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Monday, February 29, 2016

George Kennedy, ‘Cool Hand Luke, Airport’ Actor, Dies at 91

George Kennedy, ‘Cool Hand Luke’ Actor, Dies at 91
George Kennedy, ‘Cool Hand Luke’ Actor, Dies at 91 (Report)
George Kennedy, who won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in “Cool Hand Luke,” died Sunday in Boise, Idaho. He was 91.

Kennedy’s grandson Cory Schenkel told TMZ that Kennedy had been in failing health since the death of his wife Joan about a year ago, and had been in hospice care for a month.

Kennedy’s film credits also included “The Dirty Dozen,” the “Airport” movies, “The Naked Gun” and the disaster film “Earthquake,” among many others.

Kennedy also starred as Carter McKay in tne CBS drama “Dallas.”

The following is from The Chicago Tribune:
Rod Steiger, best actor; Estelle Parsons, best supporting actress; George Kennedy, best supporting actor, and George Cukor, who accepted for Katherine Hepburn, best actress on April 10, 1968 in Santa Monica. (AP)
Rod Steiger, best actor; Estelle Parsons, best supporting actress; George Kennedy, best supporting actor, and George Cukor, who accepted for Katherine Hepburn, best actress on April 10, 1968 in Santa Monica. (AP)
While Kennedy largely played gruff, blue-collar characters in dramas and genre films, he allowed a comedic side to emerge in the deadpan "The Naked Gun" movies.

Kennedy appeared in all four of the "Airport" movies of the 1970s as Joe Patroni, the reluctant, cigar-chomping but highly effective chief mechanic who could be counted upon when the chips were down and supreme expertise was required. He also turned in a powerful performance in 1975's "Earthquake" as the hearty, sentimental police sergeant Slade, who helps where he can in the wake of the devastating temblor.

Kennedy toiled in the TV trenches for much of the 1960s, especially guesting on Westerns -- and occasionally appearing in supporting roles in high-profile films such as "In Harm's Way," "The Sons of Katie Elder," "The Flight of the Phoenix" and "The Dirty Dozen."

He finally burst into the public consciousness with his 1967 role as Dragline in "Cool Hand Luke," in which he was second-billed and held his own alongside star Paul Newman. The New York Times said: "George Kennedy is powerfully obsessive as the top-dog who handles things his way as effectively and finally as destructively as does the warden or the guards."

During the 1970s he made two attempts at starring in his own television series: 1971's brief "Sarge," in which he played a priest with a police background, and 1975's "The Blue Knight," an adaptation of the Joseph Wambaugh novel and subsequent TV movie in which he played a Los Angeles beat cop.

Other notable film credits during the 1970s included Michael Cimino's "Thunderbolt and Lightfoot"; "The Eiger Sanction"; and Agatha Christie period mystery "Death on the Nile," in which he was gruff as always but in this case exceptionally well groomed. He worked steadily in the 1980s but made an impression only in the 1988 deadpan police comedy "The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!" and its sequels.

He recurred on primetime soap "Dallas" as rancher Carter McKay from 1988-91 and appeared in the reunion telepics "Dallas: J.R. Returns" (1996) and "Dallas: War of the Ewings" (1998).

Most recently he appeared in the 2014 crime drama remake "The Gambler," starring Mark Wahlberg.

Kennedy was born in New York City to parents in show business. He first appeared onstage at the age of two, but later he would spend 16 years in the U.S. Army, ultimately working for Armed Forces Radio. He participated in the opening of the Army Information Office, which provided technical advice to the entertainment industry. A role as technical adviser to "The Phil Silvers Show" led to his early career in television.

--more--

Leap Year Poem

BY MOTHER GOOSE

Leap Year by Mother Goose

Leap Day

Happy Leap Day!
What do athletes wear on Leap Day? Jumpsuits.

Where do most people eat on Leap Day? IHOP.

What kind of music do you listen to on Leap Day? Hip Hop.

What do the Chinese call the Year of the Frog? Leap Year.

What do you tell a hitchhiker on Leap Day? Hop In.

What is a frog's favorite time of year? Leap Day.

