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Down on the bayou (and the Mississippi River)


The Mighty Mississippi in Venice, La. It's a giant canal.


Always forget to pack my swim trunks.


BP didn't read the sign -- "No Dumping Area."


Maybe this is the day my ship comes in.


On Elmer's Island, La.


Not a ship on the horizon, but a drilling rig.


The view from the bridge over Bayou Lafourche, toward Port Fourchon.

By Joel Achenbach  |  May 19, 2010; 11:22 AM ET
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Next: Louisiana seafood, hold the oil


Nice pics, Joel.

And that "Do Not Anchor or Dredge" sign puts "Call Miss Utility" to shame.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

If that sign is located on Elmer's Island, shouldn't it say, "Petwoweum Pipewine Cwossing: Do Not Anchaw or Dwedge"?

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 19, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Killer rabbit attacks snake:

Posted by: Bob-S | May 19, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Kewl photos, Mr. A. But where are the people?

Posted by: MsJS | May 19, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

I've been seeing a lot of commentary about how BP is driven by pecuniary profit motives, rather than high-minded ethical and moral imperatives. Um, so? So what? This is what corporations are for. They answer to their shareholders and do what the Board of Directors and shareholders direct them to do. No individual is a majority shareholder, therefore the moral and ethical character of an individual is not in question here. The executives and officers of BP act according to the financial interest of the company, within the boundaries of the law. That's their job. It is the job of the rest of us to craft legal restrictions such that the company finds its financial best interest in doing what the rest of us consider to be right and ethical and moral. The point of the regulatory structure is to channel greed and avarice so that they are effective in meeting social needs while providing rewards to induce the meeting of those needs. If BP fails to live up to social standards because they are in conflict with the profit motive, then we have crafted our laws and regulations poorly. Blame ourselves, not them (at least, don't exclusively blame them).

Posted by: ScienceTim | May 19, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for more good photos,Joel. For some of us without an ocean handy, it actually is helpful to have the shore pictures as a reminder of what the terrain (aquarain?) is like.

That's a fine video, BobS. I hope Beatrice will pay close attention so she knows what to do should the snake visit indoors. The video does clearly show how astonishly high, quick and far rabbits can jump. The distance to an extra-high bed is nothing to them.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 19, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

TIM! Thanks.

This is why I asked Imom or FTB or Emann to remind of the legal status of corporations and their chief task of increasing shareholder value.

You are right: we created the creature we see before us.

Let the Dr. Frankenstein metaphors and references and allusions begin.

Oh, how I resisted writing WOULD we spell or syllabicate that one?

And, resistance (was) futile?

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 19, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Sadly, I suspect that from this day forward whenever I think of the words "canal" and "Venice" I shall be forced to think of oil tankers.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 12:12 PM | Report abuse

I wonder. Are these razor wire fences intended to keep people from getting into the canal, or are they *actually* intended to keep the swamp monsters safely contained.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Wait, I see from closer inspection that the wire-topped fence appears to be surrounding some kind of government facility located next to the canal. Although the swamp monster interpretation might still apply.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

That also opens up the government monster interpretation, RD_P...

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 19, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

I think the fence keeps the swamp monsters away from the gummint facility, and the gummint monsters out of the swamp.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 19, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

swamp monsters?! i am not afraid. i have a friend in Gamera.

Posted by: -jack- | May 19, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

I stand corrected, Yoki. I should know better than to post during the day.

Posted by: -jack- | May 19, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Highly authoritative source on existence of actual swamp monster(s):

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 19, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Backboodled a bit:

Oh Wheezy! Kitty loves to you, puppies too, and lots of memories. Always too sad, what must sometimes be done deliberately.

Can I now say for the boodle record this: Missing TBG and want to hear some of those roadie tales.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 19, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

CqP's Ode to TBG:

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 19, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Mudge, I will try to channel Alison K today. And, hey there TEEBEEGEEE and crew, Mudge is faxing me John Waite to sing with me while I grade papers and clean my house!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 19, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

TBG has been tweeting her trip, and it sounds like an awful lot of fun.

