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Another AchenBob Diavlog

By Joel Achenbach  |  November 5, 2009; 6:54 PM ET
 
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Per our ABC affiliate station KSAT, Maj. Hasan, the Fort Hood shooter, just last week reported a hate crime against him. Our local station also reporting that Hasan recently received a poor employment evaluation.

Calls going out all around Texas for local blood donations. No transfers of wounded to our own Brook Army Medical Center. Families with members stationed at Fort Hood urged to contact the Red Cross for information.

Posted by: laloomis | November 5, 2009 7:38 PM | Report abuse

That there's a Native American dreamcatcher.

My what spicy language.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 5, 2009 7:47 PM | Report abuse

Joel's look when he picks up the ballroom dancing (what piggy bank?) is priceless.

But wow. Bob is making sense about job loss.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 5, 2009 7:57 PM | Report abuse

I am trying to get over my envy of Joel's attic, always wanted a usable attic, with stairs - so cool.

Posted by: dmd3 | November 5, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

http://www.ksat.com/news/21533160/detail.html

Military officials say Hasan, 39, was a psychiatrist at Walter Reed Army Medical Center for six years before being transferred to the Texas base in July. The officials, who had access to Hasan's military record, said he received a poor performance evaluation while at Walter Reed. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because military records are confidential.

The Virginia-born soldier was single with no children. He graduated from Virginia Tech University, where he was a member of the ROTC and earned a bachelor's degree in biochemistry in 1997.

Posted by: laloomis | November 5, 2009 8:03 PM | Report abuse

Joel, I think you are absolutely correct that the deficit matters a lot to independents. And your point on being pain averse in Washington is right, right, right on. Bob is totally off base on this.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 5, 2009 8:04 PM | Report abuse

Not yet looking at the "Diavlog", I would like to go back to the kvetching over flu vaccine in the previous Boodle.

(1) I doubt that distribution is really a big problem. The problem is production. There simply is not enough vaccine, although it is true that it seems there has been insufficient preparation for how to ration it out. In any rationing situation, there will be plenty of disagreement over who gets it and how much. We have been talking about the unfairness of thousands of doses going here or there. There are 16 million doses to be distributed (or was it 20 million?). If 10,000 doses were simply thrown into the trash or dropped on the floor, much less sold to investment banks, that would be less than 0.1% of the supply that is being distributed. It's in the realm of round-off error.

(2) There are not armies of civil-service, or even contractor, drones standing ready at the CDC to instantly manufacture vaccine. The vaccine is commissioned under contract from professional manufacturers. Those manufacturers will have a finite pre-existing manufacturing capacity. You can throw money at them to increase capacity, but it must take finite time to do so -- time to build facilities, procure equipment, hire and train personnel.

(3) Today, I got a seasonal flu shot (I am in an at-risk category, otherwise I wouldn't bother). My total cost was $25 (not insured -- I purchased it myself). My interaction with the nurse lasted perhaps 5 minutes. At roughly $17/hour, $1.42 of my $25 just went to pay the nurse for her time; double it, to account for pension and health benefits costs for her. Then there are ancillary staff, procurement personnel, chain-of-custody security and handling, and so forth. I doubt that the manufacturer is making more than $1/dose profit after all the personnel costs. There is money being made, but not big money. Nobody is getting terribly terribly rich off of manufacturing or providing flu vaccine. Big money would mean tens of billions. Instead, we are talking about millions, hardly worthy of discussion.

(4) Vaccines are not made by sticking widgets together from your well-stocked widget stockpile. You cannot create a preparedness scenario in which you have everything you need in order to throw a vaccine together at a moment's notice.

(5) Vaccines have to be grown by biological means, then purified and rigorously tested. "Factory seconds" are not an acceptable low-cost substitute. The weakened strain of virus has to be prepared, the production method has to be prepared and verified, the virus has to be grown en masse, etc. It's all doable, but it all takes time, and none of it can be done until AFTER the relevant strain has been isolated from nature and thoroughly researched.

The practical upshot is: it will be ready when it is ready. There will be as much as there will be. That's the way it is. Get over it.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 5, 2009 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Book Plug!

Excellent!

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 5, 2009 8:14 PM | Report abuse

Joel, love your defense of the narrative.

There exists a mandatory program given to certain members of the executive branch entitled "Respect the Narrative."

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 5, 2009 8:17 PM | Report abuse

"Highbrow Earnest Books."

Found right next to "Colorful Picture Books of Cows."

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 5, 2009 8:22 PM | Report abuse

Nice bit about the sparse fossil record!

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 5, 2009 8:23 PM | Report abuse

Well done Joel!

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 5, 2009 8:28 PM | Report abuse

From the Austin-American Statesman:

Fort Hood suspect drew attention of authorities 6 mos. ago for Internet posts, according to the AP.

From the Wall Street Journal, Hasan's cousin said he was harassed by other military officers.

Posted by: laloomis | November 5, 2009 8:32 PM | Report abuse

Joel, you know I respect you and love you like a second cousin once removed, but these BloggingheadsTV things are way long. Even if he keeps every second of it, couldn't Bob break it into digestible segments with an identifiable theme for each segment?

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 5, 2009 8:48 PM | Report abuse

Tim, it's because the vaccine manufacturers overestimated. And any profits to be had will be reaped by the Swiss and the French (with a Pennsylvania plant).

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/711245

Bruce Gellin, MD, MPH, director of the National Vaccine Program Office of the Department of Health and Human Services, told the committee that summer production of H1N1 vaccine lagged behind schedule because yields of vaccine immunogen from chicken eggs fell short of those gained in initial experiments. "For some manufacturers, it was 3- to 4-fold less than expected," said Dr. Gellin.
***

As for Roche and the limited supply of children's Tamiflu, blame that on monopolistic practices/patent rights.

Posted by: laloomis | November 5, 2009 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Hi SciInnoculatedTim. I hear you save for this: CPBoy is on the priority list and still no H1N1 available for him. Checked with three docs, including mine. I should be in the next category as a caregiver.

What to do? As Ivansmom says, watch like a hawk for secondary and sudden infection. And, have the asthma stuff at the ready. Which we do. Still. I also know three pregnant women -- one carrying twins -- who have yet to get their shots. In a sort of odd Kevin Bacon game, I don't know of ANYBODY who has scored an h1n1 vaccine yet. My internist who has a huge HIV practice has not had the H1N1 shot yet either.

We were to have a huge batch available on campus in early October and yet again, no H1N1 available. So, the event was a chance for regular old seasonal flu. About 3000 doses given; some students mistakenly think they were given H1N1.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | November 5, 2009 9:07 PM | Report abuse

The US is relying on very old vaccine technology. It's reliable in the sense that the vaccines are safe, but unreliable in the sense that new flu vaccines are tricky and somewhat time consuming to make, as Tim pointed out.

The CDC is in no position to take shortcuts with vaccine approval, nor to instantly introduce new production technologies.

There's some hope of developing vaccines that are good against all strains of flu. This would relegate flu to being another has-been disease, at least in wealthy countries. I can imagine Saudi Arabia requiring that everyone coming to Mecca have the Final Flu Shot.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 5, 2009 9:10 PM | Report abuse

If anyone is interested the article on the US vs Canada vaccines.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/health/h1n1-swine-flu/canada-us-spark-ethical-debate-with-different-approaches/article1342620/

Clinics open here, starting with vaccinations for high risk persons and health providers. Eldest and I are able to get vaccinations now, as we both have asthma - not sure how long the waits are but know many who have received the shots already.

I had heard that if you had the flu this fall it was probably Swine Flu - which is the dominate flu around here now, where we live has one of the highest number of cases, strongly suspect youngest had it and possibly myself - it there a way to find out after the fact? Anyone know?

Posted by: dmd3 | November 5, 2009 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Comfortably inappropriate in this kit. BB Boodling: Read up to date but unable to post. In this spirit, I'm seguing back to sing, "Don't leave me out in a forest where, I might be eaten by a bear." Brag, great story. CASSANDRA!!!!

Still haven't seen any H1N1 vaccine @ work, though it's expected. My allergist's office isn't expecting any.

CqP, sending good thoughts towards you and CqPB.

Posted by: -dbG- | November 5, 2009 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, dbG. So far so good.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | November 5, 2009 9:32 PM | Report abuse

Yes, there's a way to find out-- but it is very expensive, dmd, and nobody is likely to do it just for curiosity. However, there is kind of a shortcut that might help. The regular flu seldom has diarrhea as a symptom, whereas the swine flu often does. So if either you or youngest (or both) had the trots, it was almost certainly swine flu.

