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The place where the world comes together in honesty and mirth.
Windmills Tilted, Scared Cows Butchered, Lies Skewered on the Lance of Reality ... or something to that effect.

Monday, August 23, 2010

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
You're an expert when it comes to romance -- you just don't go about it the way most people do.
When you set out to impress someone, you don't just grab a pizza and a beer.
You woo them in the most stylish fashion -- think limos, a great dinner and tickets to the ballet.
If you can't afford all that, don't despair -- if anyone can make that pizza and beer romantic, it's you!

Just as inexplicably as the service we use to see who is reading this blog ceased functioning properly a while back, today it returned to normal function - so we can do a partial listing of our daily readers again (for now).
Some of our readers today have been in:
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Taipei, Taipei, Taiwan
San Jose, San Jose, Costa Rica
Prague, Hlavni Mesto Praha, Czech Republic
Jeddah, Makkah, Saudi Arabia
Seoul, Kyonggi-Do, Korea
Bremen, Bremen, Germany
Dongen, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands
Islamabad, Islamabad, Pakistan
Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Eindhoven, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands
Cambridge, England, United Kingdom
Napoli, Campania, Italy
Toulouse, Midi-Pyrenees, France
Wrclaw, Dolnoslaskie, Poland
Coffs Harbor, New South Wales, Australia

as well as Serbia & Montenegro, Indonesia, Sudan, Trinidad & Tobago, Sweden, Scotland, Slovakia
and in cities across the United States such as Canoga Park, Deer Lodge, Budd Lake, Grand Junction and more.

Today is:
Today is Monday, August 23, the 235th day of 2010.
There are 130 days left in the year.
Today's unusual holiday or celebration is:
Valentino Day

Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Where to find gas for 6 cents a gallon

Relax ... it ain't near you
Gas is nearly free in one Latin American country where it's heavily subsidized.  

Five great places for retirement

A small college town and a "peanut capital" are two of the havens offering tax breaks and leisure.

Hard times don't have to be bad times you know

The Blues Brothers  movie (the real one) is set in Chicago in the late 1970s, before Reagan got to us. This is every major city in the U.S. pre–spit-and-polish, pre–Sex and the City. Looks like there's still fun to be had.

Brother Ray tells the tale:

Trapped miners send rescuers a message

After 17 days, Chilean miners tie a note to a drill to let rescuers know they're alive.  

Iran unveils first unpiloted bomber

The mouse squeaks ...
Iran's president touts the aircraft as an "ambassador of death" to the country's enemies.  

Non Sequitur


The Jefferson Davis Monument

The Jefferson Davis monument is located in Fairview Kentucky.  It is at the site where Jefferson Davis, who would become the President of the Confederacy during the Civil War, was born.  Ironically, the man who would be his chief adversary in the war, Abraham Lincoln, was born less than 100 miles away in Hodgenville KY.

At 351 feet tall, it is the largest [unreinforced] concrete obelisk in the world, and the fifth tallest monument in the United States. The top four are St. Louis’s Gateway Arch, 630 feet tall; San Jacinto (Texas) Monument, 570 feet (built to the peoples who created an independent country — just like the Confederates); the Washington Monument, 555 feet; and the Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial at Put in Bay, Ohio, which, at 352 feet, nudges its way past the Davis obelisk by a mere extra 12 inches.

Helldiver rising

One of only three or four left in existence, the Helldiver crashed there in 1945.

Belchite - Ghostly Reminder Of The Spanish Civil War

Left as it was on the day it surrendered, Belchite is a poignant reminder of the havoc war can wreak on civilian populations. In 1937 the Nationalist town of Belchite was under attack by the forces of the Republican Army. It surrendered after two weeks of intensive fighting.

General Franco, the ultimate victor in the war, ordered that the town be left untouched and a new one built next to it. He intended it to be a reminder of the damage wrought by the forces of communism on Spain.

Petra cave paintings

From The Observer:
Spectacular 2,000-year-old Hellenistic-style wall paintings have been revealed at the world heritage site of Petra through the expertise of British conservation specialists. The paintings, in a cave complex, had been obscured by centuries of black soot, smoke and greasy substances, as well as graffiti. Experts from the Courtauld Institute in London have now removed the black grime, uncovering paintings whose "exceptional" artistic quality and sheer beauty are said to be superior even to some of the better Roman paintings at Herculaneum that were inspired by Hellenistic art.

