Monday, February 16, 2015

It's Presidents' Day! :-)




15 comments:

  1. Howard Dean is first. And I just discovered that I left my post about returning from Capricon on the Saturday thread rather than yesterday/s

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  2. No problem, Bill; your post is not yet lost in the mists of time [grin].

    listener--might this be a good day to post Demetrius' 40 acres and a mule illustrations? Hmmmmm….will have to see if I can locate them and put a link here…
    Ah, here it is--now combined into a single picture. [Click]


    A couple of promising stories out of Fresno:

    Virtually all of Fresno's waste water to be recycled. [Click] This sort of thing is one of the adaptations to megadroughts foreseen by experts--California has a lot of underutilized (lower quality) water resources.

    Food processing waste into biodegradable plastic [Click]


    Another beautiful day here, with no rain in the week's forecast. the Sacramento Valley (northern half of California's Central Valley) is up to average rainfall to date, we are over half, and further south it is less. Snowpack in the Sierra Nevada still quite low. Maybe there has been enough rain that I can glean some lettuce and onions this year. Farmers are still planting almonds like crazy, albeit with drip irrigation.

    --Alan

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  3. Others making useful materials from food waste, and looking to scale up. [Click]


    The "Circular Economy." this must be the way forward. [Click] It is interesting to think of the economic effects of such an economy--there would have to be external inputs to keep things going, but external energy inputs are available from sustainable sources. It was energy inputs that drove the industrial revolutions of the Middle Ages, the 19th and 20th Centuries. With fossil fuel use being limited, might we not be at a stage similar to the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance, when energy from horses, wood, wind, and water had been utilized to the maximum, and it was becoming necessary to substitute coal for wood due to exhaustion of the latter?

    --Alan

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  4. Graphene for a greener world [Click] The polymeric graphene auto battery sounds particularly interesting, if true.
    --Alan

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  5. 10ยบ and snowing. Gonna snow till tomorrow morning. At least it's snow.

    Since this is Presidents' Day, like to say how happy and glad I am to have lived to see this man President. We're luckier than we deserve.

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  6. Currently 12 degrees. Just gone 5:30 and not quite dark. We're making some progress.

    And to my mind Democracy is first!

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  7. Dad now has a bad sore throat. He overdid it yesterday. OTOH the city has instituted a fine for businesses and residents who don't clear their sidewalks. So, what can you do? When Sis and i are here on our own we'll have to hire it done, since neither of us can operate a snow bloer. That'll be great. *sigh* But, that won't be for a while yet.

    Finished Everneath and set to start the next installment, Everbound. Interesting,well written and with engaging characters. One can almost feel sorry for the bad guy, whlethe heroine and hero are less ideal and pefect than Bella and Edward of Twilight. Mind you, I like Twilight but Nickie and Jack are more Every-kid types. Glad I stumbled upon the series.

    The tournament at Fin Trivia is winding down. I won't be able to play the last few sets because of computer problems - what else is new? Dad feels so lousy, I didn't have the heart to ask him to look at the computer. It's OK though. I did better than I ever imagined possible, so the last few sets would just have been frosting anyway. But I hope this doesn't become a habit! Something similar happened near the end of the last run of the tournament. I *really* hope it doesn't happen next time!

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  8. I see they are predicting snow for you next weekend, Cat [West Springfield, right?]. Here's hoping it doesn't amount to much. 5:30 PM now, and it is said to be 73 degrees. Got some fairly serious weeding done, but knocked off early--I'm not yet recovered from the weekend. Doing my best to take vacation this week, although I will have to spend at least some time at the lab on Thursday, most likely. (Telephone appearance in court.) Peach and plum trees' buds just starting to show some color; I haven't sprayed them this winter, but I should be able to get away with it tomorrow--last chance for sure. Then to pruning them.

    --Alan

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  9. I think I will continue reading Max Beer's "Life and Teachings of Karl Marx" and sometime later this evening watch Robert Downey Jr.'s "Sherlock Holmes." It seems the reviews for the latter are mixed, but it ought to be worth a look. Hmmmm…. I see that my Netflix queue is getting pretty short. Might have to do something about that.

    --Alan

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  10. Athenae Delenda Est [Click] Krugman on the Eurozone brinksmanship or worse.

    --Alan

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    1. I wonder what a "draft statement" really is. To me, the words sound like "initial negotiating position." Which makes it not unreasonable, assuming the central bankers are actually willing to negotiate. Krugman's right, of course, that it would be absurd to actually put this proposal into practice.

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  11. Well, the roads up here have been rather slipsy, especially as we've had below zero temps and whipping winds. Last night it got down to -18.7F (not counting wind chill!). We were lucky the wind had lightened up by that time, so it was only a windchill around -25 to -30F. On Saturday there was a 14 car pileup on I-89. Sen. Pat Leahy was stuck in it on his way to an event at UVM. So another car that was part of his crew stopped to pick him up, but got a flat tire. Not to worry, because Rep. Peter Welch happened by, enroute to the same event, and gave Sen. Pat Leahy a lift. :-D I love Vermont!!

    http://www.wcax.com/story/28121791/sen-leahy-stuck-in-14-car-pileup-due-to-icy-roads

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    1. With weather like that, I should think there would be a basic social obligation to help anyone in such a pinch, just as in traditional Inuit society.

      --Alan

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  12. What is Minneapolis doing right? A lot, evidently. [Click]

    Enough reading "The Life and Teachings of Karl Marx" for tonight. It's quite educational; I think I should get a paper copy for my library. e-books are OK for casual reading, but not for real studying. I was surprised to discover that Max Beer's works are still readily available, and even being reprinted.

    --Alan

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  13. Not enough time left tonight for a movie, but I have, by experimentation, figured out a satisfactory method for making a single cup of mexican-style hot chocolate in a microwave oven.

    This is using a 1.5 kw oven.

    Cut up the right-sized portion (it varies by brand) of a chocolate tablet and mix it in a mug with 50 ml water. Cover with a folded paper towel (e.g., the one you cut the chocolate on) and microwave for a minute. Stir well until all the chocolate is melted and dissolved in the water. Add 150 ml of milk, cover, and microwave for another minute. Stir to mix, froth if desired (a small wire whisk spun between both hands does the job) and enjoy!

    --Alan

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