Also, did onset of flu come on pretty fast (maybe as fast as three to six hours from perfectly healthy to perfectly yucky)? If so, probably swine flu.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 5, 2009 9:34 PM | Report abuse

CASSANDRA!!!!!!!!

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 5, 2009 9:39 PM | Report abuse

That would be affirmative to both.

Posted by: dmd3 | November 5, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

Well, there you have it. Dr. Gregory Mudge solves another tricky Internet disease diagnostic problem in mere seconds. Am I good or what?

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 5, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

You just knew watching those House episodes would come in handy didn't you. And while we are on that topic, what is with the reruns, first Glee then House so unfair.

My quest for confirmation wasn't so much curiosity as wondering whether to get the vaccine or not.

Posted by: dmd3 | November 5, 2009 10:09 PM | Report abuse

The advice is to get the swine flu shot anyway, dmd. The reasoning is that the strain could mutate, and six months from now you could catch it again. (I'm a bit skeptical, but that's what I read the other day.) At least in your case, there's now no great urgency in getting the shot.

As it happens, I was just watching a "House" rerun on the USA network this past hour. Now after I got pick up my son at his work I'll watch the Mentalist to brush up on my mind-reading skilz.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 5, 2009 10:20 PM | Report abuse

New word for me: adjuvant. From dmd's link:
"Adjuvants are substances that help boost the immune response of individuals receiving the vaccine...But adjuvants do not just boost the immune response. They also allow vaccine makers to use less antigen, the active ingredient in vaccines, meaning that they can produce significantly more vaccine – four to five times more – than would be possible without adjuvants."

Apparently adding adjuvants is not approved in the US. And with the resistance to vaccines in general here, I can see why. I'm going to check at my pharmacy tomorrow to see if they've got more vaccines yet. Last time I checked they said it might be mid-November till they had more, and that they would have a list at some point and would call when it was available.

Thanks for the link, dmd - very interesting.

Posted by: seasea1 | November 5, 2009 10:24 PM | Report abuse

Here's a thoughtful thing from Barbara Erhenreich about the vaccine and further thoughts...

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/chi-oped1106vaccinenov06,0,4464736.story

Posted by: rickoshea1 | November 5, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse

Thanks to RD for the sort-of live-blogging the Bloggingheads. I hope to watch it but it is always a question of Time, our artificial construct friend which consumes my days.

I can't seem to stop considering my pedestrian epiphany about the nature of Time and the difference between time in the natural world and time in the world of civilization. Sorry.

Thanks also to ScienceTim for that excellent series of observations on immunization.

I watched a little of the Mentalist - I've probably seen as much as half an hour of it all told, over a couple of episodes. Someday I'd like to be in a position to sit and watch a whole TV show. I'd watch it.

My internal clock, the clock on the wall, and the moon outside are all telling me I'd better start the slow march towards bed. Buenos gnocchis to all, vaya con queso and fondue.

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 5, 2009 10:45 PM | Report abuse

CBS is promoing the 11 o'clock news by saying the Ft. Hood gunman is still alive.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 5, 2009 10:50 PM | Report abuse

dmd, many networks were running reruns tonight in case there was a World Series Game 7. And in Fox's case - they had to put *something* on in place of the Game 7 tonight, but there would be no time to promote the airing of new episodes of *anything,* (in order to draw a larger viewing audience) so reruns is whatcha get.

There aren't any new production costs to bear for reruns, and in the cases of the shows you mention, they'll draw pretty good shares of their loyal core audiences and deliver decent ratings.

I am enjoying the Diaflog preamble -- it's banteriffic. But I am alarmed about the Attack Feather - could it be a drone device? Operated by who, and for what purpose? Foreign or Domestic? Perhaps the Man in the Basement wants to see what's going on with Joel Upstairs, and is flying his HellFeather drone from his Wii console outside the Laundry room.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 5, 2009 10:56 PM | Report abuse

I'm still catching up on the terrible Ft. Hood situation.

I hope it's not what it sounds like.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 5, 2009 10:58 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I heard that about the gunman a couple of hours ago, during the press conference from Fort Hood, and it's on the WaPo front page. Also, the police woman who had been reported killed is alive.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/05/AR2009110503467.html?hpid=topnews

Posted by: seasea1 | November 5, 2009 11:00 PM | Report abuse

I love Barbara Ehrenreich.

Posted by: seasea1 | November 5, 2009 11:10 PM | Report abuse

I'm watching Jon Stewart channeling Glenn Beck. It's awesome.

Posted by: rickoshea1 | November 5, 2009 11:15 PM | Report abuse

I watched as well rickoshea, funny and liked you link.

Posted by: dmd3 | November 5, 2009 11:20 PM | Report abuse

Tim,

You make good points about flu.I have two comments. Although the 10,000 "Wall Street doses" would be within margin of error when viewed on a national scale, they may not necessarily be quite so margin-of-errory if you view them only within the context of at-risk people within Manhattan (from whom those doses were arguably "taken"). If one extrapolates that the same misappropriation of vaccine would/could be happening nationwide, it becomes a much more serious issue. It's news right now because it happens to involve Goldman Sachs, but I suspect that with a little more scrutiny, you'd find similar patterns nationwide.

As far as production goes, in 2008 you are certainly right that the process is capacity constrained so it's sort of a "when it's ready, it's ready" situation. My point was more to the fact that we've been spending billions of dollars preparing for biological attacks during the last 8 years. World productivity lost billions of dollars due to the avian flu scare a couple of years ago. Within the past couple of years there have been severe shortages of seasonal flu vaccines and antiviral drugs due to manufacturing constraints and other problems. NIH identified this outbreak of virus as early as 11 months ago.

Manufacturing of flu vaccines has been a known problem for years. It wasn't a Rumsfeldian "Unknown Unknown". There have been a lot of longer-term signals that the response to pandemics, generally, and influenza, particularly, isn't what it should be.

Posted by: Awal | November 6, 2009 1:42 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, you all!

RD, you are a good soul to present your enjoyment of the AchenBob diavlog. After my initial viewing of about five minutes (really interesting top to bottom environments) prompted by dmd's attic comment, I think the way to go is to treat my laptop as a radio and *listen* to the fellows as I go about my morning kitchen routine.

While in the kitchen, will warm splendid french toast/egg/sausage/pineapple/pecan casserole for the ready room. Bring forks, tho, didn't see enough forks, there are plenty of dishes, however.

On attics: we had an attic in the cape cod style house of my childhood, but no one could stand up in it past a certain age. Things like doll houses and old golf clubs and manual typewriters lived up there. The type of attic many of us yearn for was in the movie/book "Little Women". Room for four trunks all in a row; room to write, as Jo did. Room for a bed or bundle of blankets to stretch out on and shed a few girlish tears, or to eat forbidden chocolate bars with a good friend. That type of attic, you know?

Posted by: VintageLady | November 6, 2009 5:38 AM | Report abuse

Austenmania hits New York:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/arts_and_culture/8340749.stm

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 6:37 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, ye Boodlers.

Depressing news from Fort Hood.

Off into the blue in search of an inspiring story.

Latta, Gang.

Brag

Posted by: Braguine | November 6, 2009 6:50 AM | Report abuse

Morning, all! VintageLady, yum! You're spoiling us in the ready room, thanks!

Yello, I wanna go! That will be a fabulous exhibit. You linked to that just for me, didn't you?

Happy Friday, all. Cassandra, are you here? I hope so!

Busy day, and heading up the mountain this afternoon. I'd better get a start.

Posted by: slyness | November 6, 2009 7:01 AM | Report abuse

Of course I did, slyness. But I love all my Janeites here in the boodle. Perhaps it could be a NYBPH. I am up in New York twice in March (don't ask) so let me know if anybody else will be in the neighborhood.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 7:25 AM | Report abuse

I don't know how many people can read this, but my son signed up for th GT Dead Week Humans vs Zombies game. It's like Assassin but with a twist.

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=169642956692&ref=nf

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 7:27 AM | Report abuse

Here is a non-Facebook link to the Humans vs Zombies game.

http://humansvszombies.org/

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 7:33 AM | Report abuse

Good morning everyone.

True, the Joel and Bob show is 67 minutes, but it is time well spent. And, sure, you can use it as mood music, but then you miss the facial expressions. Not to mention stealth book plugs.

Anyway, 'tis a lovely Fall morning. A good time to remind oneself that even with all the horrible crazy violence out there, beauty can still be found. Indeed, must be found.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 6, 2009 7:43 AM | Report abuse

Can we move the bunker to an attic like VintageLady described - imagine the fun. Yes, VintageLady that is the romantic idea I have of attics, although I am more likely to blame the Brady's thought Gregs room in the attic was so cool :-). I had friends with a large attic they converted it was in an old house, quite large.

