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Where the oil is

Much-hyped (by me, among others) "integrity test" of the Macondo well has been delayed, pushing off what seemed to be a credible hope for shutting down the "nightmare well." Here's my story. Why'd they delay it? Don't know. They didn't say. I'll try to find out. Maybe nervous? The feds may think it's too dangerous. Might just be due dilgence or it could be a genuine philosophical schism betwixt feds and BP over the best way to proceed. Adm. Allen calls the shots but he's got a team of scientists in there who may want to ponder this before they pull the trigger.

In the meantime, here's a piece I wrote that ran in the health/science section, on the gulf's geology and why there's so much oil there.


In the oil business, geologists tell stories. Here was a river, they will say. Here was a shallow sea. Here is where the sea dried up and left only salt. Here is where the sea formed anew, and widened, and deepened, and where sediments from another river, and the carcasses of microorganisms, were deposited, buried, baked, until finally -- the enchanting payoff of the story if you're an eager-beaver oil executive -- the organic matter turned into oil.

The Gulf of Mexico is full of such stories. Unfortunately, the story of one well, named Macondo, drilled by the rig Deepwater Horizon, has turned into a tragedy.

The geology of the gulf is pretty close to perfect for the creation of oil reservoirs. There are salt sheets and domes that form impermeable caps on oil fields. There are abundant rock formations that have been deformed into hump-shaped strata known as anticlines, natural traps for oil.

"It traps oil and gas beautifully," said Roger Anderson, a Columbia University geophysicist who has long studied Gulf of Mexico geology.

Anderson compares the deep-water gulf to Texas and Oklahoma more than a century ago. The "oil patch" had its famous moments, such as the Spindletop gusher in Beaumont, Tex., in 1901, which blew out at 100,000 barrels (4.2 million gallons) per day, and the Wild Mary well, which spewed out of control for 11 days in Oklahoma City in 1930. That region still produces, but there aren't many big discoveries still to be made in the pincushioned ground.

Not so the deep water. There's oil out there, in reservoirs that can top a billion barrels.

"It's like the old days. It's true frontier," Anderson says.

It's not the only such place in the world. There's abundant oil in deep water off the coasts of Brazil and West Africa, for example. But the gulf has its own near-unique geology, shaped by the great river that flows into it. The Mighty Mississippi, the Father of Waters, drains almost everything from the Rockies to the Appalachians. Millions of years ago, the Red River, which forms part of the Texas/Oklahoma border, was as big as the Mississippi. These rivers dumped dead organisms into the gulf in prodigious quantities.

Those nutrients help feed thriving ecosystems and some of the richest fisheries in the world. But the gulf is also an isolated sea, almost walled off from the Atlantic Ocean by Cuba and the Florida and Yucatan peninsulas. That means the gulf lacks the deep-water circulation of open ocean.

Bad circulation means lots of anoxic layers, dead zones, places where there's so little oxygen that organic matter doesn't decay. That's great for the eventual creation of an oil field.

"What oil and gas is is undecayed dead organisms. Microorganisms, not dinosaurs. So the small foraminifera and algae that lived in the ocean and lived in the Mississippi River died and got swept out to sea and got buried under all the mud coming out of the Mississippi. As it got deeper and deeper, it got hotter and hotter and got cooked into oil," Anderson said.

Ken Deffeyes, a retired Princeton geologist who once worked for Shell Oil and has written about the gulf, said, "The Mississippi Delta and the Niger Delta are the only two really productive, big deltas in the world. The Amazon, nothing. The Ganges, nothing or very, very little."

The geology story has been unfolding for more than 40 million years, to the very origin of the gulf as a rift in the crust of the Earth. The gulf is widening to this day. Cuba is sliding away from Texas. The Yucatan peninsula is retreating from Louisiana. At its deepest point, the Gulf of Mexico is more than 12,000 feet deep.

[Click here to keep reading.]

By Joel Achenbach  |  July 14, 2010; 8:18 AM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Will they shut in the gulf oil well?
Next: Battle plans and contact with enemy


Maybe nervous, that is good enough for me.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Somewhat ironic that I was semi-'Mudged on this:

Back from hiatus, it’s “In Search Of… ‘Mudge!”

Before NukeSpawn headed for home, we had to have lunch. We found ourselves in a Five Guys near the Anacostia. I told the spawn I’d heard on the Boodle this was the place where President Obama had bought lunch for his staff at one point.

“Boodle?” the young lady at the counter said. “Why is everybody talking about a Boodle today?”

“Who else said that?” I asked.

“Oh, this nice older guy,” she said, smacking her gum. “Looked like Robert Redford, only not so tall. He asked for some drink called a cap-ree-heen-ah, said his scurvy was acting up or something.”

‘Mudge!!! “When was this, where is he??!??!”

“Oh, he left just before you got here,” she said. “He got all huffy that we didn’t serve that drink, said something about taking a vacation with a jersey cow, I think.”

Dashing outside, all I could see was a trail of salt water taffy wrappers in the direction of Union Station.

I went back inside, where NukeSpawn was studiously studying the ceiling and doing her best “He’s not with me” pose. “Could he have said New Jersey?” I asked the server.

“Yeah, that was it, a night in a fort in New Jersey.”

“A fortnight in New Jersey, maybe?”

“You talk funny, mister. Just like that guy – you two cousins?”

“Only through a guy named Joel,” I said as I grabbed the spawn and headed for the station…


And separately, interesting results from an OPM survey of government drones:

*whistling tunelessly* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 14, 2010 8:54 AM | Report abuse

This is a great article. It serves as a wonderfully poetic and contemplative counterpoint to the frenetic tone of this crisis.

Stories like this remind me of how dependent much of our civilization is on the contingencies of geology. Just as the location of our cities and borders have been greatly influenced by the vagaries of the planet, so to, it seems, has our technology.

I mean, what if we lived on a planet where oil had never formed? How would things be different? I refuse to believe that in such a world we would all be commuting to work on horses. I assert we would have found another path.

Which implies that we can certainly expect to find a way to thrive in a post-oil world.

Of course, most people know this. On that dark day when there is no more oil most people assume we will find a way forward. But why must we wait until all the oil is actually gone before doing this? Especially given the many well-publicized hazards if Oil Addiction?

Why can't we just, you know, pretend that the oil has run out and start the process early. That we absolutely must squeeze every ounce of oil from the earth before doing this seems like a profound lack of imagination.

