Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

More worst-case scenarios in gulf oil spill

So. Yesterday I wasn't so sure about that Loop Current thing. Today it sounds like more of a sure bet. A lot of this is based on modeling by Robert Weisberg, a University of South Florida physical oceanographer who has a Web site where he tracks the spill and the currents of the Gulf and predicts what will happen next. (I haven't quite gotten the hang of his site, I must confess, and someone who is not on deadline might have better luck interpreting his animations.)

The good news: Sanibel is safe! And Captiva, and Cedar Key, and St. Petersburg beach and Longboat Key and all those other great beaches on the west coast of Florida. At least, maybe they're safe: Under the Weisberg scenario, the oil is conveyed in deep water, beyond the continental shelf, which, as you know, extends very far from the west coast of Florida. In fact, the shelf is as wide as the state. It's only when the oil hits the western opening to the Straits of Florida (also known as the Florida Strait) that it comes close to land, and then it shoots up past Miami and Palm Beach and rides the Gulf Stream to Hatteras and, who knows, England.

Here is my fairly ominous story posted today on all this.


The urgent question in the polluted Gulf of Mexico: How bad will this get?

No one knows, but with each day, as the leaking oil well a mile deep remains uncapped, industry observers and scientists are crafting scenarios that range from bad to worse to worst, with some forecasting a calamity of historic proportions.

Scientists said Tuesday that the "loop current" of the gulf, a powerful conveyor belt that extends some 3,000 feet deep, will almost surely take the oil down through the eastern gulf to the Florida Straits between the Keys and Cuba. The oil would then ride the Florida Current directly into the Gulf Stream, which could carry it up the East Coast to Cape Hatteras and beyond, the scientists said.

"I think it is inevitable at this stage because we're seeing it creep slowly toward the loop current," said University of Miami oceanographer Nick Shay. "If this thing keeps going for two to three months, it'll be catastrophic."

Once the oil is caught up in the current it will travel in deep water for about one week until it reaches the Florida Straits, said Robert Weisberg, a University of South Florida oceanographer. In another week or so it would be near Miami and then in another week at the Outer Banks, he said. Local winds will determine if the oil slathers any beaches, he said.

He said a filament of the current is currently drifting north toward the oil slick.

"The loop current is actually going to the oil versus the oil going to the loop current," Weisberg said.

The oil spill crisis is shot through with unknowns, rough estimates, murky figures. The oil slick itself has been elusive and enigmatic, lurking offshore in the gulf for many days as if choosing its moment of attack. In rough, churning seas, the visible slick at the surface has shrunk in recent days.

The oil by its nature is hard to peg: It's not a single, coherent blob, but rather an irregular, amoeba-shaped expanse that in some places forms a thin sheen on the water and in other locations is braided and stretched into tendrils of thick, orange-brown gunk. There may be a large plume of oil in the water column, unseen. A BP executive said Monday that the company is treating the oil at the gulf bottom with dispersant chemicals sprayed from a wand on a robotic submarine. Oil can vary from one well to another, and oil from very deep wells can be thicker and heavier than that from shallow wells.

No one is sure how much oil is leaking. The Coast Guard initially said there was no leak, then said there was a leak of 1,000 barrels a day, then upped the estimate to 5,000 barrels. Adm. Thad W. Allen, the leader of the federal response and commandant of the Coast Guard, has cautioned against putting too much credence in any estimate.

Ian MacDonald, a professor of oceanography at Florida State University, has calculated the amount of oil based on satellite imagery and established models of oil dispersion and believes that the quantity is already greater than that dumped in Alaska by the Exxon Valdez in 1989. He estimated last week that 9 million gallons of oil are already in the water, compared with 10.8 million gallons in the Valdez disaster.

By Joel Achenbach  |  May 4, 2010; 5:31 PM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Gulf oil spill to reach Atlantic seaboard? [Updated]
Next: Could you bomb the gulf oil well?


reposting from prior kit.

Thanks, Yoki. That does clarify things.

Ranger, if you feel Mudge’s condescending attitude is not appealing, why are you condescending in return with your “Comrade Mudge” remark?

FWIW, I am on the record here as being less-than-thrilled with having Allen in charge. Others on this blog have individually decided it’s not a topic worth discussing and I gracefully accept that. I suggest you do the same. Ramming a topic down the collective throats of those who frequent this virtual space is an ineffective strategy. It’s not personal, so get over it and move on to a different idea.

As to everything being ‘militarized’, there is so much in life that isn’t I can only scratch my head and wonder what side of the bed you get up from in the morning. I have no interest in any debate on the subject. But that’s just me.

Posted by: MsJS | May 4, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Mudged, alas, responding to Lisa Rangeragainstwar's question. Since we're still on the oil catastrophe I'll repost:

Hmm. I thought Mudge was being polite to Lisa Rangeragainstwar, explaining a technical term. I know I was unfamiliar with the military use of "asymmetrical" and am glad for the explanation, which as a matter of language makes sense to me.

Since you asked, Lisa Rangeragainstwar, I think it is important to separate any dislike or lack of respect one might have for Allen personally, based on knowledge of his likely ability or perception of past ability, from the very different question of whether the military and particularly the Coast Guard is a legitimate response group to this disaster. I do not get the sense you have made such a separation.

Further, looking specifically at Allen, I do not see Allen's statement that nobody foresaw such a disaster, which echoes the statements of BP and others in gummint, as letting anybody off the hook. It has been very clear that the hook is present and BP is on it. One may suspect Allen's personal motives or beliefs but there is no evidence that this statement, when made by anyone, may be taken as anything other than a lame excuse.

Sometimes the military, or branches thereof, are appropriate responders. One may object to the increasing use of the military as a response force for non-war efforts. However, the complaint that "everything is militarized" is both too vague and too specific to be useful. I gather from your posts that you believe a government disaster response is required here, rather than choosing to rely solely on corporate efforts. I agree that the government has a role to play in mitigation and cleanup. Under the circumstances I suggest that of gummint agencies and branches, the Coast Guard and, perhaps, specialized Navy and Marine units have the most appropriate skills for deep-sea wrangling. In fact, I can't think of another government agency or affiliate with the necessary skills - mostly, they'd contract this type of work out to private companies. Given the facts of this situation I think these branches of the military are in fact the best-equipped to save us, using the word "save" in the narrow sense I have already described.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 4, 2010 6:07 PM |

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 4, 2010 6:11 PM | Report abuse

To escape (by the narrowest of margins, I might add) being mudged, I decided to tiptoe over here and give a warm, friendly shoutout to Imom for her cogent response to whomever it were what had a hissy fit in the last kit. Hard to keep track o' them, because I mainly ignore them.

I am continually amused by those who hate gummint, yet want all the services (without, might I add, paying for them). It's magical.

And Comrade Mudge, you are indeed worthy of our adoration. Mostly ......


And speaking of *snorts*, how ya doin' Yoki?

Off to fix some dinner. Don't know what yet, tho. Whatever ....

Posted by: -ftb- | May 4, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Didn't have a chance to fully backboodle, so forgive me if someone already posted this, but Rachel Maddow pointed this out on Twitter, saying "USA Today nailed it."

One good paragraph:

"In 2009, the top five petroleum companies earned $100 billion on revenue of $1.8 trillion. That's nearly as much as the $2.1 trillion the U.S. treasury collected last year. It's mind-boggling that an industry this flush didn't anticipate a crisis this serious or spend enough to prepare for it. The industry consortium assisting BP in the cleanup has been overmatched. As a result, the much-disparaged Big Government has had to help come to the rescue."

Our view on Gulf Coast crisis: Why can't oil companies clean up after themselves?:

Posted by: -TBG- | May 4, 2010 6:20 PM | Report abuse

I didn't think it was fairly ominous, I thought it was ominous but fair. You were looking at the worst possible scenarios and encouraging people to do the same. It is only when all the scenarios are thought about, even the scary ones, that people get prepared.

I would like to know a bit more about this "dispersant" that has been hailed by some as a way to keep the oil from the surface. This sounds like a good thing because it allows the oil to, well, disperse instead of being collected at the surface. But I worry that there might be unsuspected long-term effects.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 4, 2010 6:48 PM | Report abuse

I have nothing good to say about the oil spill--but--the Exxon Valdez/Prudhoe Bay involved (at this time) 3 or 4 times as much oil into a very small space--everybody is wondering about the volume of this spill--and it seems to be a couple of swimming pools full into an area bigger than the State of Pennsylvania. It seems likely that the volume of oil may exceed the Exxon Valdez accident--but there are thousands of miles of shore line--the general level of shore pollution will never reach the level seen at Prudhoe Bay. I hope the entire net worth of British Petroleum goes to the clean up--and that their managers learn how to say "Would you like fries with that"?

Posted by: Skerns0301 | May 4, 2010 6:49 PM | Report abuse

I really meant to say "swimming pools full a day" Sorry about that.

Posted by: Skerns0301 | May 4, 2010 6:52 PM | Report abuse

When it comes to interpreting animations, well, these folks show ya how...,14204/

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 4, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

Mudged from the last post. Persona responses to the notes about the wonder of the PACIFIC series on HBO.

See this CapHillWeatherGang blog post featuring three pic of the SNOWMAGGEDON RESIDUES.