What do you call a surgery on Leap Day? A hop-eration.

I wasn't going to celebrate Leap Day, but I decided to jump on the band wagon.

My coworker was fired on Leap Day, apparently he picked the wrong time to jump off the deep end.

Bachelors Day, the only day a man doesn't want to see a woman on her knees in front of him.

I'm going to get married on February 29th, so I only have to remember our anniversary once every 4 years.

The general rule is that there is a leap year every four years. Except if the year is divisible by 100 (2100, 2200) and not exactly divisible by 400 (2000). On February 29th, 1940, Hattie McDaniel became the first African American to win an Academy Award for her role as Mammy in "Gone With The Wind".

A person who is born on February 29 is called a "leapling" or a "leap-year baby". Rapper Ja Rule (1976), actor Antonio Sabato, Jr. (1972), and hockey goalie Cam Ward (1984) were all born on a Leap Day. Singer Davy Jones (2012, "The Monkees") and legendary college football player Tom Davies (1972) died on a Leap Day. Julius Caesar and his astronomer, Sosigenes, calculated the need for a Leap Year in 45 B.C. Rare Disease Day, a day to raise awareness for rare diseases, was started on February 29, 2008. There is a popular tradition called Bachelor's Day in certain countries that allows women to propose marriage on February 29th. If the man refuses, he is obligated to give the woman money or buy her a dress.

Leap Day!

Leap Day!

The 411 - Leap Year

411 A leap year (or intercalary year) is a year containing one or more extra days (or, in case of lunisolar calendars, an extra month) in order to keep the calendar
year synchronised with the astronomical or seasonal year. For example, February would have 29 days in a leap year instead of the usual 28. Seasons and astronomical events do not repeat at an exact number of full days, so a calendar which had the same number of days in each year would over time drift with respect to the event it was supposed to track. By occasionally inserting (or intercalating) an additional day or month into the year, the drift can be corrected. A year which is not a leap year is called a common year.
Happy Leap Day!


411 Gregorian calendar
In the Gregorian calendar, the current standard calendar in most of the world, most years whose division by 4 equals an integer are leap years. In a leap year, the month of February has 29 days instead of 28. Adding an extra day to the calendar every four years compensates for the fact that a solar year is almost 6 hours longer than 365 days.

411 However, some exceptions to this rule are required since the duration of a solar year is slightly less than 365.25 days. Years which are evenly divisible by 100 are not leap years, unless they are also evenly divisible by 400, in which case they are leap years. For example, 1600 and 2000 were leap years, but 1700, 1800 and 1900 were not. Going forward, 2100, 2200, 2300, 2500, 2600, 2700, 2900, and 3000 will not be leap years, but 2400 and 2800 will be. By this rule, the average number of days per year will be 365 + 1/4 − 1/100 + 1/400 = 365.2425, which is 365 days, 5 hours, 49 minutes, and 12 seconds.

The Gregorian calendar was designed to keep the vernal equinox on or close to March 21, so that the date of Easter (celebrated on the Sunday after the 14th day of the Moon that falls on or after 21 March) remains correct with respect to the vernal Leap baby cartoonequinox. The vernal equinox year is about 365.242374 days long (and increasing), whereas the average year length of the Gregorian calendar is 365.2425.

The marginal difference of 0.000125 days means that in around 8,000 years, the calendar will be about one day behind where it is now. But in 8,000 years, the length of the vernal equinox year will have changed by an amount which cannot be accurately predicted (see below). Therefore, the current Gregorian calendar suffices for practical purposes, and Herschel's correction (making 4000 AD not a leap year) will probably not be necessary.


411 Algorithm
This algorithm determines leap years on the proleptic Gregorian calendar, which includes leap years before the official inception in 1582.

Pseudocode to determine whether a year is a leap year or not:

if year modulo 400 is 0 then leap
else if year modulo 100 is 0 then no_leap
else if year modulo 4 is 0 then leap
else no_leap
A more direct algorithm:

if (year modulo 4 is 0) and ((year modulo 100 is not 0) or (year modulo 400 is 0))
then leap
else no_leap

411 Leap day
February 29 is a date that occurs only every four years, and is called leap day. This day is added to the calendar in leap years as a corrective measure, because the earth does not orbit around the sun in precisely 365.000 days.

