Friday, August 31, 2007

Science experiment of the day

How many licks does it take to get to the tootsie-roll center of a Tootsie-Pop? Mark Robertshaw asks and, to some degree, answers the question.


Wasp flavoured Rice crackers...

HelloKitty Item of the day

Too much serious stuff on this blog, so time for a

Post of the day:

A helloKittyCorset.

Mother Teresa's Dark night...

Andrew Greeley blasts the ignorant reporters who mis reported Mother Teresa's doubts.

Was there no one in the deep sub-basements of ABC who knew about the Dark Night of the Soul -- an experience in which someone on the road to sanctity feels abandoned by God and has to cling to faith and vocation by sheer stubborn faith? Could not someone at a local chancery call ABC and say, hey, you idiots, that feeling of abandonment is one more proof that she was a saint?

Catholics know that doubt and fear are part of the human condition, and absolute certainty is rarely if ever granted, and merits skepticism if it's offered. St. Teresa of Avila experienced the Dark Night; Juan de la Cruz did, too, and wrote one of the greatest of poems in human literature about it ("Once in the Dark of Night"). St. Therese of Lisieux lived through it in the last years of her brief life. Jesus' Agony in the Garden was quite literally a Dark Night. So was his cry, ''Why have you forsaken me?''

When I'm asked if I experience doubts, I usually answer, ''No more than 20, but that's before breakfast."

And the book on the Dark Night of the Soul is found HERE and audio version HERE.

Comments to be moderated

I had to stop pornographic spam by adding "verification" letters for comments, but now I guess I'll have to check all comments before allowing them to be posted.

I don't mind BDS (Bush Derangement syndrome). After all, I'm a Democrat and prefer Hillary myself. But I just deleted a post ranting that he can't wait until Iran nukes Israel. Sorry, but that is over the line.

Headlines below the fold

Iraqi WMD finally the UN..

Philippine communist party head
to be indicted at the Hague on multiple murder charges.
It's outside of Philippine jurisdiction, so Gloria can claim it's not her fault when she pressures the NPA to talk peace. Article has a good review of who what when and why....Hmmm...wonder who they'll arrest someday for all those "extrajudicial killings" and "disappeared"?

Iraq as VietNam, or Iraq as Luzon?

It required two major changes to the post-war status quo for the Philippine government to defeat the Huks.

First, the United States had to recognize the severity of the insurgency and provide appropriate amounts of advice and military and economic assistance to help counter it. ...

Second; a government victory required an administration in Manila that was more concerned with improving the quality of life for its citizens than with self-enrichment.


NYTimes notices that charges against Marines of Haditha are "withering"...but firebrand Michelle Malkin has real details
Summary: in police work, you hesitate then shoot the bad guy and try to miss his human shields. In war, when a professional is shooting at you, you shoot first and let God sort them out...

But the irony is that in the long term, it doesn't work because you make people need the trust of the good people... Michael Yon's report on the Marines changing tactics to win over the Anbar tribes (in contrast to Alqaeda's bullying tactics) show how complicated the war in Iraq is...

Refusing to invest in terror states LINK. At the head of the line: Gov Blanco...well, It worked in South Africa...
Chavez, who allows FARC to hide in Venezuela, is now trying to negotiate to get FARC's hostages free..

Hero who saved lives at Atlanta Olympics dies

Richard Jewell, 44, Hero of Atlanta Attack, Dies

USA TODAY puts it this way:

His was not an act of conspicuous valor. He did not assault a machine gun nest with his bare hands or pull children from a burning building. But...If he does not notice the unattended backpack, does not raise the alarm before the bomb goes off, how many are close enough to die? Dozens? Hundreds?

One lady, Alice Hawthorne, did die, but the others were saved.

And in thanks, he was hounded and demonized by the press as the bomber, and his name was never really cleared until the real bomber was found.

He died of complications of Diabetes. God rest his soul and sympathy to his family.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Headlines below the fold

Dave Barry rerun of his essay on the Latex gloves of death
Actually, latex allergies are a problem, both for asthma (from the talc lining carrying latex into the air) and contact dermatitis.

Powerline and WaPo wonders about Sadr's decision to rein in his militia.. he's getting a lot of criticism after his guys got into a fight with the security guards and with a rival milita at the Karbala pilgrimage. All they ended up doing is getting a lot of people shot and a lot of pilgrims sent home early, and making a lot of people very angry.

summarizes: Sadr vs Badr. Both getting money from Iran, and both wanting an Islamic state, but each wants to run it (hint: it's not religion, it's money...who runs the state gets rich). But blunders are making them unpopular in some quarters.

Here in the Philippines, there was a demonstration against the Dutch who finally got around to arresting one of the communist leaders who was wanted for murder.
Belmont Club has the details. The Netherlands has let these guys hide there for years...

but the really big demonstrations will come if Estrada is convicted...

