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Showing posts from 2006

Welcome to the Neighborhood, Zac!

I have some of the most interesting neighbors on the planet. First, the Bomber family: Una, Shoe, Olympic, Oklahoma City, 1993 World Trade... Next, some world-class gang leaders, traitors, and mass murderers. It sounds like a rough place to live, but they pretty much keep to themselves. They have to.

I live about a mile north of Supermax, America's highest-security prison. It's a death sentence for the living and Zacarias Moussaoui's new home. Remember Alcatraz? It's sorta like a bad summer camp compared to Supermax. How's 23 hours of total isolation in your cell sound? Sure, you can spend an hour getting exercise, if you're willing to put up with the pre- and post-workout body cavity searches. Prison cells are built so you never make eye contact with another inmate. You don't go anywhere without being shackled at the wrists and ankles and escorted by two of the best guards in the federal prison system.

Prisons, at their best, rehabilitate. But a…

Colbert's got the bomb and used it at the Correspondent's Dinner

I'm a regular Daily Show and Colbert Report watcher and was excited to find out that Steven Colbert had been chosen as the entertainer for last night's White House Correspondent's Dinner. I tuned in to C-SPAN to watch it live (which sounds only slightly less nerdy-sounding "I recorded C-SPAN") and was greatly disappointed. I don't know if he didn't have adequate time to prepare or write good material, but it was a disjointed scattering of jokes, few of which were very funny. Before Colbert there was a clip about the working conditions of the press within the White House, which was somewhat interesting, and Colbert had a clip where he pretended to be the White House Press Secretary and got chased down by Helen Thomas. For my money, Al Franken still holds the pound-the-table funny prize for his appearances at the Correspondent's Dinner in '94 and '96.

Earth Day

By coincidence and procrastination, today is Earth Day and I finally replanted a tree in my front yard. I bought the tree last weekend, but it was a crazy week at school and I never found the after-school time to do the job. The planting went pretty well and my hole was just big enough to make me remember how much I hate to shovel. What a tool of torture!

The tree I planted is an autumn blaze maple, a hybrid of a red maple and silver maple. I grew up climbing the red maples in my front yard and our neighbor had silver maples. The autumn blaze is supposed to have some degree of drought tolerance and grow strong enough to not break easily under heavy snow, so I hope it turns out to be a good choice.

The NWS has issued a Red Flag Warning

Have you ever heard of a "Red Flag Warning"? I hadn't until about 5 minutes ago when I checked my weather at the National Weather Service web site (http://www.crh.noaa.gov/ifps/MapClick.php?CityName=Florence&state=CO&site=PUB). We had already been in a "Fire Weather Watch", and apparently a "Red Flag Warning" is a worsening of that condition. It is extremely dry and the last couple of days we've had temperatures in the low 80s. Winds could be at 25 mph with gusts to 45 mph. There are more criteria, but that's apparently enough to put us into a Red Flag Warning. Here's our actual warning:


RED FLAG WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PUEBLO CO
255 PM MDT WED APR 5 2006

...A RED FLAG WARNING FOR SUSTAINED WIND SPEEDS AND GUSTS...LOW
RELATIVE HUMIDITY LEVELS AND DRY FUELS...REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL
9 PM THIS EVENING FOR ELEVATIONS BELOW 9000 FEET IN FIRE WEATHER
ZONES 221...222 AND 225 THROUGH 237... INCLUDING PIKES PEAK AND
TELLER COUNTY...…

Work a Day, Get a Day Off

I've never quite figured out why most major league baseball teams play opening day (which was yesterday) and then get the next day off. For a sport where teams should be used to playing 8-12 games between days off, why take a day off after one day in a row. Can't they at least play an entire series before taking a break?

The Cubs (without which baseball would never be the same) are probably enjoying the day off, considering what they went through to beat the Reds yesterday. I really hope blowing 5-run leads doesn't become a habit. That reminds me...if you think taking a day off on your second day of the season doesn't make sense, how about Will Ohman getting the win even though he only faced one batter? Who ever established that as standard practice?

Spring Breaking

After many months of careful procrastination, I've added new content to this site. It's a good way to pass the time during spring break. I broke all the links to the "photos" part of the site and set up Gallery2, a very nice image organizer. I thought about posting new pictures the old fashioned way, but this is certainly easier and has more features. I'm trying to figure out if I'll move all the "adventure" pictures and pages Gallery as well. That will be a significant undertaking, so for now I hope you're happy with my pictures of 2005.