Leap Year Tradition The Gregorian calendar is a modification of the Julian calendar first used by the Romans. The Roman calendar originated as a lunisolar calendar and named many of its days after the syzygies of the moon: the new moon (Kalendae or calends, hence "calendar") and the full moon (Idus or ides). The Nonae or nones was not the first quarter moon but was exactly one nundinae or Roman market week of nine days before the ides, inclusively counting the ides as the first of those nine days. In 1825, Ideler believed that the lunisolar calendar was abandoned about 450 BC by the decemvirs, who implemented the Roman Republican calendar, used until 46 BC. The days of these calendars were counted down (inclusively) to the next named day, so 24 February was ante diem sextum Kalendas Martii ("the sixth day before the calends of March") often abbreviated a. d. VI Kal. Mar. The Romans counted days inclusively in their calendars, so this was actually the fifth day before March 1 when counted in the modern exclusive manner (not including the starting day).

The Republican calendar's intercalary month was inserted on the first or second day after the Terminalia (a. d. VII Kal. Mar., February 23). The remaining days of Februarius were dropped. This intercalary month, named Intercalaris or Mercedonius, contained 27 days. The religious festivals that were normally celebrated in the last five days of February were moved to the last five days of Intercalaris. Because only 22 or 23 days were effectively added, not a full lunation, the calends and ides of the Roman Republican calendar were no longer associated with the new moon and full moon.

The Julian calendar, which was developed in 46 BC by Julius Caesar, and became effective in 45 BC, distributed an extra ten days among the months of the Roman Republican calendar. Caesar also replaced the intercalary month by a single intercalary day, located where the intercalary month used to be. To create the intercalary day, the existing ante diem sextum Kalendas Martii (February 24) was doubled, producing ante diem bis sextum Kalendas Martii. Hence, the year containing the doubled day was a bissextile (bis sextum, "twice sixth") year. For legal purposes, the two days of the bis sextum were considered to be a single day, with the second half being intercalated, but common practice by 238, when Censorinus wrote, was that the intercalary day was followed by the last five days of February, a. d. VI, V, IV, III and pridie Kal. Mar. (which would be those days numbered 24, 25, 26, 27, and 28 from the beginning of February in a common year), i.e. the intercalated day was the first half of the doubled day. All later writers, including Macrobius about 430, Bede in 725, and other medieval computists (calculators of Easter), continued to state that the bissextum (bissextile day) occurred before the last five days of February.

411 Until 1970, the Roman Catholic Church always celebrated the feast of Saint Matthias on a. d. VI Kal. Mar., so if the days were numbered from the beginning of the month, it was named February 24 in common years, but the presence of the bissextum in a bissextile year immediately before a. d. VI Kal. Mar. shifted the latter day to February 25 in leap years, with the Vigil of St. Matthias shifting from February 23 to the leap day of February 24. Other feasts normally falling on February 25–28 in common years are also shifted to the following day in a leap year (although they would be on the same day according to the Roman notation). The practice is still observed by those who use the older calendars.


411 Julian, Coptic and Ethiopian calendars
The Julian calendar adds an extra day to February in years evenly divisible by four.

The Coptic calendar and Ethiopian calendar also add an extra day to the end of the year once every four years before a Julian 29-day February.

This rule gives an average year length of 365.25 days. However, it is 11 minutes longer than a real year. This means that the vernal equinox moves a day earlier in the calendar every 131 years.


411 Revised Julian calendar
The Revised Julian calendar adds an extra day to February in years divisible by four, except for years divisible by 100 that do not leave a remainder of 200 or 600 when divided by 900. This rule agrees with the rule for the Gregorian calendar until 2799. The first year that dates in the Revised Julian calendar will not agree with those in the Gregorian calendar will be 2800, because it will be a leap year in the Gregorian calendar but not in the Revised Julian calendar.