Foam monster attacks Sydney

Scientific explanation:

Scientists explain that the foam is created by impurities in the ocean, such as salts, chemicals, dead plants, decomposed fish and excretions from seaweed.

All are churned up together by powerful currents which cause the water to form bubbles.

These bubbles stick to each other as they are carried below the surface by the current towards the shore.

As a wave starts to form on the surface, the motion of the water causes the bubbles to swirl upwards and, massed together, they become foam.

Gift Item of the day

A Darth Vader Transformer...

The battle of the porn filters

Australia buys 84 million dollar porn filter to give to families free.

Teenager cracks filter in less than thirty minues.

Newspaper bitches that locally designed filters were cheaper, harder to break.

Government releases Australian designed filter for parents.

It is indeed harder to break. It took the teenager 40 minutes to crack the new one.

Proof the world is going to end

It's pet fashion week. And Pink is in.

CNN has more photos HERE

Did you know that pet fashions is a 4billion dollar industry?

ELLE magazine declares that the pampered pooch has replaced the SUV as a status symbol...


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Stuff below the newspaper fold

Good News: Reversing Alzheimer's in rats? Take brain cell out, change genes, put cell back...gene produces enzyme in cell that destroys amyloid causing brain killing plaques...good news if it works.

Bad News: Human to human transmission of bird flu in Indonesia...

Should a strain of avian flu acquire the ability to cause sustained human-to-human transmission, the results could be catastrophic, Longini said. “If not contained, the outbreak could spread worldwide through the global transportation network...

Attention Osama: Get your cell phone here...150 thousand news cellphone subscribers in Afghanistan each month...

Attention Col. Updraft: Beware of Rock Snot...
the aquatic algae called "rock snot" is creeping into New England, where it is turning up in pristine rivers and alarming fishermen and wildlife biologists....
Pristine rivers? Heck, when I lived there we couldn't eat our local fish due to high PCB levels...

Viva la difference

Misscellania tells you why men are from mars and women from venus...
and includes this list:

Ten Things Only Women Understand

(Thanks, Rich!)
10. Cats' facial expressions
9. The need for the same style of shoes in different colors
8. Why bean sprouts aren't just weeds
7. Fat clothes
6. Taking a car trip without trying to beat your best time
5. The difference between beige, off-white, and eggshell
4. Cutting your bangs to make them grow
3. Eyelash curlers
2. The inaccuracy of every bathroom scale ever made

Headlines below the fold

A search of the news shows that Alqaeda in Iraq is toast, and the reporters in the middle of the surge are reporting good news (despite an occassional bomb).
But the main battle is in the South, thanks to the Brit's failure to do things right.
So Iran is "offering" to help...of course, they are the main ones behind Sadr's militia...not to mention their proxies are trying to take over Gaza and lebanon and giving them arms and missles to hit now we are hearing war drums.
But this time the French are on the side of the US...the bad news is that the people with BDS will oppose any war, unless Paris is nuked.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Caveman ipod

your email of the day from Col Updraft.

LOL Chart

For bigger picture go HERE.
also boingBoing

Band Aid of the day

when I was in practice,
I used to give my kids Snoopy or Strawberry Shortcake bandaids.

But if you treat older kids, try one of these...

(via boingboing)

Lileks at the MN state fair

Lileks now runs a blog for the local paper in which he covers local events.

Today he is covering the State Fair...go take a peek...and don't miss The small complaining mammals division

Monday, August 27, 2007


square watermelon

Gift item of the day

Shaggy dog pillow...made of fleece

actually, it looks like a square Tribble...

The importance of the little people

During Hurricane Katrina, 100 000 people responded within three days of the disaster to help (and this doesn't count the hundreds of thousands who housed relatives and friends).

Now there is a report that emphasizes this same thing: That in times of disaster, it is the local responders who are there and do much of the rescuing and care of the injured/sick. And that the leaders at the federal level need to recognize this and see them as partners, not think they are the ones in charge.
Full essay at BNN...

Good news story of the day

The CT scan said incompatible with life, but live she did....

Stuff below the fold

You've probably seen the photo of a brick floating on smoke.
Well, Aerogel was devised by NASA to insulate space suits, but it's use is expanding to other things...
insulating appliances, buildings, and sleeping bags...if only it didn't cost so much...

The Puffins are back
The Puffins are Back!
Biologists have reintroduced the Puffin onto EasternEgg Island off the coast of Maine...

Another study claiming HUMAN embryonic stem cells can repair rats...

