Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Simply Observations

First, up in Iowa, cops got called out to a house, in the early AM hours.....to meet up with 41-year old William Todd Bliss.  Bill was a bit intoxicated, pretty pumped up, talked mostly in slurred speech, and was naked.  Bill insisted, that some guys (four) had been to his place, while they were there....they had asked him to hold a nuclear bomb for them.  Based on news reports....the cops did search around the house, but couldn't find the four guys, or the nuke.  I sat and pondered over the story.....and would to admit that the truth is that the Air Force had lost another nuke somewhere in Iowa, and a special team had stopped by Bill's house because the nuke had fallen in the backyard.  With Bill's help, which required nerves of steel....supplemented by a fair amount of alcohol.....and not clothing to interrupt Bill's dramatic actions....the nuke was recovered and quickly brought back to base.  Well....it could have happened like that.

Second, some folks in DC are coming to this realization....that sequestration process will likely occur as 2013 starts out....unless Congress, the Senate, and the President come to an agreement.  What does this mean?  Well....if the idiots on both sides fail to get their budget mess cleaned up by the end of December....all government agencies will start a furlough schedule of sorts.  The best that the experts will admit....is that they think most folks will be forced to take four weeks of unpaid leave.  I sat and pondered over this story....being a government employee....it kinda means that I would have this vast time free and could run off to Brazil or Tonga.....and do some crazy stuff.  I could go and get a part-time job for four weeks....for Piggly Wiggly or Radio Shack.  I could drive back to Bama and talk my dad into letting me paint his barn red (it won't happen, trust me).  The odds of this happening?  I'm thinking it's better than fifty percent that folks will be sent home for a month.

Third, there's this odd technology story out there about a company which is researching the idea of implanting a tattoo-like device under your skin, so when your cellphone silently rings....it'd make the skin device vibrate.  You'd naturally feel this vibration, jump up, and answer the phone.  I sat and pondered over this idea.  It's to think of what idiot would want a vibration device on their arm, neck, shoulder, or possibly butt....to ensure they pick up the phone and answer it. Why even develop this?  Well....I suspect that the guys have come to the end of the line....they'v developed 88k different ring tongs, and various vibration options with a cellphone, and this is the only thing they've got left to work on.  If you ask me....it's time to let some of the research guys go.

Fourth, some Canadian train folks have come up to admit that they will be transporting all this Keystone XL oil, from Canada to the intended locations in the US.  They've lined up the oil cars and will simply cross the plains to deliver the oil at a greater cost ($10 more per barrel).....and the White House folks are likely sitting there in disbelief.  The jobs?  Well....nothing to worry about....the folks who run the Canadian train system will have lots of work, and they will buy Canada-only manufactured  oil cars (my bet)....so there's tons of work for Canadians.  My humble bet?  It's a dismal story for the administration at this point....it would make sense by June to back-track and approve everything, in hopes of making some payback on this mess.  If not....you ought to buy as much stock in Canadian railway systems and grin at the profits over the next twenty years.

Fifth, and final....there's a number of memorials around DC, for various Presidents (certainly not all of them).  The one that you simply don't find in DC....is for Eisenhower.  This has been noted for over two decades.  There was this contest of sorts, where some fancy-suited guys working for the government did finally agree to front around $200 million to build up a fancy Eisenhower Memorial.....down near the national capital building, just a couple hundred feet from the Air and Space Museum.  The fancy elite guys came to pick a winner for the design and this was mostly moving forward until someone understood the statue business.  The design guy figured that he wanted a barefoot kid statue, to represent Ike.  It would represent this odd presentation of a kid from Kansas, making it to be President of the United States.  Beyond that....there just wasn't any sense to the kid statue.  Adding to the mess?  Well...there's park benches arranged in a fashion that says "IXXI".  For number conscious folks.....IXXI also says 911 in Roman numbers.  The odds of this being an accident?  Well....you just don't know.  How many folks remember Roman numbers from high school?  Probably less than one percent of the US population.  So, it's a pretty sure bet....the project is delayed for two more years while they argue over this, and eventually....some statue of Ike in a plain 1950's style suit will be put up.....and we will all feel pretty positive over the guy finally making it as memorial.  Now, if that President Taylor guy from the 1800s could just get remembered with a memorial.

Carrying the Watermelon Industry on His Back

Based on news reports....the comedian Gallagher is out of his coma and talking to family members.  No one saying alot but there is speculation of a stroke or some heart attack.

In the early 1990s....I got around to attending a Gallagher comedy show in Tucson.  You'd have to refer to his act as Jerry Lewis on steroids.....because there's a bit of wit to each show....but a fair amount of physical comedy as well....around watermelons which are destroyed throughout the show.

As we are all thankful over his recovery process....there is an entire industry in America which is probably praying for his swift recovery....the watermelon industry.  Over the past three decades, I'd make a guess that Gallagher has destroyed over 500k watermelons.  If you figure fifty a show, that's around $150 spent on each show for watermelons.  Figure four shows a week, or twelve a month....and it all starts to add up.

I'd guessing there a tractor trailer rig leaving Florida or Mississippi on a weekly basis.....bringing fresh watermelons to some town about to receive Gallagher comedy act.  He's carrying an entire industry on his back, and America has to appreciate this.  We need more comics like him.

My Neighborhood

When I came back to America about twenty-six months ago....there were dozens of odd things that I came to realize.  One of those....was the act of suicide by METRO subway.  I was reminded of that again yesterday......when we had another guy jump in front of a subway train.

This one was on the red line....around White Flint yesterday morning.  Some of those who jump....survive, with some pretty severe injuries, but this guy died at the scene.

What the METRO folks noted....because you have to put out a public notice and do a small bit of PR on it.....he was the fifth death by METRO suicide this year (we aren't even at 100 days so far).  Then METRO wanted everyone to know that they are busy training all their employees to recognize and suicidal candidates on the platform.

I sat and pondered over this.  At each individual METRO station....there's basically one manager on duty....typically who sits for the entire shift in his stall at the entrance area of the station.  There might be on occasion.....maybe one or two security guys who come through that station for an hour or two....then ride the subway to the next station.  In an average week.....there might be an hour or two where some METRO employee is down on the platform areas just checking lights or answering a question for riders complaining about trains running behind schedule.  Even if you trained every single employee....the odds of one of them stopping a single suicide in five years?  Maybe ten percent.....my humble guess.  It's a waste of money, but you can't just stand there and do nothing.

The problem with METRO stations, as compared to a number of European subways that I've seen.....is that they have these high roofs and provide this strange odd acoustic chamber for people.  I'd almost make the comparison to being in a cathedral.  With this odd cathedral-like feeling.....there is no music played in the background....ever.  Maybe once every six minutes or so....there's a public service message from a tape system....but otherwise, no noise to interfere with your thinking....ever how creative or personally destructive it might be.

So one might come to a logical conclusion....if they played energized music, up-lifting music or just bagpipes....you would likely interfere with one's thought process.  You'd make them have to keep rebooting their mind to get around positive or happy music.  Most people would eventually walk out of the METRO station....unable to complete their act.

I doubt that they'd ever come to think about the magnetic draw to the METRO subway tunnels....but the acoustic chamber likely plays into this whole thing.

At the current rate of things....there's at least fifteen more folks destined to die by METRO this year....sadly.  The fifteen presently....may or may not realize what will transpire this year.  A thousand other folks....sadly....will end up being personal witnesses to these fifteen episodes to come, and will be forever affected by this.

As I said after a month of living in the Arlington area.....I am a stranger in a strange land.