October 23, 2015

And So They Came to Pass

Well, THAT was transcendentally unpleasant, but at about 7 this morning, a final excruciating moment of agony largely ended the pain.  



I case you're wondering, it felt kind of like this...


...but different.


Having been up (save for fitful naps of less than an hour) for a week, I immediately collapsed and slept through my alarm clock.

This was by far the worst kidney stone episode I've ever had, even the one that impacted and required surgery a few years ago did not approach this in pain. 

An important note to my readers regarding home remedies:

I have gathered that while some products do indeed facilitate the dissolving of certain types of kidney stones, they are stone-type specific. Maniacally chugging vast quantities of them can push the PH of the kidney too far in the other direction...which causes very rapid formation of entirely different kinds of stones...in my case less congenial ones.  

Moderation in all things is important.

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October 22, 2015

Kidney Stones Are Unpleasant

For over a week, I have not one, but two of these that have embarked on their respective journeys of discovery. One of them seems to have stopped just short of the threshold, either due to second thoughts, to contemplate how different the journey might have been on the right side, or simply to ensure that there is a record of its passing etched permanently along the path. Though both are born of the same awesome process that gives us spectacular cave formations, I confess I have less appreciation for the miracle of their formation than I might if they were not cutting up my urinary tract.


But enough bio-crystallography; here is something, that while in no way a substitute for content, is at least pleasant to look at. 


Hestia, goddess of the hearth, ribbons, and win by Mr.Vi

(Note: Most of the discussion of Hestia's character design tends to focus on the physics of her ribbon, but I'm more curious as to the function of the air intakes over her ears.)

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October 21, 2015

Today in History

Well...today.

We have twitter, but no self lacing shoes, Mr. Fusion or Hoverbo....


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218 Years Ago Today

 U.S.S. Constitution was launched. 




Built to fight the Barbary Pirates (yes our first war was against Islamists) the ship distinguished herself in that war as well as the War of 1812, where the ship defeated  HMShips Guerriere, Java, Pictou, Cyane, and Levant and in the process earned the nickname "Old Ironsides".

Saved from the breakers by public outcry, the ship served for nearly a hundred years, circumnavigating the world, fighting pirates and slavers, serving as a a school ship, carrying out various diplomatic duties, and on occasion even supporting archeological and oceanographic expeditions. In 1874 she carried the US delegation and display to that year's Paris World's Fair. 



After a spell as an accommodation hulk, the ship was restored as a museum ship in the early 1900's and is moored in Boston harbor, the oldest commissioned warship afloat. 

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October 20, 2015

Well, This Is Raising My Hopes Enough That The Inevitable Betrayal Will be Most Vexatious.

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A Few Observations of Negligible Importance

CGI has come a long way in the last 16 years.



VanDread's still a fun show.

Widening my page screen some years ago really bolloxed by earlier formatting.

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October 18, 2015

Japan in 1887

...as imagined in 1987.



There may be some inaccuracies. 

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The State of Things

Business Insider has published STRATFOR's thumbnail overview of the world situation and their predictions for the rest of the year


It's long but warrants a read (though one should probably ignore the breathless headline). STRATFOR can be hit or miss on their predictions, but they do give a decent overview of what's happening now and, more importantly, they also keep an eye on parts of the world that get less coverage. 

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October 17, 2015

Don't Forget That October Is...

National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
National Liver Cancer Awareness Month
Down Syndrome AwarenessDown Syndrome Awareness Month
Energy Awareness Month 
Healthy Lungs Month
National Campaign for Healthier Babies Month
National Physical Therapy Month
National Spinal Health Month
Rett Syndrome Awareness Month
National Psoriasis Month
National AIDS Awareness Month
National Dental Hygiene Month
National Disability Employment Awareness Month
Celiac Sprue Awareness Month
SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) Awareness Month
Eye Injury Prevention Month
National Domestic Violence Awareness Month
National Medical Librarians Month
Talk About Prescriptions Month
Down Syndrome Awareness Month
Hunger Awareness Month

Remember too, these dates in this highly commemorative month....

1-7: National Sarcoidosis Awareness Week
3- 10: Hearing Aid Awareness Week
3-9: Mental Illness Awareness Week
3-9: National Fire Prevention Week
4-8: Drive Safely to Work Week
11-15: National School Lunch Week
12-20: Bone and Joint Decade National Action Week
18-24: National Drug-Free Work Week
23-31: Red Ribbon Week (Drug-Free America)
           Lung Cancer Awareness
24-30: Respiratory Care Week
24-30: Pastoral Care Week
4: National Child Health Day
7: National Depression Screening Day
13: Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day
10: World Mental Health Day
15: National Latino AIDS Awareness Day
16: World Food Day
20: World Osteoporosis Day
22: International Stuttering Awareness Day
22: National Mammography Day
27: Lung Health Day
       Lung Cancer Awareness
       Celiac Disease Awareness Day


Also:


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7 Days


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Pavlovian Prizes

I started to post on this some time ago, but could not find he words or the time and, in any event, felt I needed to cool my jets as I was being inordinately vexed by a matter that, on its face,  was fairly trivial.

Well, it's been a month and a half and this still bugs me.

Earlier this year, at the World Science Fiction Convention...


"Oh crap! Please don't talk about THAT out in the open!"
"I got's family"


OK...below the fold it goes.
more...