Four maternal uncles in the Pac Theater with the Army Air Force; all knew George McGovern as they hailed from the cluster of towns around Mitchell, South Dakota: Woonsocket, Avon, Tobin Township, Ethan. All came home, although the "baby" who is now in his high seventies, stayed in Japan for the Occupation. I just went upstairs to look at the necklace he brought home for my mom, his darling sis. He wrote to her weekly; she passed his letters on to a classmate who wrote him also. Upon return, he married that classmate. I just put the necklace on to think of this all (My mom is gone.) And, I see the the lustreware teapot he brought home for my grandmother, his mom. Too hot to make tea. Still, the object in the house were once in Japan; they made their way to me by way of that generation, a great one surly.

My paternal grandda was a WWI vet who lived into his high 90s. Interestingly, he served with the Kansas Army National Guard, whose earlier campaigns include most of the Indian ones, the Utah one(s), and the Spanish American War. Earlier unit were part of the Civil War. He was a medic.

Dad was too young for Korea and too old for Vietnam. But served in Germany at the same time that Elvis Pressley did. Met him even, saying that his southern accent was lovely.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 4, 2010 6:55 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: omni3 | May 4, 2010 6:55 PM | Report abuse

Thank for the link, TBG. Interesting editorial. The opposing editorial (linked to the first one) is also interesting.

Posted by: MsJS | May 4, 2010 6:56 PM | Report abuse

This is a Boodle Public Service Announcement:

Mother's Day is just five (5) days away.

As you were.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 4, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse


Microbes can help us, as one of a suite of early and mid term solutions:

If it wasn't for the natural ability of bacteria to eat oil we would all be knee-deep in the stuff," says bioremediation expert Ken Lee of the Bedford Institute of Oceanography in Nova Scotia, Canada.END QUOTE

Biologists can help with this eco-challenge. While not an off the shelf tool yet, microbes may be able to "eat" hydrocarbons in the spill.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 4, 2010 7:04 PM | Report abuse


These guys scare the hell out of people but then are not accountable when their predictions don't happen. Last Thursday, everyone was predicting thick crude would be on the shores of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and a portion of Florida by now, and the thing would be covering almost the whole northern Gulf. The only land effects are a few light touches on the easternmost points in Louisiana and now the oil is drifting back away from those places.

The Gulf is tearing this oil slick apart before it can travel very far. The oil is already emulsified when it reaches the surface and then over several days is broken down into a thin sheen that biodegrades or evaporates or just disappears as tiny bubbles in the much larger volume of water.

On satellite photos the spill area has shrunk since last week and on NOAA's daily updates, the heavy and medium areas have not increased in a week.

I am not convinced that the Loop Current will capture much of anything because the oil is a thin layer on the surface where it is still influenced by winds and wind-driven waves that may counter the current. The current has much more influence in the subsurface water column. If some of the oil does get into the Loop Current, I doubt it would even be recognizable as an entity by the time it got to the Florida Straits. It seems like a lot of oil, but it is still a tiny amount in the open Gulf. As long as it stays in deep water it will be beaten and broken down by the waves and sun.

Posted by: jbmindc | May 4, 2010 7:14 PM | Report abuse

That's an exciting development CP. But then we will have all these chubby microbes.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 4, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

One of my very good friends' father was a microbiology prof at the University of Alberta and was co-creator of one of the first effective microbial bio-cleaner for oil in water. It made a big impression on me, back in the day. Now is common, but it was a huge breakthrough in the late 60s.

Posted by: Yoki | May 4, 2010 7:19 PM | Report abuse

jbmindc - you have a point. But, in my mind, I would rather be told the worst thing that could (reasonably) happen and end up over-prepared then be led down a rosy path and end up with a nasty, nasty surprise.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 4, 2010 7:23 PM | Report abuse

jbmindc -- I so hope that you are right, that dilution saves us here. BUT, small amounts of oil in tiny little burbles can still cause problems. So much of what we know as life occurs at the biophysics level.

For example we are just now realizing the problems of microscopic plastic residues in the ocean, sometimes known as nurdles. Some small plastic pieces mimic phytoplankton and zooplankton and are consumed by fish...the food chain implications are serious. Satiaty -- feeling full -- does not equal nutrition.

We are fearfully and wonderfully made as our precious planet. Caution. We must move cautiously and delicately...

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 4, 2010 7:33 PM | Report abuse

jbmindc: At this point, things change by the hour. And there's a lot we simply don't know.

For example, we don't -know- that "the oil is a thin layer on the surface." Some of it is, but what that thin layer represents, or will represent, as a percentage of the total amount leaked is unknown.

Posted by: MsJS | May 4, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse

"The oil by its nature is hard to peg: It's not a single, coherent blob, but rather an irregular, amoeba-shaped expanse"

Instead of all that verbiage, could one say, perhaps, asymmetrical?

Posted by: Awal | May 4, 2010 7:46 PM | Report abuse

Good one, Awal.

Habs/Penguins scoreless after the first period, Habs out-shoot the birds 7 to 4, an unexpected outcome.

ftb? MsJS? Anything to report in your series'?

Posted by: Yoki | May 4, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Lisa, you are entitled to your opinion about Adm. Allen. I myself do not credit him with leading the "failed" Katrina operation; they brought him in to clean up after all the Bushies screwed up so royally. I think he did a fairly good job given the constraints he worked under. As it happens, during and immediately after the hurricane, and before Allen took over, the Coast Guard happened to be one of the few, and perhaps the ONLY institution, local, state, federal or military, that actually did a good job, rescuing who knows how many people from rooftops. So you have chosen to pick on the one single outfit that actually performed pretty well during Katrina.

No, I didn't especially like Allen's quote, either.

Now, if I read your posts correctly, you seem to think "rogue oil" (meaning the use of the word "rogue") is some sort of militarized terminology. In this you are completely, utterly, totally, fully, comprehensively wrong. The word "rogue" has a very long and very full history in the English language, going back nearly 500 years, and in not one major usage is "rogue" military. The one phrase that would leap to the top of the list on Family Feud would be "rogue elephant." Next, one could jump to Tom Sawyerish references to rogues and roguish behavior, again non-military. I'd even throw in pirates, also non-military. I might even jump over to dear Sarah Palin and John McCain, who usually prefer "maverick" to rogue, but probably wouldn't object much to being known for going rogue.

In pop culture and Hollywood, I would opine that "rogue" finds more application in CIA and spy-type movies, where some branch of a spy organization "goes rogue" and conducts a forbidden, unsanctioned operation, viz. Three/Six Days of the Condor. I'd submit that spy/intell stuff wasn't especially military a lot of the time, especially since our common terms of reference often derive from British spycraft, which is notoriously non-military and very High Church and Public School in its jargon, as any LeCarre reader well knows.

You have only about half a point with "asymetrical." Yes, its current meaning is military, but only since Boyd coined it 15 or 20 years ago, and 95% of the general public has no idea what it means, because it is deeply obscure. But yes, within that embedded obscurity, it is a military term. Never was before, which is why you only have half a point.

Dare I suggest that with a handle such as "Rangeragainstwar" you have a deeply anti-military bias?


Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | May 4, 2010 8:05 PM | Report abuse

How come we haven't heard Sarah Palin shout "Drill, Baby, Drill" lately, with accompanying applause?

Posted by: BettyW1 | May 4, 2010 8:20 PM | Report abuse

I'm kind of fascinated by your explanation of the origin and meaning of 'asymmetrical warfare,' 'mudge. I think I first heard it during the first Gulf War, and just assumed it had been around for a long time. That is such a recent coinage is interesting.

Posted by: Yoki | May 4, 2010 8:33 PM | Report abuse

Why is everyone hollering Halleluiahs when the oil spill is heading for the blue sea and away for the shore? Us of the deep ocean love clean water as much as the next surf crab. Massive quantity of oil heading our way is NOT the best case scenario. We find this attitude very littoralist.

Bob the Blue Fin Tuna for the Pelagic Community

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | May 4, 2010 8:36 PM | Report abuse

The Wings are up 2-1 against the Finned Wonders of San-Jose.
Aaack, a fight broke out in the Habs game...

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | May 4, 2010 8:45 PM | Report abuse

Has anyone thought of applying a periodic series of droplets of Dawn to the edges of the Gulf Coast?

Posted by: steveboyington | May 4, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Yup, Yoki. Boyd was working on his theories in the 1970s, and I think the first common use of the term came in his "Patterns of Conflict" presentation to the Marine brass in January 1980.

You might find this interesting:

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | May 4, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse

Here is my personal "Chutzpah" award, to this cartoon. It ran TODAY in the Manchester Union Leader.


Posted by: steveboyington | May 4, 2010 9:00 PM | Report abuse

Joel, to me that animation is showing three things, The direction and length of the little arrows indicate the direction and magnitude of the local ocean currents.

The color contours are surface temps. Interesting, but the impact of temp on the movement of the slick isn't especially clear to me.

The black smears represent new coverage of the slick on the day in question, while the magenta is area already covered.

My guess is that the researcher has superimposed the black and magenta on top of an existing animation, which is fine except it introduces information that could be considered extraneous.

It would be useful to see a zoomed-in animation of the slick, with the magenta remaining black - as the color change doesn't really add anything.

