Friday, April 30, 2010

"Fiancee of slain burglary suspect: he had changed "

"RACINE - Johnny Harris' fiancee simply cannot understand the events that led to the man she knew and loved being shot by Oak Creek police.

"Laurensa Fleming, 45, of Racine said she is having a very hard time and doesn't believe the man she was planning to marry would be burglarizing homes, trying to steal squad cars and then attempting to run over officers to escape.

"'I don't believe that,' she said. 'That is not the Johnny I knew.'"


Pure, 100%, unadulterated denial. The man burglarized a home, fled from police, crashed his car, tried to run over an officer, and was shot for it. This was all confirmed by numerous witnesses. But his girlfriend says, "I don't believe that."

The Journal Times is publishing the above story (a paean to enabling criminals and refusing to accept responsibility) without giving online readers the opportunity to comment on a problem that is destroying Racine: DENIAL.

Once again, the Journal Times stands squarely against personal accountability.
Party on, Lee!

Four for Fridays

Hello everyone! Another Friday is here! It's been a long, strange week filled with some ups and downs. This weeks questions are about tattoos.

1) Do you have any tattoos or body piercings?

2) Ever think of getting any tattoos or piercings?

3) What do you think of those who do have them?

4) Ever find any tats or piercings disturbing?

Enjoy your weekend folks!

"Mitchell Middle School one day away from winning $50,000 challenge: VOTE! "

Update (May 1): Mitchell School won $50,000! Yay!

Original post: "Update, April 29: OK, folks. It's 10:45 as I write this, with just one day remaining in the competition. Mitchell Middle School is in 4th place -- well within sight of winning $50,000 to remodel the school's science classrooms. This is no time to slack off; we've seen the school's position go up and down day by day. Vote now!"

Vote irregularly and vote often.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Do you believe that people are basically good, bad, or what?

Yeah, a broad question about human nature that cannot be answered definitively. Still, I think about it sometimes. I know that the public persona of OrbsCorbs is a cynical SOB who sees darkness wherever he goes. Inside of me, though, the guy who dons the OrbsCorbs mask, there's this kid who still wonders wtf is going on. I want to believe that people are basically good, that humans have an innate intelligence/spirit that seeks truth and justice. But I see little evidence of it. Very little. (Oh, that Orbs! :rolleyes: )

Of course, many believe in tabula rasa: we are born 'blank' and our experiences shape who/what we are. So, if you have more bad experiences than good, you turn out bad? Obviously, not always.

I don't know. Perhaps I'm just tired. Perhaps I think too much.

Pink Floyd - "Wish You Were Here"

One of my favorite Pink Floyd songs.

Move Over, America

According to Move Over, America: "Forty three states have passed 'Move Over' laws, which require motorists to 'Move Over' and change lanes to give safe clearance to law enforcement officers on roadsides." Wisconsin's law was implemented in 2001. The penalty for failure to 'Move Over' in Wisconsin is 15 days suspension and $40.

That seems lenient to me. From what I read here and related links, you can be fined $30 to $300, and lose your license for 3 months to 2 years. That seems more reasonable. It's written in legalese, though, so I can't be sure.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Just so you know I am a two pole fisher-person

And see a fish on each pole......I caught about 15...although we tossed them all back...
One of those days

Would love to share this you you all.. I really hope the link works. My beautiful Sister in Law wrote a song together with her friend, together they make The Fantastic duo, and they sent it in for a bit of a competition on the radio. They played it on the radio for them. If you listen to it you will have to fast forward in about 24 mintues to hear the song, there will be a bit of an intro but the song starts soon. I could not get the link to work using Firefox I had to go over to Internet Explorer to hear it. I am so very proud of her I could puke... sorry All this happened on her birthday.. what a great birthday present for her..

Why can I not get links to work?

Wendnesday Afternoon Grin

An Italian, a Scotsman and a Chinese man, are hired at a construction site.

The foreman points out a huge pile of sand. He says to the Italian guy, 'You're in charge of sweeping.' To the Scotsman he says, 'You're in charge of shoveling.' And to the Chinese guy, 'You're in charge of supplies.'

