Monthly archive for September2014 - page 2

Now You Know What To Get Me For Christmas

Now You Know What To Get Me For Christmas

Here’s one Robot I’m not afraid of:

The peeing Cherubs are a nice touch.

Ahh Japan. What would we do without ye?

Ahh Japan.  What would we do without ye?

First they gave us “Dutch Wives”.

Now they give us this:

black burger

I haven’t made a burger that looked like that since The Great Patio Conflagration of Ought Twelve.  Nobody wanted to eat them then.  Now people are paying $7 for them in Japan.

It’s not burnt – it just looks that way.  The flat black finish does make it look fast, though.  And FYI I do think about more than sex and food.

Lotta Air Traffic Today…UPDATED

Lotta Air Traffic Today…UPDATED

…there is a large wildfire burning in the mountains about 60 miles east of where I live.  Unlike some wildfires in California, this one is threatening property and homes, therefore a lot of resources are going into fighting it.  According to this story, as of 3:00 PM PDT the fire has reached over 18,000 acres and there are approximately 2,500 men fighting it.

There are at least 5 air tankers flying out of McClellan Field whose flight paths take them directly over my house.  One of these is the largest air tanker there is, the DC-10.  The others, as near as I can tell, are a pair of  BAe 146s and a Lockheed P-2V and at least one C-130.  I will update periodically with photos, if I can get them.  By the time I hear ’em coming and get outside with the camera, they’re gone.

Update – got a couple pictures.  Photos taken 9/18/14 (click on photo to enlarge – a LOT) :

DC-10 Number 912

DC-10 Number 912


BAe-146 (Neptune Inc.)

BAe-146 (Neptune Inc.)



Cross posted at Men Out of Work Blog


Now it’s time for me to Harsh your Mellow…

Now it’s time for me to Harsh your Mellow…

AP:  Marijuana Industry Battling Stoner Stereotypes

Recreational marijuana use having been recently legalized in Colorado, the Marijuana Industry (AP’s language) is looking for ways to increase sales.  I wrote about this in an April 22nd, 2014 post at The Men Out Of Work Blog: Marketing Marijuana In Colorado…

Though the law has changed, the cultural battle lines are the same.  Opponents still argue that marijuana use has risks, especially for youths.  Proponents object to the use of stereotypes in campaigns that warn of potential risks.  And one thing is for certain – the marijuana industry – whatever you want to call it – has the goal of increasing marijuana sales, and to do that it must minimize any stigma associated with it’s use and increase the customer base.  Translation:  get more people to use pot.

I don’t think that is a good thing.

Spare me your slings and arrow for a few minutes while I explain.  The older I get, the more libertarian I get.  Notice the small “l”.  Personally, I think that if you want to smoke pot, you should be free to do so.  But now that it’s legal, it’s turned into a business.  And a business’ first and foremost goal is to grow…and grow…and grow some more.  Keep growing, year after year.  That means either the same people have to use a lot more pot, or  – more likely – more people have to start using and keep using it.  And I believe that there is no upside to more people using (or abusing) a mood altering drug.

Spare me the lecture about alcohol.  Yes, it’s legal and often abused.  That is not an argument for adding one more substance to the pallette of legally abusable substances.  Many people use alcohol responsibly.  But can you argue that there is a benefit to society if more people use alcohol, responsibly or otherwise?  Well, I guess you could argue it, but would you?  I wouldn’t.

I am not a prudish teetotaller.  I use alcohol.  I have used marijuana.  In the past, both to excess.  In hindsight I can truthfully say that I would not have misssed out on anything had I never used marijuana.  Using it had costs to me that were financial, physical and intellectual.  Had I been thinking rationally, I would have opted out.  But I did not…because I was not thinking rationally…because I was young.

The legalization of a substance, advertising it and minimizing the stigmas associated with it’s use will have an impact on the most impressionable in our society – young people.  So let’s be careful.  It’s legal, so go ahead, smoke up.  Advertise responsibly.  But let’s not pretend that there are no risks.