But this is a quibble. This fellow is making quantitative predictions, so hurrah for him.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 4, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Forgive me if this has been covered before, but what would happen if a hurricane or tropical storm were to hit the oil slick?

Posted by: lostinthemiddle | May 4, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Wow, steveboyington.. I can't even figure out what the heck that comic is supposed to even mean.

Posted by: -TBG- | May 4, 2010 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Yep, you said it, Shriek -- our beloved Wings are leading. And now I'll duck because I don't wanna jinx it.

*wondering what to name my pet chubby microbe*

Posted by: -ftb- | May 4, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 4, 2010 9:24 PM | Report abuse

lostinthemiddle - I remember reading somewhere that rough seas produce an emulsion of water, oil, and air. A goopy substance akin to a mousse. So a hurricane would probably produce a very large smear of muckiness.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 4, 2010 9:31 PM | Report abuse

TBG, my guess is that the cartoon is a blunt way of saying that Republicans feel that regulation fouls our country as much as the oil spill fouls the gulf. You'da thought they could have actually said it, rather than use such a horrifying cartoon image.

Every once in a while I need to be reminded why I left the Republican party. That should get me through November.

Posted by: steveboyington | May 4, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse

Of course, I suddenly realized that where I read about that "mousse" emulsion was right here in Joel's kit.

Time to go to bed.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 4, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

Jumper, that link doesn't make for a good bedtime story. *sigh* But thanks.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 4, 2010 9:48 PM | Report abuse

Rachel Maddow just did a piece showing presidents Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan & Bush all saying virtually the same thing - we need to become energy independent. She then showed a long list of disasters, both at sea and on land, involving spills, explosions and collisions all resulting in environmental damage. It was very depressing. We know we have to change our ways but this involves more sacrifice and commitment than we as a country can muster. Maybe, as awful as the thought is, we need this gushing oil to become a mega disaster so that we finally wake up and make the changes in our energy policies and usage that we should have made forty years ago.

Posted by: badsneakers | May 4, 2010 10:15 PM | Report abuse

I'm willing to sacrifice the svelte figures of petroleum-eating microbes. Eat, enjoy. They should live a little. After this spill is digested they can go to a spa, do some nice yoga, maybe hit a microbe fitness boot camp.

Long, long day. Buenos noches y'all, vaya con queso and fondue.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 4, 2010 10:17 PM | Report abuse

steveboyington, I suspect that the dispersant that is being used to treat the Gulf oil (ahem) *is* something akin to dishwashing liquid. Where's Madge when you need that lady to tell me "Relax, it's Palmolive," even when there are *way* too many soaking in it...

What - if any - is the environmental risk of deploying sudge-eating microbes on a very wide scale? [And how would you know if they eat too much and get sick to their stomachs...or worse, pick up a little tummy bug (ahem)?]

Finally, seems to me that this whole situation is too dynamic and variable (water currents, volume of oil flow, weather, temperature, attempts at intervnetion, etc.) to make highly accurate predictions of results far in advance.

As I'd sort of suggested a few days ago, strategic and tactical planning (not to mention contingency) gets pretty difficult when the far end of the "worst-case scenario" keeps moving further off into the unknown. Out to sea, as it were.

If there were some way to cap this thing at the source with the available resources, I'm sure BP and the US Govt. would do it *right now.* The fact that we can't stem this disaster is more than a little humbling.


Posted by: -bc- | May 4, 2010 11:27 PM | Report abuse

It is now Cinco de Mayo so be careful out there. Wouldn't want any one getting deported for drinking a Dos Equis or Corona...

Also. no latin dancing, stick with the jitterbug and waltz...

If you must wear a Che Tee, wear it inside out...

Oh jeez, I could go on and on.

Posted by: omni3 | May 5, 2010 12:02 AM | Report abuse

Couldn't they pump the oil to that place in the Pacific where all the garbage goes and stays? The gyre or something like that?

Posted by: steveboyington | May 5, 2010 12:32 AM | Report abuse


Oil's a blob, a slick, a thing ... inanimate. It can't go rogue, like Ms. Palin. Even though Post copywriters may cry innocence, their choice of terminology (as you so correctly point out, sourced from the heady days of film noir, if you wish) implies, a bad guy.

Only Dersu Uzala can make of oil a "bad man". Oil doesn't "do" anything. We tap it, failingly or otherwise.

Writing for a military blog, I'm pretty familiar with the asymmetrical jargon. My only protest was a small one (and I can understand your fealty to the Post), but writers, and Admirals, should be more careful in their speech.

Again, a semantical point alone, but you guys seem a pretty learned bunch and possibly interested in such nuance.

Posted by: rangeragainstwar | May 5, 2010 12:34 AM | Report abuse

p.s.-- Mudge says:

Dare I suggest that with a handle such as "Rangeragainstwar" you have a deeply anti-military bias?

Au contraire. The title refers to the blog, which is anti - War on Terror, or whatever it's called today. Some wars are righteous (or whatever you wish to call them); the phony war on terror was discretionary and ill-chosen.

Posted by: rangeragainstwar | May 5, 2010 12:39 AM | Report abuse

Oh no, tell me it isn't true. Frontbenchers for Labour and Liberal Democrats want to ban Page 3.

Posted by: omni3 | May 5, 2010 12:49 AM | Report abuse

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
  A stately pleasure-dome decree:
  Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
  Through caverns measureless to man
    Down to a sunless sea.
  So twice five miles of fertile ground
  With walls and towers were girdled round:
  And here were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
  Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
  And here were forests ancient as the hills,
  Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.

  But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted
  Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover!
  A savage place! as holy and enchanted
  As e'er beneath a waning moon was haunted
  By woman wailing for her demon-lover!
  And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,
  As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,
  A mighty fountain momently was forced:
  Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst
  Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail,
  Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher's flail:
  And 'mid these dancing rocks at once and ever
  It flung up momently the sacred river.
  Five miles meandering with a mazy motion
  Through wood and dale the sacred river ran,
  Then reached the caverns measureless to man,
  And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean:
  And 'mid this tumult Kubla heard from far
  Ancestral voices prophesying war!         

Posted by: omni3 | May 5, 2010 2:17 AM | Report abuse

Rangeragainstwar - The 'mudgeon doth protest way too much. It was, in fact, a silly & inappropriate use of "asymmetric", and you done good by pointing that out. It's unseemly (at least for folks my age or older) to indulge in strenuous verbal gymnastics to try to defend it.

As has been pointed out before, the comfort of familiarity can sometimes lead to the sin of insularity. I think there are some (legitimately developed) sensitivities hereabouts that get triggered a bit too quickly sometimes. F 'em if they can't take a joke!

Posted by: Bob-S | May 5, 2010 4:33 AM | Report abuse

"Inappropriate" is, well, inappropriate.

It was strained, and therefore silly. Many better adjectives, and vastly many better metaphorical images, were available.

But it wasn't any more inappropriate than any of a number of things done and/or said by any of a number of high-ranking muckety-mucks over the past few centuries.

Posted by: Bob-S | May 5, 2010 4:45 AM | Report abuse


please do us all a favor and push that gimp Krauthammer off the deck of the M.M.S. Wapo

Posted by: friedtoad | May 5, 2010 5:03 AM | Report abuse

I take it that this joke would make no sense in Canada.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 5:54 AM | Report abuse

In my 9:04 last night I don't think I was very clear (it happens). My interpretation is that the black portion is the location of the oil slick on each day, while the magenta is where it has already been.

I don't like the magenta because it is unclear if this is a location that still has oil, or if it is a location that used to have oil but now doesn't.

This is why I would like to just see the actual extent of the oil slick on each day in black and get rid of the confusing magenta. Where the oil slick has been is evident from the motion.

But, like I said, a quibble.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 5, 2010 6:54 AM | Report abuse

RD, you're up early this morning!

Good morning to you, and everybody else! Hi Cassandra!

Ham biscuits, a mixed fruit bowl, and appropriate (ha!) hot and cold beverages on the ready room table.

Posted by: slyness | May 5, 2010 7:04 AM | Report abuse

The animation is interesting because the tendrils are widening east and west while skimming the lower Mississippi delta. rather than acting like a weather pattern that follows a fixed trajectory, it is spreading, which in the long run is going to affect a lot more area.

I fully expect a "Gee, it's not so bad, what were you scaring us about?" talking point if the spill is contained or if it takes weeks to wash ashore.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 7:25 AM | Report abuse

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

Morning, friends. RD!Slyness! A little surprise to see RD so early, but not you, Slyness. And the table sounds delicious! Thanks a bunch.

Today is Wednesday. I'm fixing the snacks for the Bible study now. I hope someone will come and join me. The lady that usually comes is still recuperating. I saw her Saturday with her grandson and she asked me if I was still doing the Bible study.

Have a wonderful day, folks, and love to all.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 5, 2010 7:27 AM | Report abuse

ecosystem dynamics:

not too good, especially in consideration of BP's new position that 60K gallons per day may be lost from this well, and more stories about the companies lack of foresight. harumph.

Posted by: -jack- | May 5, 2010 7:39 AM | Report abuse

Alas ... the Wings lost last night in overtime after having led 3-1 in the third period. I suspect they will not be able to win 4 in a row. I'm currently adjusting my emotions along side of my expectations.