It's like refusing to go on a diet because, you know, there's still some ice cream left in the freezer.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 14, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

ponder this before they pull the trigger

A good thought-for-the-day candidate.

"There are no records of a critical safety test supposedly performed during the fateful hours before the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico.
They went down with the rig.

While some data were being transmitted to shore for safekeeping right up until the April 20 blast, officials from Transocean, the rig owner, told Congress that the last seven hours of its data are missing and that all written logs were lost in the explosion." NBC 5/15

As the relief well is now just four feet away, it seems like pressurizing the blown out well, whether or not it is done slowly, might be risky to both. Just a guess.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 9:03 AM | Report abuse

Oh sure Scottynuke. But do you have access to your very own black helicopter? I should say not.

Although, now that I think about it, neither do I.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 14, 2010 9:04 AM | Report abuse

Don't make me mention the coffee, RD_P... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 14, 2010 9:06 AM | Report abuse

Hmmmmmm. I posted the link to Joel's geology piece in yesterday's boodle and it was ignored. Next time I'll have a trumpet fanfare. Great piece and one I can better understand and relate to than the "mechanics of oil containment" articles.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 9:08 AM | Report abuse

shrink - As I wrote before, if somehow oil and gas should start to enter the relief well prematurely this wouldn't be such a big deal. They can shut this down at the rig.

And that critical safety tests weren't performed before has no real bearing on this. It's like asserting since your mechanic didn't check your tire pressure before it means you are incapable of checking your power fluid levels today.

The real issue is what Joel mentions. They aren't sure if this will cause more surface leaks. It's a recognition of uncertainty.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 14, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Now your just being a meanie ScottyNuke...

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 14, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Nowhere near as mean (and petty and stupid) as these jackholes, RD_P...


Posted by: Scottynuke | July 14, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Uncertainty, lets go with that.

I am also worried about yello and ABC syndrome, which can be debilitating. I recommend more beer, fewer castles or, since he is in the gegend, Spyer, my favorite town in Germany.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Scotty, the crazier the Tea wing of the Republican Party gets, the better.

Moderates win the major elections. Look at Scott Brown who tacked left after he got elected, in a desperate effort to get reelected

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 9:29 AM | Report abuse

Scotty, re that OPM survey, you're showing off. Not that I blame you.

Posted by: slyness | July 14, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Oh, Lord have mercy...

Scotty, they just put the wrong picture on that billboard. It should have read "Tea Party Follow-Like-Sheepism" and had Sarah Palin's picture.

Posted by: Raysmom | July 14, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Who, me, slyness? :-)

Yes, Raysmom, I believe that would have been far more appropriate... *L*

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 14, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Scotty, loved your tale about an almost-Mudge siting. The survey you linked to was also 'very interesting'. RD, as usual, you are right on target, why indeed can't we pretend the oil is gone? Too much work for the lazy citizens?

I am going to clean my house today. This involves a very wet tank top, fans, A/C in the living room, extra iced coffee and beating myself with a wet towel to keep me going. I prefer this weather to last year's wet and chilly summer, but I am getting a bit testy. The Rose of Sharon are blooming three weeks early and I heard the crickets/cicadas, whatever they are chirping two nights ago, also three weeks early. We got rain last night and should get more today, which would be nice as we have mandatory water restrictions here so the lawn has been suffering.

Posted by: badsneakers | July 14, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

For Bastille Day, audio clip of Sousa playing the French national anthem:

La Marseillaise, by Claude Rouget de Lisle, and recorded in 1898.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | July 14, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Oh, how could I forget to comment on Joel's story. I loved it for its clear explanation for the unscientific minded of how oil deposits formed and how they are found in deep ocean areas.

I am so sick of the Tea Party and all it stands for and all its stupidity that I refuse to even read articles about it anymore. Reactionary kneejerk carp, all of it.

Posted by: badsneakers | July 14, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Thinking of Cumberland Island, when I visited the Waldseemüller Map exhibit at the Library of Congress, one of the other items on display was a small book in the Timucuan language. It was for use by Spanish priests and brothers on the coast of Guale, present-day Georgia. I wish, by the process that turned Cayo Hueso into Key West, that Guale had turned into the American state of Wally.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | July 14, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Freezing (kidding) here on the left coast this morning. Had to put a cover on about 4 AM. Actually only 48 now. Going on to 96 this afternoon.

Posted by: bh72 | July 14, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

badsneaks as I was driving around the other day I noticed all the Rose of Sharon in bloom, and thought don't they normally bloom in August?

CP - Sousa playing the Marseilles, now you are just messing with me :-)

Posted by: dmd3 | July 14, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Loved the Marseilles, CqP. Mister was up playing it on the danged fife at 6:30!

DotC, the folks from a lovely Georgia town I know might be averse to Waleska, Wally!

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

dmd, yes, I always associated the RofS bloom with the waning of summer, bittersweet. This summer has me very confused ;-)

Posted by: badsneakers | July 14, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

"BP says it temporarily halted drilling on a relief well meant to permanently plug its Gulf of Mexico oil leak. Kent Wells, a senior vice president in the company, said at a Wednesday morning news briefing they were delaying drilling by up to 48 hours on the well that is supposed to reach the broken one underground and plug it with mud and cement."

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Again this year the French Embassy failed to invite me to their famous "Garden Party du 14 juillet". Yes, it is pronounced "gardène parté". I'm starting to take it personnally.

La marseillaise's "Qu'un sang impur abreuve nos sillons" (May be an impure blood water our furrows) always makes me cringe.
Bad boy Serge Guinsbourg 1980's reggae version:

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | July 14, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Completely off-topic, I have to rant about one of my employees who has to debate over the merits of anything I ask him to do. I rant here rather shout at him "just (bleeping) do it!!!"

Posted by: Raysmom | July 14, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Neglected to mention earlier that I enjoyed this piece Joel.

Heads up for SciTim - car rental issues in Newfoundland - plan early.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 14, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Raysmom, as you know, some people bind anxiety in this way, the on the one hand, but on the other hand method of avoiding a decision. As a therapist, you can imagine how dreadful listening to that becomes, in psycho babble it is called doing and undoing. It is the core defense of the obsessive compulsive personality, but perhaps a little less obviously, we see it commonly with narcissistic character pathology. I don't know why I am posting this, maybe I shouldn't, some people find this kind of post preachy and suspect the writer of attention seeing. On the other hand, a lot of people find psychology interesting. But on the other...

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Hey everyone! Just a brief drive-by.