Most of all let’s not hide the risks from young people who are most at risk of making foolish impulsive decisions that may affect them for a lifetime.

Time for me to Mellow your Harsh

Time for me to Mellow your Harsh

I’m always interested in learning about what makes people tick and the reasons why we are such strange critters.  So after a discussion today about why certain people seem to like having an adversarial relationship with one another, I came across an article at and now feel compelled to share.

Here’s the article: “The Science of Sex: 4 Harsh Truths About Dating and Mating”

The article is based on some “research” posted at a website called Barking Up The Wrong Tree, so the “science” may be total bullshit, but the 4 truths are generally accepted stereotypes they claim are supported by research.  Well, they’re stereotypes, so they must be true at least part of the time or they would not have become stereotypes.  I won’t go into the supporting information, you can go to the link if you want that.  I just want to cover the harsh truths.  This is after all a search for the truth no matter how harsh.  So here goes.

Harsh Truth #1: Those things we say we hate about people actually make us more attracted to them.  Based on surveys of women who were most attracted to men that they were told might like them either a lot or not very much.  They were more attacted to them than to men who they were told liked them a lot.  Related: surveys found that “playing hard to get” works.  Just don’t play “too hard to get”.  Also, Narcissistic traits make a person more attractive.

Harsh Truth #2:  Guys are pretty shallow.  Most male behavior is all about getting laid.  Guys are more likely to be attracted to women with large breasts.  Guys will go to greater lengths and expense to impress younger women.

Harsh Truth #3:  Women are no angels, either.  Women find “bad boys” more attractive, and “happiness” was found to be the least attractive emotion in a man.  Women are attracted to men of status (translation: Money).

Harsh Truth #4: Harsh truths #1 – #3 do not change over time (as we age).  They also hold true across different cultures.  Men focus on looks, women focus on status.  Even in nursing homes.

Well they may be harsh but calling them truths goes too far.  They certainly are stereotypes, but stereotypes are not absolute.  In this case, the claim of “truths” is alleged to be backed up by science.  But even that holds that the “truths” are valid only for “x” percentage of the respondents.  So they are “mostly” truths or “sometimes” truths.  Thank God.

Some of these are partially true for me, others don’t apply to me at all.  I’ll let you guess which.  So all we can glean from this is that there are a wide variety of things that motivate people in regard to physical attraction.

Oh and…*ahem*…sex.

So, as I like to say, different strokes for different folks.  Now that is a truth.  And not too harsh!

Now this:

The Dream Is Over…

The Dream Is Over…

…”Six States” initiative fails to qualify for ballot.

Well, it was fun while it lasted, but according to the California Secretary of State, insufficient valid signatures were submitted to qualify the initiative for the 2016 ballot.  The initiative would have carved California up into six separate states.  You can read this for backgound.

I opined early on that this would never come to fruition because it would upset a very large apple cart for the Democratic Party and Public Sector Labor Unions that have a stranglehold on political power in this state.  They found this baby in it’s cradle and pressed the pillow hard.  Long Live the Status Quo!

Approximately 800,000 signatures were required for the initiative to qualify – nearly 1.4 million were submitted, a seemingly sufficent margin for error.  The SOS predicted that only 66 percent of the signatures were valid based on “random sampling”.  So fully 1/3 of the submited signatures were deemed “invalid”.  I’d like to see a little more in depth reporting on this.  The sponsors of the initiative have promised a review of the invalid signatures.

I’m certain that the Secretary of State did a careful and thorough job of verification.  Certain!

Now this:

Two drummers.  Awesome.  And Mike McDonald when he was still “Salt and Pepper Lightning”.

Some Saturday Nonsense

Some Saturday Nonsense

Via Althouse:  one of those internet quizzes with a twist – answer 20 questions and they will tell who you are.  No, not your name adress etc.  That the NSA’s job.  What they mean is that they will tell your gender, age and some other things about you that make you “who you are”.