But the worse news is that Ernie Harwell died this morning at the age of 92. For baseball fans everywhere, this was expected but definitely not wanted -- ever! He died from bile-duct cancer. His voice on the radio calling the Tigers games (and all the teams that came before) was a voice like no other. Hard to explain if you've never heard it. A true, true loss -- not only to the State of Michigan, but to baseball and all people everywhere who admire good, honest people. A great radio voice doesn't hurt, either.

*hand on heart for Ernie Harwell*

Posted by: -ftb- | May 5, 2010 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, tea party leaders are fighting the perception that they are a haven for racists.

There is some saying about fleas and laying down with running dogs, but I can't quite remember it correctly right now. Perhaps some teabagger can jog my memory.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

an editorial regarding how we tend to disregard the hazards of coastal oil drilling and transport, and the unfortunate value of hindsight:,0,2972258.story

plus, the Dept. of the Interior gave BP a pass on a key environmental impact study, concluding that a catastrophic spill in the gulf was unlikely. wow.

Posted by: -jack- | May 5, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

3-yr plus lurker coming out to say thanks to -ftb- for the kind words about Ernie Harwell. Knowing the end is near doesn't make it any easier when it comes. Michigan is sad today - moreso than usual.

On a much brighter note, our President will speak at a local (to me) high school graduation next month.

Posted by: Enterprise1701 | May 5, 2010 9:19 AM | Report abuse

Posted without comment:

Posted by: slyness | May 5, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

I'm so impressed that everyone here seems so interested and engaged on the oil leak story. This thing could have such a devastating impact, and there's so little I personally can do about it, that I can barely read about it. How do you do it?

Posted by: Raysmom | May 5, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

The other day we had snow_crash leave a comment and now we have heard from Enterprise1701. The Achenblog has the coolest (read 'geekiest') lurkers in the universe.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

My wife voted in that pick-a-high-school contest for Obama to speak at. I forget who she voted for, but I'm glad Kalamazoo won. I love that Obama does these inspirational public appearances.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

Ah heck, I'm usually up early. You know, slopping the lifestock and stuff. It's just I usually don't post in the morning unless I wake up in the middle of the night realizing I said something confusing.

Which really should happen more often.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 5, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

The government needs to be aware of the worst-case scenarios in order to manage and mitagate to prevent them. That does not mean that the media should hyperventilate about the worst-case scenarios to the public.
People are cancelling fishing vacations in western Louisiana where there is zero threat of oil crossing the Mississippi River current. People are cancelling vacation rentals all along the Florida Gulf Coast where the chance of any oil impact is still very minimal. Now you are going to have people cancel vacations on the East Coast of Florida because of the unlikely Loop Current scenario.
In the meantime, every media outlet keeps showing pictures of dead sea turtles and implying thata they were killed by oil exposure when they almost certainly were killed as bycatch in shrimp nets at least 30 miles from any oil. Dead turtles washing up on shore is an annual event a few days after shrimping season opens.
The federal waters near the oil spill are closed to fishing and shrimping, but the state waters (3 miles from shoreline) in Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida are still open because their still is no oil within 20 miles of shore, and all the waters to the west and east of the threat area are still open, but no one is going to buy Gulf seafood because the media hasn't explained that the impact to date is still relatively minor.

Posted by: jbmindc | May 5, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

*Saluting Enterprise1701* Welcome.

Good morning, Boodle. Another cold snowy day here. *Sigh*

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

As I said the other day, jbmindc, you do have a point. There is often a tendency for some journalists to whip a story. The classic example is snowfall, where the smallest indication of frozen precip can turn into a grim disaster sending thousands to the store to stock up on perishables. Or Y2K. Which is why a friend of mine still has a stock of military RTEs in his basement. There is such a thing as shouting fire in a crowded movie theater.

But what if there is a fire? Or, what if many experts predict that the smoke you smell might actually be something to worry about?

I assert that journalists have an ethical duty to report all reasonable scenarios honestly. Once a reporter, I suggest, starts to filter coverage then the news becomes akin to propaganda.

This is where journalistic reputation comes in.

This isn't just some anonymous member of the faceless "media" reporting these things. This is Joel Achenbach we are talking about. Someone who has earned the right to yell whatever he thinks is best, and earned the right to be listened to.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 5, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

"Go For A Swim, The Oil's Not Here. Yet." -A message from the Redneck Riviera Tourism Council

"These shrimp are certified oil-free, so if they give you the runs, it's not BP's fault." -The Greater Louisiana Prawn and Shellfish Appreciation Society

"Don't cry over these turtles, some other economic atrocity killed them." -People for the Ethical Treatment of Terrapins

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Just got off the phone with a friend in Baton Rouge. She told me that when the wind blows in a certain direction, they can actually smell the oil. Pretty disgusting. And at the start of hurricane season, to boot.

Hey Enterprise! Come out of lurk status more often!

Cya later.

Posted by: -ftb- | May 5, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse

Happy to be here - I'll just sit quietly in the back.

A little about me...yes, I'm a geek. When The Big Bang Theory premiered, I said "I can relate to those guys". My wife said "in high school you WERE those guys".

22-year banker, married a public school band director, 3 kids, 3 cats, lifelong Michigan resident. Daughter 3-of-5 is eight years old & recites scenes from The Holy Grail - I'm simultaneously frightened for her future and a little bit proud. Summer is about drum corps, fall is high school marching band. Life is good.

I found my way here via the Dave Barry to Gene Weingarten trail. Nice place you've got here...

Posted by: Enterprise1701 | May 5, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Ran across this link in Ezra Klein's column-

and although they're talking soccer, which I couldn't care less about, they're also talking rationality, which seems to me always in short supply:

"After having watched hundreds of games (or hundreds of penalty kicks at least), the team was able to compute what was the best strategy, both for the goalkeeper and for the kicker. Let's start with the goalkeeper. He has basically three choices: staying where he is, in the center, or diving to the left or to the right. In the sample of penalty kicks analyzed, his chances of stopping the ball were one out of three if he stayed put (very good odds indeed!), and below 15% if he chose to dive right or left. Is this how goalkeepers behave? Not at all. Even though the best bet is to stay in the center, the goalkeepers only did that in 6% of the penalty kicks. How is such an apparently irrational behavior to be explained?"

It's interesting stuff and widely applicable.

Posted by: kguy1 | May 5, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, y'all.

Huevos rancheros, coffee and OJ on the table.

Happy Cinco de Mayo!
"The Coast Guard says BP PLC has managed to cap one of three leaks at a deepwater oil well, but the work is not expected to reduce the overall flow of oil into the Gulf of Mexico."

How can one cap a leak but have no impact on the overall flow?

Posted by: MsJS | May 5, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

If the leak were only responsible for say 1% of the total flow, capping it would have no effect until the much bigger leak were taken care of.

My wife laughs harder at BBT than I do. She says that I may live it, but she lives WITH it.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Hee hee. My #1 was the same, Enterprise1701, at about the same age. Still is. In fact, I think she is the go-to source when Michael Palin can't remember an exact line or scene from the movie.

#2 favoured "Anchorman," (at an appropriately later age) a shockin' deterioration in the culture.

They both turned out OK, though.

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 11:03 AM | Report abuse

How can one cap a leak but have no impact on the overall flow?

Next time you are in the shower, place your hand over a portion of the showerhead. Reducing the number of outlets just increases the flow from the remaining outlets.

And don't forget to wash behind your ears while you're in there.

Posted by: kguy1 | May 5, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

I've been thinking all morning about that very thing, MsJS, and I think I've figured it out. The rate of leak depends on the amount of pressure in the system. If you have a garden hose, with two leaks in it, and you stop one of the leaks, that simply increases the pressure down the line a little bit, and the remaining unfixed leaks simply puts out slightly more fluid at a higher pressure. So that's what I think has happened here. They stopped one leak, but the pressure downstream is now a little bit higher, and so the same amount of oil will still come from the other two leaks, just out of two holes instead of three. It was a necessary thing to do, and shows a bit of progress, but they were honest in saying it didn't affect the total flow.

That's my guess, anyway.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Or, yeah, put your hand over half the showerhead, as kguy says.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Welcome Enterprise, boy do you fit in here, this place is lousy with geeks. Not me tho', I remain very quiet whenever things get technical as I know a little about a lot but not very much about anything.

Beautiful day here, the street sweeper just went by so it must be Spring. I'm off to see my financial consultant to determine if being out of work for so long will totally bankrupt me.

Posted by: badsneakers | May 5, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

My befuddlement is that this cap was (I think) supposed to be attached to a pipe that would reroute up to 85% of the oil from that leak to a ship on the surface.

The AP piece doesn't indicate where the oil that is still flowing out is going.

I get the physics, it's the writing that isn't clear.

Posted by: MsJS | May 5, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

I lived in Houston for 3 years. You could always smell oil there, and yes, it was disgusting.

Posted by: seasea1 | May 5, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Welcome, Enterprise. Thanks for de-lurking.

I have a foot high stack of folders on my desk, all to do with the three audits I'm in. Can't wait until we're finished.