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 7:45 AM | Report abuse

Can we move the bunker to an attic like VintageLady described - imagine the fun. Yes, VintageLady that is the romantic idea I have of attics, although I am more likely to blame the Brady's thought Gregs room in the attic was so cool :-). I had friends with a large attic they converted it was in an old house, quite large.

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 7:45 AM | Report abuse

Good morning boodle!

Not that it makes events any less tragic, but it appears friends and acquaintances of the frostfam were spared direct injury from the Ft. Hood incident. The aftermath will touch all.

Blogging heads will have to wait for later, a good choice for filling the evening before the much delayed Washington Week is shown on our local PBS station. I've whined about this before, but surely they're losing lots of viewers by not showing WW until 9:30!

Later gators.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 6, 2009 7:54 AM | Report abuse

As it happens, with Mudge approval, I refurbished the bunker attic all through the summer. You will find this special secret space up the creaky scuttle staircase door that is between the storage closet doors. Note these:

two horsehair couches, replete with afghans in multicolor salvage yarn

a purple-moire tufted fainting couch

a dressmaker's form with a Lanz shirtwaist dress in Alice blue

a salty dog sea trunk you may use as a coffee table or politicking stump

a whatnat between the two dormer windows; each of you have a cubby marked with your last name

I donated a Royal Underwood typewriter circa 1929; Mudge will not donate his; indulge him on this as the machine is a familiar for him, very like a black cat etc.

I managed to put four Navy Emeco chairs in the corner; we need a game table for poker and euchre and whist and bridge and spit and war and hearts and gin and cribbage....

Scotty, do not try to install a big screen TV; the attic is for salon like conversations; as a nod to your media needs, however, I bought one of those fake victrola/oldtymey media centers; cds and radio signal will have to do

The fainting couch is reserved now for Cassandra; she has her reasons; we shall plump the cushions for her and etc.

Enjoy.


Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | November 6, 2009 7:56 AM | Report abuse

And don't call me Cubby... :-)

Nice to see Milbank so adroitly skewering the "press conference" Bachmann & Co. gave yesterday:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/05/AR2009110504566_pf.html

*TFSMIF-and-all-that-especially-since-I'm-one-of-only-two-folks-in-the-office-today Grover waves*

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 8:09 AM | Report abuse

I love you CP!

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 8:12 AM | Report abuse

I know her only as Liz. She has a day job. She is not a person just like us. Fighting all odds, she has produced, FURY, a feature film.

Like unknown writers, Indy film makers are ignored by distributors who kowtow to the Hollywood Moguls. The independent producer must wage a guerilla war to get his creation on the silver screen.

You can visit, Liz’s website:

http://furythemovie.com/

This trailer shows better the quality of the film:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_v2iggOjsd4

In my humble opinion, this is a work that deserves to go viral. Whatcha think, Boodlers?

Brag

Posted by: Braguine | November 6, 2009 8:14 AM | Report abuse

How about a 'Net-enabled "small" HDTV, CquaP? :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 8:17 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle. Great breakfast, VL.

Scotty, ya beat me by a few minutes on praising the Milbank colyum this morning. I think it is one of his very best. I almost think a good bit of it could (and maybe should) have been reported as a straight news story, but keeping his many salient ironies in it, reported simply as factual observations, such as saying that Boehner announced he would read from the Constitution but actuallyy read from the Dec of Ind.

CqP, not unexpectedly, wins the Shop Steward Legion of Merit With Two Oak Leaf Clusters for Conspicuous Tasteful Gallantry in her decorating the bunker attic. And she's quite right: touch my old Underwood and you die.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Practicing new Bunker drill:

"Climb for cover!"

Up and up into the security of lofty thoughts.

Brag

Posted by: Braguine | November 6, 2009 8:34 AM | Report abuse

If you're pressed for time, you can go to the bloggingheads website and watch the chipmunk version (1.4x speed)-- that only takes 48 minutes, but (warning) may induce giggling, as I know some of you people are rather silly anyway.

It can also be downloaded for I-Pod or other mp3 player.

The third reason to go to the bloggingheads.tv site is that there are *other* diavlogs to waste--I mean, spend--your time on. I get stuck over there periodically, sometimes it's hard to get out. Interesting folks, taking on some important topics.

Posted by: kbertocci | November 6, 2009 8:42 AM | Report abuse

Soundtrack for the new attic bunker, from one of my favorite movies, A Little Princess (not the Shirley Temple version).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEZ_ICsFUaM

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Oooh, I'm soo looking forward to good times in the bunker attic! Mudge, you did insulate and ensure that we have HVAC up there, right? I'm sure Yello's company did an excellent job with the installation.

CqP, I'm amazed at the wonderful furniture you found. Scavanged, right? I'm hiding all my treasures in my cubby, don't anyone dare go near it!

Posted by: slyness | November 6, 2009 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Ground coupled heat pump powered by a PV array and backed up by a biodiesel fuel cell. Rainwater harvesting system with a UV sterilizer and gray water reclaim. Zero net energy and completely off the grid. We could survive Anne Frank style for months up there once the zombie attacks begin.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Dmd,

Good tea time music

Brag

Posted by: Braguine | November 6, 2009 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Keep the baguettes away from the collider!

http://www.thestar.com/news/sciencetech/science/article/722105--hadron-collider-shut-down-by-piece-of-bread

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Well, we're gonna have to expand the attic if we want proper separation between the kitchen and the collider, dmd...

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Those darn physicists and their bagged lunches!

Another warm Chinook-y day here, and very welcome too.

Off to seek adventure.

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Is there a corkscrew around?

Nope???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9s89FqNpXO4

Posted by: russianthistle | November 6, 2009 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Keep in mind that we've been restoring an old house for the past twelve years, and that the total living area includes thirteen rooms. The attic is about 1220sf, and the peak of the hip roof is some 20-25 feet above the 2nd floor ceiling rafters. We've toyed with the idea of makiing the attic into a living space. Alas, there is enough to finish with the restoration, without adding that to the list. There are three fixed sashes of Queen Anne glass up there. The odd thing is that most of the junk is stored downstairs.

Posted by: -jack- | November 6, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Joel and Robert talking--good audio, good video, no moderator. Optimum.

Makes me think of the talk by mother-daughter duo Jane Smiley (from the Carmel, Calif. area) and her daughter Lucy Silag. I arrived late to their venue, The Sanctuary, a Lutheran church, just one block from the Capitol. I had no sooner plopped myself into a pew, than I became aware of an annoying noise, three audible beeps with a short pause between. Not loud enough to overwhelm the authors' voices, but audible enough to annoy everyone seated in the sanctuary. Because the woman next to me was complaining, I decided to go to the lobby, staffed with festival volunteers, to discover the source of the noise. The alarm in the building next door had gone off, and the festival volunteers were "working on the situation."

MOderator Jennifer Brown didn't help matters any. She wears her hair in a bi-level page boy, and her hair constantly fell toward her face. Her solution: she raised her arms and elbows far too often to run her fingers through her red hair, also a major distraction of the dialogue.

Moderators! I mentioned already the problem with Atlantic Monthly's Corby Kummer. The third problem I observed was one of accuracy. The first session I attended on Sunday morning was also covered by C-SPAN, as was Saturday morning's by pollster Frank Luntz. Thomas Phillips introduced author Lucas Powe (poe) Jr., author of "The Supreme Court and the American Elite."

In his intro, Phillips said that Powe, who hails from Seattle originally, clerked for Justice Brennan. The short, white-hired Powe was shaking his head vigorously and mouthing "Douglas." C-SPAN didn't have its equipment wired properly, so the intro required "take two," and the error was still not corrected.

-more-

Posted by: laloomis | November 6, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Candidate for Yello's No D'uh News, combined education best for preventing teen pregnancy/STD's.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/06/AR2009110601208.html?hpid=topnews

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Powe gave a brilliant talk. He was nervous (he was very shaky when drinking from his bottle of water), but was over it by talk's end. Must have been the C-SPAN camera.

He did mention something key--the miniscule number of justices selected from west of the Alleghenies. William O. Douglas hailed from Yakima, as Earl Warren hailed from Bakersfield, Sandra Day O'Conner from Phoenix. The path to the high court is still primarily paved with graduation from the elite law schools in the East--perhaps one in the Midwest, as Powe pointed out.

Just a mention that my game plan had not been to see Smiley. Hunger prevented me from getting to Saturday's second presentation on time (not to self: bring power bars), and I figured the session would be full and the doors locked. I picked a talk that I thought would be humorous, "Stuff White People Like" by Christian Lander.