Raysmom (and other fans), you know that SYTYCD is on tonight. It's not going to be quite so appealing with Alex on crutches, but they promised to bring him back next season, which helps both him and us. Not sure who to root for now, but I do like the two women who are left. Among the guys, meh -- I don't know. The contemporary guys seem to be interchangeable, although I think Kent doesn't quite to seem he's preteen anymore. Billy's mannerisms are starting to annoy me. We'll see.

Gotta do stuff now, so I'm off until later. Toodley Boodley

Posted by: ftb3 | July 14, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Shrink, is that the "octopus" form of issue delineation?

Posted by: ftb3 | July 14, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Algae is renewable, does not affect the food channel and consumes CO2. To learn more about the fast-track commercialization of the algae production industry, you may want to check out the National Algae Association. Their engineering consortium has just come up with the design, schematics, CAPEX and OPEX to build 100 acre algae production facilities in the US using alot of off the shelf existing technologies.

Posted by: fatalgae | July 14, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Algae is renewable, does not affect the food channel and consumes CO2. To learn more about the fast-track commercialization of the algae production industry, you may want to check out the National Algae Association. Their engineering consortium has just come up with the design, schematics, CAPEX and OPEX to build 100 acre algae production facilities in the US using alot of off the shelf existing technologies.

Posted by: fatalgae | July 14, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Sorry for the delay ftb3, I was watching the food channel to see if it really was not affected by algae.

I am drawing a blank on the octopus reference. I'd like to answer, but I can only guess at what you meant.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Howdy y'all and a Happy Bastille Day to the Boodle. I had planned to storm some barricades today, but I slept late and missed the cool of the morning, such as it was. Now it is very hot and will get worse. I'm afraid that storming the barricades in such weather might be hazardous, dangerous even. Thus I have to wait until this evening. By the time dinner is cooked and dishes are done and chores finished, I'm afraid I may be a little tired for barricade-storming. However, I'll do my best. After all, it is important to celebrate holidays properly.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 14, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Paul the octopus from the W.C. ? As opposed to DNA_Girl's Paul the squid from her poem last evening.

Ya beat me to the food channel reference, shrink.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

In protest I point out I termed Joel's article "sterling" yesterday at 10:33 a.m.

There should be no worry about the wild well blowing out the relief well because the relief well is full of heavy mud, whereas the wild well blew out because they removed the mud. In addition I suspect some overzealous employee has hidden the transmitted test info. But that's just speculation.

shrink, your feedback on the ornery employee touched on a phenomenon I've been thinking about recently. The know-it-all employee who is convinced from day one that only he is smart enough to come up with a new, better, more efficient way of doing things. When I was young I was guilty, as young 'uns often are. Later, I began to spot the syndrome when it appeared. Often, the employee is right. Not often enough, though. In the most blatant case, the kid was just a jackhole. (I picked up on that new expression, btw!)

The flip side of this is, overall I think employees have far more motivation to discover new efficiencies than they are given credit for, and wise managers can use this motivation to screen and produce real improvements.

I'm pretty sure it WAS a panther, Dave. I knew the witnesses well, and they know their bobcats, lynxes, manxes, and fat cats pretty well. They may very well have seen the last one around. Remember north Florida from Alachua to the Okefenokee was pretty sparsely developed in those days. Might have been Osceola National Forest they were hiking in, way back.

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 14, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Maybe this is fatalgae's reference - ?

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Boy do I feel dumb. I just opened the door to outside and realized the temperature had dropped into the mid seventies between breakfast and now! So instead of roasting in here I've opened windows and am enjoying the very damp but refreshing air flow.

Posted by: badsneakers | July 14, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, shrink and Jumper. Let me assure you, this guy is neither waffling nor trying to find efficiencies. The conversation goes like this:

Me: I'd like you to do X, and here's why.
Him: I can't do X because of Y.
Me: *Statement overcoming objection Y*
Him: If I do X, Z will happen.
Me: I can live with Z.
Him: *Philosophical analysis of the merits/demerits of X*

And so on. He either enjoys debating (and does) or is just filibustering. As my other employees can tell you, I'm quite open to differing opinions and new ways of doing things, but this just exhausts me.

Posted by: Raysmom | July 14, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

"overzealous employee" = the usual suspect.

Speaking of speculation, I wonder why they stopped drilling the relief well, as a precaution sure, but against what? I also wonder why none of the ROVs have been moving around or doing anything this morning? I wish Exxon, I mean BP would tell us something.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Some people also say that algae are reusable, do not affect the Food Network, and confuse CEO's.

Posted by: bobsewell | July 14, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Raysmom, does this guy have a problem taking orders from a woman? Following the directions of someone older than himself?

Perhaps you're inadvertently giving him an opening by saying, "I'd like you to do X and here's why." He may be viewing the explanation as an opening for discussion.

I know you didn't ask, but you might want to formalize this. If he reports to you, and if you have another layer of management over you, he could wind up causing more problems than ignoring him is worth. I would document the problem. Explain to him the conversation you expect to have when you ask him to do something - maybe just to do it, maybe to say "If I do X Z will happen, but skipping the rest of his comments, whatever you can stand. You might outline a process he could use to raise serious concerns he might have regarding a specific order of yours; this way he won't think you're just shutting him down. Document the entire conversation in a short memo to his file. If he gets the picture, you can follow up with another memo reflecting progress.

Or, you could have him shot.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 14, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

As you see I am fascinated by Raysmom's rantworthy employee. I admit that, assuming he isn't a total jerk otherwise, I'd probably begin by simply stopping him when he began one of these objections, pointing out this habitual response to my requests, and asking why he reacts this way. He might not be completely aware of what he's doing or how it is perceived. If he is aware of it and does it on purpose I'd ask whether he assumes I haven't thought through the consequences of my requests or am unaware of their ramifications, and why he would make that assumption. It could actually be a pretty fun conversation, from the supervisor's side.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 14, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

I-mom, good suggestions. I guess I tell him "here's why" because it's an approach I appreciate when I'm told to do something. But maybe in his debate-loving mind, this just helps him develop his talking points.

Posted by: Raysmom | July 14, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

I agree with Ivansmom. At some point it becomes an issue of taking direction. The last polite stop should be "I appreciate your comments - your instructions are to do X." After that if there's pushback I would feel compelled to switch to emailed confirmation of instructions.

Posted by: engelmann | July 14, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Nope, ya didn't get it. Shrink, you were referring to a number-greater-than-two "on the other hand"(s), so my thoughts went to those creatures who could, well, you know, "step" right in. . . .