Sometimes people rail against techs. I want to highlight a nifty little thing I designed in my head today. It's a special command which electrifies the keyboards of certain users. Kind of like an electrical shock collar or tazer. And when the designee has annoyed the tech enough, the tech can administer a shock. I could use this today. We have been assisting someone who, while hired lacking necessary skills, has chosen to treat us with a minimum of courtesy at best. She should be saying novenas in our praise. I fear we will be called to consult with her in the future. She's already alienated the network guys, security person and two database engineers. So let this be a lesson, be nice to the dbas.

Sorry that's so negative. It's gorgeous here today and I will hit the gym between meetings. Have a good lunch, all.

Tbg, will write later, thanks!

Posted by: -dbG- | May 5, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

When you've got that thing protected, can you adapt it to Magpie nests and send me a couple?

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

SCC: perfected

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Sure, np. If it works on this person it'll work on anything.

Oh, for the days when messing with someones access was tolerated as a joke. :)

Posted by: -dbG- | May 5, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Even Pegoraro is having a hard time keeping up with Facebook's shifting, serpent-like attempts to suborn security. Now they've hidden how to completely delete one's account. But following a Faster Forward commenter's link puts one here

Scroll down to section 3 where it says to "click here"

Better hurry, for they will no doubt change it again!

Sorry for off-topic post but someone asked recently here.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 5, 2010 11:55 AM | Report abuse

Hey Yoki!

Enterprise, where in Michigan are you? I'm from outside of Detroit (born in Detroit), but haven't lived in the state full time since, um, what was that year? IIRC, it was waaaaaaaaaay back in the last century. In fact, I've lived in the DC area longer than I've lived anywhere else. That being said, my Detroit teams (even the Lions, alas) are *my* teams. Even if they, you know, *expletive* up, so to speak.

Anyway, really, I'm of the belief that anywhere I hang my hat is home, regardless of the state, the country, the language or the "cultcha" -- it makes it just easier to hang around, have fun and, if lucky, get good stuff to eat. The way to my heart is most definitely through my stomach, alas.

*now, what's for lunch?*

Posted by: -ftb- | May 5, 2010 11:55 AM | Report abuse

Hey guys! Let's all chip in and buy Newsweek off the WaPo. I figure if we can get a decent three figure offer together, we have a shot. I'm in for five bucks.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 11:55 AM | Report abuse

Hey, ftb! Sorry about your Red Wings (and my Habs).

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

We're west-siders primarily. Born near Sturgis, currently living outside Kalamazoo. Work takes me to Petoskey, Traverse City, Grand Rapids - I'm based in Holland but moving my office to Wyoming this summer. (Not the real Wyoming...the suburb of Grand Rapids.)

Posted by: Enterprise1701 | May 5, 2010 12:01 PM | Report abuse

That is, they really, truly promise to delete it all in 14 days or less, and they sent that in an email to me just now. Here's the EFF on "evil interfaces":

Mr. Stripeys in yesterday. I will blame the Boodle if they are not delicious. (Had never heard of them before.) If the blight gets 'em, no harm, no foul. Yellow crook-neck squash needs to go in today.

The doctor's scales revealed my loss of 20 lbs. Need about 20 more to go away; at least realistically. Unrealistically, 50.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 5, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

I've been in Paw Paw, which is pretty close to Kalamazoo. It's kinda nice out that way. And Petoskey is lovely, too. I'm sure I have a Petoskey stone around in my junk drawer somewhere.

The last time I was on Mackinaw Island must have been when I was 4 years old, and I still remember a lot from that trip. Hope I can get back there some time.

Thanks for the sympaki, Yoki! I was pulling for the Habs, too. Now I think I'll turn my attention to baseball. Or knitting.

Posted by: -ftb- | May 5, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

"I know a little about a lot but not very much about anything."

'Sneaks, are you sure we aren't twins separated at birth?

Posted by: Raysmom | May 5, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

I lost 20 pounds once, but later I found it. It had slipped round to the back side.

Posted by: kguy1 | May 5, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

I was a twin at birth, but I came pre-seperated.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

The End of Civilization As We Know It:

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Good for you, Jumper1! But, having met you, I can say with some authority that it is nowhere *near* 50.

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

the oil spill story prompts me to think, in my usual simplistic way, about the problem this way:

Q. who owns the oil well?
A. BP corp LTD, or whatever they call themselves

Q. why don't they have to clean up their mess?
A. beats the hell out of me.

seems to me if you want the profits from selling us the oil at inflated prices you also accept the costs of production, and that includes cleaning up when you have a spill.

Q. what if they don't know how to clean it up?
A. fine them a $1million an hour until they do and somebody over there will figure it out

Q. should the federal govt get involved in the cleanup?
A. maybe, for a price; send BP a bill for the fed's costs; maybe that would get their attention.

Q. how is is that oil execs and their followers think we don't need govt meddling in business until business screws up beyond recognition?
A. beats the hell out of me

Posted by: butlerguy | May 5, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Welcome, Enterprise! Good to have you in delurker status.

I have a volunteer tomato plant that's about six inches tall. It came up in the spot where I had the tomatoes last year, so I should move it to be among the vegetables this year. I'm planning to put the beans in that particular spot. Maybe tomorrow.

Cinco de Mayo celebration tonight. I understand I'm supposed to wear a sombrero, but I doubt I'll be able to see anything if I do.

Posted by: slyness | May 5, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

LOL, slyness. You'd look like that stereotypical cartoon of a tiny person sleeping under a huge sombrero, only you'd be standing up and walking around.

Anybody ever played with this? Some of the entries had me in stitches.

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Good - gadzooks, afternoon(?) all, y buen Cinco de Mayo.

Enterprise, I'd have to say thanks for de-cloaking, rather then de-lurking. But it's nice to see you in our quadrant, in any case.

Saw some pics of a dome that was descibed on CNN as the one they were going to try to seat over the Horizon blowout preventer - looks like a big white oil can with a funnel in the top. Looked like it was cylindrical rather than slab-sided as in the WaPo diagram, which should make it easier to manuever and less vulnerable to cross-currents.


Posted by: -bc- | May 5, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Newsweek - and the work of all the great people there - are worth a lot of money.

I hope they find a buyer. Should be a rather subdued site relaunch party there tonight - unless they party like it's 1999.


Posted by: -bc- | May 5, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

A million bucks an hour seems like a fair price. That's only about $9 billion a year. It's enough to get their attention without completely ensuring that they'll go bankrupt. Of course, I strongly suspect that they're already gearing up to do everything they know how to do.

I also suspect that it's overly optimistic to think that the US government has any more expertise than BP does (or can access, at any rate) in dealing with this mess.

Posted by: Bob-S | May 5, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Daily microbe dews
hot off the showers--Extra!
potent if you touch

Posted by: DNA_Girl | May 5, 2010 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, Bob-S.

We're all pretty worried down here in FLA, and it sounds like, acco. to Joel, the rest of the Eastern seaboard ought to be, as well.

We don't appreciate politicos, corporations or the military telling us, "No one could've imagined..." Um, that's a lie.

It was a lie when Condi Rice said it about the events of 9-11-01, and it's a lie now. There's this thing called "contingency planning", and it's based on good intel reports and prior experience.

Posted by: rangeragainstwar | May 5, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

I was barely able to keep my lunch down while reading the chat with a Tea Party activist. Geezos-Peezos!

According to him, I and most of the Boodlers are *not* "real Americans" and we're unpatriotic.

*muttering expletives and snorting*

Posted by: -ftb- | May 5, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Part of the foreseeability problem may, I think, be that drilling in such deep water is still sort of experimental. The operators and contractors take their experience in continental shelf drilling, even on-shore deep wells, and extrapolate from there. Most rig/drilling platform builders produce custom designs for specific locations, based on what is known of the pressures, currents, temps, etc.

So each very deep water drilling effort is a sort of best-guess stab, rather than a proven quantity.

This is not an apologia. I should think that essential to design and deployment of these things is looking at the worst case scenario and planning mitigation measures in advance.

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

A very interesting :-) or at least relevant comment of mine just vanished. I hit submit, it disappeared. No message about too many comments in a short time, no "held for review." Weird.

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Hey all.

I got about 2 hrs of sleep last night thanks to my insomnia, so this may not be as clear as I could be.

About putting Dawn in the gulf/shore:

Dishliquids/detergents generally are phosphorus-based, same as fertilizer. Excess phosphorus in open water causes rampant algae growth, which quickly outstrips its other available resources and dies. Rotting algae requires oxygen to decompose, and will absorb it from the water. This makes the water completely inhospitable to marine life, and results in "dead zones" or "fish kills."

Generally this cycle is linked to fertilizer/detergent/car wash run-off. It occurs in the Chesapeake, for instance. Therefore, dumping Dawn or another detergent into the Gulf would have some similar effects and fix one problem while causing another. FYI, any soap labeled "biogradable" should not contain phosphorus.

I haven't a clue what makes up this "dispersant" they are throwing around everywhere, but I hope it doesn't have ill effects.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | May 5, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

I was saying pretty much the same thing to MrJS at lunch as you said in your 2:13, Yoki.

MrJS is far too risk averse to have ever made it in the oil bidness, even though many of his mother's male relatives were oilers.

