Saturday, November 2, 2013

"Snow Is A Four Letter Word"

Dedicated to Madame Zoltar.

More Comet ISON and Lovejoy Pics

The Moon is out of the way so I set out to Saguaro National Park East this morning to capture some more comet pics. When I got there, I found I had some company as another local amateur astronomer was taking comet pics. He has a C-8 and a DSLR (didn't catch the model) set up so he had a bit fancier setup than mine.

Again, these are all taken with a Canon 60D and a EF-s 55-250mmm zoom lens on an iOptron SkyTracker, no telescope involved.

First is a full frame shot of Comet ISON.
Next, I cropped this shot to focus more on the comet.


Next I switched to Comet Lovejoy, higher in the sky. The sky was starting to get a little bright giving a blue tint (I don't try to correct it all the way...I kind of like it)

I also got a wider shot of Comet Lovejoy that shows the Beehive Cluster in the upper left of the shot.


I will keep posting pics as I get them. I won't be able to get up that early every day, but hopefully a couple of times a week at least so I can chart their progress, especially ISON as it dives toward its close encounter with the Sun later this month.

Reprinted with permission from the Half-Astrophysicist Blog.

Open Blog - Weekend

I'll take whatever.

Friday, November 1, 2013


Three vampires walk into a bar. The bartender looks at him suspiciously, but decides to serve them anyway. "What will it be, boys?"

The first vampire says "Blood. Give me blood."

The second vampire says "I too wish for blood!"

The third vampire says "Give me plasma."

The Bartender smiles and says "Got it. Two bloods, and a blood-light."

Lou Reed - "Men Of Good Fortune" (HQ)

Dedicated to the entrepreneurs of downtown Racine.

Four for Fridays

Hello everyone and welcome back! Another week has gone and another Friday is here... Sort of like a ritual huh? Anyways, your questions below....

1) Are you planing to hand out candy to trick or treaters this year?

2) What is the best Halloween costume you ever wore?

3) What kind of Halloween pranks you have pulled?

4) What MOVIE comes to mind when you think of the '60's?

Enjoy your weekend!

Open Blog - Friday


Thursday, October 31, 2013

A List of Lying John's Accomplishments

Lying John gavelling down the truth.
The following is from a comment by "City Hall Monitor" on the Journal Times site. 

"Back by popular demand!

"Who needs streetlights when you can give millions in corrupt back room deals to friends and family for marble bathrooms, the roundabout, CAR25, failed projects like Porters and Delta Hawk, or even grave sites on sacred Indian burial grounds?

"Here is Racine's List of Accomplishments under the current administration:

"- Poverty level has increased to make Racine one of the most impoverished cities in America while the mayor assumes no responsibility
- Substantial increase in local burglaries in both residential and commercial areas
- Creating new ordinances to specifically deter public comments and feedback
- Allowing friends to get another backdoor deal for half price grave sites on sacred Indian Burial Grounds (despite the cemetery commission saying no)
- Giving those same friends a real estate deal on a building downtown when a minority-owned business was discriminated against when they tried to buy it
- Competing as a city, connected to mayor's best friend's business no doubt, in headstone sales against long-standing local businesses
- Highest unemployment in the state for years running with no change in sight
- Bid rigging, discrimination and unfair business practices
- Unfair property taxes and assessments (and resulting lawsuits)
- Removing streetlights (still going through despite all the opposition)
- Cutting bus schedules and services to an absolute minimum
- Increased recycling and service fees (still going up despite promising it would not)
- Unnecessary cuts to essential services like Police & Fire (despite all the opposition)
- Porters $1.2 Million Giveaway (nothing to show for it)
- Giving more money to Porters without informing the community
- Delta Hawk Giveaway (nothing to show for it)
- CAR25 Giveaway and increased spending (see bid rigging)
- Giving friends that run CAR25 even more money than promised (another 30k)
- Uptown demolition and wasteful spending (more bid rigging)
- Unnecessary City Hall Bathrooms & Renovation (paying friends)
- Excessive Zoo subsidies while still increasing fees (paying more friends)
- Unnecessary City Hall roundabout (paying friends yet again)
- Excessive charges to residents for streets, sidewalks, and landscaping
- Failing school system (and failing school board)
- Suing local nonprofit organization Project New Life for issues created by the city
- Changing the rules for zoning and blight to rig real estate deals
- Unnecessary cuts to public transportation (where are bus ad revenues going?)
- Mass exodus of residents and businesses (with outdated population signs)
- Elitism and special rules to favor Aldermen (including guns in Council Chambers)
- Censorship, slander and libel against community members
- Suing our own city to cover personal legal expenses for the mayor
- Begging local churches and nonprofits to donate money to the city
- Excessive cronyism, favoritism, and back room deals
- No real plan for recovery (see bond rating downgrade)
- Hiring consultants for jobs that should be done by staff
- Incompetent City Administrator and Finance Director
- Pushed through union contracts (plus legal fees) without waiting for Act 10
- Lost potential contracts for water service due to arrogance
- Unnecessary hurdles for local businesses
- Violation of open meeting laws
- Violation of city ordinances and state statutes
- Complete lack of ethics, even by the Ethics Board itself
- Overpaid positions and benefits for City Staff, Mayor & Aldermen
- Continuous and excessive debt service (over 25 cents of every dollar)
- Excessive tax rates to deter any new residents and businesses
- No new development (besides liquor stores and discount shops)
- Massive amounts of foreclosures and pending foreclosures
- Free fall of home and property values toward ZERO for those that remain
- Rampant corruption and disregard for the community
- Lies