Tristan Hallman of the Houston Chron, as printed in Sunday's Express News, wrote:

Lander, the author of "Stuff White People Like" and the blog os the same title, chronicled his meteoric rise over six months from the time of the idea's conception to the New York Times Best-seller List. Lander described "Stuff White People Like" as a "mix between cultural anthropology and the horrible truth."

I'm reminded a great deal of Joel on the outdoor camping bit.

http://stuffwhitepeoplelike.com/

Posted by: laloomis | November 6, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

My favourite attic was an architect's or a builder's whimsical addition to a short tower. The old main building of a summer camp I work in had five-storey high small tower on one end. The tower was built with western red cedar, it had a square footprint, maybe 20 ftx 20 ft, and the last floor had a wonderful view of the lake and mountains because it was above the tall pines surrounding the building. This last storey had a trap it its ceiling going to the totally usuless but wonderful attic. It was a room with foor curved walls in tongue&groove red cedar leading to a small square ceiling. Each wall had an openable oeil-de-boeuf (bull's eye window?), very useful for venting the smoke (eh, it was the mid-seventies). A wonderful place to be during a thunderstorm to watch lightning bolts striking the lake or the tall trees.
The tower was not habitable anymore due to fire concern, the 50 year-old red cedar structure and wall covering was bone-dry and would have been torched in minutes, and it was demolished a couple of years later. But is was a really wondrous place.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 6, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

The article about the Church Universal and Triumphant is... hmmm... well, it something.


"Its 'Mother' dead, doomsday sect's future in doubt"

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/05/AR2009110503737.html?hpid=sec-religion

Posted by: bobsewell | November 6, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, that's "somthing," but THIS is really substatial, Bob!

`You hit a what?' SUV nearly slams into elephant

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/05/AR2009110502501.html

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

something and substantial, even...

SCC

*SIGH*

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 11:28 AM | Report abuse

It was interesting reading Ehrenreich's piece in the Chicago Tribune linked by rickoshea. Some of the elements of my 8:06PM were supported, others were refuted. The most damning of refutations concerned upgrading industrial production facilities, for which it seems there are methods available to dramatically increase production rates. What Ehrenreich does NOT address is whether these improved production techniques have FDA approval for human use. Even if they do have approval, the companies may be skittish about liability from any adverse incidents -- this may be an area in which the Republicans actually have a legitimate point about a need for tort-reform. Of course, I suspect their enthusiasm for reform and the liberalization of restrictions on drug manufacturing techniques would end as soon as one of the injured parties turns out to be one of their own.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

I can't see any reason why the article about that cult describes it as "New Age." First, it was founded in 1958, well before the "New Age" stuff started to emerge, and while it certainly is a cult, there doesn't appear to be anything in its message or practice that has existed for a thousand years or more. Not every cult or sect is "New Age" just because it exists in the year 2009. (See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Age for a discussion of the definition of New Age; there's nothing here to suggest Mother's Cult fit into any of that, and quite a lot in the definition that the cult seems NOT to believe in.)

I would regard it as sloppy, uncritical thinking/writing (and lack of good editing).

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

"For the Aquarian age", Mudge? That's a direct quote in the article.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 6, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Photo and story here of the woman police officer, Kimberly Munley, who shot the Ft. Hood gunman: http://www.cnn.com/2009/CRIME/11/06/fort.hood.munley/

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 11:59 AM | Report abuse

I only glanced at the comments below Milbank's piece, but it is fairly clear that there is significant representation from insane people who think that Milbank is naïve in making fun of the banner linking Obama to the "villainous" Rothschilds. Dare I say it -- anybody who still believes in that Rothschild/Trilateral Commission/International (Jewish) Conspiracy stuff, and who believes that only with their help could Obama have been elected -- well, isn't it clear that such people really are insane bigoted wingnuts?

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Yes... but there's nothing about the cult to suggest they have any clue about the Age of Aquarius. That's what I'm saying: the writer is just tossing in contemporary mumbo-jumbo to describe a cult that doesn't use it. This cult could have existed in the year 1720 or 1420 with no modification whatsoever of its ideas or practices. When Connell used the phrase "Aquarian Age" it mere was identifying the present times. If he'd been speaking in 1500 he would have said, "This is the book that's going to get us through the Renaissance."

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Good point, SciTim. That's what they keep telling me every time I go to those boring international Jewish conspiracy staff meetings. I only go because they always have coffee and blintzes. Yack, yack, yack. Old business, new business, does anyone have a second for that motion, please pass the cream cheese. Can we have a treasurer's report? Who's taking down the minutes? Anybody know if the copy machine toner has come in?

It's no wonder we never get anything done.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Over at the Milbank discussion, one of the questioners astutely noted yesterday was Guy Fawkes Day, a most excellent day to be "storming the Capitol."

*snort*

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

The elephant story generated a great deal of amusement at our house - since everyone including the elephant was essentially okay. This is partly because "elephant" is an amusing word. Also, we like to distract the Boy, say while we're in the car, by saying, "Look! An elephant!" If the timing is just right he'll look.

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 6, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

'Mudge, apparently your meetings haven't kept up to date -- from the Milbank chat:

Confused: So let me if if I've got this right: To summon the antichrist, I have to work for health care reform, reducing global climate change, and so on? I don't see any of that in my instruction manual. Is there a new edition I may have missed?

Dana Milbank: Yes the new edition is in French.

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, those meetings...does the Ladies Auxiliary put out a cookbook? What about parades...do you get something equivalent to the cool little cars that Shriners drive erratically? And attire...snazzy red hats and purple blazers? Or something closers to the Water Buffaloes? Is there a secret handshake?

Posted by: LostInThought | November 6, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Sheesh. World conspiracies. Such silliness. Everyone knows who *really* controls world events.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 6, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Funny you should mention those points, Scotty and LiT; I just posted an IJC meeting reminder over in the Milbank comments. (And under the question of great and/or warped minds thinking alike, I mentioned parades as well asdress code. No, we don't wear snazzy red hats like the Shriners. We wear gold yarmulkes lined with aluminum foil.)

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Just came in from raking leaves and the TV is on to CNN, a shooting at an Orlando office building, SIGH.

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Right.

Everyone knows that Opus Dei and the Knights (of the Illuminati) run everything.

Plus, they play parties -- try not to stay seated when they do "Shout."

Some people go with the foil yarmulke, some with the foil fez, others with the foil turban. Me, I'm going with an iron 1930's deep sea diving helmet.

Though, LiT, on Halloween, I saw someone dressed up as Fred Flintsone and he was wearing the Big Loyal Order of the Water Buffalo hat, with the horns and the insignia. In purple fur. It was *awesome.*

Serious hats for serious matters, such as ruling the world.

More gunfire in FL - please say it isn't so.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 6, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

We will never know who is REALLY running things, just who they want us to think it is. Time to take another go at the collected works of Robert Anton Wilson.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

bc,
**snort** at Opus Dei and the Knights.

I finished The Lost Symbol this week and I have to say that THEY got to Dan Brown.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Did THEY make him a better writer?

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 1:38 PM | Report abuse

For a Halloween haunted house, ScienceKid#1 played a lunatic vampire character whose lunacy was demonstrated by slowly tearing the pages out of books. A close observer might have noticed that one book was a copy of "The Da Vinci Code", one was a Danielle Steele novel, and one was a Stephen King (don't worry -- he'll just write another one to make up for the destroyed copy). We're just doing our bit to make the world safer for the publication of adequate literature.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

I can safely say that Dan Brown's prose style is as good as it has ever been. However, his kissing up to the Masons is as unseemly as his digs at the Catholic church used to be.

He did add about three buildings I need to visit as part of my Dan Brown Whacko Conspiracy World Tour.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Looks like Obama's program for gun confiscation is more incompetent than the vaccination plan.

Posted by: seasea1 | November 6, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

THEY are powerful beings if THEY can do that.

I'm quite sure that as I write the NRA is preparing a press release saying that those killings would not have happen if all the soldiers in the hospital and all the workers in that office building in Orlando were packing heat.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 6, 2009 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Destroy all the Brown and Steele you can, but I take issue with lumping S. King in that company. He is a first-rate writer of dialogue, and his plotting is pretty strong too. Granted, he needs to put himself in the way of a ruthless editor who won't let him get away with his self-indulgent ways, but he's no Dan Brown.

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Orlando, FL: looks like 6 injured (one may be dead), disgruntled former employee of an engineering firm named Jason Rodriguez went postal, is still running loose driving his 2002 silver SUV. Some area schools in lockdown.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

yello, glad you liked that.

