This is was in broad daylight, 5 pm or so, in a fairly quiet suburban neighborhood. The street does get fairly busy during rush hour, but it's regularly patrolled by police from two cities (our building is in Los Alamitos, but it's Seal Beach directly across the street). I got this in a forwarded email from the other office; it also said there's been a rash of incidents - a carjacking at the Dairy Queen a mile down the road, someone stealing a dog from the neighborhood across the street, and a drunk driver killing a bicyclist a small distance in the other direction (there seems to be a high proportion of accidents along this road; it curves several times and people just drive too fast).
Who knows if the mugging was by someone local or just a random drive-by? But if I hadn't had to go somewhere yesterday evening, I would have been standing there too, well, maybe across the street. I believe I'll call for a ride home this evening. I don't want to stop taking the bus because of this, though.
One thing strikes me though. For the last month, the Joker movie posters have been all over the place, especially bus stops, and it kept niggling at me that they reminded me of something. I finally figured out what it was.
This is the bus stop poster:
( And this is what it's reminding me of... )
Hi Senoritafish. Google News sent me a link to yesterday's blog entry about the weapons station. FYI, the building in the picture was used to construct the second stage of the Saturn V moon rocket. Those huge doors actually still work, and we very occasionally "exercise them" to make sure that they do. Never know when they might come in handy! Normally though, the doors on this building stay shut. Cheers!
(posted with permission)
Earlier in the summer, tsunami warning signs began appearing along the beaches, and on the downhill side of the streets heading to the coast. My part of the city is located on a mesa, so it is the high ground everyone would be running too. This sign is a couple of blocks from my house. And we've got that OC grafitti going on already; that little sticker guy already appeared here.
( Uphill side of the street... )
Came inside and turned on the news, thinking it might be traffic or a pretty weather background shot. Unfortunately, when the story finally came on, it was about a search for missing swimmers. Apparently five guys decided to go for a swim at 2 am and only three came back. One body was already found and they were doing CPR on another just pulled from the surf before I left for work; however, given that the guy had already been in the water for nearly six hours, the prospect didn't look good.
Two am suggests that somebody had a bright idea to go for a swim right after the bar kicked 'em out - there's a good recipe for a Darwin award. Where were the police/lifeguards that are always kicking people off the beach at 10 pm? We had to be carrying permits to go look for grunion after that time. Anyway, sad. I take my kids right along that stretch of beach all the time. I've swam there myself on numerous occasions, sometimes at night.
Thing is sometimes the surf looks deceptively calm; the longshore current can be very strong, and rip currents can easily carry you out past the surf line. I nearly drowned a former boyfriend once after high school because we went out past the surf in the same area, and I didn't realize he wasn't as strong a swimmer as I was; I looked around and saw him behind me struggling weakly to keep his head above water - he never called out to me or anything. Having recently had lifesaving training, I began pushing him back towards the beach; luckily a lifeguard saw us, swam out and carried him in. In the dark it would have been difficult for buddies to keep track of each other, especially if their judgment was impaired.
Ostensibly a martial arts place, but when I asked another occupant what they did there, she said there was never anyone in there and when she'd tried to talk to the owner once, he'd yelled at her that "he was trying to run a business and didn't have time to just be talking to her!" She thought he slept there.
The signs in the corners of the windows say "Leykis 101" - as in Tom Leykis, I'm assuming.
Friday, however, after moving her wastebasket and listening determinedly at the suspect spot, she now thinks the noise may be coming from under the floor. I know there are spaces under the carpeting for wiring network cabling and such, so maybe it's something to do with that (we really should ask the building staff, I suppose). It is startling if you happen to be in the building during off hours, when no one else is around.
Seems cooler to pretend we have a poltergeist though. ;p
This article was mentioned at lunch yesterday and VT brought it in for me today.
I've driven by here countless times but have never stopped there. It's on Highway 10, between Beaumont, where Beth used to live, and Palm Springs. Doubtful I ever will stop there, now. Makes me feel a little ill. You know, I don't follow a religion now, but even in the one I was raised in, it was the spiritual world that mattered. Not the material one. Evolution was not an issue because it was part of the material world. It also did not advocate forcing your views on everyone surrounding you, because they stopped for a coke and a potty break in the middle of the desert.
Faith is not science. They don't follow the same rules. Science does not work by just believing in something. It requires proof.
"And it's not like they're crying, 'Oh, mommy, take me out, I'm scared.' They're drawn to (dinosaurs)" Chiles said. "There's something in their DNA that knows man walked with these creatures on Earth."
*retch* DNA doesn't know anything. It's a molecule that's found a very good way to replicate itself. Sometimes it accidentally gets changed along the way. If the change doesn't kill the cell containing it, it replicates and forms more cells. I'm not sure why a creationist even acknowledges DNA actually exists, when it's the very vehicle evolution runs on. I suppose he thinks it makes him sound more credible - to people who are impressed by throwing scientific acronyms around. Think he even knows what the letters stand for?
( article )
Grrr. The cafe there was featured on the Road Food section of NPR's the Splendid Table a few years and rated very highly on their pie. I'll bet it sucks now.
(About halfway down the page - look for 1811 Pine St.)
Good grief. $2.2 million. This house is on the other side of my block. I just walked past it earlier this evening. It was a shock to us when the house across the street, a plain 60's era 3 bedroom, sold for over a million in less than eight hours last year. This is crazy.
( last year's house )
My parents bought where we live now in 1968 for $30,000.