This rule gives an average year length of 365.242222… days. This is a very good approximation to the mean tropical year, but because the vernal equinox year is slightly longer, the Revised Julian calendar does not do as good a job as the Gregorian calendar of keeping the vernal equinox on or close to 21 March.


411 Chinese calendar
The Chinese calendar is lunisolar, so a leap year has an extra month, often called an embolismic month after the Greek word for it. In the Chinese calendar the leap month is added according to a complicated rule, which ensures that month 11 is always the month that contains the northern winter solstice. The intercalary month takes the same number as the preceding month; for example, if it follows the second month then it is simply called "leap second month" (traditional Chinese; simplified Chinese; pinyin: rùn'èryuè).


411 Hebrew calendar
The Hebrew calendar is also lunisolar with an embolismic month. This extra month is called Adar Alef (first Adar) and is added before Adar, which then becomes Adar bet (second Adar). According to the Metonic cycle, this is done seven times every nineteen years (specifically, in years 3, 6, 8, 11, 14, 17, and 19).

In addition, the Hebrew calendar has postponement rules that postpone the start of the year by one or two days. These postponement rules reduce the number of different combinations of year length and starting days of the week from 28 to 14, and regulate the location of certain religious holidays in relation to the Sabbath. In particular, the first day of the Hebrew year can never be Sunday, Wednesday or Friday. This rule is known in Hebrew as "lo adu rosh", i.e. "Rosh [ha-Shanah, first day of the year] is not Sunday, Wednesday or Friday" (as the Hebrew word adu is written by three Hebrew letters signifying Sunday, Wednesday and Friday). Accordingly, the first day of Pesah (Passover) is never Monday, Wednesday or Friday. This rule is known in Hebrew as "lo badu Pesah", which has a double meaning — "Pesah is not a legend", but also "Pesah is not Monday, Wednesday or Friday" (as the Hebrew word badu is written by three Hebrew letters signifying Monday, Wednesday and Friday).

One reason for this rule is that Yom Kippur, the holiest day in the Hebrew calendar, must never be adjacent to the weekly Sabbath (which is Saturday), i.e. it must never fall on Friday or Sunday, in order not to have two adjacent Sabbath days. However, Yom Kippur can be on Saturday.

Years consisting of 12 months have between 353 and 355 days. In a k'sidra ("in order") 354-day year, months have alternating 30 and 29 day lengths. In a chaser ("lacking") year, the month of Kislev is reduced to 29 days. In a malei ("filled") year, the month of Cheshvan is increased to 30 days. 13-month years follow the same pattern, with the addition of the 30-day Adar Alef, giving them between 383 and 385 days.


411 Islamic calendar
In the Islamic calendar, leap months are not used. The Qur'an says:

“ The number of months with Allah has been twelve months by Allah's ordinance since the day He created the heavens and the earth. Of these four are known as sacred; That is the straight usage, so do not wrong yourselves therein, and fight those who go astray. But know that Allah is with those who restrain themselves. ”
“ Verily the transposing (of a prohibited month) is an addition to Unbelief: The Unbelievers are led to wrong thereby: for they make it lawful one year, and forbidden another year, of months forbidden by Allah and make such forbidden ones lawful. The evil of their course seems pleasing to them. But Allah guideth not those who reject Faith. (Qur'an 9:36-37) ”


411 Calendars with Leap Years synchronized with Gregorian
The Indian National Calendar and the Revised Bangla Calendar of Bangladesh organise their leap years so that the leap day is always close to February 29 in the Gregorian calendar. This makes it easy to convert dates to or from Gregorian.

The Bahá'í calendar is structured such that the leap day always falls within Ayyám-i-Há, a period of four or five days corresponding to Gregorian February 26 – March 1. Because of this, Baha'i dates consistently line up with exactly one Gregorian date.

The Thai solar calendar uses the Buddhist Era (BE), but has been synchronized with the Gregorian since AD 1941.


411 Hindu calendar
In the Hindu calendar, which is a lunisolar calendar, the embolismic month is called adhika maas (extra month). It is the month in which the sun is in the same sign of the stellar zodiac on two consecutive dark moons. Adhika Maas typically occurs once every 3 years, or 4 times over 11 years. So the yearly lag of a lunar year (which tends to have ten fewer days (355-356 days) per year than solar calendar) is adjusted every 3 years. Thus, Hindu festivals tend to occur within a given span. For example: the No Moon during Diwali festival tends to occur between October 22 and November 15.