A Scottish Vigil

Charles Sillem Lidderdale - A Scottish Vigil
This is a later version of his Royal Academy exhibit of 1869... entitled In Hiding after Culloden. The Royal Academy picture features solely the worn out soldier and the girl secretly bringing him food. The critic for the Art Journal considered the 1869 version to be 'the artist's best work' (1869; p. 202). This success would have no doubt prompted him to attempt another version the following year. The composition of the later work varies slightly as the girl peers at the sleeping soldier over the shoulder of her father who appears in deep concentration, probably considering the dilemma this deserter or refugee has presented and contemplating the outcome of this infamous battle.
More information at Victorian/Edwardian Paintings

The world's largest smoke ring was blown by...

... the Eyjafjallajokull volcano in Iceland.  
An additional photo and explanation is at Discovery News.

Seldom-seen waterspout caught on camera

A photographer in Okinawa, Japan, caught the unusual water column phenomenon in action.  

Pig wrestling canceled after porkers elude capture

A pig wrestling competition at a county fair in northern Montana has been canceled after the porkers eluded fair officials trying to round them up for the event.

Smörgåsbord explained

After perhaps a year of using the term "smörgåsbord" to describe my intermittent linkdump of various items for you to pick through, I realized that some readers may be unfamiliar with what a smörgåsbord is.  At a blog called "Anna's Australia" I found the photo above and the following nice description:
The traditional Swedish smörgåsbord consists of both hot and cold dishes. It's served buffet-style and diners go around the table themselves picking the dishes they want. Bread, butter and cheese are always part of the smörgåsbord as well as eggs and different types of cold fish dishes which are generally various forms of pickled herring, smoked salmon and eel. There are often omelettes, gratins, sausages, meatballs and pates among the hot dishes. The point is to eat much protein, so that potato and vegetable dishes have a rather modest role on the smörgåsbord, as opposed to a buffet where salads and potato gratins occur more frequently. Dessert may or may not be included.
There then follows an explanation of the correct protocol for which dishes to eat first and last (only newbies put everything on their plate at once), which you can read at her blog.
In an extended sense, the word smorgasbord is used to refer to any situation which invite a person to select whatever they wish among lots of pleasant things.

Brush Up On Your 17th-century Slang

The Bodleian Library is publishing a new edition of the first English language dictionary of slang, which has been out of print for 300 years.
Originally entitled A New Dictionary of Terms, Ancient and Modern, of the Canting Crew, its aim was to educate the polite London classes in ‘canting’ – the language of thieves and ruffians – should they be unlucky enough to wander into the ‘wrong’ parts of town.
With over 4,000 entries, the dictionary contains many words which are now part of everyday parlance, such as ‘Chitchat’ and ‘Eyesore’ as well as a great many which have become obsolete, such as the delightful ‘Dandyprat’ and ‘Fizzle’.
Here are some examples to whet your appetite:
Cackling-farts, c. Eggs.
Farting-crackers, c. Breeches.
Grumbletonians, Malecontents, out of Humour with the Government, for want of a Place, or having lost one.
Mutton-in-long-coats, Women. A Leg of Mutton in a Silk-Stocking, a Woman’s Leg.
You can view the definitions of Arsworm, Bumfodder, Dandyprat, Humptey-Dumptey, and many more at the Bodleian Library link.

The History of the Word "Dude"

Mark Peters explains that the word “dude” has evolved over time. In the 1800s, it referred to a dandy — a person obsessed with proper dress and deportment. The following century, the meaning began to change:
In the 20th century, “dude” evolved to take on a more neutral meaning. The term was adopted in the black community, then as now a prime spreader of new words and meanings. This 1967 OED example reflected the shift in meaning: “My set of Negro street types contained a revolving and sometimes disappearing (when the ‘heat’, or police pressure, was on) population… These were the local ‘dudes’, their term meaning not the fancy city slickers but simply ‘the boys’, ‘fellas’, the ‘cool people’.” In the sixties, the term attracted more coolness as it was embraced by surf culture, and by the seventies, a dude was just a guy.



Woman given ticket for driving too slowly

Good! More need to be cited because most wrecks are caused by slow drivers!

A Valencia County woman who was pulled over for driving too slowly said state police went too far. Jeanette Sedillo said was driving on Reinken Road in Belen, N.M., after 10 p.m. on Wednesday when a state police officer pulled beside her and told her to get off the road. Sedillo pulled into a parking lot, questioning what she did wrong.