You're OK, jack, it is just one of those things that hits a nerve. Now, if we were talking the vast bitumen deposits in West Africa, which an Indian company wants to exploit, it might be different. The first thing they want to do with the product is pave roads so that they can get the stuff to markets.

Posted by: Yoki | May 19, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Whoa, you better watch out, jack, or ... wait, you said Gamera. I thought you said Gomorrah. Never mind.

Posted by: kguy1 | May 19, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Gamera. He's my hero.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

As cool a monster as Swamp Thing is/was, he was not a member of the Cognoscenti, or SHIELD's Howling Commandos (the whole DC/Marvel thing).

Sub-Mariner was in and out of all that, and I'm thinking we could use him right about now.


Posted by: -bc- | May 19, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

Fahrenthold and Achenbach strike again:

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for catching my reference bc. I was beginning to think there weren't nearly as many geeks here as I thought.

Posted by: LostInThought | May 19, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

I feel so sad for the people of Louisiana and the rest of the gulf coast. Seeing that photo of the oil rig off shore makes me even more thankful that we will be looking at wind farms in Nantucket Sound soon.

Rainy and raw here today, but the next seven days look great. I planted vegetable seeds yesterday in soil that was only slightly drier than mud, heaven knows how much water has been added to the mix.

Posted by: badsneakers | May 19, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

To Joel and/or his corporate masters:

The penultimate paragraph of that article should probably be updated.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

So true LiT. I am shamefully ignorant of the comic book universe. But I did know that Gamera is the friend to children.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure Gamera would able survive this oil spill. Let's not even imagine what it would do to Mothra.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 19, 2010 2:51 PM | Report abuse

RD_P, you beat me to it. I read the tar ball report when it posted then Joel's update and had a mental WHA???

I'm still getting over the bunny and snake video. Never mind Venice canals, Alison Krauss and Gamera. Late lunches and back-boodling are adventures in surreality, but always dee-light-ful.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 19, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Beaches were latrines
And his baths were spit n lick;
Past tense. Poor Wheezy.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | May 19, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Oh, yello - I'm still with you on the BP paradox but will stand back for now on further commentary. ;)

Posted by: talitha1 | May 19, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Nicer, Wilbrodog!
She's /mourning/ for her couch bud.
Try that again, please.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | May 19, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse


You're sounding awfully Gordon Gekko-ish.

So I'm to blame that Halliburton removed the mud from the well prematurely? Or that BP lied to the Coast Guard for a week about the extent of the spill? And who at MMS is savvy enough to know that BP really is acting in the path that will cap the well fastest rather than at the least cost to BP?

Don't give me the 'corporations are only for profit' line. Corporations are made of people and they can behave ethically or not. Laws and regulations should be the backstop for egregious behavior, but as we have seen in our financial industry and elsewhere in the resources extraction industry (remember the dead miners), there are always people that will hide behind legalisms and the letter of the law while cutting corners and shirking their responsibilities to enrich themselves, particularly if they know others will bear the burden of the failures.

BP and Halliburton have a higher average accident rate and that can't always be corrected by tougher rules, particularly if they are bending and ignoring them already. At some point you have to do what is right, not just what is profitable. I'm rally astounded by the level of BP apologia lately.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 19, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Wheezy's sofa bud
Went out of world of hurt
Her heart, into it.



Orders of haikus
Require biscuits, glass of praise
From demanding gnomes.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | May 19, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Well hey, if Godzilla could beat the Smog Monster, I'm sure Gamera could handle a little oil...

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 19, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

SCC: Really not rally.

I really never understood whether Namor was a hero or a villain.

Iron Man was one of the Avengers and Aquaman has all his buddies in the Justice League. Perhaps we can get them all to join forces. I refuse to be out-geeked.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 19, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

I just enjoy showing off my mastery of the word "penultimate."

Yeah, I think Gamera -vs- Deepwater Horizon is, like, a sure-fire winner.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

I catch pretty well, LiT.

But I'm a much better shortstop.

A question - is anyone looking into marketing bathing/immersion in a crude oil/seawater mix as at health/dermatological treatment?

