November 30, 2005
In a statement, Christian Peacemaker Teams said it strongly opposed the U.S. invasion of Iraq and blamed the kidnapping on coalition forces.
"We are angry because what has happened to our teammates is the result of the actions of the U.S. and U.K. government due to the illegal attack on Iraq and the continuing occupation and oppression of its people," the group said.
Now as for the organization itself, fuck 'em. Anyone that damned delusional shouldn't be sending members into a war zone, and since they're "peaceful", who gives a rats ass if they're angry.
Words can trump guns, but only if both sides want to talk.
Which kind of brings up my next point. These folks claim that they're not "evangelical Christians". Ok, fair enough. But what they claim isn't the point, it's what the bad guys believe that counts. At least that's what we're told by these anti-war groups. Because, you know, they hate us because we don't understand them well enough.
I understand the terrorists enough to know that they don't want Christians in the war zone. They don't want anyone in Iraq who isn't on their side, and being anti-war or anti-US doesn't mean you're on their side, it doesn't even make you their friend. It just makes you a potential target.
November 29, 2005
If you don't know what the Jamboree is all about, click this link.
Problem is, the mountain completely blocks the sunlight from November to February. The population has been dwindling in recent decades, at least partly because of the long months without direct sunlight.
The solution: 30 heliostats, essentially rotating mirrors, mounted on a hillside to grab sunshine off reflectors from the neighboring village of Kramsach.
An Austrian company is hoping to use this project as a showpiece to point to. They're going to eat the planning costs (more than a half a million $US), and the EU is going to foot half the bill (2.4 million $US).
In the Tyrol region of the Alps alone, about 60 communities suffer the same fate in winter as Rattenberg. Peskoller says about six other towns in Austria and neighboring Switzerland have expressed interest.
The technology requires pinpoint beaming, and even the most modern mirrors have slight distortions and are vulnerable to strong winds.
Peskoller says those problems can be compensated for. But it would take a mirror the size of a football field to light up all of Rattenberg, "and we cannot cover the mountain with mirrors to bathe the whole town in light," he said.
So Lichtlabor plans to create about a dozen "hot spots" - areas not much bigger than a front yard scattered through the town, where townspeople can gather and soak up rays. The mirrors would also reflect at various times of day onto building facades to show daylight slowly turning to dusk.
Interesting idea. More here (minimal registration required).
November 27, 2005
Now imagine if every time you got a phone call, your phone started reading the Miranda rights.
You have the right to remain silent.
Everything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law...
Oh yeah, I'd pay for that. Anyone know how to create your own ringtones?
Of course, Google is your friend.
November 26, 2005
I'd written over 5,000 words for my NaNoWriMo story since Wednesday night, yet thanks to my own stupidity and an odd quirk in Windows XP's "Save to disk/Open With" feature, none of it was actually ever permanently saved, even though I hit the save button rather frequently.
I'm rather annoyed right now.
What if every sentence were ended with an "excuse me" instead of a period? Scientists have discovered that some fish fart as a means of communication. Thanks to Silflay Hraka (I think) for pointing this one out. Great one-liner over at their place too!
It's the electronic age version of learning about sex from your friends, I suppose. Welcome to Wiki After Dark (adults only), where you can hear the latest rumors and wild speculation about what sex really is. That might be a complete mischaracterization, because I haven't actually read through it. But I assume that like Wikipedia, there will be plenty of good information mixed in with the occasional outright lie or fallacy. Maybe like if you had thousands of opinionated childhood friends, and some were clueless, most were amatuers, and a few were actual gynecologists. Anyways, I now know that if I need to "get rid of crabs", I don't start with a big pot of boiling water and 1/4 cup of Old Bay seasoning. Thanks to Wegg for the pointer.
Michele did some photo live-blogging from the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade balloon prep site. Very cool pictures (scroll down to see 'em all).
Bou is blogging MRE's, military vernacular for "Meals, Ready to Eat". I had a few of the early versions, and dined on quite a few of their predecessor, the venerable C-Rats (rations). There's something about chowing down a can of sliced peaches with a date on it older than you are. So head on over and see what she and her two young boys think of "army food".
I'm not a big college football fan, but the history and trivia lover in me has really been enjoying Prochein Amy's weekly Texas Football posts. She talks about each Texas opponent and includes background information and plenty of stories and links about their traditions. Very cool.