*gotta not be so oblique and increase the "acuteness" factor*

Posted by: ftb3 | July 14, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

"It could actually be a pretty fun conversation, from the supervisor's side."

Do you work in a public employee union shop? Just sayin'

"Or, you could have him shot."
Posted by: Ivansmom

"I agree with Ivansmom."
Posted by: engelmann

I second that emotion.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

I had the fun once of telling a client (who had similar annoying verbal tactics), "But I'm so vastly much more qualified than you that considering your opinion would generally be a criminal waste of my time."

Not an especially valued client, you'll have surmised. Hey, it was my company, and I just didn't particularly cotton to the fellow.

Posted by: bobsewell | July 14, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

ftb3, no worries, I learned from you.

Not wanting to appear ignorant of a joke, I googled up everything I could find on octopus psychology and learned many amazing things. Here is just one (so as not to be boring).

It is so difficult to control the simultaneous movements of eight elastic legs (with no bones, they all work simultaneously and freely in at least five dimensions) without many of the evolutionary/God's Plan* neural advantages the vertebrates have...they only know what their legs are doing by watching them.

They don't have proprioception, the spacial awareness, neural feedback mechanism we take for granted (we can get up and walk and sometimes even find our glasses in the dark, except yello of course, who can't).

*this the result of my mandatory boodle diversity seminar attendance

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

I got the joke, ftb. By the 3rd OTOH, I was thinking, wow, shrink has lots of hands!

Raysmom, shoot him. Plenty of more docile would-be employees in the sea.

Posted by: seasea1 | July 14, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

I just think, as an uninformed layman, that it's the hallmark of somebody who can't think with his mouth shut, Shrink.

I'd just say, "I'm glad you will give it the thought and attention it deserves and that you will fully resolve any problems you find. Bye."

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 14, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Octopus psychology is an important part of civil litigation. The many-armed approach finds its form "in the alternative". Also, in real danger octopi originated the time-honoured tactic of spreading a cloud of ink and fleeing.

Posted by: engelmann | July 14, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Hey, hey, hey, it's FatAlgae!

Sorry -- on many levels, but not all.

When I have a minute, I'm going to read Joel's piece on the geology of the Gulf.

And not just because of its proximity to the site of the Chicxulub asteroid impact and relation to the theoretical-but-well-founded K-T Extinction event (the surrounding devistation - what wasn't vaporized and burned, that is - might have made a good source for crude oil).


Posted by: -bc- | July 14, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

You bet, engelmann ("even if" alternative).

Elephants' trunks have approximately 100,000 muscles (no bones or cartilage), and it takes a baby elephant maybe 18 months to 2 years to be able to control all those muscles. In fact, sometimes the babies get so frustrated they stomp their feet, which causes earthquakes worldwide. . . .


Posted by: ftb3 | July 14, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

And you can send me dead algae every morning
Send me dead algae by U.S. mail
Say it with dead algae in my wedding
And I won't forget to put roleum on your grave

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 14, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

I admit, Ivansmom's policy sounds like a great thing to implement if he doesn't take your warning shot across his bow.

I wonder, if by that point, half the office would be ready to give a standing ovation. I once worked with a negativik who yes, was in the habit of harrassing his female coworkers. I didn't know how to address the problem, largely because his daughter worked in the same place and we liked her-- didn't exactly want to call her dad out as a jerk.

Ivansmom's suggestion is gold for ALL workplace problems-- always document and be ready to take it to your superiors-- I didn't realize I should have spoken to the VP and let him have the discretion to handle it appropriately.

Now I do, but this is kind of the manual that young women (at the most risk too) don't get when they go into the workplace.

Anyway, he was fired for other reasons, largely pissing off employees in another office by way overstepping his authority and assigning work to people without their or their supervisors' consent, and generally mishandling the people end of it.

The office was a much happier place after he left; we could work without being harrassed.

I like being told the purpose of an assignment, of course, but after a while the employee should know enough generally.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 14, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

I love elephants (of the non-rethuglican variety, of course).

Posted by: ftb3 | July 14, 2010 2:41 PM | Report abuse

I really want to know now, can they use it with their eyes closed?

You add the length/diameter dimension of an octopus leg (I think, though I do not know, that an elephant can not lengthen or shorten its trunk), then you multiply that problem by 8 all working together...and then add suction cup matrix management...mind boggling.

"...a good source for crude oil)"

and gas, don't forget gas, gas never forgets.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

On kit! With apologies to Connie Francis (Where the boys are)

Where the oil is, waitin’ on BP
Oil on beaches, sea bird screeches, while for months the oil flows free
Where the oil is, a tragic sight to see
How did we let it come to this, this awful catastrophe

In a plume of a million barrels we'll consider what we’ve done
And then we'll climb up on to the roof and seek our power from the sun

Till they cap it we wait impatiently
Where the oil is, where the oil is
Where the oil is, waitin’ on BP

Till they cap it we wait impatiently
Where the oil is, where the oil is
Where the oil is, waitin’ on BP

Posted by: engelmann | July 14, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Off topic but advice needed from dog/pet owners. My dog needs some test to confirm a possible diagnosis of Cushings. At the same time he has some polyps that require further investigation/medical procedures (ultrasound, biopsy, colonoscopy). FYI key liver enzyme at initial test was 8 times what it should be.

Anyone familiar with these issues any recommendations for medications, treatment options would be most appreciated.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 14, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Joel's article is, as always, solidly professional. And yet, and this could simply be me reading things into it, I detect the subtle sound of teeth grinding. Also, I can't help but think that the phrase "The well blew out April 20 and destroyed the Deepwater Horizon rig, killing 11 men." is starting to be as superfluous as the phrase "Harry was a wizard" in the latter Harry Potter books. I understand that a good writing should always be self-contained, but at some point I figure if they don't know the background they are beyond reach.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 14, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Korean market snacks--
Eat with caution and taser
handy just in case.

The food fights you back:
Suckers clamp, tendrils go down
and meet your tonsils.

Octopus sushi:
eat just like peanut butter--
pried off your palate.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 14, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Wilbrod, after years absorbing the legal emphasis on documentation I am always surprised when people don't do it automatically. Particularly in a work environment, I constantly tell people to Write It Down And Give It To Someone. More than one person, in fact, with a couple of file copies, in case things get lost. If you can't pass it on to anyone, keep a file. Complaints about supervisors and co-workers, misunderstandings about assignments or duties - if you want to address a problem or even just clearly present your side (and do it first), write it down. A short, plain contemporaneous statement of the issue or conversation can help clear one's own mind as well as alert others. Maybe you're asking for help, maybe you're covering yourself.