Ummm...doesn't this mean that animal stem cells might be able to repair humans? and why are the scientists using HUMAN embryonic stem cells in these experiments? Why not rat embryonic stem cells? Like this group at Johns Hopkins is using?
The answer is that the first experiment was done by a corporation that is aiming to get a lot of money pumped into it. The Geron corporation was the company behind the California stem cell initiative and got a lot of the money but no one is looking at it very hard at the money trail...

Geeks against the world:

Apple IPHONE hacked by 17 year old...

And the Geeks behind Pirate Bay...

And the good news of the day:

qwinl.jpgMicrosoft's Windows Genuine Server went down earlier today. This resulted in Windows XP and Vista installations being incorrectly labelled as counterfeit. 'Reduced functionality' ensued. The issue is now resolved. [Boing Boing

the good news? I use linux/unbuntu.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Gift item of the day

A hand carved wooden cellphone

Beating swords into Plowshares

And warzones into resorts...

The Engineers of the Philippine Army have arrived in the south...

ABSCBN has a ?tongue in cheek article about turning Sulu and Basilan Island into a resort like Bohol..."
"In preparation for this, Marine soldiers have put up one tourist stop, called Buhanginan Beach and Adventure Resort, in Patikul. "

Well, why not? Lolo said the beaches there were great when he worked there 50 years ago...

And heck, it worked for the Apaches:

Has the body of the lost Tsar's children been found?

"...Remains of the last Russian emperor’s children have been found at the place of execution in the Ural, the local archeologists claim. The experts are sure they have discovered remains of prince Alexei and grand princess Maria."

DNA tests pending...

There's a hole in the center of the universe

Sounds like the start of a hit song...

but it's true:

The gargantuan hole was found by examining observations made using the Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope, funded by the National Science Foundation.
There is a "remarkable drop in the number of galaxies" in a region of sky in the constellation Eridanus, Rudnick said.

And LINK is to the ten strangest things in space...nutrinos and gravity waves and cannibalistic galaxies...

Friday, August 24, 2007

Family news

Nuevaecija Journal has a report on the PALENKE fire with photos.

Headlines below the fold

The sexy photo of Putin is making him popular in the gay community

But a reader at Gateway Pundit noted: He is wearing a crucifix...resulting in the comment:
A Christianist in the Kremlin--- Uncle Joe must be tossing in his grave.

The blogs are full of the Iraq report...SWJ summarizes: security progress, but political reconciliation is elusive...ITM blames the politicians...Strat page talks about Alqaeda's losing, and the bad news is that Iranian funded/armed Sunni militias are taking their place.

The point a lot of news reporters and bloggers are missing about the government is that in a lot of third world countries, the government is inefficient, corrupt, and has link with criminal elements, and there are always huge political squabbles.

Which is why they miss the lesson of Viet Nam: A lousy government is worth saving if the alternative is a murderous dictatorship...


According to the People's Daily, the joint Russian/Chinese wargames include a lot of the smaller ex Soviet republics and are an anti terror exercize.. it has to do with their Islamic separatists in NW China and with the oil of the region...

Speaking of inefficient governments: HelloGarci is back on the menu here...

Podcast of the week

The boys from Massachusetts talking about fixing your car. Or as their website puts it:

Free Weekly Car Talk Podcast
Bad news for your iPod: Gigabytes of Magliozzis.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

It's the bird's fault

Did pigeon dung cause the Minneapolis bridge diaster?

And it's not just bridges that are at danger: so are hydroelectric dams..

And did you hear that California scientists put GPS systems sensors and cameras around the necks of pigeons to monitor pollution?

Dave Barry


Only they could think up a scheme whereby we fight pollution using a critter whose primary environmental activity is pooping all over the environment.

The Cat's map of the bed

Gift Item of the day


The Brains Over Brawn Action Figure

Dressed for intense classroom action, this Albert Einstein Action Figure stands with a piece of chalk in his hand, poised to explain relativity or do battle with the forces of entropy. ...

Sure he might not have been able to fly, breathe underwater or emit spider webs from his wrist - but he could melt your mind in a heartbeat with just a single attempt at explaining the Universe to you. Now that's power!

Oh NO! Not my SPONGE BOB Address Book!

Well, that's the last time I try to eat my address book...


An Ohio importer recalled nearly 250,000 SpongeBob SquarePants address books and journals manufactured in China because the bindings might contain hazardous levels of lead paint, the Consumer Product Safety Commission said Wednesday.

Anyone see a pattern here?

ONE: "We've begun to change tactics in Iraq, and in some areas, particularly in Anbar province, it's working," Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) said in a speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars on Monday.


TWO: Sarkozy's moves to correct the mistake started even before his election when he met President George W. Bush at the White House in 2006 and described Chirac's policy as "arrogant"....