Posted by: MsJS | May 5, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

This is the kind of bilge that ftb is talking about-

"Maryland: I am sorry but your answer of "I think the political class is afraid of the Tea Party movement. After all, we get people out as volunteers and get them to the polls. For them, it cannot be the same as usual in D.C. A lot of them are going to be unemployed after the first of the year and that does scare them" is really offensive. This us vs. them mentality is really repulsive to me. I am a hard-working middle class American and I don't agree with anything you are saying, and I have a right not agree with you. But you spliting the citizenry into classes of "elites/political class/Washington insiders/liberals" vs "real Americans" is just plain wrong! and that's the problem with your movement.

Liberals are just as American as you are and you and your movement has no right to question people's patriotism or Americanness just because they disagree with you.

Judson Phillips: Yes we do. You folks in the left do far worse. Patriotism is not something that cannot be measured. It can be. And you folks on the left, as a general rule are not patriotic. You do not love this country. You are embarrassed by us.

I hate to tell you this, but those of us in fly over country are the real americans."

What a jackass!

Posted by: kguy1 | May 5, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

MotM, the exact composition is guarded by copyright.

Here's the most clear story I could find about the dispersants.

Posted by: MsJS | May 5, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Except he's right. I *am* deeply embarrasssed by the likes of that a-hat. (Of course, he's utterly wrong about just about everything else.)

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Uh, Yoki, I just now had one swallowed up.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

You could pick about any answer in that chat and find an equally obnoxious display of jack-assery. If you wanted to invent a more ridiculous figure you couldn't. He and his positions are beyond parody.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

It should appear soon, just above your 2:42 :)

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Ooops, no, there it is.

Weird. "Refresh" isn't refrreshing.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

kguy, but they're so cute when they take the patriotic high ground.

Posted by: MsJS | May 5, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, MsJS. Following up on that link, here's the material safety datasheet on one of the most popular dispersant.

I'm amused that one of the main ingredients is a petroleum distillate. Doesn't seem to have phosphorus though, so at least there's that.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | May 5, 2010 2:57 PM | Report abuse

SCC: dispersants

That missing "s" stands for sleep.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | May 5, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Hey, boodle. Could someone kindly tell me in plain English on what site of wapo the interview with the tea partier resides? I am having trouble today with obtaining linkage to your cited sites . . . a first, which I am investigating 'cause I hates bein' ignurunt. Yoki and Mudge, your posts are coming through on a slight delay.

Also, hello to Enterprise. I've been kindly welcomed here. I arrived during a storm and was sheltered by Bob-S. Something about a war. :)

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Here, talitha:

I'm not responsible for the consequences. I can't bring myself to even skim it.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Talitha, go to the front page (, scroll most of the way down to a box on far left called "Live Q&As", click on "Politics: Tea Party and racism allegations"

Also, if you click on the title of the box "Live Q&As" it will take you to the main Q&A page, which you can bookmark. Each day, that day's schedule of chats is prominently posted.

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Somebody please go post something nice on Greg Sargent's new column, at I'm gettin' lonesome over there. He might turn out to be one of the good guys.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Scroll to the bottom left of the national home page to "Live Q&As" and look for the Politics:Tea Party-

I find it amusing to listen someone who lives in Tennessee, which has the 44th highest tax burden among the 50 states complain about taxes and rail against the coasts, where folks pay much more. Tax Foundation compiles figures on state and local taxes. Here's the rankings for 2008, the most recent available.

1. New Jersey
2. New York
3. Connecticut
4. Maryland
5. Hawaii
6. California
7. Ohio
8. D.C. and Vermont
9. Wisconsin
10. Rhode Island

Now, when you combine this with the fact that most of these states are also donor states in terms of federal taxes and funding, you get some idea of who's more supportive of our country, at least in terms of footing the bills.

Posted by: kguy1 | May 5, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Yoki (and Mudge)

I participate in livechats often so I'm aware of the two access points. I just hadn't visited today and, like I said, am having trouble with linkage. *shrug*

Many thanks!

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

OK, who liked the "Total Eclipse of the Heart" number on "Glee" last night? *raising my hand*

And...Olivia Newton John???!?? Never one of my favorites, but that *was* a fun makeover.

Jane Lynch sooooooooooooooooooo has a lock on an Emmy. So, so, so locked.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 5, 2010 3:36 PM | Report abuse

As soon as the episode was over, my wife immediately went to YouTube and started playing the original. Personally, I like the Literal Lyrics version and I know bc is very fond of the Hurra Torpedo cover. Both available here:

Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, Talitha, I didn't mean to sound patronizing.

And .com is pretty glitchy today. Failure to refresh, a bunch of pages locking up...

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Make no mistake. I LOVE my country yet am still embarrassed by things the US does--sometimes. What a jerk!

Ranger, indeed. I do a certain amount of contingency planning. At some point one does reach the lalala I can't hear you stage because you just can't imagine how to recover in a certain scenario. And that's just on a large set of computer systems. It's unacceptable here and it's unacceptable in drilling.

We just zapped the PICNIC person mentioned this morning. Alas, none of us will be available to assist her tomorrow; it'll just be the vendor helping her. The other dba has jury duty and I have audit meetings all day. The network guys will not pick up for her because all the remaining tasks can be done by the vendor. Life is good.

Posted by: -dbG- | May 5, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

I think that what people like Mr. Phillips fail to understand is that some of us believe that our country should always live up to our ideals of freedom and democracy and when it fails to do so we are upset. I do not believe in "my country right or wrong". I want to think that my country is at least trying to do right all the time. When the president says "We don't torture" it should not be cause for laughter. When we promise to do something, we do it. When we promise not to do something, we don't do it and lie about it, we don't do it. That's not "hating America," it's belief in her best qualities.

Posted by: kguy1 | May 5, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, my dear, you are never patronizing.
I'm a bit grumpy at my .com today but never at any boodler! Heck, I'm the roundhead around here, remember? Spell it out for me if that's what it takes cuz I'll never be offended. ;)

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Hey frosti and Raysmom and all the other boodlers who like to watch (good) dancing: SYTYCD is coming back in a couple of weeks! Don't get yer tights and tutus in a twist, just kick back (like, back behind the ear) and enjoy probably the best dance show on television!

Now, I have just a mere couple of weeks to settle my inexorably carppy knees down before I start watching. I keep telling them that *I* will not put them through all that unless and until I replace them with knees that work. And *then* I am determined to learn to dance the Argentine tango.

*hahahahaha* *snort*

Posted by: -ftb- | May 5, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I hit 'submit' before I added that I just read the, ahem, conversation Phillips conducted via "the very friendly" wapo Q&A format. To say he did his cause no favors is my best attempt at understatement.

I shall now go shower with my hand held over part of the spray output for added water pressure.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Argentina, Witch no.1 set out today for a 6 week antipodean adventure in Buenos Aires. It's her self-funded gap month-and-a-half.
Man was she excited. She fried her music player by plugging its USB port to a 19.5V power source. The poor thing was smoking and smelling evil and yet all she could do was to laugh maniacally.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | May 5, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

The teapartiers seem unable to see what is so obvious to me.

Firstly, is a glee they feel about "scaring" people. It's everywhere in the movement: they want to "frighten" people.

Secondly, they enshrine ignorance as a policy. It's everywhere in the movement. Complicated = bad and untrue in the standard bilge. There is an appeal to an illusory "common sense" which of course when examined is in reality a witches brew of whatever resides in a pot of Palo Mayombe.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 5, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

I agree, Jumper, although I'm not sure that witches would be pleased to see "witches brew" as an apparent epithet.

There also appears to be a tremendous fear of learning or *having to learn* anything new or different. There doesn't even appear to be any curiosity about the way things work (or don't) or of any other peoples and/or culture. Not to mention different foods.

Curiosity is a sign of intellect, as is a sense of humor (especially if the humor does not rely on being at someone else's expense, if only to make someone else feel better about his/her self). And, as we all know, intellect is elitist.

Again, *hahahahaha* *snort*

Posted by: -ftb- | May 5, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the SYTYCD heads up, ftb.

I read the first few questions on the Philips chat and clicked away in disgust. I think it was the line about the government throwing you in jail for not buying insurance. That's what irritates the carp out of me with these people. They spread lies that are so easily detectable as lies, yet none of their minions have the intelligence to do so. And of course the only source they would trust to provide this information is Faux News. And if you were to point them to the exact language in the legislation you would be an elite intellectual liberal smarty-pants.

Posted by: Raysmom | May 5, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

btw, is "elite intellectual liberal smarty-pants" (EILSP perhaps?) available as a boodle handle?

Posted by: Raysmom | May 5, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

I haven't had a chance to backboodle so forgive me if this has been covered, saw this at work and it made me smile, then I thought - they could build a big dam/boom on the gulf coast!

Posted by: dmd3 | May 5, 2010 5:32 PM | Report abuse

And we could implant tiny little sensors and cameras in their tails before we ship them there! Shhhhhh.

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 5:37 PM | Report abuse

I did read the entire Judson Phillips transcript. I must say he didn't seem to take the Q&A very seriously.

He had to be asked THREE times what he would cut from the federal budget before he came up with ONE specific idea: Social Security disability.

I'm not saying this wouldn't be a valid place to cut waste and fraud, but c'mon. I'm willing to bet that if most of the Merikan boodlers were asked the same question, they could come up with more ideas than that.

Also, the statement "I know liberals who believe in the tooth fairy" veritably oozes with leadership, vision and inspiration, doncha think?