I made myself snort with it, too.

*Tim, I love ya buddy, but I think that that "make the world safe for the publication of adequate literature" can be a slippery slope.

I harbor no delusions of adequacy, though I do carry a fire extinguisher.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 6, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, is that Danielle Steele or Michael Steele or Bob Steele? Cuz I like Bob Steele (he played Lash Canino in "The Big Sleep" and was in a bazillion Westerns, many of them playing Tucson Smith. But I guess you knew that).

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 2:07 PM | Report abuse

True Yoki, I just re-read Insomnia (1994) and it was as good as I remembered. Since he reached his current self-appointed status of Giant of Literature he obviously refuse any editing of his books and that is his loss.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 6, 2009 2:07 PM | Report abuse

1 conformed dead in Orlando, 5 injured plus one possible heart attack; gunman arrested and in custody.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

The Orlando shooting was at the office of Reynolds Smith & Hill, a large and busy transportation consulting firm. Information still seems kind of fragmentary, with shootings reported on two separate floors.

On Tuesday, my polling place had a sign on the door noting that concealed weapons were forbidden. Voting procedures have been redone again. The registry system is now electronic, with a paper receipt you have to initial. Ballots are paper, with optical scanner.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 6, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Good to hear that the gunman is in custody, best thought for the victims and their families.

Abrupt change of pace a smile for Friday, not being an "art" expert can someone explain how this statute of Mr. Rogers is a tribute. Looks frightening to me, made for gold painted gum wrappers?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/gallery/2009/11/06/GA2009110602246.html?hpid=multimedia1&hpv=national

Photo 17 if link doesn't go direct.

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Yoki -- thanks for Stephen King props. I like him too. Like Iris Murdoch, he would be better with a firm but fair editing hand.

And, hush. If I say this in ProfessorLand, I shall be shunned and pilloried.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | November 6, 2009 2:51 PM | Report abuse

I won't let slip your guilty secret, CquaP. My own feeling is that, in any academy, if you can make an argument for a particular writer or genre, you are more likely to hired to teach a class on it than be shunned; when pulp and mystery and Western get their own courses, I don't see why King couldn't. There is certainly enough material for a semester :)

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

CqP, I agree. I heard a professor say once that Stephen KIng was not a great writer at the sentence level, but he was a great storyteller.

The editing I would itch to do on Stephen King would be to gently his tendency to have a long slow opening scene as though it was a movie, waiting for people to file into the seats with their popcorn and soda.

I have only read a handful of his books; horror is not my preferred genre, but have been impressed by the variety of horror he devises, and how sympathetic he may make even his villians.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 6, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

It's terrible to hear about more shootings today. Sad that people feel like they need to resort to this. I wonder if this is how people attempt to establish control over their lives and situation?

On another note, I, too, think much of S. King, and not just because of his hilariously madcap introduction to Harlan Ellison's "Stalking the Nightmare." The guy is good.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 6, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Got to see the Disney Christmas Carol 3D. Based on the trailer, I'd supposed it would be a terrible flop, unable to keep up with the Spaghetti Tornado a couple of months ago.

Good news is that London looks more like itself than usually happens in this sort of movie. Mansion House and the Royal Exchange play bit parts. St. Paul's and the Tower are flown over. The streets aren't aligned by those annoying Kinkade-style Olde English Cottageies.

The Ghosts, especially Christmas Future, are creepy. Future seems to owe something to the Ring Wraiths in Lord of the Rings. Future will displease or even panic little girls who love horses.

The whole movie, even the festive bits, is dark. Even party people are dressed darkly.

Jim Carrey, as fleshed out electronically, does fine.

The film takes Dickens' words seriously. Which is good.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 6, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

SCC: gentle.

I should be edited first before I cast blue ink at others' work.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 6, 2009 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Genre fiction is still a hard sell in academia:

westerns (witness the overlook of Larry McMurtry's fabulous Lonesome Dove)

mysteries

historical romance (Margaret Drabble writes these under cloaked name)

scifi

etc.

A beloved colleague of mine is a Tolkien specialist. She nigh near did not earn tenure 20 years ago because her subject was seen as "for the trade" and not for the ages.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | November 6, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

bobsewell,
I recall posters for the Church Universal and Triumphant at the laundrymat in Cody, Wyoming, circa 1982. It was quite a deal back then. Sort of a ghost by now. Chet Huntley's Big Sky ski development has had far greater staying power.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 6, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse

You could always be punned and shilloried if you prefer, CquaP... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Scotty, pinning and shilling from you? ANYtime. I assume you frost this with a delectable made by ScottySpouse the baking wonder.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | November 6, 2009 3:28 PM | Report abuse

*fighting back an attack of the snorts*

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/shortstack/2009/11/going_rouge_--_the_sarah_palin.html

:-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Actually, I felt bad about them tearing up the King novel (and it *was* Insomnia, by the way), as it is certainly not in the same class as the other two. However, it was a cost-effective purchase at the thrift store for this purpose -- it has so many pages to tear out. I console myself that it is hardly likely that this would make a serious dent in the availability of copies for those who want it. It's not one-of-a-kind. If *I* were making the purchases, I would have gone for a lesser Michener, or a doorstop romance like The Thorn Birds.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Of course NukeSpouse would delightfully frost the punning, CquaP... :-)

But this article makes my brain hurt...

http://www.latimes.com/features/health/la-na-health-religion3-2009nov03,0,6879249,full.story

*SIGHHHH* :-(

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Ohhh, great call on The Thornbirds, SciTim!

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Everyone was reading The Thorn Birds (aka "Pointy Birds") when I was in high school. I have sometimes wondered if I should go back and read it. Opinions?

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Heading out a tad early. Everybody have a good weekend.

Kinda hoping the Redskins game might be pre-empted by a TV test screen, or maybe a documentary on tax loopholes, or something more interesting.

*sigh*

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Only if you find the idea of being so driven to distraction by terrible style that you want to claw out your own eyes with your bare fingers appealing.

The reason it was popular with high school students was that there are graphic descriptions of s*x-type activities. Very bad descriptions. Awful, really.

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

The Thorn Birds -- wasn't that the one where priest Richard Chamberlain agonizes over having an affair with Rachel Ward? Why do gay Catholic priests get all the hot women?

It just doesn't seem fair.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | November 6, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Or I could just tell you how I really feel about McCullough's prose...

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 3:57 PM | Report abuse

I don't see how one could really agonize over that situation, Mudge, assuming Ms. Ward were making the offer freely and without coercion. It would be a sin NOT TO. The height of rudeness, at the very least.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 4:01 PM | Report abuse

I loved the Thornbirds - both the book and the mini-series. I probably read the book multiple times, but not sure what I would think of it now. I haven't been able to read anything else by the author (Colleen McCullough?). But I also read everything Michener wrote back then, too.

Posted by: seasea1 | November 6, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

The Thorn Birds was a great icebreaker in high school. It gave us cover for discussing all sorts of sexual topics (including the various levels of abstinence) with literary minded members of the opposite sex.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Kirk: You mean the profanity? That's simply the way they talk here. Nobody pays attention to you unless you swear every other word. You'll find it in all the literature of the period.

Spock: For example?

Kirk: Oh the neglected works of Jacqueline Susann. The novels of Harold Robbins...

Spock: Ah. The Giants.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Agree with Yoki on Thornie thingie.

I have thought to try these McCollough books. Would DR, the historical fiction maven of the boodle care to comment?

Masters of Rome Series

1. The First Man in Rome (1990)
2. The Grass Crown (1991)
3. Fortune's Favorites (1993)
4. Caesar's Women (1996)
5. Caesar (1997)
6. The October Horse (2002)
7. Antony and Cleopatra (2007)

---
SciTim...believe she is a pretty serious neuroscientist of some kind....

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | November 6, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Gosh, CquaP really is my evil twin! Or at least, evil younger sister.

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Hmmmmmmmm...

Have any of us ever seen CquaP and Yoki in the same room together???

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm...

:-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Anybody read a novel written by Robert Ludlum since he died? He was pretty long-winded and in need of editing sometimes when he was alive.
The man is an unstoppable writer though. He's been dead more than 8 years yet he just published something again.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 6, 2009 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Robert Ludlum: The Tupac Shakur of thriller novels.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse

A web site listing all the cool NASA spinoffs you could possibly want: http://www.sti.nasa.gov/tto/

I'm especially taken by the self-righting life raft. This is something that is immensely useful and has a clear market, yet the invisible hand of the market did not design it after hundreds of years of lifeboats and decades of inflatable boats, until the space program encountered the problem from a unique perspective.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Surely they should be labeled "School of" by now?