The new French policy on Iraq could also inspire a change of attitude in Moscow. With Schroeder and Chirac gone, Putin may find it harder to pursue an Iraq policy based on nostalgia for Saddam and petty enmity towards the US....France's return to Iraq strengthens the new diplomatic trend in favour of a positive attitude towards the new Iraqi regime. Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan are among several Arab countries that have decided to reopen their embassies in Baghdad and extend official invitations to the new Iraqi leadership.



From working with tribal leaders to investing time and money at street- level, it's essential to "understand the Iraqi style" of doing things. It's counterinsurgency judo: working with the weight of tradition, instead of fighting a losing battle against it.

The general recognizes that political progress at the top in Iraq may lag as an indicator, but local initiatives look like the key to national success. He believes that, in this case, the politicians will eventually follow the people - who genuinely want better lives, not more bickering and butchery.



Ironically, in Anbar Al Qaeda has become our best ally for killing al Qaeda. They’ve managed to do this directly, just by being al Qaeda. Despite the promised carrots, what Al Qaeda consistently delivered here was mostly stick, and with a special kind of hypocritical contempt that no sensible person would believe possible. (Not unlike the notion of baking the children of resistant parents or ordering shepards to diaper the corrupting genitals of goats.)

Al Qaeda has a management style—doing drugs, laying up sloppy drunk, raping women and boys, and cutting off heads, all while imposing strict morality laws on the locals—that makes it clear that they have one set of principles for themselves, and another for every one else.

In that kind of scheme, it didn’t take long before people in Anbar realized that any benefits from Al Qaeda having control would not be distributed equally. Once that realization spread, the tribal sheiks—almost all Sunni—had to consider the alternatives.


Five: The leader of Iraq's banned Baath party, Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, has decided to join efforts by the Iraqi authorities to fight al-Qaeda, one of the party's former top officials, Abu Wisam al-Jashaami, told pan-Arab daily Al Hayat.

"AlDouri has decided to sever ties with al-Qaeda and sign up to the programme of the national resistance, which includes routing Islamist terrorists and opening up dialogue with the Baghdad government and foreign forces," al-Jashaami said.

Al-Douri has decided to deal directly with US forces in Iraq, according to al-Jashaami. He figures in the 55-card deck of "most wanted" officials from the former Iraqi regime issued by the US government....


Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Hey John

I couldn't resist...

Gift item of the day

The Inflatable Illuminated Carriage Hearse.
This is the 12' long self-inflating illuminated carriage hearse with flashing lights that has an inflatable zombie that rises from a coffin in the rear. Made of durable tear-resistant nylon, the hearse fully inflates in minutes using an integral air fan, and, unlike other outdoor seasonal decor that is static, a second air fan is timed to inflate the zombie once every three minutes

Headlines below the fold

Yes, the Philippines had an earthquake, but it was far from we're fine.

Push against AbuSayyaf is serious...even the MILF are getting out of the way. The mainline protestant churches are upset, of course, saying don't harm people just to try to arrest murderous bandits. However, as usual they have no comment on the 14 civilians hurt by a bomb in Zamboanga...

India/America's Bobby Jindal gets smeared as a bigot ...but the trouble is that the quote was taken out of context: he was quoting Calvin (not Klein, the reformer of Geneva)...and this is in a state where a previous campaign for senator was summarized by the line "vote for the crook, not the bigot".
Bullwinkle alert:
Stop global warming, kill a moose.

A grown moose will burp and pass so much methane gas in the course of a year that it amounts to 2,100 kilos of carbon dioxide emissions.


Another German woman was kidnapped last week in Afghanistan last week...with the Korean fisaco, I figured they were after money. Then I read she was "freed"...turns out that the Afghan police, with a little help from Norse special forces found and rescued her...


Popular Mechanics has a new page debunking each claim by the 911 conspiracy theorists one by one.
Of course, it won't work. Delusions are so much fun. And if you can blame Bush, you don't have to worry about IED's going off in Grand Central Station like they are in Zamboanga...


Murphy's law

You might have heard about the skydiver who plans to go to the edge of space and skydive to earth to set a new high altitude record...he plans to jump out at 24 miles, and the article notes:

The record for highest leap was set in 1960 by a U.S. Air Force test pilot, at just under 20 miles.

ah, and the story of that dive is here, along with how it resulted in the coining of Murphy's law...

During one of the early tests of these so-called strain gauges....returned no data. Now, when the military goes to the trouble to fire a chimp down a railroad spur using a rocket engine, they aren’t exactly thrilled with a null result. It turns out that the technical assistant who installed Murphy’s prototype instruments wired the gauges in backward.

Now, here’s where the recriminations start, as Murphy and his compatriots didn’t get along that well. Murphy reputedly blamed his assistant, stating, “If that guy has any way of making a mistake, he will.”

