Saturday, March 21, 2020

Had Just Laid Down on the Couch. Sat Up.

Felt this quake yesterday evening. Entertainment center made a noise.

M 4.5 - 6km N of Johnson Lane, Nevada
2020-03-21 01:33:35 (UTC)
39.111°N 119.736°W 8.4 km depth

Friday, March 20, 2020

Went to the DMV Today

Hardly anybody in the parking lot! Still, I was greeted by people who said do everything online. Basically, the message was the same as that voiced here near the start:

World of Hurt for the Non-Profits

Survival mode:
Nonprofit leaders and boards: Be tough-minded. Nonprofits must go into cash-conservation mode. It is hard to stiff vendors, lay people off, furlough or reduce pay or take advantage of eviction-stays to simply not pay the rent. But a tough restructuring allowing for survival and the continuation of the mission (which is a nonprofit's sole reason for being) is far better than hitting the wall and closing up shop altogether.

Sleeping Under The Kitchen Table

V.K. is an actress friend from Utah who did several shows at DMTC a few years ago, notably 2015's "Sweeney Todd," which I stage-managed.

V.K. got rattled by the earthquakes near Salt Lake City, and responded to my Facebook post about it:

V.K.: I've been in it. The first earthquake woke me up and the aftershocks have been almost non stop.

M.V.: Hi! Hope you are well. You're down around Midvale, right? Theater was cancelled at lightning speed around here due to coronavirus. Same with you?

V.K.: I'm in West Jordan. Theater has been cancelled too and Evermore where I worked shut down temporarily.

M.V.: So sad! Could do a plague primer there, but reality is a little too close.

V.K.: Yeah, I'm just hoping all this crazy stuff calms down soon. I'm honestly okay being quarantined for a bit because its been giving me more time to spend with my family and to write, but the earthquakes are not that cool haha.

M.V.: Nature isn't cooperating. Could self-isolate outside in the cold.

V.K.: Utah has been over do for a huge earthquake for awhile. This was was big and did some damage but wasn't too big. I'm hoping the aftershocks are keeping a bigger earthquake at bay for the future. It's very unlikely that one greater than the 5.6 hits very soon, but my family is all sleeping upstairs and we've got our jackets and shoes right by the door. I'm currently held up in a fort underneath my kitchen table and sleeping with my dog. Aftershocks have been somewhat tame for the most part, we had a couple 4.0's and one 4.6 I believe and they've been pretty constant up until a couple hours ago. I believe we've had more than a hundred by now.

V.K.: There was a big power outage for some people. Airport started flooding and we had a chemical spill in one of the mines as well. Today has been a very interesting day.

M.V.: I wonder why the airport started flooding? I'm glad you are keeping your dog company, and have a shield over you both. Still, uncomfortable. I have a friend in New Zealand who had a major quake nearly under his house. He said the ground trembled nearly constantly for a couple of months. Hope things calm down for you.

V.K.: I'm hoping they do too. The first earthquake was the scariest. I have major anxiety so when I woke up my brain wasn't processing what was happening. I just remember the whole room shaking and things beginning to fall off the walls and bookshelves. It felt like our house was just a toy being shaken by a little kid. I always slept through the earthquakes in California. This one was loud though. Mother earth sounded very angry.

M.V.: That experience of waking up in confusion. I once had that. I woke up to a big boom. I jumped up and ran outside. I saw a glow on the horizon and thought it was a huge fire in the distance. Then, suddenly, I was wet. I slowly realized the glow was from distant city lights and the boom was from thunder. There was a little thundercloud right above the house.

V.K.: Yeah my first thought was that someone dropped a bomb. It was a lot like that dream I feel a lot of people have, where you're falling and as soon as you hit the ground you wake up. It felt like that, except I was awake. I'm having a hard time falling asleep because I don't want to wake up to that again. Luckily I'm under the table so I don't have as much of a fear that the ceiling is going to crush me.

M.V.: Right! Take care, and keep your dog from getting overly-anxious too.

V.K.: I've got three haha. They've actually been really good through out all of this and they listen to me when I tell them to get under the table. They can sense it a little before each one happens. I can see their ears perking up and I know its time to get under the table again

M.V.: Wow! Good to have those dogs with you!

V.K.: Yes! I was worried that they would try to run when the aftershocks hit, but they're starting to get into the routine of going under the table now. Nala, my rottie has been extremely sweet too. She's usually very puppy like, but today she's been sleeping at my feet or sitting calmly by my side. I'm not sure if she's scared or if she's trying to be protective, but its good to know she's got my back.

M.V.: Are you in school these days, or has it been cancelled?

V.K.: I've just been working, but most schools have been cancelled because of the virus

M.V.: Is Evermore fun?

V.K.: Yes, very. They have a wonderful group of actors and a great community.

M.V.: Well, time to walk my dog (I'm a night owl, and prowl the streets at night). The very best to you!

V.K.: You as well! Stay safe!

More Coronavirus

Remember, this guy flunked out of Yuba Community College:
Rep. Don Young (R-AK) poked fun at the fatal COVID-19 outbreak and dismissed the notion of taking cautionary measures to prevent further spread of the coronavirus.

