but remakes of old stories such as Robin Hood and this classic TV Show:

Oklahoma news

Bad news: Oklahoma hit by tornadoes...
several dead...
Everytime Nat Geo or other channels show tornado hunters, I find it ironic. They are posited as "heroes" for risking their neck, but no one notices the daily heroism of folks who live with the danger, and who know that four or five times a year they will have to high tail it to the shelter and hope they don't lose everything they own, and maybe even their lives.

Semi bad news: Government mishandled Indian mineral rights but
Good news: The courts ordered pay back.
related cases that after years of litigation settled for only 3.4 billion dollars..

Yes, the same government who plans to run your health care...and this is only one tribe in a huge government scam that cost tribes billions due to fraud and mismanagement.

Stuff below the fold

Those in the US Navy who want to know about their personnel file issues should check out the FACEBOOK page FAQ
the Millington facility was flooded, but should have reopened on Monday.

Father Z notes the appointment of Cardinal Pell (a troublemaking Aussie) to the Vatican office that will chose bishops.
Not only getting rid of the Italian careerists, but getting someone who will appoint Catholics as bishops...


GAO admits delays and other problems in paying docs for caring for Medicare patients.
Yeah, and wait till Obama's health system takes over.

Forget the mark of the beast tattooed on your hand...
Big brother can now check if you took your "smart pill"...
The system attaches a microchip and digestible antenna to a standard-size capsule. When the pill is swallowed, it communicates with a small electronic device carried by the patient. That device in turn signals a cell phone or laptop, informing doctors or family members.

The American Academy of Pediatrics, which has long condemned male circumcision, now says it's okay to "nick" girls if they are Muslim and need to be circumcized. They claim they only want to be 'culturally sensitive" by okaying the limited form to prevent folks from doing a full clitorectomy...but the result will be seen as approval of this terrible mutilation, which has nothing to do with Islam.

Indeed, when Mohammed suggested that the full clitorectomy (which was commonly done in his day) be limited to a small cut, his suggestions didn't stop the cutting by those who felt more was better...

StrategyPage says the CIA does a lousy job...and explains why:
sucking up to bigshots, and no competition...

and SenseOfEvents has a post on the coming war against Israel:

It cannot be overstated enough that anyone who thinks this coming war is about Israel is either an idiot or a fool..This war is about Xerxes and the New Persians. They are back. Israel is just the example. The real target is to the South and East.

First Jerusalem, then Mecca?

Down, Blacky, down: How do dogs learn new words?

Election news

Tinio Won!

the firecrackers going off in the middle of the night resulted in George, the killer watchdog, cowering under our bed for an hour...

also NoyNoy won, as expected...people power III?

but Makati's Binay as VP, not Roxas. (the VP doesn't have to be from the same party).

Erap came in second...
Villar came in third...his "poor boy can represent the poor" campaign was marred by links to Gloria and the fact that Erap, whose credentials for being one of the people, took a lot of the poor's votes away from Villar, a businessman who was expected to win before the campaign started.

not all votes in yet...Abscbn link here is updated constantly.

the US news is noting the "violence" but by Philippine standards, it was low...and no "helloGarci" type scandals expected, despite polling machine glitches.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Election day

Today is election day in the Philippines....Joy and Chano just went to our farm area barangay to vote (where we are registered)...Lolo is a dual citizen and didn't register so he will stay home.

Since the mayor's wife is running (and he under indictment for being behind the shooting that killed our nephew) we are worried they will win, meaning they will have access to money to keep him out of jail by legal delays.

There is always a danger of violence, so say a prayer that it will be kept to a minimum...

Musical Interlude of the day

turn up speakers and sing along...

Rubber Tut-y

via Archeoblog

Headlines below the fold

Everything causes cancer...ho hum.
if I am cynical, it's because an overblown "green" solution would kill more poor people than a measured approach.

get rid of preservatives, you end up with spoiled food thrown out, higher prices, and death/sickness from spoiled food and natural carcinogens in mold.
In Africa, we saw liver cancer from moldy peanuts and grain...and one of these days, the PC will notice promiscuity causes cancer too.

on the other hand, there are areas in the US where you are warned against eating fish you catch locally due to chemicals or pollution contamination...

related item: Now carbs are the big problem?

Some of my Oklahoma patients used to work in oil rigs in the Gulf, so it is painful to read about those who died in that rig explosion.
The reason? A methane bubble.

and that Russian mine disaster was also caused by either coal dust or hitting a methane bubble...the second explosion probably killed the rescuers. more HERE

MSM outrage when right wing activists out a moderate Republican in the caucuses.
Wonder why no outrage when Obama's left wing activists did the same to Hillary? It wasn't even covered by most papers.