And if someone on the Gulf coast figures that out, will BP demand payment for providing the crude?


PS, yello, I thought Kick A$$ was a hoot (Nick Cage's channeling Adam West was highly snortworthy), and thought IM2 was better than the commercials suggested. Got all geeked up at the post-credits sequence (Scottynuke can vouch for that). By Odin's eye, 'twas good to see Mjolnir on screen.

Posted by: -bc- | May 19, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Wonder if these guys do aquatic accidents?

Posted by: kguy1 | May 19, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

I can't understand all this anti-incumbent talk. Why just today HR 1297 was introduced in the Congress. What better use of their time could our elected leaders make?

Posted by: kguy1 | May 19, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

I was geeking out at the post-credits also and I had to explain to my wife who the owner of that weapon was and that he was a superhero in the Marvel universe. Which brought on my listing of the main Avengers (IM, Hulk, Hammer-guy, Hawkeye (a lame GA rip-off if there ever was one), Scarlett Witch, sometimes Spidey, and of course, wait for it, Yellowjacket). I then went on to explain whose shield Tony was using as a shim on his particle accelerator.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 19, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

I keep getting this vision in my head and I need someone to tell me why it wouldn't work. There is now a pipe stuck into the leaky pipe that is sucking some oil and gas, but not all, up the pipe. Why not have a similar pipe but with an inflatable tip, similar to the device used in balloon angioplasty, that could be threaded into the leaky pipe and inflated, thereby closing off the leak. The inserted pipe would still have its end open and would be able to apply suction to the oil-gas mix. There's gotta be a problem with that scenario, but the idea's been bugging me for days.

Posted by: Gomer144 | May 19, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Wait, wait! I'm not apologizing for BP. They are operating in the system we (as a democratic nation of laws) control, according to the rules we give them (including the indefensible and unspoken rules, like "we won't really do anything about it if you break the other rules"). I'm just saying that I consider it absurd to be "shocked, shocked!" by the notion that BP, as an organization, will act on the basis of any prodding other than profit motive.

Corporations are amoral constructs that act out of pure self-interest, doing whatever the "rules" permit them to do to increase profit. We may hope that their self-interest is enlightened, but it would be foolish to depend on that. They can impose ethical restrictions on themselves, which are enforced by their Board and shareholders. These days, I gather that the majority shareholders of giant multinational corporations like BP are other amoral corporate entities, like mutual funds and other corporations. BP is a vast machine, independent of human desires and criteria, and I doubt there are any moral actors who have much opportunity or authority to impose moral and ethical standards on the machine's operation.

The assumption and expectation that corporations are amoral and thus can distinguish only between "legal" and "not-legal" -- or, distinguish between "they have evidence" and "they don't have evidence" -- rather than distinguishing between "right" and "wrong", is why corporations should not be granted full status as virtual persons. They are persons in the same sense as a minor child is a person: having certain rights, but not entitled to full, unsupervised, exercise of those rights because they lack the wisdom to use those rights wisely.

Posted by: ScienceTim | May 19, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

"There's gotta be a problem with that scenario, but the idea's been bugging me for days."

Geez, Gomer, BP execs are talking about dumping concrete and golf balls(!) in the hole and you think your angioplasty idea is suspect? You might very well be qualified to be the next CEO.

Posted by: byoolin1 | May 19, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Indeed, I was worried bc was gonna jump through the screen when that hide-wrapped handle showed up...

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 19, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

*faxing kudos to SciTim for his 3:50 post*

I got back from a long (yet highly enjoyable) meeting downtown about 45 minutes ago -- there was an extraordinary amount of traffic going both ways, so the trip took longer each way than it ordinarily would. All I want to do right now is take a nap.

So, I think I will .........................zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Posted by: -ftb- | May 19, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Namor is a more-or-less benevolent despot and hero to the people of Atlantis. His actions are motivated by the best interests of the Atlanteans and of himself; he is not actively hostile to the existence of surface civilization, but he is indifferent to its interests and actively opposes any actions taken by human society which endanger his own realm. He is thus amoral with respect to human society, neither hero nor villain, but more like a force of nature with a pompous speaking style. He will act on behalf of individual humans out of personal loyalty, but only so far as it is of no cost to Atlantis.