I've discovered that people who genuinely resist this suggestion often don't really want to address the problem. Some folks just like being victims, as they characterize it.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 14, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Excellent Englemann, even if it leaves me with an awful tune cootie ;-)

dmd, have no knowledge to impart but you and your dog have my sympathies.

Posted by: badsneakers | July 14, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Nice, engelmann & Wilbrodog.

RD, I like the continued references to the 11 dead because, sadly, I believe in all the hoopla since then, and anger at BP, some folks may be in danger of forgetting that part.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 14, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

dmd, this is a pretty comprehensive primer on Cushings in dogs, and is endorsed for accuracy by my vet (there was some question if Yeoman was Cushings late in his life -- he wasn't).

Posted by: Yoki | July 14, 2010 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Boodle gardening question: I have an old sometime peach tree. This year two branches are absolutely laden with peaches. They look great, but are still hard as rocks on the tree. When and if are peaches ready to pick? Or will these perhaps just be critter food?

I recently planted several varieties of then-flourishing vegetables and herbs in containers which sit on my patio next to the back door. I hoped this would discourage casual woodland shoppers. Alas, I was mistaken. Judging from the rabbits alone, I believe that I have created critter carry-out. Varmint vittles to go.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 14, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Instrumental and visual only ------

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

No resistance from me on that. You're certainly very right.

The only workplace where I think documentation wouldn't have helped was an one-person business where the boss certainly seemed the kind of person to countersue and make people's lives living hell. I got out, learning that some jobs are just not worth it.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 14, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

I had to chuckle when I saw this question and response in a food chat today:

Q. Cucumber water -
In hot weather, the Madison Hotel on Connecticut Ave keeps a big dispenser of cool water with cucumber slices near the entrance, with disposable cups for patrons. It's quite refreshing. Any idea if I can replicate this by just putting some thin-sliced cukes in water? Or do you have a recipe for making something similar?

A. Joe Yonan writes:
I'm sorry, but are you asking if you can replicate cucumber-slices-in-water by putting ... cucumber slices in water? Why, yes, you can!
– July 14, 2010 1:37 PM

Posted by: bobsewell | July 14, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

I'm a big fan of Mr. Yonan. He reliably cracks me up at least once a week. His exasperation with silly questions is a source of many laughs.

Also, two weeks ago when he reprimanded a chatter pretending to be someone other than himself by saying, "Look, you are the original poster. You don't think we can see your ISP? Well, we can."

Posted by: Yoki | July 14, 2010 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom, are the peaches approaching full size? If so pick them and let them ripen - away from varmints.

I like my peaches firm you could ship them here and I would sacrafice myself to test for you. Saw an article the other day on this being a good year for peaches, in this area.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 14, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, belated thanks for the link to Springsteen singing Oklahoma Home. I really enjoyed it. He does a version of Hard Times that makes it an anthem. I am impressed by how a now-rich rocker from New Jersey is also an authentic conduit for music from very different times and places. I enjoy Springsteen's rock 'n roll, but to me this ability confirms that he is a serious musician across many lines.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 14, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Bob...lots of variation possible...but I like paper thin cuke slices in water with a dash of lemon or vinegar and a twist of black pepper....please deliver a vat to me and I am yours, I tell, yours, AT LEAST UNTIL Imom sends her peaches my way. I am fickle but faithful....

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | July 14, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

BoB, Peggy Lee singing my theme song to you for the moment:

From Kiss Me Kate: the "Always True to You, Darlin', in my Fashion" BUT the bestest version to reflect me would be Blossom Dearie's rendition.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | July 14, 2010 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Here are some handy peach-picking tips:

Dmd I have lots of sympathy.

I'd strongly get a second opinion from another vet, because it's possible the high cortisol is from the stress of his illness; you don't want to medicate unnecessarily with his liver issues.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 14, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

You're the cutest thing
I ever did see
Really like your peaches
Wanna shake your tree...

Ahhhh, the overwhelming hormone rush of a breifly requited teenage crush. Good times, good times... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 14, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

To be clear, I was the teenager. Come to think of it, so was she. :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 14, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Also there's Georgia peaches, there's peaches rottin' in the noonday sun, but I like pickled peaches the best.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Congratulations to the Iroquois lacrosse team, which has been cleared to travel to compete in England on their sovereign tribal passports. Belated pat on the head to the State Department which finally allowed the travel. The Iroquois team have used their sovereign nation passports without any problem for thirty years. The State Dept's repeated suggestion that the group should just use US passports shows a sad failure to grasp the principle of sovereignty.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 14, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

This is a brilliant boodle.
But I'll have to really read it later as I am en passant.

Just this, when I said gas does not forget, I meant this...

"...some folks may be in danger of forgetting that part."

I suspect the moratorium on doing something down there today is about appreciating the magnitude of the danger, not the danger.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Reacting tot he OPM survey that Scottynuke cited: "We're number 3! We're number 3!"

Posted by: ScienceTim | July 14, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Knitty alert!!! A clock that knits a scarf...I WANT ONE:

What a great little box canyon of joy!

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | July 14, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Do you realize that we had a drive-by spamming today by, literally, pond scum?

I am so pleased by that thought.

Posted by: ScienceTim | July 14, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Only thing wrong with that clock is that white yarn makes it hard to see the time.

I say this clock calls for a crayon rainbow of neon, electric, and fluorescent yarns, with perhaps a little black as edging.

Or we could go peach, banana cream, tan, plum, chocolate, cream...

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 14, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

I just read CP's post as a kitty that knits a clock - now that would be talent :-)

Posted by: dmd3 | July 14, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

Catching up after a less-than-scintillating all-afternoon meeting.

Re: my rant employee. He's actually got a decent sense of humor, so I think calling him on his habit of questioning would be well-received. As in "was there something wrong with my request, or can you just not help yourself?" I'm not insulted by his behavior; he did it with his former boss, too (a guy). Ultimately he does what he's asked--he just tortures me a bit before he does.

Posted by: Raysmom | July 14, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

That is a good point Ivansmom, about the 11 dead. Some things are worth repeating.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 14, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

That clock that knits works on the same principle as this old time device for knitting cord, one of the first textile-toys I ever owned, maybe 4/5 years old.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Wilbrod, it would have to be one of the multi-color handpainted sock yarns now on the market. The mechanism would require a smooth, fairly thin yarn to run smoothly. You could add accents after it "wound down" at the end of the year!

