Saturday, June 13, 2015

Bloom Night

Last night was Bloom Night here in Tucson. Once a year, the Peniocereus greggi, also known as the Desert cereus, blooms. You never get much warning about this event since even experts can only tell the day of when they are likely to bloom. Friday morning word went out that it was bloom night.

The cereus blooms one night per year so this really is Bloom Night singular (although there are always a few stragglers most of them bloom one night and one night only. They live all over Tucson but there are none in my condo complex so I went to Tohono Chul park and their bloom night event. I got there later after our Friday night improv show and it was still pretty busy but, based on all the cars parked down the road, not as bad as it was earlier in the night!

So here are a couple of shots of the Queen of the Night.

Dear Madame Zoltar - Special Edition

Downtown, Cody, Wyoming:

Photo Credit: Tricky Dicky

It looks like my ex is finally getting some competition.

You go, Shaman!

A tip o' the turban to Mr. Tricky Dicky for alerting me to this.

"Why Can't We All Have Neighbors Like This?"

From LiveLeak:

The guy who shot the video said, "You're tweaking," and, "Your pupils look like pin points."  Don't even get near those people (meth heads), but I'm not sure this lady isn't just crazy.  Does it matter anymore?

Open Blog - Weekend

Or else!

Friday, June 12, 2015

Four for Fridays

Good morning and welcome back! It's been a long time since I've rock and rolled.... My apologies for my hiatus from Four for Fridays. This year's spring migration had gotten too crazy and left me exhausted. Kinda hard to come with questions after a long day of work, birding, writing rare bird reports and going through hundreds of pictures. Anyways, here are your questions...

1) What do you like the most about the morning?

2) What did you have for breakfast?

3) What do you prefer, white or wheat bread?

4) How often do you get "behind schedule"?

Enjoy your weekend!

“I brought dinner home!”

From Knuckledraggin My Life Away:

"Unbelievable Footage of Exploding Plants"

Wow! Organic fireworks.

Open Blog - Friday

It's a good day for a swim.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

"Tree trunk removal with an SUV"

From LiveLeak:

It must've been a Monday.

"Journal Times editorial: Disney shouldn't get to use immigration loophole for outsourcing"

June 08, 2015 8:00 pm  • 

"We’re not wild about outsourcing, but we recognize it as a fact of life in the 21st century American economy. Work formerly done for American companies by Americans is now being done overseas.

"We didn’t think outsourcing would take the form of foreigners brought into America to do the work at the American companies. But that’s what has been happening at DisneyWorld in Orlando, Fla.

"What definitely shouldn’t have happened is Disney exploiting a loophole in immigration law to bring in the foreign workers.

"A visa program known as H-1B provides a limited number of temporary visas — a total of 85,000 a year — for foreigners with computer, engineering or other advanced skills to fill jobs in American companies when American workers are not available.

"A lack of available workers was not the case at The Magic Kingdom.

"The New York Times reported Wednesday that about 250 Disney technology-operations workers were laid off last year and many were replaced by immigrants hired by an outsourcing company based in India.

"Before leaving, some of the laid-off workers had to train immigrants on H-1B visas to do their jobs.

"'I just couldn’t believe they could fly people in to sit at our desks and take over our jobs exactly,' one former worker, an American in his 40s who remains unemployed since his last day at Disney on Jan. 30, told the Times. 'It was so humiliating to train somebody else to take over your job. I still can’t grasp it.'

"We’re also finding it difficult to grasp. And questioning the legality of Disney having done so.

"U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., on Thursday asked the Department of Homeland Security to investigate the temporary visa program. In a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, Nelson asked him to examine 'potential misuses' of a visa program known as H-1B.

"'This program was created to help fill jobs when there were labor shortages, not to take jobs away from anyone,' Nelson wrote.

"In 2014, the power utility Southern California Edison initiated layoffs of 540 workers, replacing them with immigrants brought in by a different India-based outsourcing company. Sens. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, and Richard Durbin, D-Ill., are among those asking the Labor Department to investigate those layoffs.

"The intention of H-1B is to fill skilled-worker gaps that already exist, not to help companies increase profits after they’ve deliberately created a skilled-worker gap."

Dear Madame Zoltar

Hello, my friends and lovers!  How are you?  Well, we finally got some heat.  In typical Wisconsin weather, spring lasts for two or three days and then the firebomb is dropped on us.  “It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity.”  Actually, it’s both.  But, as I noted just a few months ago, I’m not going to complain about the heat because of how darn cold it gets in winter.  I’ll take 80 or 90 degrees or more rather than the below zero death trap winter days and nights.  I haven’t turned on the air conditioning yet, but I’ve used its fan.  I also sleep with a fan blowing on me almost every night, summer or winter. 