Posted by: MsJS | May 5, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

"elite intellectual liberal smarty-pants"

Dibs!! because it is just so me (hehehe).

Posted by: dmd3 | May 5, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Off kit relief: Just published, a new book of real student writing lapses that make we teacherly types wince and laugh at the same time.

"The Eight Amendment bans cool and unusual punishment."

"Most liberals are circular humanists."

"The propositional phrase is often an attempt to answer the questions 'where' and when'?"

"Some people do not cope well. This copulation problem can lead to heroine or alcohol abuse. Alcoholism may involve drinking."

Anders H. Henriksson, the professor who nine years ago compiled the best-selling Non Campus Mentis (republished as Ignorance Is Blitz), has returned with College in a Nutskull. Professor Henriksson says “for every student who thinks that Egypt is an island or that the U.S. Congress is prohibited from making laws, there are scores of well-informed, articulate undergraduates eager to learn.”

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 5, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse

MsJs, I loved it when Phillips just answered "No" to questions we all knew he had no clue to understanding, much less providing an answer.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Boodle handles for sale:

Circular Humanist

Tooth Fairy Believer
(tune too, Day Dream Believer and a Home Coming Queen)



Intellectual Spanx

AntiPodian (SD -- funny as in a non Pod-wielding somebody)

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 5, 2010 6:15 PM | Report abuse

I am definitely a 'circular humanist'.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

In my experience, propositional phrases generally precede the questions "where" and "when."

Posted by: rashomon | May 5, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Back when my husband was an adjunct basic US History prof at a community college, he decided to give his students a pop quiz, and gave them a blank map of the US to fill in (one of those put the name next to the number dealies). Very few students could even name more than half, much less place them properly. Canada and Mexico, you'll be glad to know you were located in Montana and Texas, and Puerto Rico had been granted statehood generally somewhere in the New Mexico vicinity. Our favorite though, was the state of New Hamster.

My other favorite was the paper about Carnegie and the "steal" industry. At least the spelling was consistent throughout.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | May 5, 2010 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Rashie-funny, very funny.

My favorite line from a resume, after emphasizing to students that fraternity and sorority items need to worded carefully to avoid the accent on partying is this:

Representative to U-Greek Committee--worked tirelessly on the bong between BetaBetaBeta fraternity and campus administration

Bond? Bong? Spellchecker will not help you with this one.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | May 5, 2010 6:54 PM | Report abuse

yellojkt, these are not funny or clever. They are offensive.

"Go For A Swim, The Oil's Not Here. Yet." -A message from the Redneck Riviera Tourism Council

"These shrimp are certified oil-free, so if they give you the runs, it's not BP's fault." -The Greater Louisiana Prawn and Shellfish Appreciation Society
Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 10:26 AM

The Gulf of Mexico is a big place and the media is creating a panic affecting places that are far from any oil. How is it okay to shut down the economy in places that are not affected except by hysteria?

Would it be okay if people stopped coming to DC because of a threat in Baltimore or Philadelphia?

Posted by: jbmindc | May 5, 2010 7:00 PM | Report abuse

yellojkt, these are not funny or clever. They are offensive.

"Go For A Swim, The Oil's Not Here. Yet." -A message from the Redneck Riviera Tourism Council

"These shrimp are certified oil-free, so if they give you the runs, it's not BP's fault." -The Greater Louisiana Prawn and Shellfish Appreciation Society
Posted by: yellojkt | May 5, 2010 10:26 AM

The Gulf of Mexico is a big place and the media is creating a panic affecting places that are far from any oil. How is it okay to shut down the economy in places that are not affected except by hysteria?

Would it be okay if people stopped coming to DC because of a threat in Baltimore or Philadelphia?

Posted by: jbmindc | May 5, 2010 7:00 PM | Report abuse

I think I could safely say I worked tirelessly on the bong in college, as well. Oh.. did I misspell that? Uh oh.

Being busy at work has kept me from my beloved boodle. First I'd like to agree with Raysmom's assessment of the oil spill: I'm finding it hard to read the coverage and I'm counting on Joel and the folks here to keep me informed in this forum.

Posted by: -TBG- | May 5, 2010 7:19 PM | Report abuse

A bongbond o'boolers?

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

A bongbond o'boolers?

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

scc: bongbond o'boodlers?

(nevermind, and no I'm not now)

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 7:32 PM | Report abuse

The Canucks-Blackhawks series moves to Vancouver tonight for game 3. Series tied 1-1.

Blackhawks Blackhawks Blackhawks

Must be going. Everyone enjoy the evening.

Posted by: MsJS | May 5, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

In other sports news, Phoenix Suns take a stand against Arizona immigration law:

Posted by: DNA_Girl | May 5, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, I read the whole jughead q&a. His MO was to evade actually answering most questions except those from dittoheads. Guess that means he's jumped on the band wagon as a new dittochief.

soon on a wide screen near you on fox TV.

Never mentioned was the right there plain as day pork: agriculture pork, extraction pork, bridge to nowhere pork (oops, I guess that might maybe fall under fraud, nope didn't think so). He's either really smart and like said jumping on a wagon or completely intellectually vacant.

Blue states get so few fed dollars back and pay more in state and local taxes because they subsidize red states lower state and local taxes with fed expenditures in their states and locals.

Blue states are OK with their tax burden for the most part except for the waste and fraud (hard to track) and pork (easy to track but...such a sweat teat for to many politicos who want to be reelected (term-limits))

Red states want to eat their cake and have it toooooo!

Two things I always find ironic is GOP. Grand Old Party. Isn't the Democratic party older? If Democrats are socialist how come Republicans are red?

My mind is racing off on too many tangents now I think I'll stop

Posted by: omni3 | May 5, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse

I liked yello's tourism slogans, and also the Bad Student Essays Etc., thanks CqP, MotM, Rash, et alia (them's lawyer talk). Of course my "offensive" meter is sometimes set at "twisted".

Off to learn a nice solo for a Haydn Mass (May 30, church service, if you're in town). We're also doing a Billings concert that night, not to be confused with Billing, which would be a lawyer performance.

Boy good news: knee still sprained but no break, no torn ligaments. Possible slight separation of growth plate, to be fixed with therapy etc. No more immobilizing brace, much rejoicing. Still on crutches, lots of attention.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 5, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Lots of attention paid is the first principle of care-giving, around here.

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 8:03 PM | Report abuse

OK, I was totally rambling up there.

This for RD_P: Fluffy Bunnies

You know if word of this gets out the FSM may have some serious competition.

I can just imagine the fight now:

FSM waves a noodly appendage and bunny runs away to its burrow den until the coast is clear.

Yeah, these are the kinds of religions we need

Posted by: omni3 | May 5, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse

I seem to be intrigued by odd animal stories today.

Posted by: dmd3 | May 5, 2010 8:14 PM | Report abuse

I listened to a story last week on NPR about the "elusive Palouse Earthworm" being possibly spotted in farmland in Idaho. One farmer spoke about his fears that if the endangered worm is found on his land, he may lose certain rights.

According to the story, "[Craig] Fleener believes the country is moving toward socialism, and any effort to list the worm as endangered is another step in that direction."

I heard that line about socialism and it just burned at me for several days. So I went looking for the story online to see if I could track down whether this Mr. Fleener, who certainly sounded more than old enough to be on Medicare, also receives farm subsidies.

I didn't have to go any farther than the article's comments. (It seems like more of the comments are about this aspect of the story rather than the worm itself.)

A commenter called "Tom B (contrarian)" wrote:

"Mr. Fleener is right, the country IS moving toward socialism. For example, a quick internet search of crop subsidies directed me to the information that an Idaho farmer named Craig Fleener has received $163,738 in direct, and loan-deficiency payments over a 3-year period. Go to and you can do a similar search. By the way, the average annual income in Latah County is about $39K, so Mr. Fleener is doing fairly well under 'socialism.'"

(Maybe I'm grouchy because I just found out that a childhood friend's daughter just had twins and named them Piper & Tripp.)

Posted by: -TBG- | May 5, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

I swear I am not even looking for these stories, this time a grey whale in Vancouver harbour, magnificent.

Posted by: dmd3 | May 5, 2010 8:20 PM | Report abuse

Piper & Tripp, ltd., we hope.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 8:26 PM | Report abuse

Even without being Palin names, they're just awful names for people anyway. They sound like pet's names.

Posted by: -TBG- | May 5, 2010 8:31 PM | Report abuse

Piper Laurie might disagree, but I don't.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 8:39 PM | Report abuse

One last link, I promise, this is an obituary for a crime reporter I remember so well from childhood. A fixture in Toronto both in print and on the radio. The last line of the column says a lot. RIP Jocko.

Posted by: dmd3 | May 5, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

I don't know...sounds to me like the parents like to party. Might as well name them Doobie and Spleef (but spell it Dewbie and Spleife).

Posted by: LostInThought | May 5, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

I wish, LiT. I really do wish that was the case.

Posted by: -TBG- | May 5, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

Or were.

Posted by: -TBG- | May 5, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse

dmd, great links but especially the last one about Jocko. Wow, he was quite a guy, I'm impressed and saddened that he's gone and that the newspaper business isn't what it used to be :-(

Posted by: badsneakers | May 5, 2010 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Yes, he was one of a list of reporters/columnists that made me love reading/listing to the news.