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Anyone find this funny? It's from a story about the Russian spies...

< Back to front page Text size – +
Russian spies left behind soda cans with fake bottoms, and plenty of pills
EmailE-mail|Link|Comments (0) July 14, 2010 04:53 PM
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By Shelley Murphy,Globe Staff

FBI searches of the Cambridge home and a safe deposit box belonging to a couple of Russian spies turned up some interesting tools of the trade: a Dr. Pepper can with a fake lid; a Coke can with a fake bottom; foreign currency from Europe and Asia; and various identification cards.

Documents unsealed yesterday in US District Court in Boston detailed the items that were seized during searches of 35B Trowbridge St. and a safe deposit box at a Bank of America in Harvard Square shortly after the June 27 arrests of the married couple who passed themselves off as French Canadians Donald Howard Heathfield and Tracey Lee Ann Foley.

Many of the items seized from the home the couple shared with their two sons, ages 16 and 20, included electronics, computer equipment and other gadgetry. A Sony Playstation and games; a Toshiba Satellite computer; cellphones, cameras, laptops, hard drives, memory sticks, credit cards, photos, documents, and files were seized.

The raids also netted numerous unidentified pills and capsules in a variety of colors.

"The pills and vitamins indicate to me that they were well integrated into the Cambridge social scene,'' said Boston attorney Robert Sheketoff, who represented Heathfield, adding that the unidentified pills were probably vitamins and anti-oxidants.

Posted by: rickoshea11 | July 14, 2010 5:12 PM | Report abuse

The fellow who reads news on the television says that the Feds have agreed to let BP start shutting the valves for the integrity test.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 14, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Dmd, will write.

Imom, I heard about the issue yesterday on NPR. They said gb wanted assurances from the us that the team would be allowed to re-enter the us. They weren't given. Glad it's solved.

Raysmom, I used to work with someone like that, it got old. When he left we had a party for him and a bigger one afterward. I'd tell him. You never know how people will respond when they know what you're really thinking.

Agreed, it's the appreciation of danger and I'm happy to see it.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Oops. Didn't mean to post the whole story, just the part about the unidentified pills indicating that they were well integrated into the Cambridge social scene.

Posted by: rickoshea11 | July 14, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

ros, when the Russian spy story first broke, it was reported that they used invisible ink! Ha! They also used more sophisticated digital methods of passing messages - steganography, I think it's called - but invisible ink made me laugh.

Posted by: seasea1 | July 14, 2010 5:22 PM | Report abuse

That knitting clock knits slower than I do!

Posted by: seasea1 | July 14, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Because every boodle needs a bear.

tbg, xoxo
Kind Regards

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

dmd3, kitties that knit

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Quick Talitha while Mudge is away let's blow that picture up really big and wallpaper the bunker with it - cause "whiles the cats away...."


Posted by: dmd3 | July 14, 2010 6:02 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, I'm not much for cuteness usually. But maybe we could use that to replace a Kincade or two. I abhor that schmaltz with a passion.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 6:11 PM | Report abuse

I remember having one of those spools when I was a kid, talitha, though I don't recall using it much. The potholder loom was my favorite; I must have made hundreds. Quick, easy, useful - what's not to love?

dbG, that shirt makes me laugh! I'm surprised Geekdottir hasn't purchased it. You folks have my blessing to repaper the bunker walls. Just don't forget replace the Mudge 'n' bc portrait. You know, this one:

Posted by: slyness | July 14, 2010 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Shoot, slyness, I still make potholders and my family expects a couple of new ones every year for the holidays. I even found a wooden loom and a source for wool loops. Wool doesn't scorch as readily and felts up really well when washed.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

My first glimpse into the bunker. Love the sleigh bed. (I will make no further comment at this time.)

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 6:39 PM | Report abuse

Who needs bears? Let's just hope yello is offline tonight.

Posted by: Yoki | July 14, 2010 6:56 PM | Report abuse

It is on down there. The valves are getting worked. This is what we came to see.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 6:57 PM | Report abuse

rickoshea... I knew when I read it that you were specifically pointing to the paragraph about integrating into the Cambridge scene, but the whole thing was interesting, so thanks for posting.

Talitha... I LOVE the kitty picture. It will look mahvelous in the bunker.

CqP... thanks for the Sousa link. Very cool to hear a recording from 1898 don't you think?

I read an interesting factoid today: The French revolutionaries stormed the Bastille to get to the gunpowder; there were only seven prisoners there at the time.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 14, 2010 7:11 PM | Report abuse

Movin' to the country,
gonna eat a lot of peaches

Peaches come from a can,
they were put there by a man
In a factory downtown
If I had my little way,
I'd eat peaches every day
Sun-soakin' bulges in the shade

Take a little nap where the roots all twist
Squished a rotten peach in my fist
And dreamed about you, woman,
I poked my finger down inside
Make a little room for an ant to hide
Nature's candy in my hand or can or a pie

Millions of peaches, peaches for me
Millions of peaches, peaches for free

Posted by: baldinho | July 14, 2010 7:16 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of pond scum, there seems to be a colony somewhere in the Utah state government (or at least the pond scum has contacts there):


Posted by: Scottynuke | July 14, 2010 7:21 PM | Report abuse

When I was a kid we had a peach tree in the front yard that was so prolific my mom used to stop strangers who were walking by the house and thrust paper grocery bags full of peaches into their arms.

They were incredibly delicious: juicy, sweet and wonderful. The bees loved them, too, so there was always a swarm of yellow jackets hovering nearby. Eating them warm off the tree was like heaven.

We probably had this bounty for about three or four years. Then one summer there were no more peaches. It was quite a disappointment and I must say I've never tasted a peach as good since then.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 14, 2010 7:23 PM | Report abuse

I wonder how many of those folks in Utah would be willing to take the jobs that the illegals are doing right now.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 14, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

Today's Woody Guthrie's birthday. Here's a song Willis Alan Ramsey wrote about him:

Now you know that Woody Guthrie
Is dead and buried in the ground
Sometimes I sing his songs
And get to thinking he's still around
I'll hold that his fire's everlasting
Testify that his course has run true
And the ramblin's man's ris'
And the kingdom's his
But his songs are for me and you.

Just a boy from Oklahoma
On an endless midnight stand
Wanderin' and ramblin'
And driftin' with the midnight sand . . .