Apparently, going too fast was not the problem: the officer wrote her a ticket for driving 6 mph under the speed limit. "He said, 'You were going 34 in a 40,'" said Sedillo.

The citation said she violated the statute for minimum speed. Now, she has to pay a $70 fine for what she thought was careful driving. Sedillo said there was little traffic in the area at the time and that she wasn't putting drivers in danger. She said state police went too far with the citation and that officers should be going after more serious offenders. "They're just out to get anybody," said Sedillo.

Sedillo is planning to fight the citation in court. State police wouldn't give specific information pertaining to the incident, but a spokesperson said every agency can ticket drivers for going under the speed limit, which is impeding traffic.
If she is stupid enough to fight it in court - the court should triple her fine and points against her license!

And you thougt your commute was bad ...

The end may now be in sight for frustrated drivers who have endured a nine-day, 100 km- long traffic jam on a highway leading into Beijing, state media said Monday.

Man ordered off bus for carrying painting

A man walked eight miles home from Sheffield city center after a bus driver refused to let him on board with a wrapped-up painting.

Andrew Marshall, aged 61, tried to board the number 75 First bus on Castlegate with a bargain African painting he had bought for £5 from a charity shop. But he was repeatedly asked by the driver if his item was made of glass - and then told to get off.

Mr Marshall, who ended up walking for two-and-a-half hours home to Cotswold Avenue, Burncross, said: "I couldn't believe what was happening. There are nice ways of doing these things and he didn't explain what the problem was. All he kept saying was, 'Is it glass?', and since there were people waiting behind me getting irritable, I just said yes."

He later discovered the frame was perspex and, at 28ins by 20ins, would have "fitted perfectly" on a bus seat.

A spokesman for bus firm First said: "Mr Marshall indicated the frame was made of glass and our driver took the view this was potentially dangerous to other passengers, particularly if it was dropped and shattered.

"Our drivers have the discretion not to transport passengers carrying bulky, cumbersome or potentially dangerous items. We will be writing to Mr Marshall to explain our policy and urge all our passengers to think about the safety of others."

Nation's costliest public school set to open

The $578 million complex includes a pool, public park, and marble memorial.

Culinary DeLites

Culinary DeLites
Three delicious and good-for-you breakfasts tied for first place in a taste test.  



Outbreaks and Infestations

An outbreak of the bubonic plague has occurred in Peru.
By now everyone has heard about the epidemic of bedbugs in NYC.  
Apparently it's so severe that they are even infesting subway benches.

Mysterious illness strikes football team

Doctors hunt for clues to how a rare and dangerous syndrome swept through an Oregon high school squad.

On The Job

On The Job
Job hunters should think twice before boosting GPAs or tweaking start dates.

It's The Economy Stupid

It's The Economy Stupid
China is now the world's second-largest economy, but it won't overtake the U.S. anytime soon.

Things They Won't Tell You

Things They Won't Tell You
Lots of paste won't help, and whitening products can do only so much.  

Bad Cops

Bad Cops

Lunatic Fringe

Lunatic Fringe
Otherwise known as the Seditionists
When dealing with wingnuts ... Remember the rule: 
If they accuse someone of something, then they're already guilty of it.
Liars and Fools

Faux's Sarah Palin ratchets up her support over hate radio shrew Laura Schlessinger's "n*gger n*gger n*gger" broadcast, claims she and Schlessinger have been "shackled" by critics.
If only ... if only ...

Wingnut (excuse me - Washington) Times hack Jeffrey Kuhner describes President Obama as a "cultural Muslim who is promoting an anti-American" agenda.
Repeating a lie does not make it the truth.

Faux's Glenn Beck lies: that President Obama is "a Christian that Christians don't recognize".
That makes no sense, but then again consider the source.

Poll shows that, thanks to endless wingnut lies, more and more Americans believe Obama is Muslim.
Just proves they are morons.

Wingnut Ted Nugent's shout-out to Iowa: "There's a lot of white people in this crowd -- I like that! [Dubuque] is a white town.".
Sieg Heil

Faux News adds "persecuted Christian" meme to its demagoguery of Manhattan Islamic center.
Surprised it took'em this long.

After hate radio shrew Laura Schlessinger advises against interracial marriage and says "n*gger" eleven times in one broadcast, Faux's Sarah Palin backs Schlessinger and tells her to "reload".
One dim bulb to another.

Wizard of Id