Meanwhile, the other project staff blamed Murphy for failing to check and calibrate the sensors before the test, conjuring up their own sarcastic Murphy’s Law, which held that “If it can happen, it will happen.” Murphy’s Law became part of the project’s lore.


killerplants news has an article on the tumbleweed.
Did you know it came from Europe? and probably hit the west as a weed from Russian/German Mennonite farmers who settled on the plains?

more HERE...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Stuff below the fold

Last weekend's NYTime had a long article on religion and society LINK

However, the acid tongued Spengler of the Asian Times "fisks" the article HERE...

But Spengler notes the supreme Irony of the essay: by making Christianity the enemy, he goes on to praise Islamic political sharia

, Professor Ramadan personifies everything that Lilla hates, and Lilla knows it. But Ramadan has one redeeming virtue. He is not a Christian. Lilla does not love Reason; he simply hates Christianity with all his heart, and will make alliance with whichever of her enemies might be available.

Full rant on BNN...
And an article on the City Journal shows a similar distortion in intellectual circles, but in this article the enemy is the US...

Monday, August 20, 2007

Family News

Chano had a trade fair over the weekend and delivered some of the craft items to an exporter yesterday.

The Palenke days is Monday, so when we went jogging, the streets around the square are full of temporary booths with the weekly vendors. The old palenke is now fenced off, and many of the vendors moved up or down the street to put their new wares for sale. It's fine, but don't try driving....

Lolo is fine.

Gift item of the day

Headlines below the fold

Pajamas media suggests France is no longer a cheese eating surrender monkey...

Manuel QuezonIII discusses how the Islamic terror groups spin their war...they cause a "humanitarian crisis" it allows the left and leftist countries to pressure the government to stop fighting...and they can start other terrorist acts which of course will never be blamed on them by the international community...
And the aim is a caliphate...and if you think he is extreme, just remember last week's meeting in Indonesia said the same thing.

The Carnival of the recipes is up...Yum.
The UN will make plans for any Zim refugee crisis...ummm...a little late, don't you think?

Tourist site of the day

LINK2... made more famous after a protest from PETA........

First they came for our cigarettes, and now they come for our

Nail polish...

Disaster preparedness

Instapundit has a link for disaster preparedness.

Lots of it is common sense. I always kept disaster supplies in the car in Minnesota, since even the 30 mile drive to get groceries could lead to you being stranded and frozen to death if you got caught in a storm.

But in Oklahoma, I had my disaster supplies in the garage...and if a tornado hit, I was well aware that the house and garage and all our supplies would end up in Kansas...

Sunday, August 19, 2007

A simplified keyboard for men

R2-Beer 2


Harry Potter and his gadgets

Want Harry's invisibility cloak? How about his flying car?

Well, some of the "magic" objects might be available one of these days.

Wasn't it Haldane who said that if technology is much more advanced that a culture, it resembles magic?

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Friday, August 17, 2007

Fish School

and the link has a book you can buy to learn how to train your goldfish to do stupid pet tricks.

What to do with your old monitor

Lies, damn lies and statistics

The story about the increase in army suicides in the WaPo .is misleading, and I analyze the numbers at the link.

One, the actual increase in the number of Army suicides is 11 more than last year. And two thirds of those committing suicide are not in Iraq or Afghanistan.

Two, the "high rate" compared to civilians is a misleading statistic.

The rate of suicide for the army is 18/100 000 population
The rate of suicide for males aged 20-29 is 22.
The rate of suicide for women aged 20-29 is 3

And to put things into perspective:
the rate of suicide for physicians is also 18/100 000.

Headline of the day

End prayers for rain – Rosales
Cardinal says rains have ended the dry spell
Prelate cites need to take care of environment

Could baby powder save San Francisco?

Talc is lubricating the San Andreas fault

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Science project of the day

Make a hovercraft from your leaf blower...

Was the mamoth extinction due to a comet?

The discovery was made by scientists from the University of California at Santa Barbara...
The period in question is called the Younger Dryas, an interval of abrupt cooling that lasted for about 1,000 years ...
According to the scientists, the comet before fragmentation must have been about four kilometers across, and either exploded in the atmosphere or had fragments hit the Laurentide ice sheet in the northeastern North America.

Wildfires across the continent would have resulted from the fiery impact, killing off vegetation that was the food supply of many of larger mammals like the woolly mammoths, causing them to go extinct.

Since the Clovis people of North America hunted the mammoths as a major source of their food, they too would have been affected by the impact. Their culture eventually died out.

Craft item of the day

a cursor shaped kite

Kill Bill director one, traffic jam zero

Tarentino was caught in a Manila traffic jam and had to use a pedicar to get to the Palace to pick up an award.

Heh. I didn't know they still had pedicabs in manila...or that he could fit inside one...