Posted by: -pj- | July 14, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

I think the story should read 'dogs attack beaver, beaver defends successfully'

Posted by: bh72 | July 14, 2010 7:41 PM | Report abuse

The story about the killer beaver is tragic indeed for the dogs and their owners. However, it reminded me of the Jeff Foxworthy story about a stunned beaver and the damage it can do. I will not repeat it here in consideration of the grieving.

I love Woody Guthrie, I do, I do.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse headline is driving me crazy.

Please note: the integrity test is currently under way.

It is not underway.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 14, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Very cool story about the peach tree, TBG. I can see the juice running out of the peach as it was eaten.

Yes, there were only seven prisoners in the Bastille when it was taken. One of the keys from the Bastille is in the front hall of Mt. Vernon, given to George Washington by La Fayette.

Posted by: -pj- | July 14, 2010 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Crossing my fingers on the well cap test. I read could take several-48 hours to tell.

I vote yes on the knittin' kitten wallpaper.

A silversmith I sometimes sell with knits silver or copper with a spool, covering beads with it in a kind of spiderweb pattern (really beautiful), she'll also take the resulting string and draw it down to a heavy chain.

I love the knitting clock, but try not to buy anything that will need refilling--it's hard enough keeping toilet paper and paper towels in stock.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 8:00 PM | Report abuse

So, how do I go about producing a blowup of the knittin' kittens? My lack of geekitude is, by now, well known hereabouts.

dbG, intrigued with the description of your friend's metal knitted technique. Are the beads strung onto the wire prior to knitting or "captured" beneath the knitting? I've knit with wire, and knit and crocheted with beads strung on thread, but never the combination. (If you get the clock I'll supply the refills - I could/should open a yarn store with my supplies.)

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

The spindle is large enough for colored glass beads to fit through. So she'll knit for a while, put the bead through, keeps knitting. At the end, she may have a long, silver tube with 5 or 6 beads in it.

Then she cuts between the beads and tucks the extra knit wire into the bead holes on each side, then makes jewelry with it. I have a few of her pieces and have bought more for my cousin, who loves them as much as I do.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 8:21 PM | Report abuse

She leaves space between each bead, an inch or more, so there's enough wire left to tuck in the holes to finish the bead off.

We're both big fans of Anne Choi. Don't get me started.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

Anne Choi! Wonderful beads. I heard about her a couple of years ago here on the Boodle and bought two beads last Christmas for two granddaughters. Everyone marvelled at the workmanship.

Posted by: nellie4 | July 14, 2010 8:30 PM | Report abuse

When I was a kid in south Florida, we lived in a neighborhood carved out of a citrus orchard. Our backyard had an orange tree and a grapefruit tree. As I recall, there were kumquats behind the garage. Across the street was a "vacant" lot which still had closely spaced orange and tangerine trees in it. I barely recall the grapefruit trees as I didn't like them; my parents' appreciation of the grapefruit is why I remember. But the tangerines - the boy that I was loved some tangerines. I remember sitting up in a tangerine tree at about 6 years old, eating one after another. I guess that was about the closest thing to heaven.

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 14, 2010 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I understand the technique perfectly now. You can do the same thing in crochet. If you recall seeing knitted or crocheted beaded bags that is the method used, usually on silk thread. Also many of the long "flapper" style necklaces were actually seed beads crocheted or knitted into a tube, rather than just a simple string of beads.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 9:11 PM | Report abuse

Scotty, the Iowa Tea Party billboard achieved its goal, I think.

A very impolitic description: it was like a retard dinner bell.

Posted by: baldinho | July 14, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Meant to add that I'm also aware of Anne Choi's work, both through art jewelry magazines and from seeing it on Etsy. Exquisite. She achieves a delicacy in her work coupled with a solidity that keeps it from being too frilly feminine, if that makes sense. I love the subtle colors and balance of elements, too.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 9:19 PM | Report abuse

What she does isn't actually difficult. My friend and I have discussed it often because we buy a lot from her. Either of us could do it, we cast, have the experience, can sign up for the studio time.

But we wouldn't. It would be a blatant ripoff. Also, my friend is more interested in wearable jewelry than making small pieces, I'd make one and then recast it and sell the castings because it's more profitable as a very part-time silversmith.

One of the great charms of her beads is each is unique since each is handmade once she has each cast flat (by hand, by someone else). So she carves the design, has it cast many times, then shapes each bead, solders on the top and bottom, patinas them individually. I have multiples of a number of beads, bought at the same time, each is easily distinguishable from its sibling.

I have mine exhibited in a mirrored vitrine on my jewelry worktable. I have made jewelry with some, strictly as gifts, although I plan to do more in August. I don't collect many things anymore, these are small and while the aggregate value is large, they're affordable a few at a time. I won't sell my favorites, but there are those duplicates. . . I usually hand polish the raised type and rims, leaving the rest patinaed.

nellie, I'd been trying to remember who liked them so much after I talked about them a few years ago. I thought Moose, but she said no.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 9:40 PM | Report abuse

One more thing and I'll stop Boodle-hogging.

Talitha, the beads my friend uses are marble size and larger. Sometimes she'll drill river rocks and use them.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

"Beware the blatant ripoff" Oh, that those words were heeded more often. Learn the old techniques - apply them in new ways, I say.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 9:48 PM | Report abuse

They sound wonderful, as does your work. I'll be all eyes one of these days!

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 9:52 PM | Report abuse

You may not get this, but it is the ROV feed manifold...

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

In other knitting wonders, I want to make these home furnishings...!stmenu_template.main?

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | July 14, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

This is psychotic,

"Anger among Americans over the failure to halt the spill added to Obama's political problems, distracting him..."

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 10:07 PM | Report abuse

shrink... it's almost as if just having that link to those BP feeds on this page (without even clicking) is clogging up my broadband and making my Netflix Watch Instantly not so instant.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 14, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

Let's hope the cap works even better than that.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 10:17 PM | Report abuse

CqP, those are so kewl. I'd love to have a couple around.

I can attest to dbG's silversmithing skilz. She makes beautiful stuff.

G'night, all.

Posted by: slyness | July 14, 2010 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Nice, CqP.

Talitha, I'll bring something to the BPH.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 10:20 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, slyness!

Posted by: -dbG- | July 14, 2010 10:21 PM | Report abuse

Just finished "Honor Your Anger: How transforming your anger style can change your life" by Beverly Engel.

I can't find fault with anything said therein for all the anger styles discussed, and the advice does seem very useful; there's also a small section for how to deal with others' anger style, not just your own (the majority of the book).

