Friday, August 28, 2015

Worried About Tampa

In hurricane season I keep an eye out for Tampa, FL, where friends live. Tropical Storm Erika may be a problem for them, in part, because they've had tons of rain already and the ground is saturated. Right now, as far as rainfall is concerned, the new forecast is the worst yet for Tampa, with the circulation center passing far enough west of Tampa that the region of highest rainfall passes directly over the city. Let’s hope that interaction with Hispaniola disrupts the system enough to move the center of circulation. The National Hurricane Center thinks there’s a chance of that disruption happening.

The Pattern Of Drought

When you look at drought maps at year intervals it sure seems like we've been dealing with the very same belt of drought since 2007, when it first showed up in the American South, and has been moving at a glacial pace westwards ever since. Maybe this is a repeating pattern? And if it is a pattern it's still heading west today, with increasing drought in the Pacific NW and less in California. Eventually it'll pass out to sea, with maybe a new drought starting up in the South and starting the cycle over again.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

2015 Teen Cabaret - DMTC YPT - August 21, 2015

Act 1

Act 2

Sunny Sunny Yaariyan" Lyric Video

Today's Bollywood tune, good for Zumba....

Laying Down On The Job

I work in a neighborhood where bars and nightclubs have expanded operations over the last 15 years, and with that expansion came the late-night Urinators, who would sometimes target the back door of the business.

In a recent months, a homeless man started sleeping by the back door. As long as that man was laying down on the job, his presence offered a measure of protection against the Urinators.

About a week ago, the man disappeared, and I feel vulnerable again.

Donna Summer - I Feel Love - 2015 Dance Remix

I believe in the simple pleasures, which is why I love this video! Endless Giorgio Moroder and Donna Summer, with the world in motion. Plus, it starts in Albuquerque, of all places, with what appear to be 'Gamer' outtakes:

Genius Bar

Feeling uneasy. Surrounded by morons here at Apple Store's Genius Bar....

Bella Remembers

Bella, the Labrador Retriever, and I were heading west on 4th Avenue, at 1:35 a.m. during our normal evening constitutional, when Bella turned right onto 22nd St., and froze. Waddling straight towards us in the gloom was canine Nemesis: a skunk! To my great surprise, Bella reacted with respect and fear, and decided we should abandon the detour onto 22nd Street. Bella seems as dumb as a box of rocks sometimes, but it's been less than two months since her last WMD encounter with a skunk, and she actually REMEMBERED!

Here Comes The Dagger!

Here comes the dagger! Right between the shoulder blades!:
"Cuccinelli’s involvement in this push “to tie Trump’s hands” is notable given his role as president of Jim Demint’s tea party-aligned Senate Conservatives Fund. The group has previously found common cause with Trump, spearheading an effort to defeat Sen. John McCain in next year’s Arizona primary and promoting Sen. Ted Cruz’s epic rant against Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell last month."
Now, in many ways, I'm sympathetic to the GOP on this. It's important for parties to maintain discipline, and Trump is way out of line and needs to be spanked, hard. Nevertheless, the billionaires run the GOP, and after the GOP's recent humiliating loss of its mailing lists to the Koch Brothers, it is clear the party is in a severely-weakened state. Trump beat FOX News over Megyn Kelly; he can beat Ken Cuccinelli too. And Lindsay Graham has just been quoted: "If Donald Trump is the nominee, that’s the end of the Republican Party." Graham's right, but the opposite may be true too. If Trump isn't the nominee, the party may crumble.

Atheist Agenda

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Rain On The Horizon?

Rain on the horizon? Possibly! Forecasts are beginning to firm up for northern parts of California, Saturday morning and Tuesday evening. If it happens, it'll be amazingly-early!

Hawaiian Hazard

Long range weather forecasts suggest this innocent-looking "X" south of Mazatlan could evolve into a hurricane that could trouble Hawaii, potentially hitting - hard - every single island.

Attacking Caves Near The Mexican Border

On the idiot front, Ben Carson suggests using drones to attack caves on the Mexican border. But these aren't caves, these are tunnels, all of which are in towns and cities, and would survive drone air strikes and not, you know, visits by the Border Patrol. Needless to say, Republicans and their leaders are fools.

[UPDATE] Continuing in the category of figuring out just what the hell Ben Carson is talking about when he suggests using drones to attack caves near the Mexican border, Digby speculates he's talking about the postulated use by drug cartels of remote caves and points on high terrain inside the U.S. to coordinate the movement of drug shipments. Now, there are points on rugged terrain near the border that make fantastic lookouts, places the Apache frequented two centuries ago and desert sheep frequent today, provided drug cartels anticipate attacks by Border Patrol cavalry on horseback, or by infantry, but their relative inaccessibility makes them unsuitable for use by drug cartels, who would likely prefer using modern conveniences like cell phones, and drive on freeways and other convenient roads. Dropping bombs on remote places will start fires without reducing their inherent appeal, and besides, these places are easily observable - and attackable if need be - by USAF A-10 aircraft that use the area for training. Digby speculates Carson is simply childishly repeating crap he's heard from that excitable idiot, Pinal County Sheriff Babeu.