411 Iranian calendar
The Iranian calendar also has a single intercalated day once in every four years, but every 33 years or so the leap years will be five years apart instead of four years apart. The system used is more accurate and more complicated, and is based on the time of the March equinox as observed from Tehran. The 33-year period is not completely regular; every so often the 33-year cycle will be broken by a cycle of 29 or 37 years.


411 Long term leap year rules
The accumulated difference between the Gregorian calendar and the vernal equinoctial year amounts to 1 day in about 8,000 years. This suggests that the calendar needs to be improved by another refinement to the leap year rule: perhaps by avoiding leap years in years evenly divisible by 8,000.

(The most common such proposal is to avoid leap years in years evenly divisible by 4,000. This is based on the difference between the Gregorian calendar and the mean tropical year. Others claim, erroneously, that the Gregorian calendar itself already contains a refinement of this kind.)

A system of 128-year-based leap years has been proposed[citation needed], and it can be adopted directly without any modification to current leap year calculations until the year 2048 because no year between now and 2048 is divisable by 128. This rule gives a mean year of 365 + 1/4 − 1/128 = 365.2578125 days, which is 365 days, 6 hours, 11 minutes, and 15 seconds.

However, there is little point in planning a calendar so far ahead because over a timescale of tens of thousands of years the number of days in a year will change for a number of reasons, most notably:

Precession of the equinoxes moves the position of the vernal equinox with respect to perihelion and so changes the length of the vernal equinoctial year.
Tidal acceleration from the sun and moon slows the rotation of the earth, making the day longer.

In particular, the second component of change depends on such things as post-glacial rebound and sea level rise due to climate change. We can't predict these changes accurately enough to be able to make a calendar that will be accurate to a day in tens of thousands of years.


411 Folk traditions
In the English speaking a world, it is a tradition that women may propose marriage only on leap years. While it has been argued that the tradition was initiated by Saint Patrick or Brigid of Kildare in 5th century Ireland, it is dubious as the tradition has not been attested before the 19th century. Supposedly, a 1288 law by Queen Margaret of Scotland (then age five and living in Norway), required that fines be levied if a marriage proposal was refused by the man; compensation ranged from a kiss to £1 to a silk gown, in order to soften the blow. Because men felt that put them at too great a risk, the tradition was in some places tightened to restricting female proposals to the modern leap day, 29 February, or to the medieval leap day, 24 February. According to Felten: "A play from the turn of the 17th century, 'The Maydes Metamorphosis,' has it that 'this is leape year/women wear breeches.' A few hundred years later, breeches wouldn't do at all: Women looking to take advantage of their opportunity to pitch woo were expected to wear a scarlet petticoat -- fair warning, if you will.".

In Greece, it is believed that getting married in a leap year is bad luck for the couple. Thus, mainly in the middle of the past century, couples avoided setting a marriage date in a leap year.

A person with a birthday on the leap day may be called a "leapling". In common years they usually celebrate their birthdays on 28 February or 1 March.

For legal purposes, their legal birthdays depend on how different laws count time intervals. In Taiwan, for example, the legal birthday of a leapling is 28 February in common years, so a Taiwanese leapling born on February 29, 1980 would have legally reached 18 years old on February 28, 1998.

“ If a period fixed by weeks, months, and years does not commence from the beginning I Luv Leap Year!of a week, month, or year, it ends with the ending of the day which proceeds the day of the last week, month, or year which corresponds to that on which it began to commence. But if there is no corresponding day in the last month, the period ends with the ending of the last day of the last month. ”

In some situations, March 1 is used as the birthday in a non-leap year since it then is the day just after February 28.

There are many instances in children's literature where a person's claim to be only a quarter of their actual age turns out to be based on counting only their leap-year birthdays. A similar device is used in the plot of the Gilbert and Sullivan operetta The Pirates of Penzance.