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, I'm still dreamily thinking of Rachel Ward...

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 4:41 PM | Report abuse

It's by Robert Ludlum (TM).

http://www.amazon.com/Robert-Ludlums-TM-Bourne-Deception/dp/0446539821/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1257543850&sr=1-14

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 6, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

If only gunman Hasan had been a member of the New Earth Army. *sigh*

Fo more on the New Earth Army, see the funny film released today, "The Men Who Stare at Goats" with George Clooney, Jeff Bridges, Ewan McGregor, and Kevin Spacey.

Saw a trailer for an upcoming film that looks fun and plenty entertaining, "Pirate Radio," starring Phillip Seymour Hoffman. Trailer here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX1SSiFWF-s

Posted by: laloomis | November 6, 2009 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Having just Googled Rachel Ward, let me also say that my trivial and shallow physical interest has been replaced by a deeper appreciation of what she has done with her life beyond looking pretty. Sorry, boys: she is happily married and has been for about 26 years.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 4:49 PM | Report abuse

I never read The Thornbirds but I did read Catch-22. Not a devotee of horror, either.

That would be amusing about your Tolkien scholar friend, CqP, if it were funny. I suppose Tolkien is a respectable topic for study nowadays. He's been dead long enough. I read C.S. Lewis before he was idolized. Now his work seems so flat to me. OTOH, I am glad there is a professor in the English department of my alma mater who is a specialist in Louisa May Alcott. Who woulda thunk?

Made it up the mountain. It was 55 on the porch and 51 in the house when I got here.

Posted by: slyness | November 6, 2009 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Sort of a Bourne Liar?

Posted by: kguy1 | November 6, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

A Bourne Deception on many levels.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 6, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Bourne before reading.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Liked the the end of the diavlog. Star compost. Ascertaining the star by looking at the signature ratios in the lifeform metabolisms of say iron and cobalt. Did most of the supernova debris that makes up us and the sun come from the same supernova? If a sun made from one stellar cauldron acquired some planetary matter from a different dying star, then histories might be more difficult to pin down, at least with limited samples.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 6, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Well, I'm Bourne free. Free as the wind blows.

Posted by: engelmann | November 6, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Good evening,friends. I'm just checking in, but it has been one hectic day. I am so tired, and gonna have the g-girl in a few so I know that will wipe what little energy have left totally out. Slyness, if you saw the g-girl, you would not recognize her. She's gain some weight, and loves McDonalds. I'm trying to do the fruit thing with her, anything but french fries. Not making much headway, but hanging in there.

Dad is watching the television. He's been to the laundromat. I think he just likes the machines because he only had a handful of clothes. His sister came by and took him to breakfast and then the the laundromat.

We've been watching the tragedy in Orlando, and Fort Hood. It seems we go from one bad thing to another bad thing.My heart goes out to the families of the young soldiers that were killed, just terribly young. I'm thinking the war will still be going on by the time my grandsons finish high school.

Have a lovely weekend everyone here, and thanks for the warm welcome back. And you too, JA. It is good to be back, although just barely. I can't get the kit, probably need to do something on the computer in order to pull that up. I'm still trying to get this printer to work.

I haven't had time to read all the comments, and don't know if I will, but will try when I get a minute. Minutes are precious, and I've known that all along, but boy, it's in the face now.

Take care and where is Yoki? Good to see you back Loomis, and hope all is well with your family.

Posted by: cmyth4u | November 6, 2009 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Okay, I see you, Yoki, went back and there it popped right out at me. Hope all is well with you. I always see you in my mind's eye as someone moving and doing. No flies on you home girl.

Posted by: cmyth4u | November 6, 2009 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Cassandra!!! Don't go without a big hug and two kisses and awelcome home! We've all missed you terribly.

It's true, I am very bad at sitting still. If nothing else is going on, there is always dancing in the kitchen...

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 5:52 PM | Report abuse

*more hugs for Cassandra*

Just got back from this week's physical therapy, where I was told I'm doing a bit better. My hamstrings are so tight and the stretching thereof is really painful. And then there are the quad stretches, which are *really* painful. But I'm movin' guys! Getting stronger and stronger. Woo-hoo!

Also just got a bunch of work dumped on me (not that I'm complaining!) and instead of tidying up the office (yeah, right), I'll be taking care of those discovery requests.

Hope you all have nice weekends. I might lurk a bit over it. Dunno.

Toodley Boodley.

Posted by: -ftb- | November 6, 2009 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Hey ftb, guess what i found at the grocery yesterday? Honey Crisp apples, of which I had been completely unaware until you mentioned them as a favourite. Wow. Good.

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 6:35 PM | Report abuse

I don't think I'm made out of star dust, or even star compost. I kinda think I might be star mulch, or even star sawdust. Possibly star fertilizer, maybe.

Some days it's hard to say.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Maybe asteroid soot.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 7:17 PM | Report abuse

Pulsar sludge.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 7:19 PM | Report abuse

Comet dandruff.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Cosmic asterisks

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | November 6, 2009 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Me? Interplanetary dander.

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 7:25 PM | Report abuse

super-nova tub-ring (which we used, to our shame, call "the biological bathmat," chez Yoki).

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Good to see you, too, Cassandra.

In exiting our subdivision to go see the wacky and truly absurb Friday flick, "The Men Who Stare at Goats," the Chevron on the corner was flying its jumbo flag at half-staff--per Gov. Perry's orders last night. Just trying to get to a wacky and absurb movie to push the wacky and absurd world away for awhile. (Or perhaps a celebration that we finally have water back on at the kitchen sink after three and half days without?)

Local news informs us here that folks in these parts have been lining up in droves to give blood and platelets today. The gunman Maj. Nidal Hasan is now in Alamo City, having been transferred to our own Brooke Army Medical Center, called around here BAM-C. Obama said to be coming to Texas next week to attend one of the memorial services in the Fort Hood area.

Yes, that's it. Star mulch.

Posted by: laloomis | November 6, 2009 7:36 PM | Report abuse

Posting this review of Bright Star from the Irish Times....small clip.

Lovely film. Recommend it on the big screen as lush England is also a character.

Off for some spontaneous Friday eve crack at a snug. Crack would be the Gaelic sort: good convo with friends a bit jollied by making it to another Friday.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | November 6, 2009 7:47 PM | Report abuse

CP promise you will be careful to whom you say you are going off for some Friday crack :-). How's our bail budget Mudge?

This saddens me, Winfield Farms (famous for Northern Dancer) is closing, houses will replace almost all the lovely grounds.

For seasea and other horse lovers some nice photos.

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/article/722053--last-gallop-for-legendary-windfields-farm

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Cassandra!

I hope your dad is doing okay. It has to be terribly disorienting to lose your home at any age, and almost incomprehensible when you're his age. Thank heavens you are there for him.

I heard today that the grandson of an old friend is at Ft.Hood but is okay. The story about the police officer who got the shooter down, wow. Just wow. I hope she will recover quickly.

Mudge, I was going to look for your comments on the Milbank story, but there were 869 at that moment, so I'm taking a pass. Yup, nothing like having bad socialized emergency medical services disrupt a rally against health care.

Posted by: slyness | November 6, 2009 7:52 PM | Report abuse

Quasar crystals. Magical, magical quasar crystals.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 6, 2009 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Galactic sediment. Supernova detritus.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 7:54 PM | Report abuse

C'mon, Mudge -- think about it.

Clingons.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 6, 2009 7:54 PM | Report abuse

And thanks for beating me to "detritus."

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 6, 2009 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Moonglow earwax.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 7:57 PM | Report abuse

I'll grant that the world is absurd. "Wacky" takes a little more distant perspective. Fortunately, I have pictures from that distance. Earth's atmospheric chemistry is completely nonsensical without the efforts of our microbial brothers. To that extent, it is absurd. Not knowing the chemistry of other living worlds in the universe, I cannot know whether it is outstandingly wacky.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 7:58 PM | Report abuse

Stellar lint.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Eewwww! Boodle-boyz.

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Orbital buildup.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Meteor exhaust.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Planetary precipitate.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 8:05 PM | Report abuse

And hi, Cassandra.

Jumper, I haven't finished the diaflog yet, but the heavy metals and other elements that comprise us were formed over billions of years of nuclear fusion, cycled through who knows how many supernovae.

I think it's unlikely that all of what we are came from a single star or stellar event, but I could be wrong.

The 'verse has lots of room for me to be wrong about Everything. Including Heavy Metal.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 6, 2009 8:05 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for that link, dmd. What a beautiful place. I had forgotten that Bill Hartack rode Northern Dancer in the Kentucky Derby. He was from western PA.