Paul, of the defunct Sanity's Edge, had moved in with Shank, resident genius over at Id's Cage. Now, they've both joined forces with Jim and are now posting at Snooze Button Dreams.
Also, since I'm bringing back old crap, have a Rocket Jones recycled post from August of 2003.
What the heck am I talking about? Check it out here.
November 25, 2005
Congrats, Gir, and may you have a peaceful and wonderful holiday season.
November 23, 2005
In high school, I had a gym teacher who used to say the same thing.
I'm going to try it for awhile here on Rocket Jones, even though personal experience already tells me that they were both full of crap.
Truth is, I've been trying to keep up with too many plates on too many sticks lately, and I'm tired.
As daughter Mookie noted, I've posted nearly every day for two and a half years.
Examining my priorities, I find that there are some adjustments to be made. I've got family to take care of, and school to attend to, and rockets to build, and more going on that never gets mentioned here. I've let some important things slip that never should have, and projects that I'm going to try and salvage before it's too late.
I'm not going away, but the focus here at Rocket Jones will be shifting for a time. I'll be trying that "changing pace" thing that I mentioned above, even though I'm pretty sure that my gym coach was lying to me.
Keep checking back, because I plan to keep posting, but there will be more emphasis on things like the Star Cards series and cult flick and B-movie reviews and a couple of new features that I've been working on.
I will be posting my NaNoWriMo work when it's done. I've got, what, seven days to go? I'm a little better than halfway to the goal of 50,000 words. I'm planning to put a big dent into the remainder this holiday weekend.
Interestingly enough, I was in the middle of writing this post when I discovered that I'd gotten a trackback from Michelle Malkin for the Carnival of the Recipes. So that's one from Instapundit (way back when) and now this. If that isn't encouragement to keep plugging away, I don't know what is.
At some point, I will decide that my batteries are sufficiently recharged and I'll return to my regular Rocket Jonesian blogging, but for now I need a break.
My gym coach also tried to tell me that running was fun. Lying bastard.
November 20, 2005
I can hear the collective sigh of relief, because at least some of you were thinking it was gonna be... that other one (yeah, I know it was rather too obvious. Work with me here).
So amigo, instead of getting that obnoxiously addictive song stuck in your head (too late?), what you need to do is to grab that fish out of itÂ’s bowl (and here you thought it was just a goldfish), hold it up to your ear, and read on.
But mon ami (I can hear you asking), what if I have no fish handy? IÂ’ve heard - but have no idea if itÂ’s true or not and amazingly enough Snopes doesnÂ’t say - that if you donÂ’t have a babelfish handy, you can use a frozen fishstick instead. The obvious limitations are that itÂ’ll only work for Scandanavian languages and youÂ’ll look rather silly with a fishstick sticking out of your head. Or not. Who am I to judge?
Yep, I put the babble in Babelfish. And so, without further adieu (oooo, heÂ’s a multilingual defiler of language!), I present this 66th edition of the Carnival of the Recipes, complete with snippets translated into various languages and then translated back.
It's not surprising that there were several Thanksgiving related submissions this time around.
First up is an interesting recipe for brining turkey from Sun Comprehending Glass. Let's see what the babelfish says:
My low and slow peoples are basters; they form throughout the year marvelously from Peru after the year. Low slow and lots of the result in 10 hours to terminate to a bird. With however salt, leave the cook, who the time is not shortened, because none is requested, heat aways even the furnace to run.
Now how can you argue with that?
Blog o'RAM offers up a bit of zingbird, via Salsafied Turkey and Jalepeno Cornbread.
From Ziggarat of Doom, check out Awesome Turkey which is another variation on the theme, this time using a rub with olive oil and braised in a roasting bag.
Checking in with the fish:
It is a income of ordeal and a new idea, thus they are real the final publication of this for with. The band of friction is little different, marks the lack of sage for example. Moreover, I have fallen in the bags for the turkey. The oil of olive makes precisely as the order a work that the butter for crisping ascendant the skin, and I like the aromatic substance more. Big pinchments and small pinchments they are a entire grass, usually for big make, you go there and [unintelligeble] the money in the fresh grasses.
Of course, you could follow the link above and see the original directions, but I'm a road less travelled kinda guy.
The Clog Almanac shares this side dish: Asparagus and Wild Rice Pilaf. It's on my to-try list.
Here's a repost from last year about a variety of Thanksgiving recipes, wine recommendations and more. Good stuff from The Glittering Eye.
