Friday, October 30, 2015


Had a strange dream last night. I climbed into an elevator in Washington, D.C., and started descending. Soon, the walls of the elevator started sweating. Then, the elevator started moving sideways, and accelerating. Pretty soon, it was like this:

Can't Take The Heat

The Republicans can't take the heat, and they won't get out of the kitchen.

This is absurd, but hey, I'm OK with it. Let them storm off in a huff from all the other networks too. They can argue in my basement. The visuals are appalling there, and the acoustics terrible, but Bella the Dog is a very attentive listener:
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus told NBC News in a Friday letter that the committee will no longer partner with the network for the February Republican presidential debate.

Citing concerns over the Wednesday night CNBC debate, Priebus wrote that the RNC can not continue to work with NBC for the debate on Feb. 26 until the committee consults with the Republican campaigns. NBC was set to co-host the debate with Telemundo, the Spanish-language media division of NBCUniversal.

Dumb As A Sack Of Hammers

This page lists many euphemisms for "Stupid", e.g., "Suffers from Clue Deficit Disorder."

Helluva Wave

Great link regarding the Tallest Tsunami Ever Recorded:
On the night of July 9, 1958 an earthquake along the Fairweather Fault in the Alaska Panhandle loosened about 40 million cubic yards (30.6 million cubic meters) of rock high above the northeastern shore of Lituya Bay. This mass of rock plunged from an altitude of approximately 3000 feet (914 meters) down into the waters of Gilbert Inlet. The impact generated a local tsunami that crashed against the southwest shoreline of Gilbert Inlet. The wave hit with such power that it swept completely over the spur of land that separates Gilbert Inlet from the main body of Lituya Bay. The wave then continued down the entire length of Lituya Bay, over La Chaussee Spit and into the Gulf of Alaska. The force of the wave removed all trees and vegetation from elevations as high as 1720 feet (524 meters) above sea level. Millions of trees were uprooted and swept away by the wave. This is the highest wave that has ever been known.
And not just Alaska. There is ample evidence at Lake Tahoe of a prehistoric tsunami:

When I taught my Astronomy class last year I had my students watch this video, which describes California geology and Lake Tahoe tsunami.

Don't Come Back

Don't even look back:
ROCHESTER, MN—In an effort to help working individuals improve their fitness and well-being, experts at the Mayo Clinic issued a new set of health guidelines Thursday recommending that Americans stand up at their desk, leave their office, and never return. “Many Americans spend a minimum of eight hours per day sitting in an office, but we observed significant physical and mental health benefits in subjects after just one instance of standing up, walking out the door, and never coming back to their place of work again,” said researcher Claudine Sparks, who explained that those who implemented the practice in their lives reported an improvement in mood and reduced stress that lasted for the remainder of the day, and which appeared to persist even into subsequent weeks.

Inclined To Give This Use Of Blackface A Pass

The use of blackface creates many quandaries, and is generally bad, but this use here tweaks Kanye, so inclined to give it a pass:
A white elementary school teacher in Alabama apologized on Monday for wearing blackface to dress up as rap artist Kanye West for a Halloween party, according to CBS affiliate WHNT.

Heath Morrow, a fifth grade teacher in Decatur City Schools, dressed up in blackface and posed with a "Kanye for Prez 2020" sign in a photograph published online. The real West had announced at the Video Music Awards that he would run for President in 2020.

Morrow's wife, Shannon, dressed up as the rapper's wife, Kim Kardashian, and posted the photograph to Facebook, according to

...In his apology, Morrow said that he decided on his costume "based on celebrities and the political climate today."
Accidental blackface is the best. I remember when I lived in Arizona. "Old times dere are not forgotten." I was boarding with the Doctor, who was originally from Alabama. There was the time I was trying to clean some gunk out of my VW Bug's carburetor and so was blowing into it. He came to ask a question and when I turned to face him he collapsed in laughter. (The carburetor had left a greasy ring around my lips in a bad photo-negative imitation of blackface.)

James reminds me:
Good time to remind white people about this very important app (about when to drop the N-bomb). Maybe we can expand it to see if it's ok to do Blackface.

Story Structure


The last dud of a storm reminds us of how difficult it is to get any rain at all here in California these days. The storm looked impressive on satellite, and even had Hurricane Olaf's moisture with it too. Still, the forecasts said very little rain would fall, and they were right.

Sunday night and Monday morning, we get another crack at rain, but once again, the forecasts aren't that optimistic, at least here in the Central Valley. Maybe some mountain rains....

Long-range forecast suggests first heavy rain around Friday the 13th. So, here's hoping!

DMTC Haunted House 2015 - Thursday Evening

The hardest part of performing in a Haunted House is the wait between groups, so the teens have gathered and are telling ghost stories.

Natural Gas Leak In Curtis Park, One Block From My House

After evacuating my neighbors and closing 21st Street, PG&E works through the night to repair the damaged gas main a block from my house, and prevent my neighborhood from detonating into "San Bruno II".