*Wikipedia

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Have Bucket List, Will Travel...

PLACE DJEMAA EL-FNA MARRAKECH, MOROCCO

PLACE DJEMAA EL-FNA
MARRAKECH, MOROCCO


Place Djemaa el-Fna is at the heart of Marrakech's medina, the teaming central plaza with the feel of an impromptu, unending medieval circus. During the day, snake charmers, souvenir hawkers, and henna tattoo artists beckon, but at night the plaza overflows with hundreds of food vendors and the air is filled with the smoke and sizzle of grilled kebabs.

It's Punny!

I met a great girl at a soccer game. I think she's a keeper!

I tried to catch fog but I mist.

You can tune a guitar, but you can't tuna fish.

They're selling dead batteries, free of charge.

Where do you go when you feel cold in a square room? The corners, they are always 90 degrees.

This bloke said to me,"I've dropped my Scrabble set all over the road." I said,"What's the word on the street?"

Beware of alphabet grenades. If one of them goes off, it could spell disaster.

Becoming a vegetarian is a huge missed steak.

What did the dachshund say when he won first place at the dog show? I'm a real wiener.

I'm celebrating 200 years of the buffalo. It's the bison-tennial!

I went to this restaurant, and all the food was made by special effects. It was CGI Friday's.

I've got a chicken-proof front lawn. It's impeccable.

ONE YEAR LATER: Leonard Nimoy On Trek And Spock... In His Own Words

From StarTrek.com
Nimoy on Developing the Spock Character

Creating the Vulcan Salute And Favorite Episodes

Thoughts on Spock's Makeup

The Evolution of Trek's Special Effects

The Mind Meld, The Neck Pinch

The TOS Feature Films

Education

Education

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Intimate House Concert with Musical artist, Jeffery Straker

Me, my partner Dwight and Jeffery Straker
Me, my partner Dwight and Jeffery Straker
Jeffery Straker hard at work! Excellent house concert Jeff!
Jeffery Straker hard at work! Excellent house concert Jeff!

Visit Jeff's website - buy some cd's. You will not be disappointed!

Negative People

This is something to think about when negative people are doing their best to rain on your parade. So remember this story the next time someone who knows nothing, and cares less, tries to make your life miserable.

A woman was at her hair dresser's getting her hair styled for a trip to Rome with her husband. She mentioned the trip to the hairdresser, who responded:

Rome ? Why would anyone want to go there? It's crowded and dirty. You're crazy to go to Rome. So, how are you getting there?'

'We're taking Continental,' was the reply. 'We got a great rate!'

'Continental?' exclaimed the hairdresser. 'That's a terrible airline. Their planes are old, their flight attendants are ugly , and they're always late. So, where are you staying in Rome ?'

'We'll be at this exclusive little place over on Rome 's Tiber River called Teste.'

'Don't go any further. I know that place. Everybody thinks it's gonna be something special and exclusive, but it's really a dump, the worst hotel in the city! The rooms are small, the service is surly, and they're overpriced.

So, whatcha' doing when you get there?'

'We're going to go to see the Vatican and we hope to see the Pope.'

'That's rich ,' laughed the hairdresser. 'You and a million other people trying to see him. He'll look the size of an ant.

Boy, good luck on this lousy trip of yours. You're going to need it.'

A month later, the woman again came in for a hairdo. The hairdresser asked her about her trip to Rome .

'It was wonderful,' explained the woman, 'not only were we on time in one of Continental's brand new planes, but it was overbooked, and they bumped us up to first class. The food and wine were wonderful, and I had a handsome 28-year-old steward who waited on me hand and foot.

And the hotel was great! They'd just finished a $ 5 million remodeling job, and now it's a jewel, the finest hotel in the city They, too, were overbooked, so they apologized and gave us their owner's suite at no extra charge!'

'Well,' muttered the hairdresser, 'that's all well and good, but I know you didn't get to see the Pope.'

'Actually, we were quite lucky, because as we toured the Vatican, a Swiss Guard tapped me on the shoulder, and explained that the Pope likes to meet some of the visitors, and if I'd be so kind as to step into his private room and wait, the Pope would personally greet me.