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 14, 2010 10:23 PM | Report abuse

I've quit trying to connect to the undersea links, too. They throw everything off and I've had enough trouble with this baby lately.

CqP, the felted rocks are great. Knowing the pounding it takes to make even a small felted piece stable I'm thinking you'd have to take something that large down to the river and beat it on the rocks! Soft rock on hard rocks?

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Loved the rocks and rugs made from reclaimed materials, and a number of other items. Great site CP.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 14, 2010 10:36 PM | Report abuse

For the knitters, knitting with Ramen noodles.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 14, 2010 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Ok, I will no longer post links if it does not work anywhere else. Someone might know why they work out here in the woods and not there, but I can see a page full of the ROV cameras, working, looking at pressure gauges and stuff. One is now off the peg and up to 700psi on a scale of 10,000. It can't be that no one can see this, can it?

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Shrink it keeps telling me I need to install downloads, but the .downloads won't work

Posted by: dmd3 | July 14, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

I can see them now, shrink, but they slow down my computer, clog up our broadband, stutter up my TiVo and make me irregular.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 14, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

Interesting site CqP. I feel so boring when I see the places you visit ;-). dmd, that is hilarious, where do people get these ideas? Again, I am just in a rut of banality I guess.

Posted by: badsneakers | July 14, 2010 11:04 PM | Report abuse

You forgot how they make the rabbit ears chase the cat around the room, TBG.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 14, 2010 11:04 PM | Report abuse

dbG, no memory at all of the person who raved about Anne Choi -- just that I was intrigued enough to follow the links, and liked what I saw.

Posted by: nellie4 | July 14, 2010 11:06 PM | Report abuse

I wish I knew what to do.
I have never been the person with the 'puter that worked. I always assume everyone else has been there and done that on the www.

The text says,

"In preparation for commencement of the well integrity test, the middle ram has been closed and a leak has been detected in the choke line of the 3 ram stack. It has been isolated and will be repaired prior to starting the test."

It looks like a really big leak to me.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 11:09 PM | Report abuse

The central "plume" is shut down and all the oil and gas is coming out of the side of the stack of engineering product, the thing that should end up in the museum right next to Bob'S product.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 14, 2010 11:18 PM | Report abuse

What TBG and dmd said about the links, plus it makes my eyebrows sweat and my toes curl. 8-]

That ramenknitter sure had a weird technique. I've never seen anyone throw the loop with the left hand before. At least she didn't try to dye the ramen before knitting. Oh, wait . . . . .

Posted by: talitha1 | July 14, 2010 11:37 PM | Report abuse

This is the one and only thing I know about knitting, because I do it (when I knit, which is for about 3 minutes every 20 years); that is the European method, and what I was taught in 3rd grade Handarbeit class in Switzerland in 1967.

Posted by: Yoki | July 15, 2010 12:07 AM | Report abuse

spent the day pushing a mower about the acre that the shop is sited on. hot. hummed this at various times during the chore. interesting couplet into cumberland blues. ace is sporting what amount to hot pants. ha.

Posted by: -jack- | July 15, 2010 12:13 AM | Report abuse

I knot rather than knit. I guess I'm just a knut that way.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 15, 2010 12:18 AM | Report abuse

i've never undertaken knitting. tried crochet. failed. thus, it went into the file of never to do again, along with golf. i'll take my chances with a router.

Posted by: -jack- | July 15, 2010 12:42 AM | Report abuse

It really ticked me off when my late lamented grandmother wanted to teach me to tat (with *her* grandmother's celluloid tatting shuttle) and I just couldn't do it, but Himself took right to it, and produced some of the doilies now in the bunker. He, of course, has some spacial awareness, which put him ahead right there.

Posted by: Yoki | July 15, 2010 12:45 AM | Report abuse

Yoki, I understand the European method of knitting (though I can't do it) and that the the loop is thrown differently. She was doing a combo of both styles, I think, but perhaps because of her "yarn". It was funny.

I have never tried tatting and doubt that my eyesight could handle it any longer. I knit and crochet half "by feel" these days.

Wilbrod, you are a stitch. (!)
Goodnight, dear boodle. Are you gonna sing us to sleep? Last night was great, Y. and J.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 15, 2010 1:09 AM | Report abuse

they love each other. jgb

Posted by: -jack- | July 15, 2010 1:11 AM | Report abuse

Since jack and I post our own music but in tandem.

Posted by: Yoki | July 15, 2010 1:20 AM | Report abuse

charlie dont surf

Posted by: -jack- | July 15, 2010 1:27 AM | Report abuse

Knit ramen for breakfast? Like I don't have enough to do?

Mini bacon explosions are in the oven, latino yogurt in the fridge--mango, guava, piña colada. Granola sprinkles, blue mountain coffee, chai. Fresh homegrown Rutgers tomato sandwiches on whole wheat.
That ought to hold us until brunch.

Got the first tomato yesterday, Rutgers, one ofthe Jersey near heirlooms. Warm, juicy, delicious.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 15, 2010 7:42 AM | Report abuse

Morning, dbG and y'all.
That breakfast sounds wonderful and congratulations on the 'mater! Friend, I've had another email kaflooey and am requesting one more short blast from you today if you can - I have news re HdG.

Everytime I post in the morning I get mudged. See you all later . . . . . .

Posted by: talitha1 | July 15, 2010 7:48 AM | Report abuse

The contraption designed to stop the leak has, itself, sprung a leak.

You can't make stuff like this up.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 15, 2010 7:53 AM | Report abuse

I don't want to, RD_P... *SIGH*

*wondering-why-such-a-lovely-altho-muggy-morning-fails-to-engender-more-enthusiasm Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 15, 2010 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Wow... Just managed to open two browser tabs to the same satellite radio channel. Talk about audio overload! *L*

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 15, 2010 8:14 AM | Report abuse

Morning, all. dbG's breakfast sounds delicious. I believe I shall partake.

RD, you're right. If it were a novel, nobody would believe it.

Posted by: slyness | July 15, 2010 8:21 AM | Report abuse

New Kit

Posted by: talitha1 | July 15, 2010 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Where is the oil indeed? The oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico is being separated in the water column from heavy molecular weight to light molecular weight. The oil we see at the surface is the light stuff. No one has any idea what the deep heavy stuff will do. Some say it will decay over decades keeping the Gulf full of oil and some say storms will bring it ashore for decades to come. Mother Earth is hurting from man's greedy blunder, does anyone hear? Does anyone care?

Posted by: GulfShoresMan | July 21, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

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