The problem was the rain from the typhoon that flooded the streets.
We are fine here

Headlines below the fold

Healthy foods just as bad as junk food?

a spoonful of sugar helps warming? or maybe garlic and sunflower oil will

Alqaeda continues ethnic cleansing of non Sunnis... The LATimes reporter says it is a "rebuttal" of US success, However, the Khaleej Times does, and their story is actually notices more favorable things about the US.
The real questions: Syria. Were the bombers those from the south, or Saudis entering from nearby Syria?

Blue ear pig virus
in spreading to SE Asia.

Newark neighborhood terrorized gangs. The recent murder was the tip of the iceburg.

Good News: Soldiers find wounded boy and save his life.

More good news: 20 years ago, a little girl was the only survivor of a plane crash...and here is the rest of the story.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Recipe of the day

Deep Fried Oreos

1 cup buttermilk pancake mix
3/4 cup ice water
1 quart vegetable oil
14 Oreo cookies
Powdered sugar

Freeze cookies. Make pancake batter. dip and fry in hot oil. Drain and then coat with powdered sugar.

Slashfood supplied the photo, and one of his commenters advises: " The 6 fried oreos are topped with ice cream, chocolate and caramel sauces, and powdered sugar..." absolute heaven.

Yes, I know what that will do to your cholesterol, but you will die happy...
(headsup from CathyofCalifornia)

HelloKitty Hell!

Sofashark, via HelloKitty Hell, of course...

Zim students take protest to you tube

A lot of the students were forcibly evicted from their dormatories after protesting about high school fees...

There has long been censorship of foreign reporters and news getting out of that country. And now internet censorship is "official". SWRA has a link on how to ger around the snoops.

Trivia facts of the day

According to the BBC..
Glaciers have calves...
Bush is more fit than most people...
Bill Murray's sister is an actress and a nun...
Majong can trigger seizures...

Headlines below the fold

What does Islam mean to the average Iraqi? The ability to tolerate terrible things because they are the will of God. Sounds like "Behala na"...

Americans, whose ancestors left many different countries because they were uppity enough to rebel against this idea, are the real revolutionaries in much of the world.

If you are wondering why the Afghan government likes Iran, it may be because Iran has a major heroin problem, and needs the Afghan (and NATO's) helpt in stopping the drug trade.

A lot of libertarian blogs say the US shouldn't make the opium fields a priority since they favor drug legalization. But the Iranians disagree. My take is HERE

Guilliani: Speak quickly and carry a big stick...if he gets elected, it will be Reagan all over again: A divided America, a president hated by Europe, and success in foreign affairs because he is just enough of an SOB to scare them.

If Hillary gets in, we will get attacked (to test her) similar to the Cuban missile crisis or the Iran hostage crisis under Carter, since the enemies will figure she is a wimp. The bad news, of course, is that Hillary has more balls than Rudy, but she won't win the primaries if she shows them too soon.
Philippine news: Another day, another typhoon...will be north so mainly rains and floods.

And the word on the street is that the Palenke fire was set off when the street kids who sleep there played with firecrackers too close to a leaky Propane tank...luckily no one reported killed.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

It's heeere

The E-Jeepney, the latest way to get around Makati: electric Jeepneys

The bad news: They are only for short hauls, not intercity travel, and they take forever to charge their batteries

Free Vintage Movies

Bittorrent is now charging for downloads, but does include some free downloads, such as some of the vintage Hitchcock and silent movies...not to mention some movies I know you all want to see such as:
Jesse James Meets Frankenstein's Daughter (Full-Length Movie. 1965)

video Jesse James Meets Frankenstein's Daughter (Full-Length Movie. 1965)

William "One Shot" Beaudine's companion piece to the equally nonsensical Billy the Kid vs. Dracula represents a memorable closing to the eccentric "Z"-movie ...

Released: 1965

Seeders: 1 Downloaders: 1

Shaken, not stirred

"...antioxidants can help protect against tissue damage that leads to heart disease and cataracts, and James Bond seems to be pretty tough with good eyesight, so this seemed a reasonable subject for study. (In fact, the authors of the study cite James Bond as their motivation in their paper in the British Medical Journal. They even conclude, "007's profound state of health may be due, at least in part, to compliant bartenders." -- Who says scientists don't have a sense of humor?).."

Mean Genes

The DNA Monster.

Weird theological news of the day

Could alien life exist in the form of DNA-shaped dust?

More about astrobiology HERE.
Film...Looking for life in all the right places...

Science/Tech headlines below the fold

How to surf the net You have to be a member to get the chapter.

How to make a minimag flashlight into a laser...bad news: You need an old dvd burner laser to do it.

Patioheater phobia
: "The patio heater... has cynically been made into a public symbol of people’s apparent greed and selfishness... And any solution to climate change...which focuses on adapting to rising temperatures rather than on changing behaviour is ruled out as unacceptable. "

Similarly, those who see too many "racial inferiors" breeding are now using climate change to impose their religion of Malthus.