"Vote for your favorites (or add to the list)!"

Party on, lying John!

One of the Other Comets: Lovejoy

Comet ISON seems to be getting all the love right now, but this morning I went for Comet Lovejoy. This is C/2013 R! Lovejoy (not to be confused with the one he discovered in 2011 or the other two comets Lovejoy also discovered) and discovered back in September of this year. It is currently high in the morning sky a couple hours before dawn not far from the bright star Procyon.

I went out this morning and got the following shot with my Canon 60D, EF-s 55-250mm zoom lens at 55mm and f/4, ISO5000 and 30 seconds on an iOptron SkyTracker. Procyon is the bright star at the right and the faint fuzzy comet is on the far left of this image.

So although ISON is getting all the hype, don't forget there are some other pleasing sites out there. Universe today just had an article on the four morning comets currently visible. These will provide some rich morning observing...if I can keep dragging myself out of bed that early!

For more on Comet Lovejoy, check out the Universe Today primer.

Reprinted with permission from the Half-Astrophysicist Blog.

Open Blog - Thursday

Have a boo-tiful day.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Our Phones - Wireless
Cooking - Fireless
Cars - Keyless
Food – Fatless
Tires – Tubeless
Dress – Sleeveless
Youth – Jobless
Leaders – Shameless
Relationships – Meaningless
Attitudes – Careless
Babies – Fatherless
Feelings – Heartless
Education – Valueless
Children – Manner-less
Country – Godless
We are speechless,
Congress is CLUELESS,
and our President is WORTHLESS!

Need Money?

Dear Madame Zoltar

Hello, my extraordinary friends!  How are you?  More and more leaves fall to the ground (or your gutters).  Some trees are already bare.  More and more homes are decorated for Halloween.  Some will be decorated for Christmas shortly thereafter.  The seasons march on, immune to the will of man.  So do the retailers.

Our bombastic and monumental Green Bay Packers defeated the Minnesota Vikings last Sunday.  Somehow, even with all those injuries, the men in green and gold get the job done.  Next Monday night, the Packers take on the hated Chicago Bears.  May the peerless and transcendent Green Bay Packers mutilate da Bears.

In the Irregular Football League, my Screaming Psychics dropped to fourth place.  The Half-Astrophysicists are in first place, the Orbliterators are in second, and the Racine Irregulars are in third.  Oh my.

I was psychic channel surfing the other night when I came across some mumblings and rumblings concerning the behavior of a current Racine alderman in past employment. Someone wake up the Ethics Board again and broadcast the news to Racine’s leaders: the internet is here!  People are connecting in ways that you don’t even know exist.  You best be sure that the skeletons in your closet don’t rattle and tattle on you.  People love dirt on public servants.  It justifies their anger with our government, at all levels.