I was obliged to fire back these 70s Weight Watchers recipe cards another biologist had sent to us:
"You get your very own cup!"
"Four toast points form the hellmouth..."
"Mack on you!"
(the entire thing is completely disturbing - http://www.candyboots.com/wwcards.html - I believe people lost weight on this stuff - it's so unappetizing you'd totally avoid eating)
Actually, I like mackerel, if it's very fresh and thoroughly de-parasitized - I've seen the insides of too many of them to have a lot of enthusiasm for mackerel sashimi. But baked or grilled, it's very good. I'm never cared for very mild fish such as orange roughy, because it didn't taste like anything; I like my fish to taste like fish. We nearly killed off a very slow growing, old deepwater fish to try to get people who don't like fish to eat fish. Doesn't make a lot of sense to me.
My dad has a story about bringing a mackerel home from fishing; he wasn't planning to eat it himself, but thought he would give the cat a treat. He baked it, and when he took it out of the oven, the cat just about climbed up his leg to get at it. He thought at the time, "hmm, there must be something to this" and tried it himself. So we've been eating it now and then ever since.
In reference to the article, I did not know sauries were filed under mackerel too, as a market category. They used to serve those for dinner on the Japanese longliner I worked on - a bisected whole fish, so all of the roe it was filled with was visible.
Pandemic-causing 'Asian flu' accidentally released
* 14:21 13 April 2005
* NewScientist.com news service
* Debora MacKenzie
The virus that caused the 1957 “Asian flu” pandemic has been accidentally released by a lab in the US, and sent all over the world in test kits which scientists are now scrambling to destroy.
There are fears the virus could escape the labs, as the mistake was discovered after the virus escaped from a kit at a high-containment lab in Canada. Such an escape could spread worldwide, as demonstrated in Russia in the 1970s.
The flu testing kits were sent to some 3700 labs between October 2004 and February 2005 by the College of American Pathologists (CAP), a professional body which helps pathology laboratories improve their accuracy, by sending them unidentified samples of various germs to identify.
The CAP kits - prepared by private contractor Meridian Bioscience in Cincinnati, US - were to contain a particular strain of influenza A - the viral family that causes most flu worldwide. But instead of choosing a strain from the hundreds of recently circulating influenza A viruses, the firm chose the 1957 pandemic strain.
This is a problem because of the way pandemic flu strains edge each other out of circulation. The most lethal flu pandemic on record, in 1918, was caused by an influenza A of the H1 type, named for the haemagglutinin, a surface protein, it carries. After 1918, H1 flu evolved into an “ordinary” flu, and continued to circulate.
The 1957 pandemic started in China before spreading worldwide, killing an estimated two million or more people. It was triggered by the hybridisation of human H1 flu with flu viruses from birds which carried another surface protein, H2. It was more lethal than the then-circulating H1 strains because no human had ever encountered the H2 protein before, and so lacked any immunity to the new strain.
Immediately after 1957, all traces of H1 flu in humans disappeared, to be replaced by H2 strains. A similar process occurred again in 1968, when another hybrid virus emerged - again in China - carrying another haemagglutinin, H3. This caused the “Hong Kong flu” pandemic, which killed an estimated one million people worldwide.
But after 1968, H2 flu disappeared - so anyone born after this year will have no immunity to H2 flu and any escape of the virus in the test kits could be as lethal to them as the Asian flu of 1957.
A similar event happened in 1977, with the sudden reappearance of an H1 flu identical to one that had been isolated in 1950. It is believed that the virus escaped from a faulty batch of live flu vaccine prepared in Russia. But fortunately that strain had evolved into a much tamer creature than its 1918 predecessor. Unfortunately, the 1957 H2 virus is the most lethal variant of its kind.
A few of the CAP kits were sent to labs in Asia, the Middle East and South America, as well as Europe and North America. The kits’ originators should have known what strain they contained, in order to evaluate the test results, though they claim they did not realise their mistake.
However, when Canada’s National Microbiology Lab in Winnipeg identified the strain on 26 March - in a routine sample sent there from a Vancouver-based lab - it alerted the US Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization.
A major concern is that test kits are not usually handled at a high level of biological containment as it is generally assumed they do not carry unusually dangerous viruses. The Asian flu’s most probable route of escape into the outside world would be if a lab worker were to unknowingly become infected by it.
But there has been no sign of the virus infecting humans yet, says Klaus Stöhr, chief flu scientist at the World Health Organization in Geneva.
“If this incident doesn't cause a major reassessment of the safety of flu research, a lab-sponsored pandemic may well be the only thing that induces sobriety,” comments Ed Hammond of the Sunshine Project, a biosafety pressure group.
A week or two ago, TB was putting up Easter lights shaped like PEEPS (both original chick and rabbit shaped) outside her cubicle. She told VT and I that, like me, she doesn't like eating them, but the lights were too cute to pass up. This had me remembering a site I'd seen last year, and sent all of us on a mad dash hunting up weird PEEP websites. I found these:
Marshmallow Peeps: Harbingers of Doom for the Human Race?
The Entire Lord of the Rings redone with Peeps
Reactions to cold, heat, and sulfuric acid
(Did you know Peeps will only dissolve in phenol?)
Unorthodox Peep Situations
The Peep Dance
Peep practical jokes
Quote: "Even six months after they were up we had people coming by and eating them off the ceiling. Ugh."
Peeps in Rock n' Roll history
Got any more? :D
I will eat one in memory of Mom, because she loved them. Another happy sugar OD day to you all...