Friday, November 02, 2007
Great questions of our time
Is there really, like, a Supreme Being?
Opposition. In small matters, good fortune.
Above, fire; below, the lake:
The image of Opposition.
Thus amid all fellowship
The superior man retains his individuality.
Nine at the Beginning
If you lose your horse, do not run after it;
It will come back of its own accord.
When you see evil people,
Guard yourself against mistakes.
Six in the Third Place
One sees the wagon dragged back,
The oxen halted,
A man's hair and nose cut off.
Not a good beginning, but a good end.
Thursday, November 01, 2007
The first (and last) time I ate my earwax
In the wake of the political scandal of Kevin Rudd eating his own earwax in Parliament, I thought I’d disclose a personal anecdote, which may or may not illumine this apparently shocking incident.
A long time ago when I was a young adult — okay, a long, long time ago — I was sitting reading a book, when I was suddenly irritated by an infuriating itch inside my ear.
I gingerly probed my ear hole with my little finger to soothe the source of the itch, then noticed that the nail of this little finger actually had an overly sharp edge that threatened to break the skin where I was scratching.
Absent-mindedly I then took that little finger to my mouth with a view to filing the edge off of it with my teeth — as one does, with no scissors or other specialist implements within convenient reach.
Ble-e-ecchhh!! I realised with deep revulsion that a trace of earwax had hitched a ride on that finger into my mouth, and its acrid flavour overwhelmed me with nausea.
Quite seriously, I can’t believe that anyone would habitually eat that stuff out of their own (or anyone else’s) ear.
Having only seen the incriminating Rudd footage once, I really can’t remember whether the expression on his face was a surprised grimace, or one of a furtive, stolen, secret pleasure. My own experience would suggest the former.
One day I may review that shocking footage, but for the moment my mind is occupied with more pressing political questions — such as, whether I should wait until election night to chill a much anticipated bottle of vintage champagne.
You see, as I may have mentioned elsewhere, I bought a bottle of bubbly on the eve of the 1998 election, with which I had planned to toast the lower-lip tremors of a single-term Prime Minister.
Nine years down the track, and not only have I “never had it so good”, but the Howard Era has yielded me a really fine bottle of vintage champagne!
But one can’t have one’s vintage and drink it too, so I really feel It’s Time! for the incumbent Prime Minister to give up the electoral ghost, so to speak, and let me enjoy my bubbly, at long last.
I do have other arguments, but at this time I find the above to be the most compelling.
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Geoscience Australia has a range of online tools that just about anyone, sometime, somewhere, should find very useful.
From their Astronomical Information webpage, you can:
- Compute your own Sunrise/Sunset times
- Compute your own Moonrise/Moonset times
- Compute your own Sun and Moon Azimuth & Elevation
- Browse Moon phase data
- Browse Planet data for the major Australian cities
UPDATE: A colleague referred me to another useful reference page, this one offering metric conversion tables and ready reckoners.
Monday, October 29, 2007
From ABC news online:
Truck-sized meteorite up for auction
A chunk of one of the most famous meteorites in the world — the size of small truck — goes under the hammer today [Sunday] in the US. ...
Scientists believe the 15.5 tonne chunk of iron and nickle was the core of a planet that shattered in a stellar collision billions of years ago.
It was found in the Williamette valley in Oregon in the United States over 100 years ago.
The local confederated tribes of the Grand Ronde considers the entire meteorite a sacred icon.
The tribe group says it is saddened and dismayed by the sale, but a spokesman said it could not stop the auction and would not consider becoming a bidder.
Also up for auction is “the only mailbox known to have been hit by a meteorite (Claxton, Georgia, 1984).”
As yet today, no living thing has been documented as being killed by a meteorite. Watch this space for late breaking meteorites...
Sunday, October 28, 2007
The day they drove the old drive-in down...
Labels: Bastard developers