[Most Recent Entries]
Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in
[ << Previous 20 ]
[ << Previous 20 ]
|Tuesday, February 14th, 2017|
|Strange Things in the Desert: Part 305
Sometimes I need to know things, things that are not real but, nevertheless, important. That's when I seek wisdom in the Borderlands.
At the mouth of the Valley of the Moon stands the Desert Tower. It is a place of strange and sometimes dangerous creatures.
The Coyote Princess lives there and gives answers to people who come with offerings. The things she says are mostly lies, because she's a coyote first and a princess second. Fortunately, her lies are more helpful than most truths if one knows how to listen.
As you might expect, a coyote's junkyard is not exactly normal.
Rock Dog guards the Springs The Quench Not Thirst. He's a bit more direct than Coyote Princess.
The millionaire bikers are easy to dodge. A casual comment about scratched paint sends them scurrying off to desperately run their eyes and hands over their rides.
In a town overrun by vampires, a lot of holy water is required. Thanks to the miracle of modern Capitalism, this is not a problem.
Labyrinths, why does it always have to be Labyrinths?
They're up there, searching. I hope they're searching for someone else, but I wait until I can no longer hear the drumbeat of the rotors to continue. Just in case.
Dead end here. No wings.
Other locals point out the way for me.
There it is. The Center of the World, and the histories written in stone. Coe, the dragon who sometimes lives there, was not at home.
It's official. And that puzzles me. In what office is the Hub of All set or recognized? I think it should be a sacred glade or a mountain top, not an office. It's gladial. It's peakial. I'll have to consider that when I have more time.
It's all here.
Even the future, there on the left... it's harder to read, but still here. The problem is finding exactly what I'm looking for.
The sun sinks lower, but I find what I need.
The way back home.
|Thursday, September 17th, 2015|
|Friday, May 22nd, 2015|
|Saturday, May 2nd, 2015|
|More Painting This Weekend
Got most of the major areas of the wagon's main room done. Cabinets and lots of fiddly little bits of trim left to do. Current Mood: accomplished
|Wednesday, April 15th, 2015|
I finished the bedroom of the gypsy wagon tonight:
|Sunday, November 9th, 2014|
In New Mexico for a lab, I realized I was passing by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory, so I stopped in to check it out. That's the hub of the VLA behind me. I also got a look at the LWA and the "Barn" where they build the dishes. Much astronomy geek-love ensued.
|Tuesday, May 13th, 2014|
| Mythic Parallels
I surely can't be the only person to have noticed this:
A lot of people complaining about how Twilight defeated Tirek in the season four finale, don't seem to grasp the concept of metaphoric storytelling.
|Friday, May 9th, 2014|
|Ya Turn Yer Back and....
Back from the jobs in Florida and there are darned thistles everywhere!
Guess it's time to break out the line mower and dilled mayonnaise.
|Tuesday, March 4th, 2014|
|The Difference Between Agnostics and Atheists
An agnostic and an atheist are sitting in a pub when a man rushes in from outside and says, "I've just seen the most incredible thing! There was a black dog walking down the street that had wings and two heads! He was all green and floated in the air about a foot off the pavement, and was reciting Chaucer in fluent Aramaic!"
When the agnostic and the atheist go out to see this amazing animal they find the street deserted, but the third man assures them that the dog had been there just moments ago.
They go back inside the pub and order another round.
The barman delivers their drinks and asks, "So do you guys believe all that about the weird dog?"
The agnostic says, "I have no idea. I could be true, I suppose. There's no way of absolutely telling for sure."
The atheist says, "I can't disprove his story, but based on what I know of the way the world usually works, and the fact that two of his claims are self-contradictory, and a third is based on knowledge he doesn't posses (he doesn't speak Aramaic), I consider the probability of his claims being true to be vanishingly close to zero. In short, he's almost certainly lying, though there is also a chance he was hallucinating."
Were you expecting a joke? Sorry; no punch line. This is just the most succinct illustration I could come up with to explain why I'm an atheist and not an agnostic. Unfalsifiable assertions are not a 50/50 coin flip.
|Tuesday, February 4th, 2014|
|Tuesday, January 14th, 2014|
|Monday, December 23rd, 2013|
We decided to do something a bit different than the usual bonfire, it being still a bit too dry up here to safely kindle a gigantic conflagration.
Loaded with all the things we wanted to burn away before the new year:
|Saturday, December 7th, 2013|
|Sunday, November 17th, 2013|
|Sunday, November 3rd, 2013|
|Saturday, October 26th, 2013|
|Getting to Third Base
Or, third dan
, in this case!
John Martin, Carol, and I received our certificates for our third degree black belts today!
|Thursday, October 24th, 2013|
Doing some remodeling for a friend. A steel I-beam becomes a nice paneled post. Three more to go, and dark stain to come.
|Thursday, October 17th, 2013|
|Majority, Majority, Who's Got the Majority?
Something even more horrifying from the political cesspit of Flatland!
Here are all the states in the country with the congressional districts divided in a "fair" manner:
The Purples at 60.5% of the electorate get 10 congressmen, and the Greens at 39.5% get 6. Pretty obvious and expected. But, with the usual jiggery-pokery applied, we get:
The Purples at 60.5% of the electorate get 6 congressmen, and the Greens at 39.5% get 10. Just the opposite
of what it should be! The more complex the system gets, the easier it is to completely subvert it! Fun, huh?
Wait...wait... this is just an example, right? Things like this don't happen in real life, do they?Do
Uhmn... kid... sorry to do this to you... but, about Santa Claus....
|Wednesday, October 16th, 2013|
This subject came up in conversation because of the latest comedy to come out of DC and I was somewhat surprised to discover that the people I was talking with could not conceive of how congressional districts could be wildly misrepresented when the proportion of voters in those districts was fairly obvious.
One pencil, one bar napkin, and two minutes later things were clearer.
I thought I'd rebroadcast it here just because this is something that everyone in the US should know:
In the nation of Flatland is the State of Cubonia. Cubonia has enough population to be apportioned four congressional districts. The picture below is a map of Cubonia showing the population divided into the two main political parties they are registered as, Green and Purple. The exact proportion is 71% Purple, 29% Green.
The question is how to draw the boundaries of the congressional districts. The obvious way to do so fairly (remember, the population in each district must be the same) is the following:
This gives Cuboinia three Purple congressmen and one Green congressman... fairly close to the percentage of the population that is divided between the two parties.
But wait! Remember I said "fairly" above? No politician wants fairness, they want to win!
So, after some typical back-room legislation by the Purples, who have more votes, the boundaries are re-drawn thusly:
Cuboinia, without any change in the population or their voting habits, goes from three Purple congressmen to four, losing the Greens their single congressman and leaving them completely unrepresented.
But wait! The Greens are swept into Flatland national office in a landslide. More power politics ensue, and Cubonia's districts are re-drawn, again, thusly:
Now Cubonia elects two Purple congressmen and two Green... still out of proportion to the number of voters in each party, which remain unchanged.
Fairness has nothing to do with it. The above example is very simple and it's easy to see how it's been rigged. Actual congressional districts in the US look like diagrams of bacteria clusters and are drawn by very sophisticated computer algorithms to ensure "safe" districts.
Wouldn't directly proportional representation be best? Bite your tongue! That's only in the interest of the citizens, and is un-American!