I prefer star dust:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFyKAUBkdOs

Posted by: seasea1 | November 6, 2009 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Sirius drool is our specialty.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 6, 2009 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Oh, great. Like I don't have enough weight issues as it is, now I gotta deal with heavy metals.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 8:14 PM | Report abuse

bc, *snort*

Posted by: Yoki | November 6, 2009 8:16 PM | Report abuse

"...cycled through who knows how many supernovae."
Oh great, we are the civet cat coffee of the universe.

Off to watch the diavlog.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 6, 2009 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Supernova schmutz.

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 6, 2009 8:22 PM | Report abuse

A review of a short story collection by another prolific writer who doesn't get much respect:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/05/AR2009110504745.html?hpid=sec-artsliving

And on page 2 of that article, I'm reminded again that I have never read The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank, which I must rectify. Of course, I know *about* her, and have read excerpts, but not the whole thing.

Posted by: seasea1 | November 6, 2009 8:24 PM | Report abuse

Nobody has yet commented on the fact that Bob wright looks like a normally pigmented person, whereas Joel looks like a slightly lavender-hued vampire in that lighting.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 6, 2009 8:29 PM | Report abuse

I noted it Mudge but could not find a way to mention it as tactfully as you did :-).

Re My H1N1 question yesterday - watching Mentalist must have worked as well, this question to the Globe today,

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/health/h1n1-swine-flu/how-come-our-daughter-got-sick-but-we-didnt/article1349446/

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Neutron nuggets.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 8:54 PM | Report abuse

bc said:
"I think it's unlikely that all of what we are came from a single star or stellar event, but I could be wrong.

"The 'verse has lots of room for me to be wrong about Everything. Including Heavy Metal."

You are probably right. Stellar nucleosynthesis can only get you up to iron in the periodic table, and won't make much of it. Most of your elements heavier than, say, carbon, are produced in a supernova. Supernovas near each other? Not unlikely in a stellar association, resulting in lots of gas and dust slowly coalescing into other stars. There is some evidence for "triggered" star formation, in which a nearby supernova would drive a shockwave into a gas cloud (and a wave of neutrons, as well, transmuting stuff right and left), forming new stars with an additional seasoning of nucleosynthesis. So, I guess, yes: more than one event is likely.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 6, 2009 8:58 PM | Report abuse

I find it vaguely annoying that frosti makes winning the prize for "civet cat coffee of the universe" look easy.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 6, 2009 9:07 PM | Report abuse

I got a request to put one of my homemade images in a book. That always raises the spirits. A real book, with a real publisher. By an author for a real popular magazine, a real popular website, who is more than almost famous! Someone give me free advice on how much to charge! $10 - $100 - $500? (That is, someone in the biz!)

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 6, 2009 9:13 PM | Report abuse

In other words, way to go, frostbitten!

"you can't put too much water in a nuclear reactor." - Wilford Brimley

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 6, 2009 9:16 PM | Report abuse

Congrats Jumper

Posted by: dmd3 | November 6, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Asteroid amalgamation.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Congrats, Jumper. I'd just ask for a couple of free copies.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 6, 2009 9:26 PM | Report abuse

*Tim, thanks for the backup, dude.

I would think that stellar nurseries are fertile grounds for such cycles of formation and birth, and would have the added benefit (for what would become *us*) of said gas and dust as well as nearby stars to gravitationally capture chunks of iron and other metals produced by novae to continue the process of creating elements further into the Periodic table. Oh, and like planetary systems and stuff,

Personally, I can't be prouder to be animated Stellar Civet Cat coffee.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 6, 2009 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Galactic glitter.

We are stardust, we are golden
We are million year old carbon
And we've got to get ourselves
Back to the Garden...

Those lyrics have been quoted at least twice before in the boodle. I wouldn't mind having Woodstock as a theme tune.

<3

Posted by: kbertocci | November 7, 2009 5:42 AM | Report abuse

I looked it up, and it's more like six times Joni's ode to Woodstock has been quoted. And now I'm unhappy because I typed "million" instead of "billion." I apologize to Joni and everybody.

Posted by: kbertocci | November 7, 2009 5:55 AM | Report abuse

Morning, kb.

I had to read that Joni Mitchell song in college for my American Lit class. Somewhere Norton opened it's anthologies to hippies of all stripes.

Not all song lyrics work as poetry, but that one sure does. 'Garden' is an obvious allusion, but I'm not quite as sure what the 'devil's bargain' is. Buehler? Anyone?

Posted by: yellojkt | November 7, 2009 6:10 AM | Report abuse

Fusion farts.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 7, 2009 6:11 AM | Report abuse

I woke up an hour early on my weekend so that I could cram in the diavlog (perhaps the clumsiest portmanteau ever), but it needs hyperlinks. I had to go look up the Tom Friedman column Bob alluded to.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/28/opinion/28friedman.html?_r=1

I differ with Bob about the level of reversal on Friedman's epiphany. While he calls for cutting and running in Afghanistan, he still calls for staying the course in Iraq. Probably for at least one more Friedman Unit.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 7, 2009 6:35 AM | Report abuse

More non-linear commentary on the bloggingheads.

That's a dreamcatcher, Joel.

Hey, I've read both of those Achenbooks he held up.

The lighting in the attic is terrible. Joel looks like an alien. You can get a pretty good effect just pointing a desk lamp at yourself.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npIvWNheSeo

He said 'charticle'. Heh, heh.

He said 'curmudgeonly'. Heh, heh.

Joel has a brand. I have said it before, but it bears repeating: The Achenblog Boodle is proof that there is no level of celebrity too low to not have a cult of personality.

Joel just has never found a way to monetize the boodle. The only people that have profited off of us is McCormick and Schmick.

I've heard of McGuane too but never knew how to pronounce it before now.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 7, 2009 6:43 AM | Report abuse

'moning all, yello. The birdbath's water was frozen to the bottom. Yikes. It's really getting time for the winter tires.

Joel-in-the-attic looks like me when I had a walking pneumonia 20 years ago. The greenish blue hue is just about right. He's funnier than I was though.

I got to drive to the end of the world to drop Mrs.D sewing machine at the sewing machine hospital. The darn thing has decided to quit just as she is sprinting to make a baby quilt for our first grand-niece. The old faithful has 11 solid years of quilting in it, it may be time for a replacement.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 7, 2009 7:05 AM | Report abuse

The main bloggingheads page for this diavlog does have a link to the Friedman column. And an ad from a major corporation.

http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/23634

And the best 10-second clip from it:

http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/23634?in=22:07&out=22:18

Posted by: yellojkt | November 7, 2009 7:24 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, you all. Opportunity lost: if I had signed on when I first sat down this morning, maybe I would have been basking in the warmth of kb's golden glitter or at the very least could have asked her what is blooming in her garden.....

Gerber Daisies on the deck expired in the cold last night, but two huge and still flowering pink potted geraniums live on, snug on the front porch.

Must take butterfly bush off of deck and plant in ground. Deer will not eat it, so *they* say.

Posted by: VintageLady | November 7, 2009 7:25 AM | Report abuse

Morning, sd. There would be frost on the pumpkin if I had any pumpkins. Instead there is frost on the Hyundai. I'm trying to figure out if I need to break out the long spandex for the bike ride this morning.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 7, 2009 7:28 AM | Report abuse

Space shnivels.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 7, 2009 7:49 AM | Report abuse

Make sure you catch the Jon Stewart Glenn Beck parody:

http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/thu-november-5-2009/the-11-3-project

My favorite part is that "Purity of Essence" is written on the blackboard.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 7, 2009 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Woke up to a nice morning here, seems to have warmed up over night, temp at 40f right now and will climb, forcast for nice temps this week, now warm but comfortable low 50's.

Hoping to get more yard clean up done today but it will be a busy day so we will see.

Posted by: dmd3 | November 7, 2009 8:04 AM | Report abuse

Good Morning everyone.

You know, you can meet the nicest people waiting in line for the Early Bird Deals at Walmart.

Now, the leaves await.

Evil. Evil. Leaves.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 7, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Wal-Mart is selling pets now? What???

As for awaiting, we've got a box o' Goodwill donations to deliver, groceries to shop, and a delightful sunny day to enjoy. I hope you all enjoy your days.

Even those with leaves.

*trying-not-to-bust-into-full-"O-What-A-Beautiful-Morning"-mode Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 7, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

cassandra, it's so nice to have you back again!!

cqp, love the decor in the bunker attic.

yj, the glenn beck parody is utter genius.

my favorite stardust words so far are 'detritus' and 'schmutz'.

happy weekend, everyone!