Young made the comments during a meeting on Friday with senior citizens and members of the state’s Chamber of Commerce in Palmer, Alaska, according to the Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman. The comments were first reported this week.

“This ‘beer virus’ I call it – they call it a coronavirus, I call it a beer virus, how do you like that? – it attacks our senior citizens,” he said. “Now I’m one of you. I still say we have to as a nation, as a state to go forth with our everyday activities.”

I love Randy Rainbow!

Missed this, but love it!

The U.S. May Lead On This

Neighborhood Watch

On last night's walk, Jasper and I rounded the corner where Jasper's girlfriend, a mini-dachshund named Ladybug, lives in an upstairs apartment with her two owners, J. & M. At the corner across the street, a man was straining to reach high up a telephone pole - and also humping the telephone pole. Jasper and I walked past, and crossed the street. The strange man stopped humping the telephone pole and started striding towards us.

Then I heard a female voice, unseen, coming from somewhere. I've seen a crazy woman lingering around the corner lately, and figured it might be her. The man stopped, began saying something, and started walking away, towards the railroad. I still couldn't pin down the female voice.

Just then I noticed the voice was coming from Ladybug's owners' apartment. Apparently J. had witnessed the strange man start to approach me. "He was trying to get close to you. No way was I going to let that happen," she said.

It's nice to have neighbors that keep an eye out for you.

Two Hymns

On the occasion of Rachel's Great Aunt's Alice Vaught's funeral.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Bad Year For Rain, But Great Year For Flowers!

This bush by the back yard gate really went nuts!

Woodland Opera House's "Of Mice and Men" - March 7, 2020

John Ewing, Jason Hammond, and the rest of the crew did an amazing job with John Steinbeck's "Of Mice and Men." Very tense at times. Director Gil Sebastian mentioned how nice it was and how the actors took direction very well (seven of the ten actors were directors as well, so they understood and implemented his instructions).

Sacramento's Tower Bridge

Impressed by the Very Tight Cluster of Earthquakes

Biggest, magnitude M5.7, just east of the Kennecott tailings pond, near the shore of the Great Salt Lake, just west of Salt Lake City.

Monday, March 16, 2020

Census Enumerator

In a world of gig work, I may have found a new niche for summer: as a census enumerator. We'll see what lies ahead.

World of Hurt in the Rainy Season

We finally are getting a little bit of rain after a desiccated two months at the height of the California rainy season. We have only one month left and here in Sacramento we are only at 45% of a normal rainy season. It's hopeless, but we've got to get as much as possible now before the summer heat and the dread fires come.

Sunday, March 15, 2020

The Rule of Planets in Solar Systems

The pattern I found on that sunny afternoon: planets in the same system tend to be the same size. For example, if one planet is 1.5 times the radius of Earth, the other planets in the system are very likely to be 1.5 times the radius of Earth, plus or minus a little bit.

This is not at all what my colleagues and I expected. In our solar system, planets range from the size of Mercury (less than half the radius of Earth) to Jupiter (more than ten times the radius of Earth). The whole population of exoplanets discovered by Kepler ranges from one quarter the size of Earth to about twenty times the size of Earth. Yet, despite this wide range of possible sizes, planets tend to be about the same sizes as their neighbors. One of my collaborators decided they looked like “peas in a pod,” and that moniker became our shorthand for the pattern.

The Upside: More Republicans Will Die Than Democrats

Sow the wind and reap the whirlwind.

Communists Used to be the Enemy of Capitalism. Now, It's Little Viral Bits

And why does his background happen to be that of downtown Albuquerque? Is ABQ the last bastion of reasonableness in America? It would be the first time ever ABQ had that role:

“I am TIRED of all this, “we have to err on the side of caution” BULL SH*T. WE HAVE TO GET BACK TO REASONABLENESS DAMMIT. It’s the DAMN FLU. Stop being afraid and start being SENSIBLE. WASH YOUR FUCK*NG HANDS! STOP BUYING TOILET PAPER. DO YOU FUC*ING HEAR ME????”

A Good Description of Exponential Growth and "Flattening the Curve"

Like the Monte-Carlo-like simulations in this link. We're still in the exponential growth part. The curve won't flatten for some weeks.

Kevin Drum has his charts showing we are following Italy's footsteps.

This chart too.

Too Soon

Ethics Training w/ Kim Wexler: Self-Care - Better Call Saul


Unexpected, but here it is:
The nation's nerds woke up in a utopia this morning, one where everyone stays inside, sporting events are being canceled, and all social interaction is forbidden.

All types of nerds, from social introverts to hardcore PC gamers, welcomed the dawn of this new era, privately from their own homes.

"I have been waiting my whole life for this moment," said Ned Pendleton, 32 -- via text message, of course -- as he fired up League of Legends on his beefy gaming PC. "They told me to take up a sport and that the kids playing basketball and stuff were gonna be way more successful than us nerds who played Counter-Strike at LAN parties every weekend."

"They all laughed at me. Well, who's laughing now?"