Growing up in California, we just called Ambrosia fruit salad, and we were living large if Mom tossed mini-marshmallows into the mix.
Here's a quick and Easy Orange Survival Glaze for ham or turkey, from The Pragmatic Chef.
Non-Holiday Goodies and Yummies
(although there's nothing that says these wouldn't be wonderful then too)
From One Happy Dog Speaks, we get a twofer, Yeast Rolls and Cinnamon Rolls, from the same basic recipe. As an added bonus, there's a nifty hot-doggy variation in the comments. Yay Hats!
Whoa, that was totally random.
Cornbread. If you love it, there's no need to say more. If you don't, then you'll never understand. Two varieties, courtesy of the Pajama Pundits.
From Leslie's Ombibus, we're treated to Oxtail Soup. Mmmmmm, soup.
Two, two! Chicken and Sausage Gumbos! One easy-peasy, one a little more involved, thanks to Everything and Nothing.
This is the definition of comfort food.
Salisbury Steak, and One for the Road shows us how to do it the easy way.
Babelfish chimes in with:
Simmer related to meanly excessive heat 35-45 minutes until the sausse was not thickend and the tortini were cooked through.
For the more gentle cooks, follow the original directions. You gangsta peeps can use the meanly excessive way.
Risoto with Arugula, Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Cheeses. Doesn't that sound great, in a completely "I'm so sick of turkey" kinda way? Thank Cooking Capers for this one.
My Favorite Mushrooms. Apparently there's a problem with Oasis of Sanity this week, because I kept getting 404 errors while trying to access this. I mention it here to tempt you and tease you and make you come back next week like Pavlov's dogs, hoping for a working link.
ArmyWifeToddlerMom presents Another Pretty Salad. She notes that this versatile salad looks great on the holiday table, so I could have included it up top with the Thanksgiving dishes. But to me, this says "summertime dinner" too, so I put it here instead.
Chicken Paprikas is comfort food with a nice little twist, and like most soups and stews, it gets better if you make it a day or two in advance. Seriously Good shares this one, and it looks seriously good.
Elisson checks in with Beef Stew with a Difference, aka Beef Rendang. This is for those who like a little curry heat with their moo. Because I'm a thoughtful guy, I won't even mention the groaner he tosses in at the end of his post (oops, guess I just did).
From Special Fried Rice, we're treated to a recipe for one, namely Low-fat Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo.
Even the fish likes it:
The part of my process to learn of new good eating habits implies to try to calculate outside in a way to eat the foods that taste without the problems has associates to they. A fat version is weak here. Taste sauce Alfredo! This perfect age, densely and that he is rich.
From down south, no, farther south... waaaay south. Not that far south. Leave the penguins alone, they'll eat your babelfish. I talking about Kiwi south, specifically KeeWee's Corner, where we get a nice recipe for Tacos in Pasta Shells. Sounds good to me, I'm a Mexican food fanatic.
S.O.S. is its very own food group, although some would dispute using the word "food" in that sentence. Fill'er Up, Hon? shows you how to do it right, and when it's done right, it's wonderful.
From my good friend Tuning Spork, we get Baked Apple Sauce. He originally called it Twice-Baked Apples, so don't let the post title fool you. With his link, he adds the following advice:
Just remind people to go easy on the spices as they prepare the sauce -- tasting it for good balance. It's easy to go overboard!
This one... Mmmmmmmmmmmmm. Chicken Torte Milanese with Tomato Basil Sauce. Thank you ApparatChick.
From TechnoGypsy, we get Lamb Shanks, because you can't roast the shanks or they'll burn (I didn't know that).
Now if you need something vegetarianish, I highly recommend this Three Sisters Stew. From Shoes, Ships, and Sealing Wax, who always has interesting recipes to share, and the background stories to go with them.
The research revealed far more the auxiliary advantages of this "companion, it planted." the bacteria colonies in the roots of the bean take prisoner the nitrogen of air, something from which it in the soil are inserted, in order to feed the high needs of the nitrogen of corn.
Doesn't that sound so very German? All that research and scientifical talk and taking prisoners and stuff. Check out the original, just trust me on this one.
Courtesy of SilverBlue, we get this delicious sounding Spinach Stuffed Chicken. The best part is, by this time next week you'll all be saying, "hey, it's not turkey! Yay!"
Tuna and Caper Pasta, from FrazzledDad. It's all in the quality of the ingredients.