But, he is totally hot for Sue Storm-Richards, a convenience which can keep him under control. Like Zeus, he is totally hot for many other human women, too, but the Invisible Girl can pole-axe him if necessary.

Aquaman, on the other hand, is a wimp.

Posted by: ScienceTim | May 19, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

TIM -- boodlebabeluv to you big time with rhubarb sauce on top. We need to reform the oddity of letting corporations BE persons. Weird. Weird. Weird. and WIRED to make some people very rich and very irresponsible.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 19, 2010 4:00 PM | Report abuse

That makes perfect sense. So here is the conundrum: If the accident was a result of their acting in THEIR self interest to the detriment of ours, how can we be sure that the measures they are taking to fix the problem they caused is being done to OUR best interest other than to the extent that it matches theirs? I have been futilely trying all day to make the point that while there is significant overlap, the two are not the same.

Not only have we let the foxes guard the chicken coop, we put the foxes in charge of egg counting and hired foxes with chicken feathers stuck to their lips to fix the coop because they are the only ones with hammers. Their only motivation to fix the coop is in hope that people will put more chickens back in it.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 19, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Wheezy's sofa bud
Went out of world of hurt
Her heart, into it.


/////Wow, Wilbrodog, that is the best one yet!

Posted by: rickoshea11 | May 19, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

JA's latest:

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 19, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

And it's a humdinger, as usual!

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 19, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

*chicken clucking furiously*

Posted by: talitha1 | May 19, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

We must breed tastier chickens. Metaphorically speaking.

Posted by: ScienceTim | May 19, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

So if I burgle a house and get away with it, it's okay because I maximized profit. It's the homeowner's fault. For not having better security. That's the rules of the game.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 19, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

If it is understood that you will not be prosecuted, or fined only a fraction of the value of what you burgled, Jumper -- then, yes. It is okay, if you are an amoral psychopath, which is what corporations are. Problems arise only when we assume that an amoral psychopath should and will be guided by moral and ethical standards.

We do not assume that bears will respect our personal property. Campers who keep food in the tent while camping in bear country thus are blamed for their own mauling. We still may end up shooting the bear (we don't want bears to discover that people are tasty and walk away to share that information with the other bears), but the assumption is that it is the victims' job to be prepared against a known local population of amoral psychopaths. I mean, bears.

Posted by: ScienceTim | May 19, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Re, your 4:44. Yes.

AND, you get your own TV show.

Then again, it's also OK if you don't get away with it because the owner was home, and shot you, dead. Rules is rules, yaknow.

Gomer, I've been bugged by the same angioplastic idea. The problem is, if you form a tight seal, and don't suck hard enough, you'll blow out the inserted pipe. I think that they are trying to ramp this up to a balance point where they can suck enough oil without getting hosed over by hydrates. Sucking is the one thing that BP is good at.

Posted by: Don_from_I-270 | May 19, 2010 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Now imagine the bear is composed of 10 people, each one pulling a lever that operates part of the bear. It's not their fault.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 19, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Don -- your wisdom is a keeper.


Posted by: -ftb- | May 19, 2010 5:44 PM | Report abuse

I kilt the boodle ..................

Posted by: -ftb- | May 19, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Hi, everybody.

Been outside most of this incredibly gorgeous day so I've missed most of the discussion.

Putting my $0.02 worth into the corporation discussion, I would submit they are not amoral psychopaths, or amoral anything.

Having worked at several and either consulted to or partnered with a couple hundred others, I have seen that they have complex multi-faceted personalities that vary upon the circumstances and level within the organization.

I'm not convinced that general statements about corporations, or even about large ones, necessarily sheds a lot of light on the particulars relating to BP and the other major players.

Nor am I convinced that I, as an American citizen, share in any failing of the MMS to adequately carry out its regulatory role any more than I would be held responsible for a person's unlocked car being stolen from the parking lot of a mall that I occasionally frequent.

We're BBQing with neighbors this evening. Must go make salad and a dessert.

