We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
- For starters, the view from our deck (photo above)
- Our pup, despite age, is still able to fully enjoy exploring the salt marshes and Cape Cod woods. Half-blind and deaf, but nose still works well. For the first time, we would not let him swim with us. His arthritis is terrible and his athletic endurance is limited. He would probably drown.
- While hiking on the Audubon land, we were lucky to come across the hatching of a nest of Diamondback Terrapins. 12 tiny ones pushing up through the sand at the same time. A first, for me. They emerge from the sand, blink a few times, then scamper for cover as if their life depended on it. Which it does. I took photos, but my camera died before I could download them. A dead Lumix with quite a few good pics in its memory. Maybe I can get them from the memory card.
- Wild highbush blueberries. Blueberries are native to North America. There are two wild forms, the lowbush types of the far north and the highbush of more temperate climates. Wild highbush berries are less than half the size of commercial berries, and darker, sometimes almost black. Somebody is farming wild highbush. Expensive. Taste brings me back to my youth of berry-picking in the woods. Mom tied strings through holes in metal coffee cans, painted our names on them, put the strings over our necks and sent us out to fill the cans. We had to let the little sibs climb on our backs to reach the high berries.
- Outdoor calisthenics in salty air and piney woods. About one hour, every morning at 630 or 7. Best way to begin a day of physical activity.
- A car. Friends visited with their older Audi S4 with a V8. Now I want one. Makes a fine sound.
- Blueberry pancakes at The Lighthouse, and dozens of Wellfleet Oysters everywhere we ate. At least 6 dozen, probably more. And the Steamers and Lobster festive supper I made for Mrs. BD's birthday party. Always good to have so much family around. Always buy large lobsters.
- With ocean temps pushing the high 60s, you could body surf until fatigued. Nothing better. Some Great Whites around, but the lifeguards let you know when they spot them. Heck, they would probably grab a little kid out there before they would grab you...
This is a rattler of the central US, ranging from Ontario to Mexico and generally preferring grasslands and marshes. I have never seen one, but I have never searched for snakes in the central US. However, I once came across a DeKay's Snake in central Ohio on a hike. Took a photo. The field biologist said they had never been recorded in central Ohio so I guess I made history in a small way.
Have you ever seen a Massasauga? This guy is well-camouflaged in the grasses. It is good not to be a mouse.
This pattern goes back to the selling of the Lincoln bedroom. Friends, this is abnormal. I think it is racketeering at the least. Unsurprisingly, the MSM has played no role in exposing Clinton corruption.
This is not an argument for Donald Trump. As I have said before, I think Clintonian morals are already baked in the cake. It would be newsworthy if they did something honest and unselfish.
The era of the stock-picker - those without inside info - is past. Or mostly-past. If you get lucky or smart and ride a big wave of a single equity, good for you. More likely, you would not gamble enough on it to make a big difference. Today, retail investors are the muppets of the big money world. I know, because I am a muppet.
There was a time when teacher unions were on the cutting edge of reform, and it would be a mistake now not to recognize those accomplishments, and not to understand the good reasons many people still have to support them. But the future of our schools isn’t more of the same: more big box, one-size-fits-all cookie cutter educational institutions in which everybody moves at the same pace through the machine. As the American economy changes, our schools must change too. Big box schools prepare people for big box jobs: in government bureaucracies, in bureaucratic stable corporations, on jobs for life assembly lines.
We are going to need schools that are focused on preparing kids both intellectually and socially for very different lives than their grandparents led. Among other things, this means that we don’t want the next generation to spend most of its formative years under the guidance of people who have been socialized into the jobs for life in behemoth institutions.
The largest broadcast networks — CBS, NBC and ABC — and major newspapers like The New York Times and Washington Post have jettisoned all pretense of fair play. Their fierce determination to keep Trump out of the Oval Office has no precedent.
Indeed, no foreign enemy, no terror group, no native criminal gang, suffers the daily beating that Trump does. The mad mullahs of Iran, who call America the Great Satan and vow to wipe Israel off the map, are treated gently by comparison.