Blogeline's Journal offers up this heavenly-sounding Guinness Beef or Venison Stew. I'll be trying a pot of this in the near future.
Over at The Common Room, there's a sweet post full of ideas on being frugal in the kitchen and incorporates several recipes as well. Among them is Stir Fried Sweet Potatoes. Check this one out.
From Third World County, this simple classic: Black Beans and Rice.
Wash and sort beans. I usually make this with the large tank and the grid. Beans in the grid, the water in the tank. Beans of water pipe surplus. You can develop mechanics.
They invented beans, you know.
Yummy prawny limey recipe (can be done with chicken). Gotta love a recipe with a name like that! Might as well break out the tequila since you already have all those limes sitting around being lazy. Thanks to Aussie Wife for this one.
Not just Rum Cake, but Yummy Rum Cake (as if there's any other kind!). Thanks to In the Headlights for this one.
Slap Your Mama Chocolate Cake is presented by a feisty guest-poster over at Not Exactly Rocket Science (Yay Rockets!). Sinful is a descriptive word that comes to mind.
From Vermont's own A Weight Lifted, have a slice of Maple Pumpkin Pie.
Via Morning Coffee & Afternoon Tea, we get this chocolate yummy: Cocoa Apple Cake. She promises pictures next week, so in the meantime, let's let babelfish paint a picture with words:
Criminy, I missed the chocolate Friday almost. Still. I was, you thus do not employ work and trying to finish with of Thanksgiving, have to me much time to think have.
Ok, so it's a crayon picture. Hang it on the fridge.
Bananas. Bars. Bananas behind bars. There's an odd kind of synergy here, that makes me want to
write absolute crap like that take Hollywood by storm. In the meantime, while I wait for them to beat down my door, I'll pass the time by making Best Banana Bars Ever. Thanks to Notes in the Key of Life, because these are going to become a staple in our house. Gotta keep those bananas off the street, you know, before they go bad.
Once again from SilverBlue, he offers up Three Emergency Deserts. I'm not sure about the emergency part, these look good enough to make just because.
Blueberry-Pear Clafouti is a baked pudding, courtesy of Blonde Sagacity. This looks so good, it's also on my "try soon" list.
More excellent goodness from The Glittering Eye, Pumpkin Chiffon Pie.
The above were in no particular order other than being in broad categories. Any implied preferences or rankings are solely in your own imagination and they have drugs now that can help people like you. Or me, for that matter.
One last pass through the babelfish:
All preferences or the implicit places are only in their its fancy and have drugs now that he can help you the people. Or me for this material.
Deep. In more than one way too. Anyway, I hope you go visit all of these people and make their food and share the results with the rest of us. Thanks for stopping by (and y'all are welcome back any time), and thanks to everyone who sends in recipes, who hosts, who keeps things organized, and especially my agent and my family and my...
Sorry. Storming Hollywood and all that.
Next week, the Carnival will be hosted by the Lost Budgie Blog, who will almost certainly not continue this babelfish silliness. Which reminds me, go put your fish back into its bowl, or the freezer, and for pete's sake don't get them mixed up.
November 16, 2005
His name is Paul. He's my best friend.
For those of you who are not aware, North Dakota, southwestern Montana, and parts of Colorado got hit with their first blizzard of the season a couple of weeks ago. This text is from the county emergency manager out in the western part of North Dakota state after the storm.
Up here in the Northern Plains we just recovered from a Historic event --- may I even say a "Weather Event" of "Biblical Proportions" --- with a historic blizzard of up to 24" inches of snow and winds to 50 MPH that broke trees in half, stranded hundreds of motorists in lethal snow banks, closed all roads, isolated scores of communities and cut power to 10's of thousands.
- George Bush did not comeÂ…
- FEMA staged nothingÂ…
- No one howled for the governmentÂ…
- No one even uttered an expletive on TVÂ…
- Nobody demanded $2,000 debit cardsÂ…
- No one asked for a FEMA Trailer HouseÂ…
- No news anchors moved inÂ…
- We just melted snow for water, sent out caravans to pluck people out of
snow engulfed cars, fired up wood stoves, broke out coal oil lanterns or
Aladdin lamps and put on an extra layer of clothesÂ…
Even though a Category "5" blizzard of this scale has never fallen this early... we know it can happen and how to deal with it ourselves.
Everybody is fine.
Snopes has more background. It's based on some truth, and after having lived through five North Dakota winters (and many many whiteout blizzards), this strikes me as pretty much the NoDak attitude I remember.