Posted by: MsJS | May 19, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Wow. That is a humdinger article indeed. Poignant without being maudlin. Complex. I am very impressed.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Yes, RD, typical Joel.

Posted by: slyness | May 19, 2010 6:43 PM | Report abuse

No, no, jumper. If you, personally, burgle a house you get prosecuted. If you as a corporate entity burgle the house, and maximize profit, the situation may be different. However, the law frowns on persons incorporating purely in order to commit crimes. At least, on a small scale.

I agree with ScienceTim and MSJS about the nature of the corporate beast. A lot of bad things can be said of and imputed to corporations and, in some cases, they are true. In some they are not.

Nice bears.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 19, 2010 6:46 PM | Report abuse

YJ, they're not the same. But the moment this went KA-boom, the corporate interest began to be pulled toward the public interest. Not only is there the problem of losing their market share here in the land of the addicted, but every company involved will see their operations within other countries' jurisdictions scrutinized in proportions dictated by what happens here next. (Terrible sentence, I know, but it's been a long week. And it's Wednesday. Yipes.)

*Tim, I like your analogy. But don't forget...whether the bear goes for the food and/or campers, it's still gotta contend with cars, trucks, and big-game hunters.

Posted by: LostInThought | May 19, 2010 6:52 PM | Report abuse

Soon I shall settle down and read Joel's latest. I look forward to it.

People here, I think, are just flat demoralized by the weather. After the big tornado Monday, followed by a big hail Sunday, severe storms are predicted for this afternoon and evening. Everyone has just given up. Our cathedral church closed at 3 pm, choir is cancelled, the public schools have cancelled all after-school activity and rescheduled two high school graduations - all due to the possibility of severe weather. All this was decided before any was actually present. Now storms are popping up all over the west and central part of the state (not here yet), and I understand that people just didn't want to risk liability for exposure to the kind of stuff we've had recently. It is still a little odd.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 19, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

Wheezy-kitty lovin's headed your way from the frostcats.

I-mom- Mr. F's employer just got a sweet deal on space leased from GM in your fair city. At least it seems like a sweet deal, so it makes me want to ask the question that came up so often in The Big Short "How are you going to @%$# me?" Since avoidance of severe weather was supposed to be one of the criteria for site selection I guess that answers the question.

Off to attend a special City Council meeting. Our small business revolving loan fund has two applications to consider. We are going to have a new business in town! This is our first in over a decade so we may have to celebrate over a beer or three.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | May 19, 2010 7:29 PM | Report abuse

Except for that whole tornado thing, frostbitten, it probably is a sweet deal. Real estate here, commercial & residential, is very low priced for good value compared to most of the rest of the country, and to comparable cities. And I suspect they are desperate to get someone in that GM space for almost any amount of money, even if it is very low.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 19, 2010 7:43 PM | Report abuse

Also, Ivansmom, I have been led to believe that the wind comes sweeping down the plain.

But, you know, in a good way.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Exactly, LiT. Exactly. It is rare for economic self interest, corporate or otherwise, to automatically align with Doing The Right Thing. It seems to require some manner of crisis to accomplish this. Which, perhaps, is why some people assert that such a crisis should never be wasted.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 8:04 PM | Report abuse

I know we've all been thinking this.


Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 8:08 PM | Report abuse

Indeed it does, RD. Indeed it does.

Tornadoes to the south of us, hail to the north of us. Nothing here so far but the tornado warning sirens. Keeps us on our toes.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 19, 2010 8:36 PM | Report abuse

RD, I always thought that wind swept along in a good way, too -- everywhere. Then we moved to this place, where the wind comes sweeping in from the ocean at 45 mph every afternoon, all through the springtime.

I dream of Falls Church.

Posted by: nellie4 | May 19, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

Wilbrodog is, indeed, a good dog. Thanks.