Re-linking E.O. Wilson's wonderful essay Trailhead. He begins:
The Trailhead Queen was dead. At first, there was no overt sign that her long life was ending: no fever, no spasms, no farewells. She simply sat on the floor of the royal chamber and died. As in life, her body was prone and immobile, her legs and antennae relaxed. Her stillness alone failed to give warning to her daughters that a catastrophe had occurred for all of them. She lay there, in fact, as though nothing had happened. She had become a perfect statue of herself. While humans and other vertebrates have an internal skeleton surrounded by soft tissue that quickly rots away, ants are encased in an external skeleton; their soft tissues shrivel into dry threads and lumps, but their exoskeletons remain, a knight’s armor fully intact long after the knight is gone. Hence the workers were at first unaware of their mother’s death. Her quietude said nothing, and the odors of her life, still rising from her, signalled, I remain among you. She smelled alive.
A terrible storm came into a town and local officials sent out an emergency warning that the riverbanks would soon overflow and flood the nearby homes. They ordered everyone in the town to evacuate immediately.
A faithful Christian man heard the warning and decided to stay, saying to himself, “I will trust God and if I am in danger, then God will send a divine miracle to save me.”
The neighbors came by his house and said to him, “We’re leaving and there is room for you in our car, please come with us!” But the man declined. “I have faith that God will save me.”
As the man stood on his porch watching the water rise up the steps, a man in a canoe paddled by and called to him, “Hurry and come into my canoe, the waters are rising quickly!” But the man again said, “No thanks, God will save me.”
The floodwaters rose higher pouring water into his living room and the man had to retreat to the second floor. A police motorboat came by and saw him at the window. “We will come up and rescue you!” they shouted. But the man refused, waving them off saying, “Use your time to save someone else! I have faith that God will save me!”
The flood waters rose higher and higher and the man had to climb up to his rooftop.
A helicopter spotted him and dropped a rope ladder. A rescue officer came down the ladder and pleaded with the man, "Grab my hand and I will pull you up!" But the man STILL refused, folding his arms tightly to his body. “No thank you! God will save me!”
Shortly after, the house broke up and the floodwaters swept the man away and he drowned.
When in Heaven, the man stood before God and asked, “I put all of my faith in You. Why didn’t You come and save me?”
And God said, “Son, I sent you a warning. I sent you a car. I sent you a canoe. I sent you a motorboat. I sent you a helicopter. What more were you looking for?”
13:10 Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath.
13:11 And just then there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years. She was bent over and was quite unable to stand up straight.
13:12 When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said, "Woman, you are set free from your ailment."
13:13 When he laid his hands on her, immediately she stood up straight and began praising God.
13:14 But the leader of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had cured on the sabbath, kept saying to the crowd, "There are six days on which work ought to be done; come on those days and be cured, and not on the sabbath day."
13:15 But the Lord answered him and said, "You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger, and lead it away to give it water?
13:16 And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen long years, be set free from this bondage on the sabbath day?"
13:17 When he said this, all his opponents were put to shame; and the entire crowd was rejoicing at all the wonderful things that he was doing.
A young friend recently asked, while on a lovely July walk, how plants got the energy to grow. It is high school bio, but I forgot some of it. I recalled the rough outlines of the Calvin Cycle, then began wondering whether plants had mitochondria because they use solar energy. Well, plant cells are eukaryotes just as are animals, so of course they have mitochondria.
For photosynthesis, they don't need mitochondria much. Light waves provide the energy to split water into the Hs and the O, and to attach those Hs to ADP onto ATP - the main energy source of most living things. Thus oxygen is produced by plants from water.
The second step of photosynthesis is to use the ATP to produce glucose (sugar) from CO2. Technically, triose phosphates are produced, which the cell combines to construct glucose. Simple sugar is the main building block for plant structure (eg cellulose, etc).
That whole thing is called the Calvin Cycle and it is one fancy mini-machine.
However, for night functioning and for extra needs, plants can also burn sugar (that's called respiration) just as animal cells do. Mitochondria do that job. In the respiration of plants and animals, glucose is metabolized to CO2 and water to produce ATP - the energy for cell life and growth. Thus plants are CO2 emitters and oxygen emitters.
Animal life requires plants, but not vice versa. Only plants can produce glucose which is the building block for many things including carbs.
I will not get into the topic of how plants and animals construct proteins now. It is all a miracle.
Body type is relevant to health, exercise, and appearance. It's worth bearing in mind that few people are a pure type, and that, for example, endomorphs can be fat (often termed "skinny fat" - ie a belly on a slender frame) and ectomorphs are not necessarily fat.
The body types are genetic, products of inborn bone and muscle structure. In other words, the body frame.