Posted by: LALurker | November 7, 2009 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Big Bang Offal.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 7, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse

Primordial ort.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 7, 2009 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Ah, RD, Mr. T is dealing with leaves as I type. The trees are bare here in the high country, and we know there has been wind because the volume of leaves is much less than he expected. Today will be the last of them for this fall!

Temperature was 39 when we got up. It's a clear day, just perfect for football. Appalachian plays this afternoon, so we expect a crowd in town.

I just wish we could be similarly finished with leaves at home. No such luck; with the willow oaks, we'll be fortunate if the trees are bare by Christmas.

Posted by: slyness | November 7, 2009 9:22 AM | Report abuse

i forgot something else i wanted to say:

sgt. kimberly munley is a rock star.

Posted by: LALurker | November 7, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Last weekend we decided it would be nice to be able to find the driveway, so we dealt with those leaves. Happily, the front yard is dominated by a big pine tree -- cones and needles, but no big seasonal drop. And the neighbors can't see the back yard, so it may have to fend for itself.

Now we've gone and lost the driveway again. With about half of the leaves still to fall, I haven't decided yet whether to rake today or just find it by faith for another week.

Posted by: -bia- | November 7, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Sgt. Munley is an NC native:

http://www.wbtv.com/global/story.asp?s=11457120

Posted by: slyness | November 7, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

You're referring to Friedman's column of Oct. 28. I would like to call you attention to two grafs from Friedman's Nov. 1 (last Sunday's) column:

“Obama’s election marked a shift — from a politics that celebrated privatized concerns to a politics that recognized the need for effective government and larger public purposes. Across the political spectrum, people understood that national renewal requires big ambition, and a better kind of politics,” said the Harvard political theorist Michael Sandel, author of the new best seller — “Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do?” — that calls for elevating our public discourse.

But to deliver on that promise, Sandel added, Obama needs to carry the civic idealism of his campaign into his presidency. He needs a narrative that will get the same voters who elected him to push through his ambitious agenda — against all the forces of inertia and private greed.
***

I call this out only because Harvard prof and author Sandel spoke about his book "Justice" at last Saturday's Texas Bok Festival in Austin in the Paramount Theatre. I know nothing of Sandel's work, but it leads to my chat with an usher, a bright woman whom I'd peg to be in her late 60s or possibly early 70s, at the foot of the stage of the Paramount before Gail Collins' presentation.

I'd simply asked her how the presentations had gone thus far. Buzz Aldrin was wildly popular, she said. Every single seat in the house had been taken, including every balcony seat. Mr. Church, who had gotten out of line to go inside and buy a copy of Collins' book, informed those of us in line that Aldrin's book signing line coiled across the balcony, down the broad staircase, and, as we could obviously see, spilled some distance out of the theater and out onto the street. Huge clusters of individuals streamed into the street after his talk was over, we in line observed.

-more-

Posted by: laloomis | November 7, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Good morning boodle! On my way to a women's leadership conference this afternoon. No idea what that means, but it will be interesting.

Find myself taking inordinate pride in the thought that it was a woman who brought down the Ft. Hood shooter. As I recently told a friend "I'm a liberal, but I'm not a pacifist."

Jumper-you're so sweet.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 7, 2009 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Hello, all--

VintageLady, thanks for an excuse to give a garden report. I've been wanting to brag about how my vigilance is paying off--I vowed daily inspections to prevent tomato hornworms, and I have been faithful enough to the promise that I succeeded in finding two hornworm EGGS. I brought them in the house and put them in a jar to hatch, just to confirm that's what they were. Once hatched and identified, they were disposed of, and now the score is ME: 2, Hornworms: 0. The garden is looking pretty good.

We are off to visit the World Headquarters of the American Orchid Society today--I'll try to get some decent photos to share.

Posted by: kbertocci | November 7, 2009 10:17 AM | Report abuse

I just typed that and walked away, was putting clothes in the dryer and realized "the world headquarters of American Orchid Society" is a stupid phrase. But in my defense, it came from their website:

http://www.aos.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=visit

Posted by: kbertocci | November 7, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

The usher shared that authors Rick Riordan and Peter Lerangis, though collaborating on one of the "39 Clues" books, had never met until that morning on the stage. I assume they had used the Internet and phone to communicate prior to this first face-to-face. You may recall that director Steven Spielberg has bought the film rights to "39 Clues." There were many children in the audience, with a lively 20-minute Q&A sessions, with the children asking many of the questions.

When I asked her her favorite presentation of the morning, her answer surprised me. It was Michael Sander's talk about "Justice: What's The Right Thing to Do?" She explained, when I asked "Why?", that he was clear and very logical and that his topic and talk had challenged her to think about issues in new ways.

Gail Collins filled about 85 percent to 90 percent of the theater's main floor. In all probability I could have seen Dayton Duncan speak in the capitol about the national parks and still have been seated for Collins. But perhaps it's not the quantity of the audience, but the quality. I met Mr. and Mrs. Church in line, as I mentioned, he the former news director of our ABC affiliate station. One of the women at the mic to ask Collins a question was a a former sports writer. The handsome young man in line behind me in Collins' book signing line had just begun, several months earlier, his position as a professor of journalism at the university in Bloomington, Indiana.

The view from our 12th floor room at the Intercontinental Hotel looked squarely down on the middle portion of the roof of the Paramount Theatre. The festival didn't use this older theater at all on Sunday, but to think of all the talent it held on Saturday, including the last presentation by Margaret Atwood, in the space of six hours, including a man who had traveled to outer space and a woman who wrote that when a NASA administrator thought of sending a woman into space the thought made him want to vomit.

Light fog on the grasses, lawns and fields this morning here.

Posted by: laloomis | November 7, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

A nice crisp morning for a hot breakfast with the kids and a quick run through the neighborhood.

Lots to do today - shopping, high school football playoff games, meal planning, the facing the Laundry Giant Planet that's accreting around my stellarly inadequate laundry basket (believe me, there's life there), etc.

Q: Are we saying that Life is a Universal P00p?

Or, are we just Bad Leftovers?

Here's an old Guest Kit about cooking up Life in the Cosmos from way, way, back.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/achenblog/2006/07/bcs_cosmic_gumbo.html

bc

Posted by: -bc- | November 7, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

I had steeled myself for a long drive to Belmont but research told me that the beer-making supply store had re-established itself right here in our fair city! Three kinds of special yeasts for hard cider have been acquired. Plus some local honey and some malt sugar. On the list to buy is some ice cream. I want to try some chocolate malt ice cream. Then I will have in a day or so a big chocolate malted milkshake.

On the way out I went into this place:
http://sleepypoetstuff.com/
This place is HUGE! Son of G, take your mother to that place. Knowing y'all though you probably found it already. 55,000 sq. feet of antiques is large. They gave me permission to come back and photograph stuff. Cool. I'm tired of lifting art off the internet.

yellojkt, Joel could start a new religion like Hubbard. Too much integrity, however. Too bad, we could have gotten in on the ground floor.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 7, 2009 10:34 AM | Report abuse

A small heartwarming story to counter all the bad news of the past week.
http://wbztv.com/local/lost.wedding.rings.2.1297192.html

Sunny but cold day here. Some chores to be done. May see if "S" feels like a quick trip over the bridge later on today to visit #2 at the restaurant where she bartends and to take some pics at the beach nearby.

Posted by: badsneakers | November 7, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Good morning. It was breezy and balmy for my walk and is 62 (F) now, supposed to reach almost 80. I still haven't brought in my plants. This is November?

Thanks to all for the risible descriptive phrases.

Leaves? RD, last week I raked a bunch of leaves *into* my yard from the patio. With any luck they'll kill the stickers. Nothing kills the crabgrass. It can be very liberating, having an ecosystem instead of a lawn.

Off again to help at the debate tournament. Aarrgh.

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 7, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Duh. Tired of clean pots stacked on the stove, I'm going to move some rarely-used bakeware out to the garage, gaining hidden space for the pots. Maybe some of it will move to Goodwill, as well.

TBG, we could possibly visit Provenance or Antiques' Row when you're out in a few weeks.

Have a good day, all.

Posted by: -dbG- | November 7, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

I'm doing my civic duty by watching the health care bill get passed (or not) on C-Span. I always thought I'd be bad in an elective office, now I know for sure. I'd be throwing things by now.

Posted by: rickoshea1 | November 7, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Celestial panko.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | November 7, 2009 12:12 PM | Report abuse

New Kit!

Posted by: seasea1 | November 7, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

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