Our Mr. Governor Scott Walker says he will soon release his decision on the casino in Kenosha.  I’m sure that whichever side comes up with the most payola will win square and fair.

Here’s some good news from RacineUncovered: “Racine Police: 14 burglary arrests made in 48 hours,” “From Racine Police Department:14 Burglary Arrests Made in the past 48 Hours! THANK YOU CITIZENS!!! We couldn’t do it without you!”  On the contrary, we couldn’t do it without you.  Thank you, Racine Police Department! 

Finally, my dears, please take heed of this story from Reuters: “Psychic scammers find fertile haunting ground in Internet age,”
“(Reuters) - As pre-Halloween witches and ghouls sprout up on U.S. lawns, experts are warning people to be wary of modern occult scammers who have moved online to hawk virtual voodoo dolls, revenge spells and otherwise ‘haunted’ items.

“While the idea of spending money for a magic spell - to help with an endeavor or to inflict pain on an enemy - has been around for centuries, experts say the anonymity of online transactions can encourage people who would otherwise never think of visiting a storefront psychic to fall for a con.”

Always be sure that your psychic displays the American Psychic Association Seal of Approval.  It’s the only way to protect unwitting customers.

Thank you for reading my blog this week.  You are such a marvelous audience.  I love spending time with you.  Your presence is my present.

Report the misdeeds of our “superiors:”

I hope that you all have a Happy Halloween!  When you get your bag of goodies home, be sure to check the apples and popcorn balls for needles and razor blades.  And don’t eat anything that tastes like mothballs.  Baragouin!

Open Blog - Wednesday

Enjoy your day.

Monday, October 28, 2013

"Baby LED light suit halloween costume preview"

Published on Oct 22, 2013

"Quick preview of the LED light suit I made for my 22 month old daughter for Halloween. She loves wearing this costume! Go to to sign-up for more information to get the costume. SUBSCRIBE! I will be shooting more of her and uploading some other interesting ideas.

"Snowboarding LED suits:

"*Subscribe for more funny footage of the LED costume.
Vine: @RoyceHutain"

That's super scary and super cute.

JTI Get Together!

I am taking over this time for Lizardmom because she is not feeling good right now. We are trying to get a count of how many people will be able to get together on November 9th.. Mary will be up from Oklahoma and we would really like to get as many of us together to see her. If I do not have your email her is mine so I can make sure I keep you updated on the get together.

This was Drew's idea so you can yell at him. We hope you get better soon so we can see you at the get together!

Halloween Pictures from Up North!

I was not able to get anymore Halloween pictures from around here when we got back from up north. I was able to get a few from up north to share with you. My son even carved some pumpkins for the Grandkids and I have a picture of that to share with you. So here are the pictures:

                             This picture was taken at my son's house on Lincoln St. Shawano Wi..

                             This picture was taken at my son's house on Lincoln St. Shawano Wi..

                              This picture was taken at my son's house on Lincoln St. Shawano Wi..

                              This picture was taken on Hwy 55 in the Menominee Reservation.

                              This picture was taken on Hwy 55 in the Menominee Reservation.

                                        This picture was taken on Washington St. Shawano Wi..

                                        This picture was taken on Washington St. Shawano Wi..

                                        This picture was taken on Washington St. Shawano Wi..

I hope that everyone enjoys the pictures because I really enjoy going out and taking the pictures to share with everyone. There was a couple more I would have loved to get around town and maybe when I get the car tomorrow and run some errands I will get the pictures and share with everyone. I will try my hardest but it is suppose to rain so I don't know how the pictures will turn out. If they turn out good with the rain I will post them. Have a great day!

Open Blog - Monday

Up and at 'em, pussycat.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

"Lou Reed, Rock ’n’ Roll Pioneer, Dies at 71"

"Lou Reed, the singer, songwriter and guitarist whose work with the Velvet Underground in the 1960s had an impact on generations of rock musicians, and who remained a powerful if polarizing force for the rest of his life, died on Sunday at his home in Southampton, N.Y., on Long Island. He was 71."

Read more:

Sad Song.

Enough Said