Sure enough, five minutes later, the Pope walked through the door and shook my hand! I knelt down and he spoke a few words to me.'

'Oh, really! What 'd he say ?'

He said: 'Where'd you get the shitty Hairdo? '

Fantastic Natural Phenomena

The classical natural wonders are huge and hard to miss - vast canyons, giant mountains and the like. Many of the most fantastic natural phenomena, however, are also least easy to spot. Some are incredibly rare while others are located in hard-to-reach parts of the planet. From moving rocks to mammatus clouds and red tides to fire rainbows, here are seven of the most spectacular phenomenal wonders of the natural world.

1) Sailing Stones

Sailing Stones

The mysterious moving stones of the packed-mud desert of Death Valley have been a center of scientific controversy for decades. Rocks weighing up to hundreds of pounds have been known to move up to hundreds of yards at a time. Some scientists have proposed that a combination of strong winds and surface ice account for these movements. However, this theory does not explain evidence of different rocks starting side by side and moving at different rates and in disparate directions. Moreover, the physics calculations do not fully support this theory as wind speeds of hundreds of miles per hour would be needed to move some of the stones.


2) Columnar Basalt

Columner Basalt

When a thick lava flow cools it contracts vertically but cracks perpendicular to its directional flow with remarkable geometric regularity - in most cases forming a regular grid of remarkable hexagonal extrusions that almost appear to be made by man. One of the most famous such examples is the Giant's Causeway on the coast of Ireland (shown above) though the largest and most widely recognized would be Devil's Tower in Wyoming. Basalt also forms different but equally fascinating ways when eruptions are exposed to air or water.


3) Blue Holes

Blue Holes

Blue holes are giant and sudden drops in underwater elevation that get their name from the dark and foreboding blue tone they exhibit when viewed from above in relationship to surrounding waters. They can be hundreds of feet deep and while divers are able to explore some of them they are largely devoid of oxygen that would support sea life due to poor water circulation - leaving them eerily empty. Some blue holes, however, contain ancient fossil remains that have been discovered, preserved in their depths.


4) Red Tides

Red Tide

Red tides are also known as algal blooms - sudden influxes of massive amounts of colored single-cell algae that can convert entire areas of an ocean or beach into a blood red color. While some of these can be relatively harmless, others can be harbingers of deadly toxins that cause the deaths of fish, birds and marine mammals. In some cases, even humans have been harmed by red tides though no human exposure are known to have been fatal. While they can be fatal, the constituent phytoplankton in ride tides are not harmful in small numbers.


5) Ice Circles

Ice Circles

While many see these apparently perfect ice circles as worthy of conspiracy theorizing, scientists generally accept that they are formed by eddies in the water that spin a sizable piece of ice in a circular motion. As a result of this rotation, other pieces of ice and flotsam wear relatively evenly at the edges of the ice until it slowly forms into an essentially ideal circle. Ice circles have been seen with diameters of over 500 feet and can also at times be found in clusters and groups at different sizes as shown above.


6) Mammatus Clouds



True to their ominous appearance, mammatus clouds are often harbingers of a coming storm or other extreme weather system. Typically composed primarily of ice, they can extend for hundreds of miles in each direction and individual formations can remain visibly static for ten to fifteen minutes at a time. While they may appear foreboding they are merely the messengers - appearing around, before or even after severe weather.

Tarot!

Tarot!

Friday, February 26, 2016

What We Did Before Semi-Automatics and Crack

Remember When

I was stuck in the Jerk-Off Queue From Hell when I got an email from my sister listing all the things I remember from being a kid. I’ve added a few of my own, and if your over 35, then this is sure to make you smile.

Before having 200 parentally controlled digital channels, I remember…

Listening to AM radio in the dark.
Rabbit ears and aluminum foil.
When finding out you missed a Peanut’s special was the worst thing that could happen.
A 13" black and white TV in your room meant you were RICH.
Our first Betamax and the two movies you could watch on it.
Creature Double Feature, Kung Fu Theater and the Million Dollar Movie.
The After School Special, Saturday morning cartoons and Sunday morning oldies.
The National Anthem at midnight and snowy screens.