He then says, 'Now, I have to leave for a little while. I expect you men to make a dent in that pile of sand.'

So when the foreman returns after being away for a couple of hours the pile of sand is untouched.

He asks the Italian, 'Why didn't you sweep any of it?'

The Italian replies, 'I no hava no broom. You saida to the Chinesea fella he a wasa ina charge of supplies, but he hasa disappeared and I no coulda finda him nowhere.'

Then the foreman turns to the Scotsman and says, 'And you, I thought I told you to shovel this pile.'

The Scotsman replies, 'Aye, that ye did laddie, boot ah could nae get meself a shoovel. Ye left th' Chinese gadgie in chairge of supplies, boot ah couldna fin' him neither.'

The foreman is really angry now. He storms off toward the pile of sand to look for the Chinese gent.

Just then, the Chinese man leaps out from behind the pile of sand and yells,



These are fun to read.......

1. A bicycle can't stand alone; it is two tired.

2. A will is a dead giveaway.

2. Time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana.

4. A backward poet writes inverse.

5. A chicken crossing the road: poultry in motion.

6. When a clock is hungry it goes back four seconds.

7. The guy who fell onto an upholstery machine was fully recovered.

8. You are stuck with your debt if you can't budge it.

9. He broke into song because he couldn't find the key.

10. A calendar's days are numbered.

11. A boiled egg is hard to beat.

12. He had a photographic memory which was never developed.

13. The short fortune-teller who escaped from prison: a small medium at large.

14. Those who get too big for their britches will be exposed in the end.

15. When you've seen one shopping centre you've seen a mall.

16. If you jump off a Paris bridge, you are in Seine .

17. When she saw her first strands of grey hair, she thought she'd dye.

18. Santa's helpers are subordinate clauses.

19. Acupuncture: a jab well done.

20. Marathon runners with bad shoes suffer the agony of de feet.

21. The roundest knight at king Arthur's round table was Sir Cumference. He acquired his size from too much pi.

22. I thought I saw an eye doctor on an Alaskan island, but it turned out to be an optical Aleutian .

23. She was only a whisky maker, but he loved her still.

24. A rubber band pistol was confiscated from algebra class because it was a weapon of math disruption.

25. No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

26. A dog gave birth to puppies near the road and was cited for littering.

27. Two silk worms had a race. They ended up in a tie.

28. A hole has been found in the nudist camp wall. The police are looking into it.

29. Atheism is a non-prophet organization.

30. I wondered why the baseball kept getting bigger. Then it hit me.

31. A sign on the lawn at a drug rehab centre said: 'Keep off the Grass.'

32. A small boy swallowed some coins and was taken to a hospital. When his grandmother telephoned to ask how he was, a nurse said, 'No change yet.'

33. The soldier who survived mustard gas and pepper spray is now a seasoned veteran.

34. Don't join dangerous cults: practice safe sects

I went fishing and actually caught some fish!

Okay, so I had some help with the worm thing, but I did put a couple of those icky things on the hook myself! Honest.

Dear Madame Zoltar

Madame Zoltar is on vacation this week at an undisclosed location. She said, "Give my love to all of my dear Irregulars and tell them that I will be back next week."

Don't don't forget to submit your queries and comments to:

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Gordon Hirabayashi: A Local Bit of History

There are all kinds of little bits of history all around us and it's kind of cool when you find them. Recently, I became aware of Gordon Hirabayashi (who will henceforth be known as Gordon H.).

Okay, I am a newspaper reader as many of you know and will be sad when the printed version goes away. The local paper, the Arizona Daily Star (a Lee Enterprises joint) has a series that appears on Saturday. Each Saturday, they feature a different local hike or recreation area. This series is very nice and has led me to some local gems over the years.

Well, last Saturday they featured the Gordon H. Recreation Area in the Coronado National Forest. I have driven by it many times, but never stopped there (always going somewhere else on the mountain).

