Tag: Doc

My Little Town 20110221: Gene and Katy

This is an installment of an extremely irregular series that I write when I begin to remember people from my childhood.  I grew up, for the most part, in Hackett, Arkansas, just about nine miles south of Fort Smith, Arkansas, almost on the border with Oklahoma.  This was quite the “redneck” part of the nation.

Hackett, when I was little, still had a sunset law on the books.  Those of you not from the South may not be familiar with such a law, but they were real (and likely still are on many books, but obviously not enforceable any more).  Essentially, a sunset law dictated that any black person (NOT the term used at the time) could not remain in the town after sunset, to prevent black families from moving into the town.

The penalty was, at least in my town, that being black and there after sunset was not just an offense, but a shooting cause, both by citizens and law enforcement.  I report this not to titillate, but just to illustrate how many southern jurisdictions were run until recently, and some still are.

Q and A from the Geek’s Mailbox 20100514

As you know, I get questions from time to time about things.  I keep the best ones until I have enough to post them.  Some of them are serious, some are funny, and some do not quite make sense.

This is a followup to the hugely successful (for me, making the rec list) post from a couple of weeks ago.  You have Keith Olbermann to thank or to curse for stimulating me to write in the Thurber tradition.

By the way, Docudharma.com gets the scoop on this one.  I will not post it to the big orange until tomorrow because of the severe time restrictions on comments, and you all know that the comments are the best part of my posts.

Dispicable People 20100513: Brigitte Gabriel

Of all of the folks who are in contract with the Fox “News” Channel, Brigitte Gabriel is the most uncontrollable one.  She typically shrieks nonsense, most of it very venomous diatribes against Muslim folks.  This is one of the most vile persons that I have ever seen.

She was born in Lebanon in 1964, and claims to have lived in a bomb shelter for many years.  This is a lie, but just one of many.  Even Hannity could not control her on his show tonight, and actually apologized for her.

Doc’s Take on the Virginia Confederate Statement 20100408

Those of you who regularly read my posts know that I do not routinely write about politics, although I usually make a short joke about silly wingnuts in my closing statements on Pique the Geek, the science post every Sunday at 9:00 PM Sunday evenings.

However, the antics of the newly elected Republican (of course) governor of Virginia just got me going.  Robert Francis McDonnell is the new governor of Virginia, just this year being sworn into the office.  In my opinion, he is a racist and a bigot.

I offer insights not often given by folks at progressive sites, but I think that my experiences might help to make sense of McDonnell’s antics.  Please read to the end before you hate me, or my ancestors.

Wonderful Wedding, more tomorrow. Morans aggravate me 20091214

Hello, folks!  Sorry to take a hiatus from Pique the Geek last night, but I was enjoying the bonds of family, not something that I am able to do often.  As much as I love all of you, please excuse me for loving those really close to me more.

Eldest Son was married to his sweetheart of eight years Saturday afternoon.  Yes,  choked up and damn near cried.  His mum, the former Mrs. Translator, was about the same, but it hit her more the next day.

Pique the Geek 20091206: Botulinum Toxin (Botox)

Botox is in the news all of the time because of its use as wrinkle reducer, but it has many more uses than that, and a very long history.  The proper name is botulinum toxin, and is a neurotoxin produced by the common soil bacterium Clostridium botulinum.  This bacterium is an obligate anaerobe, meaning that it is poisoned by oxygen.

As a matter of fact, many bacteria of this genus are obligate anaerobes, and more than one are causes of human and animal disease.  In addition, they are also spore formers, which is the mechanism that they use to survive times when they are exposed to oxygen.

20,000 Years of Memory. 20091202

I have not told you very much about myself, actually.  But I will tell you what it has like to have been a woman for untold centuries.  It sucks.  Not because that I do not like my sexuality, in fact I really am comfortable with it (I would not be a man for anything), but how we as an important part of society have been treated.

With the gift, I have been able not only to be an historian, but actually wrote down much of it (we Neanderthals DID have the written word) and remember it.  Part of the gift is complete memory.  By the way, NEVER wish for that.  There are thousands of things in my memory that I would prefer to extinguish.  Give thanks for putting bad things out of your mind.  If you ever get the gift, not only will those memories come back, but the ones of those in my lineage, or of the half a dozen of my kind.

Twenty Thousand Years of Memory 20091127

I mentioned the memory thing.  That is the strangest, other than living for so long, thing.  Those of us who have been given the gift hold memories, or at least fragments of them, from our predecessors.

I have not been specific about how this gift is transferred, but suffice it to say that it is nothing like a “bite on the neck” that does it.  I requires hours of extremely intimate contact, some, but not all of it, sexual.

Twenty Thousand Years of Memory 20091125

You do not know what it was like.  What you now know of as central Europe was cold as cold could be.  My people lived there.  We were Neanderthals.  Most moderns think that we were stupid.  We were not.

Nor did we look “odd” to you.  The skeletons that you moderns found were from our elders, and after three or four hundreds of years, of course they look primitive.  I assure you that they were not.  They were our elders that passed on the genetic trait of longevity that I have.

Pique the Geek 20091122. US Coin Facts

United States coins have traditionally been forged and minted with gold, silver, and copper.  Very small amounts of other metals have also been added to improve the wearing properties of the coins.

Gold, silver, and copper, in their pure states, are actually too soft to make good coins, in that they wear must too fast.  The chemistry of good alloys is a fascinating part of numismatics, the study of coins.

Warp Speed

Zeph slept into the late afternoon.  I went and awoke him, shaking him.  “Zeph, Zeph, we did it!  We constructed a stable warp field and went faster than light, or at least you did!.”

Zeph was very passed out from the night before.  I finally was able to awaken him.  “Dave, what happened?”

“Zeph, you broke the light limit!  We did it!”

“Oh, shit, my head hurts.  I dreamed of little, well full sized, green men with pointed ears.”

“Shit, Zeph, those were the Vulcans.  You really met them.  They saw our warp signature and landed to meet us.  You are going to be remembered forever.”

American Family Association Propaganda 20090903

The American Family Association (AFA) is a right wing wingnut outfit run by Donald Wildmon and his son.  They own the “news” outlet One News Now (ONN), which is as nutty as Cybercast News.

They are also tax exempt.  You tell me after you read this one if they should be.  I think not.

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