May 25, 2008 archive

Happy Birthday, Mr. Tambourine Man

Well it’s past midnight here, but on the West Coast it’s still Bob Dylan’s birthday.

Took a few things to nudge me into realizing this.

When I checked out meteoriot’s site, lose the label I noticed an entry, crossposted from Docudharma, lol … and it had a video whose tragedy was it was more relevant today than ever.  As meteoriot noted, Dylan was only 22 when he did Masters of War:

‘Course he wasn’t too bad at the love songs, either:

Reflections on Directions

One of the weird transformations I have noted in this last year is that both of my parents have been turning to me for advice quite a bit. On the one hand I am comfortable giving the advice, and on the other I am reminded that in my youth I was rather good at ignoring it. Especially from my parents. Naturally I wonder if what I am saying is the same half baked crap that I rolled my eyes at. I certainly feel no wiser, nor any more insightful than I was as a younger person. Nor do I see my parents as lacking in competence and intellect.

Suddenly one is middle aged and judged to be somehow stable and sensible. Being sensible is never anything I have been accused of in the past.

I have detailed in my comments and a few essays the struggles my mother has faced trying to help my grandmother retain some dignity and independence and there have been no dramatic changes. In the movies and literature there is always some defining moment or event that propels the protagonist to action. For many of us there is no grand stage upon which to declare ourselves and our intentions. Nobody is our witness. Often when we have our “aha” moments we are by ourselves doing mundane things, poking along. And then the phone rings, or the spouse and kids mutter something, and the “aha” moment eludes or shows back up again while we are brushing our teeth.

What’s with the Weather? The La Niña-Tornado Connection

Excerpted by permission from THE ENVIRONMENTALIST:

2008 has seen a record outbreak of tornadoes in the United States from California to the Midwest, from the South through the central plains, to the Appalachian states.

In January, THE ENVIRONMENTALIST reported the University of East Anglia’s prediction for a strong 2008 La Niña event.

“The assessment for 2008 is that there will be a “strong La Niña” event in the Pacific, which will limit the warming trend for the year (whilst still being one of the warmest years).”

The La Niña phenomenon is an upwelling of colder waters resulting in a change in ocean temperature that causes a shift in the jet stream, reducing corresponding climate temperature. While this NOAA study from October, 1999, still referenced on their site, which uses data from 1950 through 1996, concluded there was no tornadic connection to the El Niño/La Niña event, Joseph Schaefer, Director of the National Storm Center, seems to have revised that position, according to this February MSNBC report:

Tornadoes do happen in February, but a study by Schaefer two years ago found that winter tornadoes in parts of the South occur more frequently and are stronger when there is a La Niña…

Full article, graphs, climate change considerations and links at THE ENVIRONMENTALIST

Pony Party: Afternoon Edition

Please don’t ask me why this stupid song was going through my head….

Went kayaking ( that is a pretty loose description ) last weekend on a much under utilized lake nearby. Got my first sunburn of the year and yes I was wearing sunblock.

Taking pictures while kayaking. Not so easy…. try sticking your camera ( my crummy back up camera I might add ) in a waterproof pouch and snapping…

View from the boat…..



Unflattering look at me…..


Turtle and snake action. I freaked out thinking I was accidentally banging into a water moccasin. The turtles were less than pleased about being disturbed.



Thanks for looking at my crummy pictures. Tell me what cool things you are doing for the holiday weekend. Hang out, chit chat and then go read some of the excellent offering on our recent and rec’d list.

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