Saturday, June 29, 2013

What's going on in the world?

A friend of mine posted that he just completed a 25 mile bike run. Way to go, Jason. With the temps expected to be around 104 degrees F (40 degrees C), I warned him to take plenty of water and do his run early in the morning before the heat builds up.
I remember biking all over El Paso in the full heat of summertime as a kid. There is no way I'd do it now.
Think about it: 100-101 degrees in August in the desert 20 years ago, that's tricky enough. 104 and it isn't even July yet.
And just so you know, I did 20 mile biking runs back in the 80's and 90's. They weren't easy, but I did them. I wouldn't dare do them now. The heat is too much of a killer. 
Climate deniers, you're talking out your ass.
My parents used to grow a vegetable garden all while I was growing up. I complained and did the teenage mocking thing then, but now I find myself putting a garden in (when the budget allows.) Right now I've got herbs and peppers growing. When it gets cooler in September I might put in some tomatoes and zucchini.
Think about what I just said. In July and August it's too hot to grow anything. When some yahoo says 'It's a cycle thing the planet is going through.' I put that right along side 'A woman's body has a way of shutting pregnancy down.' A bunch of BS from someone who doesn't know what they're talking about. I'm finding myself calling Bullshit on a bunch of things lately.

They're putting another Wal-Mart in down the street from my neighborhood. My first thought was, 'Now things are going downhill.'
Have I shopped at Wal-Mart? Yes, of course I have. More and more often however, I'm finding reasons not to shop there.
Austin has a slogan, and it goes like this: 'Keep Austin Weird.'
After seeing the humor in that, I took a deeper look.
Not only is Austin the state capitol, but it has a more vibrant college community. There are more mom and pop shops per square mile than any other city I've visited. Don't believe me?
Don't get me wrong, if I could, I'd live in Austin. There is nothing more fun than walking down sixth street during one of the many music festivals going on through the summer.
Voyager I and II are set to leave the heliosheath, or heliopause, of our solar system. For the scientifically challenged, that's about as far out as you can get. If you can imagine a bubble generated by our sun. The Voyager ships are in the bubble's filmy outermost layer. Beyond that is where interstellar space begins and the sun has no more influence via gravity or magnetic particles. Voyager I will drift towards another star, AC+79 3888. It will come within 1.6 billion miles more or less... in 40,000 years. Voyager II will come close to Ross 248 in about 296,000 years.
These are humanity's ambassadors. Long after you and I are dust, these machines will be the equivalent of messages in a bottle for other races. What gives me the most hope is the gold discs they contain. Languages change over time. Mathematics does not.
In addition to the recordings of greetings in many languages, there are numerous messages in binary including the 14 closest pulsars from planet Earth with the times in which they emit bursts. Space faring races can deduce where our solar system lies from that. The fact that it was done mathematically only encourages me to think there is hope for the human race. 
Knowing humans the way I do, I wouldn't be at all surprised if we beat the Voyagers to their destinations. Think about that.

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