Linux boom ahead? Why the Novell win might lead to more companies using Linux bases systems.

DARPAtech conference stuff here...
the bad news: The hackers know more than the Pentagon...

Robots of war? Yup. And right now, there is a robot surge going on...

Paper batteri
es? nanotechnology at work

HAARP is it weather control or mind control?

Spying on O.J.... will our cars be tracked by radar? LINK

I wasn't drunk, it was the breathalyzer....we'll probably see it the case next year on Law and Order...

And finally, I'm not the only Grannie on line LINK

Monday, August 13, 2007

Burning movies on Ubuntu/linux

I use Ubuntu feisty fawn, and write about it on BNN...the link is if you want to know about burning stuff...actually, it's hard to figure out but once you have the right programs, it's easier than using Roxio.

Gift item of the day

Lucky kitty

Family news

Here are news links to the Palenke fire...several different stories on how it started.
and why it took so long for the firemen to arrive (and no hydrants).



Earlier, FO3 Simons aid the fire, which started at the center portion of the market at about 2 a.m., reached general alarm level as of 4:30 a.m.

“Ang gitna ng palengke ang nasunog, ang tinitinda doon mga damit, grocery, plastic (The center part of the market was burning. Stalls in that part sell clothes, groceries and plastic items)," he said.

Simon said power has been cut off to the market and neighboring areas to prevent electrical fires from starting.

He said no one was reported injured as of 4 a.m., and that the cause of the fire remained undetermined.

As of 6:30 a.m., dzRH radio reported that while the flames had stopped, explosions were still heard at the market.

Its correspondent said there was no watchman or market administrator at the scene as of Sunday morning. Vendors wept upon seeing the fire.

Terror related headlines below the fold

Laser pointed at plane in Australia...the article mentions that there have been 80 laser attacks on planes...every once in awhile you read about this in the US...wonder if anyone is counting the numbers or arresting anyone?

In the Philippines, Father Bossi is going to Italy...and Catholic foreign missionaries will be banned from Mindanao.

They claim no ransom was paid, but few here believe it. Indeed, the fact that the Indonesians from Abu Sayyaf can now get the MNLF to break the truce and ambush another convoy of Philippine soldiers suggest that they now have a lot of money to spread around. LINK.

Due to pressure from Japan and Canada and leftist groups, the government allowed time for the MILF to give back the kidnappers and those who mutilated the Marines. Instead, now we read the MNLF is now protecting the kidnappers and will buy you anything...and crime/terrorism/militants overlap each other, along with the usual feudal politics/political corruption mean it will be a problem to clean up. And now that the army is preparing an offense, we hear cries for peace by the same groups that destroyed the peace....

So cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war...thanks to the Italian government paying ransom.

Family News

The shops of the palenke are no more, but the vendors who come in for Palenke day (i.e. Monday) have booths all over, including in the vacant lot across from the park and in the street on the north side of the Palenke. The concrete buildling on the corner is still standing.

The electricity and cable TV went back on last evening.

And the small cat that lives in the bedroom after being mauled by the dogs had a kitten. She kept hiding in the closet, so we closed it...and she ended up having the kittens in our bed instead. Serves us right. Luckily she only had one. She is now in a box in our bathroom.

Joy and Chano have another trade fair this week in Subic. They said we could go with them, but it's hard for me and lolo to do a one day trip like that, so we will probably stay home.

Fiesta Time

This time, it is a fiesta of Vietnamese families...over 40,000 people attended a celebration in...Carthage honor of the Virgin Mary. Link2's not just for white Europeans anymore

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Nefertiti needed a face lift?

A closer look using specialized light source shows that Nefertiti had eye bags and wrinkles.

Speculation is that they were subtly placed there to imply she was wise, since in those days wrinkles meant experience and wisdom.

Or maybe they didn't pay the artist, and he was having his revenge

Family news: no more palenke

The dogs woke me at 2:30 am, but I just thought they heard revelers returning home.
About 3, I heard some sirens and then the electricity went off, so I placed candles in the bathroom and in the kitchen and checked the door was shut. Nothing there but a tricycle driver sleeping across the street. But the sirens continued, and we heard noise outside, so at 3:45 I went outside with a candle and saw Joy investigating the shouting.

She lives on the second floor, and when she was on the staircase noticed a glow in the east. Soon everyone was up investigating, and we could see a huge glow and smoke coming from the Palenke. At 4, Dita arrived with the news. There was an "electrical" fire that started about 2am, and the sirens were all the various fire fighting equipment coming to help quell the blaze.