As Renee says, "That would have made for one helluva birthday candle."

As Sac Bee relates:

Residents in an area of Curtis Park have been evacuated due to a natural gas leak caused by digging activity.

The evacuation was announced shortly before 2:30 p.m. Thursday. Sacramento Fire Department spokesman Chris Harvey said a 6-inch line was damaged at 21st Street and Second Avenue. He said 21st Street is closed in both directions and homes on both sides of the street have been evacuated between Second Avenue and Castro Way.

Bacon Day! And Not Veggie Bacon Neither!

From Miss Renee Hudon....

And others!

From Jackie Sandoval.
From Kiri Yashida.
From Milissa Ross Greenberg.
From Marge Silverman.

From Marius Laurentiu.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Obama Is Coming For Your Guns On November 8, 2016

Badtux, the Snarky Penguin has a suggestion:
"Yo, Tea Party dudes. Obama is coming for your guns on November 8, 2016. So you need to stay home that day with your guns. Don’t leave them for even a moment, because if you leave your home for *any* reason, Obama’s black helicopters will drop onto your homes and *take away every single one of them*!"
So, mark your calendars!

Chuck Johnson And His Hilarious Lawsuit

This is article is hilarious. Dangerous right-winger Chuck Johnson of got butthurt on the Internet and is trying to sue Gawker for butthurting him. He has a legal mountain range to surmount first, however.

Zombie Is Not For Thee

(Thanks, John!)

New Mexican man won't be Zombified without a fight:
GRANTS, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico man who had been watching TV’s “The Walking Dead” says he fatally beat his friend before he could become a zombie.

Grants police spokesman Moses Marquez said Sunday that 23-year-old Christopher Paquin was beaten and that 23-year-old Damon Perry is being held on a murder charge.

...Perry told investigators they had been drinking when Paquin began “to change into a zombie” and tried to bite him.

Police say Perry beat Paquin with his hands, feet, an electric guitar and a microwave.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Why Not The Cougars?

The Lefties and Righties broke into their separate groups to choose colors for the hip hop recital. I suggested yellow, but consensus was generally purple.

One of the women said something I understood to be a suggestion for a group name. "Why not the Cougars?"

I thought this was the worst suggestion I had heard in weeks. Hip hop groups don't have names like sports teams. I didn't want to be a Cougar.

But I think she wants to be a Cougar.

Emerald The Dog

Sam said, "Do you see that stray dog?" I said, "No, I've been painting at close quarters and I have my reading glasses on." Sam said, "Well, anyway, there's a loose dog over there."

Peering through my glasses, I realized Sam was right. There was a loose dog across the street. The dog was heading west on Second Avenue. I stopped her before she reached 21st Street.

And so, for a time, I had two dogs. Two barbarian dogs. She drank from the toilet bowl after I peed in it. And she didn't get along with Bella that well either. She went inside, ran all over, and walked all over the sofa to spite Bella. The dogs were too jealous of each other.

But precious and cute too!

Eventually the masters located my notice on "Next Door - Curtis Park" and took her back.

Driver Shortage Plagues The Trucking Industry

Sounds like hard work:
With over-the-road truckers able to earn $45,000 to $70,000, payable by mile driven, in theory, pay shouldn't be a problem.

But in practice, drivers sit in traffic or wait hours for their turn at a loading dock, costing them money.

The situation could be addressed by paying drivers by the hour, "but the shipping industry isn't ready for that," said Charles "Shorty" Wittington, a former ATA chairman and owner of Grammer Industries, an Indiana trucking company.

Thank The Democrats For Staying On The Stupid Benghazi Committee

So the Dems have decided to stay on the Benghazi Committee, for now. As pointless as their service is, it will be worse if they walk, and let the clowns work unopposed.

No Charges In IRS Investigation

No charges regarding the IRS's handling of tax-exempt political groups. The real scandal is that Congress has made some political non-profits tax exempt, but that puts IRS in the awkward position of having to distinguish between the groups, and open to charges of political favoritism.

It's stupid. Political non-profits, even milquetoast variants, should not be tax exempt. They aren't charities and shouldn't be treated as such.

Help To Find The Portal

Bit of a crisis at the Mongolian Barbecue Restaurant. Sparrow flew in as I entered and started crashing about the place. Crashed into window and nearly tumbled onto the hot surface where staff was cooking my lunch. So, we opened the door, and like the 2-D creature lost in the 3-D world in the Outer Limits episode "Behold, Eck" the bird found the portal back into its own Universe, and departed.

What To Do With Olaf?

The weather forecasts can't decide what to do with the remains of Hurricane Olaf. The logical thing is to bring it through California on Wednesday & Thursday and make a rainmaker of it, but some recent forecasts keep it offshore, or send it south to Baja. Olaf is on that cusp of indecision.