Posted by: dmd3 | May 5, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

I didn't know Sterling Hadyn wrote church music. But very glad to hear D'Artagnan is healing well.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | May 5, 2010 9:11 PM | Report abuse

dmd, thank you for the link to Jocko Thomas's life and death. I feel like I have just finished a good book that I didn't want to end. And you're right . . . that last sentence says a mouthful.

(liked the whale, too)

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Dang, new kit!

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

nope, false alarm
.com is messin' with me again.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 9:16 PM | Report abuse

I also saw that Ernie Harwell passed away, special condolences to ftb.

Posted by: dmd3 | May 5, 2010 9:21 PM | Report abuse

I thought all the 'crazies' were located in other areas of the country, but this piece shows that we have some here too ;-)

No offense to dogs, dog owners or dog lovers. I firmly believe that all pets go to heaven, but I really don't think they need to attend services in order to get there.

Posted by: badsneakers | May 5, 2010 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Oh, no! People names that sound like pet names! (Is that as bad as pet names that are people names?) :)

Sigh. I've had 2 retrievers named Lucia and Tristan, and a current one named Emma. And a future one to be named after Son of G. My dog when I was a small child was named Timmy and cats named Chrissie and Bruce have owned me. Is Cutter a people name?

Posted by: -dbG- | May 5, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

Tough couple of days in general. Makes me think how sometime soon it would be good for lots of folks to snap out of it. I'd like to think that when they do, someone will quote Vonnegut.

You were sick, and now you're well again. There's work to do.

Posted by: steveboyington | May 5, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

No, no... people names are great for pets. Just not the other way around.

Thanks for the reminder steveb... I'll snap out of it. :-) g'night.

Posted by: -TBG- | May 5, 2010 10:18 PM | Report abuse

After living for many years with no other companion, Séamus O'Donnell was heartbroken when his beloved terrier Madigan died. He approached the parish priest with a request, "Father Gallagher, my Madán has passed, and I was hopin' maybe you could perform a funeral for him?"

The priest gently told him, "I'm so sorry, Seamus, but the Church won't have me doin' the rites for an animal. Perhaps you should ask the Baptists down the road."

O'Donnell thought about that, and said, "I guess I'll do that, Father. Do ya suppose five hundred pounds would be enough to offer them for the favor?"

Father Gallagher clutched at his chest and thundered, "Goodness, man! Why didn't you tell me the dog was Catholic?!"

Posted by: Bob-S | May 5, 2010 10:26 PM | Report abuse

'Zackly, TBG. Have you ever met a dog named Fred? If ever I have another female pup in residence, I'm calling her Fred.

That reminds me, my mother was *outraged* when I adopted a big Alberta Heeler from the Humane Society who came with the name Lucy. Because that is the (priorly-installed) middle name of #1.

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Oh, crap. Yanno, when I named my kids Spot and Fluffy I knew I was getting something wrong, but couldn't figure out what.

I guess it's too late now.

And now I know why Fluffy Curmudgeon always such a chip on his shoulder when the kids teased him at football practice.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | May 5, 2010 10:36 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: omni3 | May 5, 2010 10:52 PM | Report abuse

Good evening, all.

yello, thanks for tipping in the Hurra Torpedo cover of "Total Eclipse of the Heart" for me, dude.

On a completely different note, a lot of people in my family have names that might sound made up to some degree (and in fact, some *are*), but we shorten or use nicknames for day-to-day usage. TBG, I'd look for those to become Pip and Tip soon enough. Granted, that may not really help you feel better about it.

And does not a rose by any other name smell just as sweet? [Diaper changes aside]

Had a nice Cinco de Mayo, listened to jokes about how the hoilday is a stretch of the Battle of Puebla, propogated these days a a celebration of Mexican heritage for the benefit of beverage sales. Could it be a Group Modelo holiday, in the way some other celebratory holidays are Hallmark Holidays?

Having heard that, I had a fine dinner with friends and family, and was pleasantly suprised by the appearance of a live Mariachi band. As I was telling a friend earlier, I'm a sucker for Mariachi. I can do some authentic-sounding yells and calls reasonably on time, and the players
(and some other patrons) laughed at my enthusiasm (if not volume). Not sure if the guitarron player who nodded to me was laughing at, or laughing with, and at this point, I care not at all.

Have a nice evening, folks.


Posted by: -bc- | May 5, 2010 10:52 PM | Report abuse

our dogs: pete, bonnie, scamp, isabel, oakley; and, the pups with temporary monikers rocky, angela, dj, allie g, and the other one, whose name escapes me at this moment. just got off the road with the soccer squad. white line fever.

Posted by: -jack- | May 5, 2010 11:04 PM | Report abuse

My grandfather had three old huntin' hounddogs named Worthless, Reckless and Useless. I swear. And they were anything but their respective monikers because they could tree a raccoon or point/fetch like nobody's business. And, no, they didn't live under the porch.

Loved the joke, Bob-S.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 11:08 PM | Report abuse

That joke's definitely long in the tooth, but it seemed appropriate.

Posted by: Bob-S | May 5, 2010 11:20 PM | Report abuse

That is a great joke.

But here's the truth. Himself and I have friends (sort of) who have one boy- and one girl-child. As pets they had one cat and one bird. The cat was named Kitty and the bird, Birdy. I fell in love all over again the day Himself turned to the male of the couple and said, "I'm surprised you didn't call the kids Boy and Girl."

Posted by: Yoki | May 5, 2010 11:42 PM | Report abuse

Ya, I'd heard it before. But as a lapsed Baptist married to a lapsed Catholic I appreciated it again . . . and you wrote it so well I could almost hear the brogue.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

Sonny and Sissy?

'night, boodle.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 5, 2010 11:49 PM | Report abuse

Good night, talitha.

Posted by: Yoki | May 6, 2010 12:01 AM | Report abuse

No giggling child names
for pets; I bark loud and deep--
Why wasn't I called Zeus?


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | May 6, 2010 12:45 AM | Report abuse

Piper Laurie's name is actually Rosetta Jacobs

but then there is

Piper Gilles, figure skater
Piper Perabo, movie actress
Piper Reese, entertainment reporter

I kinda like this name

But I think my favorite Piper is Billie Piper

Posted by: omni3 | May 6, 2010 3:31 AM | Report abuse

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

Morning, friends. Up early, getting ready to make the trip for a doctor's appointment. I wanted to hug the bed longer, but alas, must move.

Have a great day, folks, and love to all.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 6, 2010 5:35 AM | Report abuse

The naming of children is a bit out of hand. Too many individuals looking to find a name that will ensure success for the child. Ya gotta find a name that SOUNDS successful and accomplished... and it'll rub off on the child, I guess.

When we were expecting (and knew it was a boy) I would urge names that would help ensure our boy would be a leader and man among men.... you know, names like Genghis or Thor or Hannibal. I always liked Hannibal... and then the movie came out and the dream was dashed.

My instincts were good, though, as his favorite animal bar none is the elephant.

Posted by: steveboyington | May 6, 2010 7:04 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, Cassandra! And good luck at the doctor's! I have my physical this morning, oh joy. But better that than falling dead of a treatable condition because I refused to see a physician, like my cousin last May.

I hope everyone has a pleasant day. Maybe this will be the day BP figures out what to do about the oil spill. We can hope.

Posted by: slyness | May 6, 2010 7:05 AM | Report abuse

I'm here, and I'm backBoodling, however...

Welcome, Enterprise1701! *third-star-to-the-right-and-straight-on-til-morning Grover waves*

Had my first stuffed avocado last night @ Cinco de Mayo dinner. Meh.

Bears on skates with sticks, up 3-0!!! :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 6, 2010 7:10 AM | Report abuse

Now that I'm caught up...

Media hyping "worst-case scenarios" about a technological disaster? Hmmmm... seems oddly familiar. *SIGHHHHHHHHHHH*

The tea party doesn't realize it's a repeat phenomenon, and can't comprehend how quickly it'll fall apart once people realize we've crested the biggest wave in the economic downturn. *shrug*

*Off-to-a-meeting-not-too-far-from-the-Gulf-but-what-I-smell-isn't-spilt-oil Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 6, 2010 7:39 AM | Report abuse

I've always wanted to have opposite sex fraternal twins and name the boy Hunter and the girl Gatherer.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 6, 2010 8:26 AM | Report abuse

I am on the mailing list of the Tea Party Nation (as well as Media Matters and a few others) and got an e-mail today about donating money to help with clean-up from the flooding in Nashville. It was ver sincere and civic-minded until the penultimate paragraph:

"Nashville is an example of the best of America. When this disaster struck, there was no looting. Instead, neighbor helped neighbor and friend helped friend."

There was no reason to go there.

Posted by: Mo_MoDo | May 6, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

I should know better than to drink my tea while backboodling, but thanks for the laughs. A special shout out to Yoki (actually to Himself) and yello.

Posted by: Raysmom | May 6, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Raysmom! *long-distance waving* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 6, 2010 8:47 AM | Report abuse

This is boodle-related going back to the open Captured By Aliens thread:

Posted by: yellojkt | May 6, 2010 8:51 AM | Report abuse

New kit!

Posted by: slyness | May 6, 2010 8:51 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company