We got things ready in case the fire spread, but luckily only concrete buildings are between us and the palenke, and the wind was light and to the south...which meant all the street vendors on the main street got burnt out too. (The Tsinalis/sandal festival is coming, so a lot of temporary booths were along the street, separated only by a ten foot parking lot).

In the US, usually fires at 2 am are arson, planned so not to kill anyone. Was this arson? I don't know...but there had been talk to move the palenke out near Waltermart and the newer part of town. Now this will probably be done.
The bad news is that a lot of our neighbors ran small shops in the palenke (what woke me was them racing to try to save their stock...but it was too late).
Since ordinarly shop keepers don't usually have insurance, there will be a lot of families losing their livelihood, and the ones to benefit will be the outsiders who have capital to place shops in the new palenke.


Saturday, August 11, 2007

Well, eat ma grits

Of the peoples who settled North America, some preferred a life away from the towns. These self-reliant backcountry people lived for generations on the same land. They may well have learned survival from the natives that once lived on the same land. These people ground their corn or made their hominy and grits. By social norms, they were considered " inferior class of white hill-dwellers in some of the southern United States...." They were disparagingly called crackers. "The name is said to have been applied because cracked corn is their chief article of diet; it is as old in Georgia and Florida as the times of the revolution." (Century Unabridged Dictionary, 1889)

Banana torture

n Indian suspect was forced by police to eat 50 bananas as a laxative, to retrieve a necklace he was accused of stealing and swallowing.

When the bananas failed to produce the desired effect, police fed Sheikh Mohsin rice, chicken and local bread.

Finally the necklace, which appeared on an X-ray taken on the suspect, was excreted and retrieved...

Actually, in the US, they use GoLytely to retrieve contraband.

Bananas to the Rescue

How To Remove CD Scratches With A Banana - video powered by Metacafe

Gift item of the day

A windup mp3 player.LINK2

These things would be popular here because the price of batteries is so high, but alas it costs over $300..., like most "green" technology on this website means only the rich are able to afford it...

Actually, I have bought "wind up" radio/flashlights...and in both the rechargeable battery died after two years so they won't hold the charge from the crank, and I can't find replacements. So now they "run" on regular batteries...duh.

Happy 75th birthday Lego

LEGO website HERE

Free Magazine about Lego HERE.

The future of evolution: Legomen.

LEGO CLUB EXCLUSIVE -- Recent scientific studies have shown that humans are slowly evolving. Scientists predict that by 2037, humans will become more of a blocky shape, have yellow skin, and skin will harden into more of a plastic substance. Other scientists say that hands will also turn more simplistic, appearing much like grappling claws. Along with this, humans will have the amazing ability to detatch and reattatch limbs. The bottom of our feet will be able to stick to bumps and grooves in the earth, and the world itself will take on a LEGO-like appearance.

Friday, August 10, 2007

The hottest year on record is ....1934?

Did a Y2K computer glitch lead to a lot of falsely high temperatures being reported, temperatures that "verified" global warming?

Stuff below the fold

Capone interviews Miss Piggy...LINK

Turn up speakers and enjoy!

Headlines below the fold

Aluminum connected to Alzheimers? or is it just that a lot more people are living to be over 80 nowadays?

Nice girls finish first
? Right. Actually, there are a lot of "clean" living actors and actresses in Hollywood. It's just that most of them don't hog the headlines.

Time machines is possible...LINK...

Finally, a green solution that might work here...converting poop and garbage to methane...

Talapia one, mosquitoes eat mosquito larvae. well, yes. about time you noticed...

Libya admits they tortured medics who "admitted" injecting children with HIV...ah, hear the protests...not.

Another marine cleared from murder charges at Haditha...well, at least the Beeb noticed...

Weatlh gap spreads across Asia
...well yes. The poor living in rural area are still poor and no worse off than they used to be (indeed, many are better off). The main problem is when people leave their farms and become homeless in cities.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

The attack of the eight foot Lego Man

Headsup MarkSteyn at the corner


Well, last week they were busy seeding clouds to stop the drought, and the Catholics declared Friday as a day of prayer.

So now we have the tail end of a typhoon, and it's been raining for 24 hours. Lots of flooding of roads and even bridges are closed, so Joy wasn't able to go to Manila for a meeting. Here we are on high ground and near enough to a river for the water to run off, so we are safe.

But we have a "brownout" and are on generator, so blogging will be spotty.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Don't forget to celebrate

Friday is national S'mores day....

Recipe: if you have nothing better to do, try it.

Or try the original one:HOW GIRLS
(1) Place Hershey bars on graham crackers.
(2) Toast marshmallows. (3) Place toasted marshmallows on Hershey bars to melt chocolate.

(1) Eat Hershey bars.
(2) Eat marshmallows.
(3) Throw graham crackers at other boys.

Did china discover the Americas in 1418?

or did someone copy a 16th century Spanish map?