Posted by: Wheezy11 | May 19, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

I finally read Joel's latest on oil & fish, which of course is about neither oil nor fish but about the men and women who depend on both down there at the edge of the continent. I am very glad the Post had the sense to send Joel down there. The article is very fine indeed. He can make sense of the scientific and technical aspects of the problem, and its politics, and still powerfully convey the human story. That last paragraph brought wholly unexpected tears to my eyes.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 19, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Oops, sorry, meant to thank everyone for their good wishes, not just Wilbrodog.

Stay safe, I-mom. I saw a video of the hail the other day in OK - scary stuff.

Posted by: Wheezy11 | May 19, 2010 8:55 PM | Report abuse

I did too Ivansmom.

Just, you know, in a real manly-type way.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 19, 2010 9:07 PM | Report abuse

SciTim and Scottynuke, good discussion on the pluses and minuses of negative action. Reminds me of the long-forgotten coal explosion, and all those $250 fines that piled up unpaid for months and years as the company did nothing to fix the situation and played the system to "challenge" them, delaying when the fines were due.

Posted by: steveboyington | May 19, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

The young couple at the end of Joel's dispatch brought tears here too. Should the boodle buy stock in Kleenex?

Wheezy, we've not "met" but I've sent hugs for you. Wish I had Wilbrodog's touch with words.

Y'all take take out there in OK, okay?

Posted by: talitha1 | May 19, 2010 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Oil has entered the Loop Current. Evidently not too much, so far.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | May 19, 2010 10:08 PM | Report abuse

I figured out why ESL folks talk funny

'Last January, her old car stopped working. She was driving it.'

Edit the above two sentences

This is a an exercise in adjective clauses

Look at that sentence again. who the heck talks like that in the first place. I mean besides it being a sentence fragment

I replaced the period with the word 'while' and the one new sentence worked but the one new sentence was still a bit funny sounding. But Nooooo, you have to add the word 'that'. the rules were you could drop words and move some around but not add any word but 'that'

This exercise is from an ESL study book edited by four women. one named Bitterlin, and another named Savage

Sadists is what I say

I would obviously fail this class cause I don't know what an adjective clause is?

I would think 'when' instead of 'while' would work for the exercise, but it clearly stipulates that you have to use 'that', and who talks like either even anyways

And who says their car 'stopped working'. Don't we say 'broke down'

I can almost hear 'and then it just stopped working', but, um, not really

Posted by: omni3 | May 19, 2010 10:16 PM | Report abuse

Omni, it's a common translation problem. My grandmother would say things like 'we to the store went.' It's even worse when there's a colloquialism or cussing in the sentence.

Posted by: LostInThought | May 19, 2010 10:24 PM | Report abuse

LiT, I know what your saying, but, this isn't really a translation problem. I've helped out with homework using this book before and the lessons are a bit tedious and besides the point for the necessary basics. Let's get ESL students up to an eighth grade level before we toss them in to the headache inducement High School. If you had seen the look on her face, even with two Spanish and English speaking recent High School grads helping

I mean, I make a joke of otro mas meaning another more, but this is teaching to speak like ESL and not English with an accent. I think there is a legit dif

On another related not...

Babel is, well, all to often little help.

Something that should translate as 'and you arrived' babel says... 'and you arrived your'

Vuélvete la luna

is Vuélvete the moon

And it hangs on everything it wants to load and the one thing I want is last on

FaceBook is of course the worst offender.

And don't get me started on Google. So rich they both are. How about upgrading your servers to handle some volume

OK, now I'm really on a rantgent

I'm off. Gonna watch that old time movie with bc in it

You know "Abbott and Costello meet Frankenstein"

bc howls at moon and makes cameo appearance. Yeah, that one.

Posted by: omni3 | May 19, 2010 10:57 PM | Report abuse

i guess it's safe enough to post this on the occasion of the new, new remastered iteration of Exile. if this doesn't make you tap your feet...

Posted by: -jack- | May 20, 2010 12:06 AM | Report abuse

NY Times has a story on scientists' complaints about NOAA being slow to get its fleet to work on assessing the oil leak.

Some oil's now in the Loop Current, so there's efforts to intercept it.