Here’s the link: – Can We Guess Who You Are In Only 20 Questions?

dog who are you

I tried it for grins and giggles and the only thing they got right about me were my gender, hair color (!) and marital status.  I think there are a couple questions that identify you as either male of female then beyond that they randomly generate other characteristics.  That’s my guess anyway.  Give it a try and let me know in the comments how they did.

Music Friday – just under the wire edition

Music Friday – just under the wire edition

This week featuring…The Animals!  AKA Eric Burdon and The Animals.  The original incarnation was formed in England in 1962 or 1963.  As part of the British Invasion of the early 60s they had a few hit songs and some commercial success.  In one of my earlier Music Friday posts I gave them a mention because they recorded the song “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood” which was the first record that I actually owned, that didn’t belong to one of my older siblings.  Here it is – give a listen:

Probably their most successful song is a traditional folk song, written by an unknown author on an unknown date.  Recorded by the group in 1964, it’s a song that still gets a lot of airplay on oldies and classic rock stations.  Here is “The House of the Rising Sun”:

Like most of the groups that were part of the British Invasion their roots were in American Rythm and Blues, which you will hear in this number, “It’s My Life”:

What were they thinking?  I dunno – maybe you should ask them.  Most of them are still around.  Thanks for listening!


What Are They Thinking?

What Are They Thinking?

“They” being animals.  I lifted the post title from the article “What are Animals Thinking? (Hint:More Than You Suspect)”. There are some interesting observations in the short article, but after reading it turns out that it’s just a preview – almost an advertisement –  for the Time book “The Animal Mind” (On Newsstands Now!).

Since the most popular post on the blog is “What Makes a Human Different From an Animal?” I thought that this would be a natural topic to do a follow up post.  The original post ended up being more of a reflection on animal rights vs. human rights.  Not having read “The Animal Mind” because I do not know where I might find one of these “newsstand”  things, I can only go with the ideas put forth in the preview article which seem to focus more on animal intelligence and “intellect” if you will, based on animals’ exhibition of so-called “human” behaviors and their relative success at performing those behaviors.  There is no doubt that all animals have some degree of intelligence.  We’ve heard for years that some animals are “smarter” than others – A pig is smarter than a horse, which is smarter than a dog, which is smarter than etc, etc.  Also, a (fill in the blank) is as intelligent as a (blank) year old child.  A quote from the article:

“Animals, the research is proving, are creatures capable of reflection, bliss, worry and more. Not all of them in the same ways or to the same degrees, surely, but all of them in far deeper measures than we’ve ever believed.”

Interesting, if true.  I guess I’ll have to read “The Animal Mind” to find out how you measure whether an animal feels “bliss” or whether they worry.  I think that these type of “human behaviors”, if that’s what you want to call them, require a certain amount of self- awareness.  All animals are self-aware to some extent – they’d have to be to survive.  I think the question lies in determining how much of their behavior is geneticaly embedded “instictive” behavior and how much is driven by intellectual reasoning and emotion.  To the extent that certain behaviors are noted I think that it is interesting that the behaviors do not seem to overlap species which leads me to believe that much of it, no matter how human it seems, is instinct.

I don’t believe that cats groom themselves because they worry that their hair  doesn’t look good.  But that doesn’t mean that I like cats any less because of it.  There are a lot of people who are emotionally invested in portraying animals as “beings” – just look to the animal rights movement for proof.  I think animals have it better today than at any time in the past; machines have taken over a lot of the labor we used to use animals for.  The animals we eat are raised and slaughtered more humanely than in the past and we’re probably eating fewer of them to boot.  Animal cruelty is socially unacceptable today.  These are all good things.


Often I would like to know what is going on inside my dog’s head, though I don’t think there’s a lot of intellectual activity going on there.  But that won’t stop me from trying to live up her expectatations and to be the kind of person she thinks I am.  Or rather the kind of person I imagine that she thinks I am.

NEVER Forget

NEVER Forget

airliner towers



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