Friday, July 22, 2016

July 22 Link Log

As I headed home yesterday I passed a bank thermometer showing 101 degrees Fahrenheit at 5:25 p.m. I don't think that thermometer is properly shaded but neither were people walking on the street at 5:25 p.m. Today is likely to be as hot, or hotter. I left the Friday Market a little early, due to the sensation that my brain was starting to melt. Clearly, an afternoon with an iced drink in the cafe, during which I might manage a Link Log, was indicated. Clearly, many people agree with me; every table in the cafe is occupied. Can I get from Amazon to Zazzle in four hours?

Categories: Animals, Bad News, Books, Fun, Health News, Movie, Nature, Phenology Links, Politics, Youth Behaving Well, Zazzle


Octopi don't look as if they had brains, but they do:

Bad News 

Another mass murder, this one in Munich. Photos and videos if you want them. The Daily Mail story is so creepy, it makes me wonder whether the murderer was an Al Qaeda goon (on drugs) or a Prozac Dementia case (who particularly hated Muslims before he went insane). Empathy hugs to the city that had to deal with rape-terrorist attacks last winter, and now...


A white-collar convict known as Ra Avis has published a collection of poems about the prison experience:

Have you been confused by the difference in the work of evangelical Christian Franky Schaeffer and non-evangelical Frank Schaeffer? Wondered whether Frank was Franky's son? No,  they're one man. Here's where his story is told:

Ralph Nader has a book due in September:

Fun Stuff 

Fun facts about TV game shows:

Health News 

Can a vegan diet help patients with multiple sclerosis? Dr. McDougall and a team of younger researchers and practitioners ran a study and found doesn't seem to hurt them.

Hurrah for for getting this slideshow all onto one page! This time of year, I still think it's the heat'n'humidity...but if loss of efficient sleep persists after those drop back out of the nineties, I'll know which of the other possibilities shown here to blame.


Here's a less than enthusiastic review that, nevertheless, makes me want the book, anyway. ('Cos I'm guessing I can read a romance novel faster, and more attentively, than I can watch a romance movie.)


Wendy Welch posted road trip photos earlier this week. Here's Jack on the road trip, a Scot in the Western States. More bison:

More pictures and another poem from Minnesota; thanks to @LivingAlmanac for the link:

Phenology Links

Official temperatures (documented in the shade) of 129 degrees Fahrenheit, not far from where people were getting the mercury all the way to the top of the thermometer on hot pavement last July. (Please do not try to burst a mercury tube on the pavement, Gentle Readers.)

It's not as if we've not had rain, plenty of rain, and wind and thunder and lightning. Those things do not clear the air (for long, if at all). In Gate City a retiree claims the wind blew a rear window right out of his car; on lower-lying ground there've been the predictable floods, backups, and sewer overflows.

(Sorry there's no link for this one, but I have seen some cute bits of phenology, here, in spite of the dreaded weather. On the way into town, one morning this week, I saw an animal that looked hard to identify. I was able to focus my astigmatic old eyes on it before "it" broke up into two separate, fleeing animals--it was two little groundhog pups, less than half their adult size, nosing about in the grass beside the road together. If my cell phone snapped decent photos I would've tried to post one. They. Were. Adorable.)

Politics (Applied) 

Why is this story news? Because, during a peaceable nonviolent demonstration, protesters don't block traffic. Make themselves seen, yes; make themselves noticed as people enter or leave private property, maybe; make people detour out of public thoroughfares, no. These protesters were behaving badly, and a case could be made for arresting them.

Politics (Election 2016) 

Tim Kaine for vice-president? Y'know, I sort of like this idea...because Virginia is a conservative state, and needs one really conservative senator.

Another vice-presidential nominee broke the obscure law regulating his right to voice support for Candidate Clinton, that is. Since I'd like her to pick Tim Kaine, I chortled. And I hope the posters of the really mean comments on this report have never run through a red light or kept a library book overdue.

Here's a Kaine fan from the extreme left. "In favor of universal pre-K" is of course code for compulsory (tax-funded, profoundly dysfunctional) day care, which was the lousy idea supported by Walter Mondale that caused me to vote for Reagan, and against my own college scholarship fund, the very first time I voted. I remember, though, that we'd already survived four years with Vice-President Mondale with no compulsory day care. In fact, WM did for school choice what politicians who continue to blather about gun control, these days, do for gun sales.

And..."boring"? Maybe the kid means "older than the guys she finds sexually attractive"? I assure young readers that Tim Kaine is a regular live wire compared to Walter Mondale. Senator Kaine speaks Spanish and has a normal-looking face that some women probably do find attractive. Vice-President Mondale's problem, back in the day, was being mistaken for Richard that's an image problem.

(Fair disclosure: I've never found Al Gore "boring" either. Bland, and if you oppose censorship of the Internet you might say menacing, but not boring.)

About our junior senator's charisma factor...I will admit that Senator Warner is a more conventionally handsome man. Nevertheless, this blandly, predictably partisan Tweet...

Spoke w just back from . Knows VP finalist well. says he's a nice guy but too liberal guns, coal. etc.

...says more to Virginians than it may to the rest of the country. When Tim Kaine won the gubernatorial election in 2005, he won against former state Attorney General Jerry Kilgore, Terry's identical twin, equally likely to be seen as "too young." This tells us that, whatever it takes to win an election against someone who could be described as young and cute, Senator Kaine has. Democrats should not underestimate the advantages of age and guile.

Politics (Miscellaneous) 

Rand Paul's been having an interesting vacation:


Bad example, or how not to write: In Austin the police chief, who has a lovely Spanish name, formally apologizes to a Black woman whose minor traffic stop got out of hand last year. A writer who probably can't get fire insurance in his/her own name, due to a history of throwing kerosene on grease fires, wraps up the story with an explanation that White Americans are afraid of Black Americans' "violent tendencies." That's part of the stereotype, if White Americans didn't have violent tendencies too. Customs like branding, scalping, and mutilating offenders' bodies are often associated with Native Americans, but are, in fact, of European origin. See how this NBC writer turns a story that's supposed to be about making peace into something that, when read by a little old lady, definitely brings out snarky tendencies?

Youth Behaving Well 

How cool is this site? Well, thanks to Governor Haslam for Tweeting the link. Earlier this week I mentioned the young strong handsome bodies that helped load furniture from the Habitat store; here's a whole gallery of other ways Tennessee's high school students are burning off their adolescent energy and gaining work experience.


Have readers who don't do Google + had a chance to see our four-footed e-friend Valentino?

Whoa...that's kind of expensive. Here's a cheaper photo from the same gallery, on a simple little postcard, with a haiku by +Ruth Cox :

And, er um, would you like postage stamps with that?