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October 16, 2015

A Rescue Mission MUST Be Undertaken!

For some reason, this story does not have top billing on Drudge, despite its awesome implications.




We should note that one of The Brickmuppet's Crack Team of Stunning Experts pointed us to the story


Art by Ayaki

UPDATE:The linked story is problematically parsimonious with the pictures. There is a better spread at the Daily Mail of all places and, of course, a bunch of super high-res pictures can be found at the New Horizon's page at  NASA

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October 14, 2015

Egzam Heck!

I have midterms, a stone, and other issues, so I'll continue to be scarce. In the meantime, as compensation, here is a cute bunnygirl.



Art by Razi.


Look. It's fall, its cold, and she's probably looking for work, so stop complaining. 



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October 11, 2015

GochiUsa Continues

I've gotten through 3 more episodes of Is The Order A WABBIT!!? and this trite series about wacky young baristas working their way through...high school(?) continues pushing the envelope on bromidic cuteness. I had thought that the first three episodes were exceedingly möe, but that was nothing compared to the next episode which cranked the sweetness up to eleven. Fortunately the show has just enough senseless violence...



This is nothing compared to what happened to the crêpe.

...that it is amusing me sufficiently I to continue watching it for now. The show is doing a masterful job of lulling its audience into complacency, but I'm pretty sure that the woman who has begun stalking our protagonists has a sinister agenda...no doubt connected in some way to a giant Robot buried beneath the cafe. 
Or perhaps not..
...but even if that theory is Jossed, this cornucopia of anachronisms and cuteness does have some things going for it.


...like first class trigger discipline. 

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October 10, 2015

14 Days



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October 07, 2015

Placeholder

I may be away a few days so here is some non threatening, seasonally appropriate content by Kemineko.



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Article 5

Article 5 of the Washington Treaty (generally referred to as the NATO Charter, to avoid confusion with that other Washington Treaty...and because it IS the NATO CHARTER) reads as follows...


Article 5 of the Washington Treaty:

The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defence recognised by Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations, will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area.

Any such armed attack and all measures taken as a result thereof shall immediately be reported to the Security Council. Such measures shall be terminated when the Security Council has taken the measures necessary to restore and maintain international peace and security.


As an aside, apropos of nothing, I'm sure..., here are a few of the mornings headlines...




...and a couple of analysis pieces. 


(Perhaps your effort should be put into determining how we DON'T)



Well.
I am have tests coming up and no time to opine on these matters so instead I'll just leave this here.


UPDATE@22:44: 
Tam has comprehensive yet concise thoughts on the matter here as well as worrying confirmation that it's not just me looking to Fred Thompson for insight on this matter.  

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October 06, 2015

Simple Processes Involving Layyyzeerrzz



The most strongest of The Brickmuppet's Crack Team of Science Fairies brings us news fro the practical application of coherent light. 

Via Brian Wang, we learn that General Atomics (could there BE a more awesome name for a company?) is expected to be offering its line of Avenger drones with 150 kilowatt lasers on them.  The Avenger is a stealthy development of the much used Predator (and was formerly called Predator-C)

For comparison purposes, the article helpfully provides video of what the prototype 30 kilowatt laser on the USS Ponce can achieve. 

WARNING: Military grade laser...demo may cause ear damage and extreme irritation. 


Yes gentle readers, in a little over a year we will have flying robots armed with lasers!
Sarah Connor, raise your son well. 

Farther afield, in San Luis Obispo, Scientists are working on a solar laser that can de-spin asteroids for exploration and exploitation as well as alter their orbits so as to deflect space rocks that threaten to impact the Earth.  

Note too that if they can get a solar laser working, it is just a matter of scaling it up (a whole hell of a lot) to allow interstellar probes, perhaps even manned ones


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October 05, 2015

Keep In Mind...

...that the hurricane completely missed us.




Taken in Norfolk today during my abortive attempt to get to school.



Had the storm actually hit today on top of the anomalous rain we've had over the last week,  the area cities would have been obliterated.

At least the tunnels are open now. (They'd had to close the flood gates on some of them over the weekend)

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Questions For My Readers Regarding Matters of No Importance

Some months ago, in a moment of indiscipline, I picked up a DVD of Did You Order the Hossenfeffer? and, having watched the first three episodes I'm wondering if I've missed something.


Where ARE they? It looks like Rotterdam and I initially thought that the protagonist (Cocoa) was, in fact, an exchange student, but everyone else has (unlikely) Japanese names and the mannerisms, school related rituals and references to samurai indicate this is not the case. Sentai's subtitling seemed a tad off at first, and I was wondering if I'd missed something or this is just set in "Myazaki land", a theme park...or perhaps Hokkaido. 

Setting aside, the show seems to be a standard CGDCT series but has made me laugh a couple of times. However, the cast has transcended quirky and appears to have been generated by randomly pulling approved ipseities from Tumbler. We've got the directionally challenged, the lesbian, the autistic cubist, the girl intimately in touch with her exotic culture who is not from the American southeast, and the tribble who identifies as a pre-op transexual rabbit. In contrast, there is also something of a combo breaker...



...the badass barista of competence who warrants a completely different sort of trigger warning. There is no indication as of yet that her Browning is an air-soft...which simply adds more questions about the setting.

(I've noted no zombies as of yet but remain hopeful)

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