There is a project underway that will reduce the amount of dependence placed on the government when a natural disaster strikes one of the coastal states (Atlantic, Gulf or Pacific). The projects name is Operation Enduring Service and was created by Beauchamp Tower Corporation.
Posted on phin's blog and cross-posted at Confederate Yankee are calls to press Senators to insert a rider that will allow this to happen. Due to time constraints the legislation required to make this happen is dangerously close to falling by the wayside-in fact it has to pass before Congress ends this Session (less than 14 days).
The project calls for the transfer of decommisioned and obsolete military ships to an established award-winning nonprofit organization that will convert them into powerful and 100% volunteer-funded floating rescue and recovery vessels to assist those in need in the wake of natural and manmade disasters.
So, you want to see what these old girls will be able to do? Here's a list of only a few things we can provide during a Coastal State disaster (such as flooding or a hurricane)
----Service a disaster area of up to 10,000 square miles (up to 100 miles inland) with minimal (if any) outside support
----Provide complete berthing facilities for up to 400 emergency responders "on scene" at a disaster site
----Fully integrated communications system serving all local, state, and federal agencies, as well as cell phone coverage and military band frequencies--allowing for seamless communications between all disaster scene personnel, no matter what radio frequency or cell phone is being used.
----Daily provide 110 tons of bagged and palletized ice to the disaster region
----Daily generate, bottle, and palletize up to 50,000 gallons of fresh water
----Provide refueling station and loading platform for helicopters operating in the disaster area
----Carry over 7,000 tons of food and supplies for a disaster area
----Store (and provide delivery of) 700,000 gallons of diesel, gasoline, and aviation fuel for use in the disaster area on emergency vehicles and critical needs generators (hospitals, emergency operation centers, etc)
.......and that's just one ship.
They're talking about fielding two ships, not one... a regular "Salvation Navy." We have a chance to make a great deal of difference in future disasters (these ships may be ready for the '06 hurricane season) but we must act now. Think of the number of lives saved and the peace of mind that can be brought, while saving the government and tax payers money.
Any help you can give in the form of summoning your readerships to help press the key senators listed (and their own) would be greatly appreciated.
There it is. I call and/or write my congresscritters fairly often on various matters. This time, it won't be to gripe about something, it'll be to suggest that this needs to be done. You should too, it can make a difference.
November 15, 2005
Gist: My wife Liz was taken to the hospital for severe abdominal pain yesterday morning (luckily, she works next door in a medical practice). When things weren't moving quickly enough, then shuffled her to the ER and called me.
Lots of tests and scans and rays later, they've ruled out some things and have plenty of supporting data for their primary diagnosis, but no solid confirmation. It was looking likely that she'd be having surgery last night, but as test after test came back that option was eliminated. They sent us home last night around 1am and I made a followup appointment with her doctor for this morning.
If this turns out to be what Liz and I both thought it was from the beginning, then she's going to be very tender and in pain for a few days. Bottom line is, she had a rough yesterday, but it looks like everything is going to be ok.
Good thoughts and prayers never hurt. Thanks.
I read somewhere once that you should never end a letter on a downer, so I'll mention now that I just saved a bunch of money on my car insurance.
Update: Liz has had eight abdominal surgeries over the last twenty years, which tends to build up a lot of scar tissue. The doctor is assuming (and this is what we first suspected) that Liz ripped loose a big chunk of the adhesions. That means that it's time for another laboroscopy (might not be spelled right), which is where they go in through her belly button with a fiber optic camera and a laser and just cut away all the spidery webby scarring that's built up inside. She sees a surgeon Monday to set it up. In the meantime, as long as she doesn't overdo she'll feel a bit better every day.
Thanks for the good thoughts and kind words, everyone.
November 14, 2005
Then again, maybe not, since her team is the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Machelle and David: Detroit Red Wings
Frinklin: Vancouver Canucks
Brian J: St. Louis Blues
Tom: Philadelphia Flyers
Derek: Colorado Avalanche
Gir: Calgary Flames
Grand Moff Trojan: Colorado Avalanche
Tilesey: Toronto Maple Leafs
Cal Tech Girl: Carolina Hurricanes
Victor: Washington Capitals
Michele: New York Rangers
Brandon: Los Angeles Kings
Catt: Pittsburgh Penguins
Yours Truly: San Jose Sharks
Complete rules - and there's not many - can be found here.
just wide logo contest
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