Before PlayStation, Nintendo and even before Atari, I remember when the streets were for…

Stickball in the afternoon and Kick-the-Can at dusk.
Roller skates and skateboards with metal wheels.
Learning to ride your bike with no hands.
Discovering new abilities as the result of a triple-dog-dare.
Double Dutch, Hopscotch, Jacks and chalk drawings.

And the playgrounds were for…

Dodgeball, Kick Ball, Four Square and Tetherball.
King-of-the-Mountain on jungle gyms shaped like domes.
Penny-drops from the horizontal bar.
Seeing who could swing the highest and jump the furthest.

And the woods were for…

Finding dead, smelly things to poke.
Finding living, smelly things to bring home.
Short-cutting to a friend’s house, school, or the dime store.
Hiding out from a disgruntled parent or sibling.
Scoping out sledding hills.
Traversing log bridges, climbing trees, building forts and swinging from branches.
Being alone with your first girl/boyfriend.
Sipping your first beer and smoking your first cigarette – and throwing up.

Before pagers and cell phones, I remember….

Moms whistling or yelling for their kid to come home.
When, “But Mom! There was no phone!” was a legitimate excuse.
NETWORK meant a collection of neighborhood mothers that could identify which kids were where, and exactly what they were doing – scary!
Believing your mom would agree with you when said that the street lights must be broken because they came on late.
Passing notes in class.
The school bathroom being a core social center.

Before HIV, flesh-eating bacteria and e-coli in the news, I remember…

The worst thing you could get from the opposite sex was cooties (and mono).
Sharing ice cream with the dog and your best friend.
Cereal and Cracker Jacks with cool prizes at the bottom.
When your parents took you to McDonalds and you were COOL.

Before drive-bys, home invasions and child protective services in the media, I remember…

When ANY parent could discipline ANY kid, or feed him, or use him to carry groceries - And nobody, not even the kid, thought a thing of it.
Water balloons and snowballs with ice cores were the ultimate weapons.
Getting your ass whooped meant you deserved it and that your parents loved you.
Sleeping with the windows and doors open.
Running into a friends house without knocking.
RACE ISSUES meant arguing about who ran the fastest.

Before the endless technological diversions, summer was for…

Pulling the glow-goo out of fireflies.
Sand in your crack.
Swigs from the hose.
Sprinklers, fire hydrants, the local lake and the neighbor’s pool.
Sweating in bed with the window open, listening to crickets
Kool-Aid, Fla-Vor-Ice, the Good Humor Truck, Mr. Softie, and ice pops you could break in two and share with a friend.
Seeing shapes in the clouds and millions of mosquito bites.

Fall was for…

New clothes someone else picked out and paid for.
Raking leaves just to jump in them.
Seeing “who you got”.
Monday Night Football.
Deciding what to wear for Halloween - a major decision.
Your stinky aunt and cousins at Thanksgiving.
Pouring over store catalogs and making wish-lists.

And winter was for…

Waking up to a foot of snow – which proved the existence of god.
Witnessing the miracle of some kid smacking head-first into the tree at the bottom of the sledding hill and surviving.
Writing your name in the snow.
Swearing to your mother that you weren’t cold even though your hat had turned into an ice helmet.

Before I grew up and took this lousy job, I remember…

WORK meant taking out the trash or doing the dishes.
When a quarter seemed like a fair allowance - and another quarter a MIRACLE.
Money issues were handled by whoever was the banker in Monopoly.
Decisions were made by going "eeny-meeny-miney-mo".
Mistakes could be corrected by simply yelling, “DO OVER!!!”.
Being tired from PLAYING.
Being old, referred to anyone over 20 ( I'm officially old!).

*by WCDogg, Headset Suicide

Sound of Music in Antwerp station

If this doesn't tickle your happy muscle, then you're probably dead inside. A large group of people in Belgium decided that a local transit station could use some Sound Of Music, and this was the wonderful result.


Brings tears to my eyes every time I see this..

New product for the ultimate lazy person!

Pre-Chewed Pencils