Monday, August 24, 2015

"Goblin Song" California Cast/Crew/Supporter Film Screening

On Saturday, August 22, 2015, Nora Unkel, director of the "Goblin Song" movie and 'Behind the Scenes' Documentary, held a private film screening and reception for about sixty supporters at Richard Brunelle Performance Hall, on the Davis Senior High School campus. Nora had crowd-sourced funding for the movie, and wanted to thank not just people in New York, but people in California too.

As part of her crowdsourcing effort, Nora had previously announced:

The film is my 20 minute, short, thesis film for New York University, Tisch School of the Arts. We are going to be shooting the film in the Davis, California, area in late March of this year (2014). This is an opportunity for me to showcase the beautiful locations around Davis and to utilize many of the supportive people and groups that I have been a part of my whole life.

The film itself is a dark, fairy tale, musical set in the Victorian era. It is about the love of two sisters as they have to persevere against the entrancement of a group of mystical goblin men and their temptations. The film is called “The Goblin Song”.

I have been working on the film now for about three years and see it as the culmination of everything that I have learned in the last four years at film school. This film is showcasing everything that I want to continue making movies about- it is a musical because I grew up doing musical theatre, it is a fairy tale as I have always had a love of Disney and fairy tales, and it is in the Victorian era because I am a history minor and love the symbology of that time period.

The film, once completed, will be sent around the world to film festivals and producers, hoping for as much viewing as possible as well as a possible distribution deal. The film is also the beginning of my career and will be a stepping stone for me to enter the professional film world.

More recently, she announced:
Hello everyone!

I am so beyond excited to share the final film with all of you. We apologize for the delay, as we have been waiting on film festival submissions and post production tweaks... but we are finally able to share the completed film with all of you!

This film would not have been made without your support. Myself and the rest of the team are forever in your debt and want you to know how eternally grateful we truly are for everything.

We will be having a screening in Davis, California this coming summer and would love to see as many of you there as can be! We'll also be screening a Behind the Scenes Documentary that is in the works as we speak. We'll keep you updated as to the time and date for this as well as any other screenings happening at film festivals.


Much love and gratitude always,
Nora and the Goblin Song Team

Lobby, Richard Brunelle Performance Hall

Richard Brunelle Performance Hall

Nora Unkel thanks her supporters!

Woody Allen's "Irrational Man"

Went to see Woody Allen's new film, "Irrational Man", with Joaquin Phoenix, Emma Stone, and Parker Posey, at the Tower Theater. The first half hour is pretty bad (almost like a SNL parody of a Woody Allen film: a non-intellectual's idea of how intellectuals speak on an ivy-league campus, plus an implausible romance), but once the central plot starts it's absorbing and actually pretty good (because Allen keeps things simple). It's just that you have to tolerate Woody Allen.

Enslaving Latinos

Now here's this powerful right-wing radio host in Iowa who proposes enslaving illegals. Nice what you can do without a 14th Amendment! And without birthright citizenship, any Latino birth certificate becomes just another piece of paper, so who needs to confine slavery to illegals? And THAT is your modern Republican Party, the advocates of freedom and opportunity

Varieties Of Jamaican Dancehall

There appears to be a thriving Jamaican Dancehall underground in Eastern Europe. People's imaginations are caught up by the exotic - the Japanese fascination with Mexican mariachi music, for example, or the romantic Russian fascination with Scotland - and I suppose this is no different. Fun to see the varieties of choreography among different groups. This group is Polish.

"El Gecko"

Here's a nice Q-and-A about “Godzilla” El NiƱo vs. The Blob, and whether we'll have a wet winter or instead whether "Godzilla" will become "El Gecko".

Thinking About Cutoff Lows

Interesting to see the weather models argue with one another. This week, an Aleutian cutoff low will descend off the Oregon coast. The question is: exactly where will it descend? Far west of the 140 degree longitude (bad), or closer in (good)? Forecasting the behavior of cutoff lows is weather's greatest challenge, particularly when the low doesn't even exist yet, yet the possibility of rain in the Pacific Northwest and Northern California depends on the answer to that question.

A cutoff low is a more-or-less self-contained rotating low pressure system often seen in mid-latitudes. Rotating flow like you see in hurricanes (just not nearly so powerful). Flow is momentarily diverted away from the jet stream to initiate the cutoff low, then resumes its flow. The spun-off cutoff low wanders around for awhile, then later, it encounters the jet stream again and is reabsorbed. Cutoff lows are responsible for a large amount of mid-latitude weather, but they are squirrelly. Asymmetric cutoff lows being reabsorbed into the jet stream can generate huge amounts of rain, but symmetric cutoff lows might not generate any rain at all. Forecasting what you'll actually get is a big challenge.

As Jerry notes, the formation of a cutoff low is analogous to the way an oxbow lake forms when the channel of a river cuts across the neck of a meander. It's a good analogy! And the oxbow lake eventually gets reabsorbed by the meandering river.

A Bad Lip Reading of Catching Fire

Startled my dog, I was laughing so hard!

Kylie Minogue - Giving You Up (Showgirl)

Still a favorite!