I remember a place I lived in before I met Junior’s father.  It was steam heated and I had an apartment directly above the boiler room.  On the coldest winter days, I would have both of my radiators turned off while the ceiling fan blew.  Opening windows was the best way to deal with it, but my landlord at the time warned me he would fine me if he saw my windows open.  Meanwhile, apartments in the far corners of the building had all their radiators on and they were still cold.  I considered living in my underwear (or less) at home during the winter, but the apartment was right next to the parking lot.  I didn’t want to put on a show.

I’m not sure where in the process the proposed raise for Mister City Administrator Tom Freidel is, but I liked what our Mr. Toad had to say.  Don’t give him a raise.  Let him walk, if he dares.  Where else is he gong to find a job that pays so well, with so many perks?  And if he does walk, that would be a perfect time to reconsider the need for the position.  We didn’t need one until Mister then-Mayor Becker decided that being a pedophile was a full time job.  So he hired Mr. Ben Hughes to do his job for him.  Mr. Hughes promptly resigned after Mr. Becker’s arrest.  So why does Mr. Mayor Dickert need a city administrator?  So Mr. Mayor can fly to Paris with his friends and have a good time.  There are a lot of similarities between Racine and Paris, such as, uh, such as . . . its light during the day and dark at night. 

I can hardly wait for Machinery Row to save us from ourselves.  I asked Señor Zanza and Junior if they’d like to live down by the river.  Junior asked, “Will it smell like fish?” Señor Zanza just snorted.  So I guess not.  I don’t think I’d like it, either.  There’s something to be said for green space around your home.  We don’t have much of a yard; it’s an old city lot, like most of the homes around here.  I like having a picnic table and grill.  We can do that.  We can even have a small party on our lawn, or hold the overspill from a larger indoor party at home.  Please, no peeing on the neighbor’s shrubs.  And watch out for the garden.  And no tormenting the neighbor’s dog, Flash.

Here’s a song in the vein of today’s blog:

I’ll always be on your side, Irregular or not.  I love my regulars and irregulars, Irregular or not.  Thank you for reading my blog this week.  Be on my side.

Enjoy the warming trend, my dears.  May the heat help heal us all from winter’s indignities.  Get out there and enjoy it, because you know your time is limited.  Before you know it, you’ll be shoveling snow again.  I love you all.  Fruitjzka!

Open Blog - Wednesday

Camel Day?

Monday, June 8, 2015

Growing Older

"100 Year Old Chalkboard Lessons Discovered In Oklahoma High School"

From Break:

By PhilHaney
"One time in high school I remember there was a snippet of a math problem left up in the corner of the chalk board for several months. I always wondered if it would ever be erased.  However I doubt that a teacher at Emerson High School in Oklahoma in the early Twentieth Century knew that their lesson on the chalkboard one day would be viewed by people 98 years later.

"That seems to be the case after construction crews remodeling the high school discovered the old chalkboards in the walls behind current chalkboards in classrooms on the second floor. The fully intact lessons which include music, history, math problems and a calendar counting down the days until Christmas have been dated to 1917. The high school itself was originally built in 1911. Luckily nobody immediately erased the chalkboards.

"A teacher at the school, Sherry Read told ABC News; 'It's been neat just to touch history,' Read said. 'To see this being preserved just makes my heart filled with joy. Knowing that this was behind my wall all this time is pretty fascinating.'

"It is weird that the chalkboards lasted generations, since a lot of times it was the student’s job to wash the board. Franklin and Ethel really screwed up their duties; no Figgy pudding for them, and they won’t be able to listen to the stories on the radio tonight!  The school is looking for a way to preserve the 100 year old chalk board lessons. Hopefully nobody sneezes around them until they do."

Follow Phil Haney on Twitter @PhilHaney

Source:  Yahoo

"Former Chicago man covers entire Florida home in aluminum foil"

Weekday Funny

"What If… Bullies Did This Instead"

From Racine County Eye:

By Denise Lockwood in Breaking · June 6, 2015 

"On Wednesday night the Racine County Eye held a forum on bullying. We wanted to connect parents with resources, offer access to professionals, and have families see a program the Case High School Theatre group does called the Secret Project.

"Even though almost 600 people liked our story about hosting the forum, about 25 people came. I wish more people would have come, but I was truly grateful for those who did come. And I wish you would have heard the things the kids in the audience told us they needed… which was acceptance.

"But the dialogue was great. I couldn’t have asked for better. Still, I wish you could have been there to hear what we heard about the sensitive nature of bullies not really wanting to be bullies at all, one girl in the audience talked about girls in her class being bullied because they liked girls, about a parent’s frustration over how her girls were bullied online, and the difficulty parents face when their children are victims.

"So Heather Asiyanbi, who co-owns the news website with me, and I decided that we’re going to keep doing these kinds of forums. Why? Because we want to keep this dialogue going about how to discuss the issue of bullying in a school district where kids struggle with the complexities of poverty, mental illness, and the fragile reality of not always feeling good enough."

Read more:

Open Blog - Monday

Oh no!