The North Korea-South Korea situation tomorrow should be interesting as South Korea officially accuses NK of sinking their ship.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | May 20, 2010 1:31 AM | Report abuse

Few months back, I was in a taxi driven by a guy who was just helping his brother-in-law who went on holiday. This guy didn’t like driving taxis. He preferred rearing shrimps. We got to talking and I said something about dumping chemicals in the water to kill bacteria that are killing the shrimps. He said dumping chemicals in the water is really not necessary. All you need is just not over crowd them and to make sure that the water is not cloudy. If the shrimps wallow in their faeces, they will get sick. Sounds logical to me.

Posted by: rainforest1 | May 20, 2010 3:10 AM | Report abuse

In China, one woman kills herself every four minutes…..
"…..there's a saying among men that goes: 'marrying a woman is like buying a horse: I can ride you and beat you whenever I like'."

And who was the one who had encouraged such debasement of women in China? The biggest male chauvinist pig of ancient times – Confucius. I wrote a posting some time back about him setting Chinese women back hundreds of generations. I later corrected that. I shouldn’t have. He really did set Chinese women back hundreds of generations.

Posted by: rainforest1 | May 20, 2010 3:22 AM | Report abuse

I don't know how much of the oil spill Joel will get to see. Corporate censorship and intimidation is already happening to reporters.

But NASA can see the oil slick from space.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 20, 2010 7:07 AM | Report abuse

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

Morning, friends. Yesterday a transformer blew so we didn't have power for quite some time. By the time the lights came back on, I was rushed to get my day started, and didn't have time to post. Just wanted to stop by and say hello.

JA, the pictures are nice. It does look like a lot of water. I've never seen the Mississippi, maybe one day.

Follow-up appointment this morning with regular doctor. Have a wonderful day, folks, and love to all.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 20, 2010 7:08 AM | Report abuse

This spill/blowout could end up being the scale of Chernobyl. Vast areas of land and ocean largely unusable for a long time or ever. Death knell for the use of this type of technology. Chernobyl knocked out the idea of that type of reactor. This will knock out the idea of this type of deep well.

Posted by: steveboyington | May 20, 2010 7:11 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, y'all.

Up early to caravan to auto repair with mister. It's a long haul from ye olde homestead.

BCC belated: "take" care to Ivansmom and clan.
Thanks for the links, yello. :((

Glad to hear from Cassandra as I was a little worried yesterday. Enjoy the day everyone.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 20, 2010 7:33 AM | Report abuse

Cassandra!! *HUGSSSS* :-)

steveboyington, I get the impression that human error led to this disaster, not the technology itself. Time will tell.

And may I say that, while an improved house is a great thing, the improvement process is a royal pain in the patoot... *SIGHHH*

*diving-into-lots-of-unexpected-work-this-morning Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 20, 2010 7:52 AM | Report abuse

Good morning all, hi Cassandra! I hope the doctor has positive news and/or actions for you.

Mr. T decided he would get up early and walk, so we were out at 0600 hours. It's a nice, cool time of the day to be out, not to mention a complete discombobulation of my usual schedule. We'll see how long it lasts.

Good luck with the auto repairs, Talitha. I trust everything is okay this morning in Oklahoma, Ivansmom. Scotty, be strong! The mess will be over and you will enjoy the improvements.

Posted by: slyness | May 20, 2010 8:08 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of the dangers associated with advanced technology, until last night I never fully realized the hazards of browsing through music videos on YouTube. In addition to the CCR version of "Jambalaya" I listened to the original Hank Williams version as well as many other covers. (Including a rather rousing rendition done by a Mexican ensemble.) But the version that has lodged itself firmly into my brain and absolutely refuses to go is the classic interpretation by Karen Carpenter.

I said it was dangerous.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 20, 2010 8:11 AM | Report abuse

You've only just begun, RD_P... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 20, 2010 8:20 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

One of those mornings where everyone at the office wants some of my attention RIGHT NOW. Ah, the life of Mr. Wolf ...(hope you enjoyed that flick last night, Omni).

Joel, today's piece is something I hope I'll reread next April. And not just because of the word "agglomeration."


Posted by: -bc- | May 20, 2010 9:29 AM | Report abuse

New Kit!

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 20, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

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