Outrage of the week: euthanizing disabled patients for their organs.

science headline of the day:
Herschel shows star formation is slowing

RCW  120 star formation as seen by Herschel

This large bubble of hot hydrogen gas appears to be a massive star in the making, say astronomers (Source: ESA, PACS, SPIRE Consortia/A Zavagno)

The formation of new stars in galaxies like the Milky Way has declined five-fold in the last three billion years, according to astronomers.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

family news

Robin no longer lives in Millington, which is good since the entire base was flooded in last week's floods:

MILLINGTON, TN – The entire United States Navy is feeling the effect of the flooded naval base at Millington. The base is slowly recovering from this weekend's floods. What happened at the Millington facility touches every sailor in the service.

bbc story HERE

the CSMonitor has an article on the flood also, and notes the lack of coverage:

Yet many saw a troubling paradox in what was perceived as a dearth of media exposure.

"It was mind-boggling to flip by CNN, MSNBC, and FOX on Sunday afternoon and see not one station even occasionally bringing their viewers footage of the flood, news of our people dying," writes Betsy Phillips of the Nashville Scene. wonders if the press even realizes the seriousness of flooding the Naval facility.

but some locals posted stories on youtube. This one is from May 1:

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Recipe of the week

make some HELLOKITTY oreo cookies, recipe at JustJENN.

(headsup HelloKittyHEll)

and if you need gluten free recipe, check out TheBakingBeauties (via Recipezaar)

Gilligan's Island

a scholarly essay posits the societal roles of Gilligan's Island.

or if you prefer, watch the entire film of "rescue from Gilligan's island" LINK

Family news

hot again...modem not working during the afternoon...hard drive threatening to crash on my new computer...had it fixed once but might have to replace it.

Aside from that we are well. One more field to harvest and all the planting equipment is being fixed up in preparation for the next crop, once the monsoons start (no rain for five days).

Friday, May 07, 2010

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Musical interlude of the day

Family news

Angel, the small white dog, has had three puppies so far this afternoon..

Stuff below the fold

The recent decoding of the Mayan Code showed that they were as bloody as the Aztecs, not the peaceful people that we had been told about.

so now, the myth of the peaceful Minoans has been shattered, when Anthropologists found large walls for defense.


Hell on earth: Or rather, man made hells on earth.

The Gates of Hell in Turkmenistan, thanks to Russian drillers hitting a pocket of natural gas...

Related places:

Pitcher Oklahoma, the most polluted place in the US...
and Centralia PA is still burning...
and then there is that man made mud Indonesia

The Hanging coffins of SW China are well known thanks to a TV program about them.

But tribes in the Northern Philippines also used to bury their dead on cliffs.

Now, Atlas Obscura links to Torajaland, Indonesia, with similar burial practices.

the Discovery channel special is on youtube:


Family news

Blackie had five puppies yesterday...this is her third litter since we had her "Fixed"...

small white dog Angel looks like she's due anyday.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Craft item of the day

make your very own Arigarumi Darth Vader...pattern at link
buy at Etsy



Stuff below the fold

Time travel is possible, but only forward, says Hawkings.

Yeah, I guess going back to the past might cause a few problems....

turn up speakers and dance!


Freakonomics, the movie...


Calling Mr. Spock: Patient bleeds green blood...
large doses of sumatriptan - 200 milligrams a day resulted in sulfhaemoglobinaemia

Darwin's family suffered major health problems due to interbreeding...


Paul, now in a Manga style comic book...


YUM! Sushi!


Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Stuff below the fold

Headline of the day:
Beautiful women can be bad for your health, according to scientists


HRW releases report on abuse of domestic workers in the Middle East...
someone tell Maureen Dowd, who has written several fluffy editorials on the wonderfulness of Saudi Arabia.


Depressed from reading the news? Remember: not everything is war and disasters: the Tulips are out in Tehran...

The LATimes has some recipes here for CincoDeMayo...

No, my Hispanic kids were Colombianos, and you can find Colombian recipes HERE

YUM meatloaf!

Monday, May 03, 2010

Musical Interlude of the day

if facebook covered World War II

check link at StrategyPage

Stuff below the fold

it's now "discrimination" to teach table manners in Canada.

Our big election is May 10, so at the fiesta, everyone was wearing teeshirts in their party's color...
Emy handed out one with the mayor candidate's name on the back, but on the front it said: Remember the murder of Dr. Ito...


PhilInquirer editorialist notes: what good is competency if they steal everything in sight?

This is actually about Villar smearing Noyoy...actually Noynoy is the favorite, so he is being smeared with claims he once was treated for mental illness (probably depression, but never mind) and that he is gay (because he is unmarried), smokes cigarettes, and goes to night clubs now and then....

Marong 43 remain in's either a major injustice or a major anti terrorist coup...maybe both...

Some demonstrations, but not many here (more protests overseas than here), making one think something might be going on.


The state of Virginia moves to prevent earthquakes...
cover that bosom or Allah will smite California?...

Saturday, May 01, 2010

Insomnia links for today

Aristotle's Catagories is now on Librivox for your listening pleasure.

InOurTime podcast this week is about the Great Wall of China.

and if you want to learn about the mythology of ancient Greece, LLT 121 podcast will give you the very funny R-Rated version that you didn't learn at school...itunes link