This was an Honor Camp. From what I can tell, basically a prison labor camp with minimal security. Prisoners here helped build the Catalina Highway up Mount Lemmon. The interesting piece of its history is that it housed Japanese Americans who were rounded up during WWII, including the aforementioned Gordon H. who defied the internment and got his case all the way to the Supreme Court, where he lost. In those days, to add insult to injury, the government didn't transport you to your prison so he had to hitch hike to Tucson to serve his sentence.

Here are a couple of pics of the ruins.
I like seeing pieces of history (remember the Trinity Site...I visited Dachau when I was in Germany). We need to remember the injustices of the past or we may repeat them. Post 9/11, the U.S. went a little crazy and unjustly detaiedn some Muslim citizens. Fortunately, saner heads prevailed and for the most part, the ones who should not have been detained were released (with a couple of exceptions who are still somewhat questionable). Looking back, it is not so far fetched to wonder if we would have gone off the deep end if another attach occurred in the fall of 2001 and locked up thousands of our citizens simply for who they were and not for anything the did.

The Ultimate Nerd Version of Hamlet

Hamlet, that scourge of high school students everywhere, has been produced hundreds of times and numerous film versions exist. Even Mel Gibson has difficulty arousing interest in this Shakespearian classic.

Tomorrow night, however, PBS's Great Performances series is airing a nerdgasm inducing production of Hamlet. Claudius is being played by Patrick Stewart. Yes THAT Patrick Steward, a.k.a. Captain Picard. But that would not be enough to attract the geeks and nerds by itself, so the threw in David Tennant, better known as the 10th Doctor in BBC's long running Doctor Who. Now you are talking Nerdstock all the way.

This appears to be a pretty full production of the play. I set my DVR and it clocks in at three and a half hours. Check your local listings for air time!

Reprinted with permission from the Half-Astrophysicist Blog.

Chocolate and Depression

"Severe depression led people to eat nearly 12 servings [of chocolate] per month."

Hell, I can eat 12 servings in a day...

Green Flash Podcast

Today is my next turn on the 365 Days of Astronomy podcast. The topic is green flashes. I have posted a blog entry accompanying the podcast. I am not going to repost it here since it is a) long and b) contains lots of pictures, most of which have already been posted here as I took them. I think there is one pic I have not posted here before of the Sun being projected by the McMath-Pierce Solar Telescope (which you all got to see on your bus tour of Kitt Peak :)

Einstein - The Smallest Horse In The World

What a cutie.

Monday, April 26, 2010

An 8.0 Magnitude Boob Quake

Okay, I hope we are all showing huge amounts of cleavage today in celebration of Boobquake. You see, an Iranian Cleric recently blamed women dressing immodestly for all these darn earthquakes this year. This is pretty stupid as various statistical measures show we really aren't that far off from the norm of earthquake frequency (although we are above average in terms of them hitting populated areas). The guy is an idiot and been properly ridiculed.

So hence the idea for Boobquake, a day for women around the world to show off their assests to see if they could make another huge earthquake. The facebook group claims over 200,000 confirmed guests. Man boobs welcome as well (judging from the people who have said they would attend!)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Venus and the Pleiades

Venus and the Pleiades are having a nice conjunction. Look west after sunset for the brightest thing you can see. That’s Venus. Tonight the Pleiades were almost directly to the right of Venus. Here is what it looked like from Tucson.

Venus will continue to get higher in the sky and the Pleiades are sinking lower each night after sunset. You can still get a good view the next few nights, so give it a shot.

Reprinted with permission from the Half-Astrophysicist Blog.

another Best of Racine Tie Breaker...

I'm about ready to post the winners of this months
"Best Of Racine, JT Irregular edition" but...
we have 2 ties that need to be broken, so please vote for the following -

In a 2 - way tie for Best Grocery Store -

Piggly Wiggly on Eerie
Piggly Wiggly on Spring

Does anyone know if they are owned by the same person? If so, that would solve that one real quick :) If not, please vote and help break this tie.

ALSO, we have a tie for Best Home Improvement Store -
Home Depot.
This one may be hard to get a winner for since they were the only 2 voted on and
it was dead even.

Please vote and help break the ties,