Thursday, June 28, 2007

Waitin' For My Latte

Denver, Colorado.

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Monday, June 25, 2007

Jacobs Field

First ballgame of the season. May 2d, Jacobs Field, Cleveland. Just a few weeks earlier, a whole series was cancelled due to snow, but this night was quite satisfactory, if not a bit cool.

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Sunday, June 24, 2007

USA Wins Consecutive Gold Cups

Next time some ignoramus starts spouting off about what a non-sport soccer is, just pull out the video of this classic between Mexico and the United States. Drama, suspense, controversy, amazing athletic skills made this the best Gold Cup ever. Folks, there's a reason why you see soccer on ESPN more than hockey: people are watching.

The thing that impresses me about this side is that, here we are, 5 years after nearly reaching the pinnacle, and this program still consistently produces elite level results, far more than anybody could have ever expected.

Now if only DaMarcus Beasley could just learn to put a ball into an empty net. His days in the national side are numbered.

United States Wins Fourth Gold Cup - New York Times

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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Welcome Hillbillies

Only in Pikeville, Kentucky, where they hold an annual "Hillbilly Days". They told me at the hospital that the cases of people falling out of pickup truck beds about triples during the festival.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

A Welcome Sign

After connecting through Cincinnati, and a dramatic landing on a runway scraped off the top of the mountain, you are greeted upon exiting the airport at Huntington, West Virginia, by this sign.

To suggest this resembles a Boy Scout Eagle project may just be an insult to Boy Scouts. (Can you find the upside down letter?)

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Sunday, June 17, 2007

When Chemistry Is Outlawed, Only Outlaws Will Do Chemistry

PZ Myers sums up his post on just how messed up our priorities are:

In the name of child safety, in order to inhibit drug peddlers, because we don't want to make things easy for terrorists, we have put up bureaucratic barriers to the purchase of laboratory glassware — while encouraging unimpaired, unchecked access to guns.

Is this a screwed-up country, or what?

Pharyngula: When chemistry is outlawed, only outlaws will do chemistry

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Saturday, June 16, 2007

Layers of Time

Young earth?


Sedona, Arizona.
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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Flight Patterns

I first spotted this video by Aaron Kobin on adultswim the other night. It's mezmerizing. This Youtube video does no justice. For more, click this link that will take you to a higher res quicktime version.

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Monday, June 11, 2007

A Sign Before It's Time?

If I told you about a man who, failed in previous careers, becomes an author with limited success, but uses his writings as the basis for a pseudo-religion with a near fanatical following, you would say, "that's L. Ron Hubbard." And you would be wrong.

Thousands of travelers along the busy I-94 corridor between Chicago and Milwaukee pass by this sign near Racine, Wisconsin, most of whom never give what it says a second thought. And yet the legend behind the name gives Mr. Hubbard a run for the money.

Alfred Lawson's first career was as a professional baseball player during the turn of the last century. He was regarded by some as a promising young pitcher, but bad luck and an even worse personality derailed his big league aspirations. After seeing a dirigible in flight in 1907, Lawson experienced an epiphany of sorts and left baseball to start the first aviation journal and eventually his own airplane manufacturing company. Well, actually two airplane companies. The first one built military planes and shut down after World War I. The second company operated in Milwaukee for the purpose of building passenger planes for his nascent air line. But whatever talent he had as a salesman was easily countered by an inferior aircraft design, and his air line never really launched. If that was the end of the story, Lawson would be remembered as an aviation visionary at best, snake oil salesman at worst. But he had found his true calling. Or a way to make a fortune, depending on how you look at it.

Lawson developed a philosophy based on his belief that banks were the root of all economic problems. He also wrote a novel and used it as the basis for a new, science and economics based religion called Lawsonomy. His message of calling for the abolition of banks with money controlled by the central government had resonance during the Great Depression, when banks were often seen to be the cause of so much suffering. So when most hucksters might turn to politics to gain power and money, Lawson chose instead to grow his religion and create a university to groom his acolytes. That didn't turn out so well, since his "students" lived in a military fashion, including wearing uniforms. The parallels to a rising star in pre-war Germany hit a bit close to home, and the university failed. And so, after failing in Iowa, Lawson moved back to Wisconsin, bought a tract of land, and tried his lot again. But alas, the University of Lawsonomy would all but disappear. Except for this sign.

Can you imagine what might have been if only Lawson enlisted some B-list actors to carry his flag? This similarities are almost uncanny. On that, Lawson was a generation ahead of Hubbard.

The research for this article turned out quite a fascinating story. I should hope a documentary producer out there might pick this up. I sprinkled links to source documents throughout this article. I'd like to leave you with a link to a Youtube video to a tour of the university campus. Don't worry, it's only a little more than 90 seconds long.

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Friday, June 08, 2007

High Alcohol Content

I thought the drinking establishments in Watertown were densely packed. Then I came to "Whiskey Row" in Prescott, Arizona.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Camping at Ottawa Lake

A shot from our second camping trip of the season, this past weekend at Ottawa Lake Recreation Area. Ottawa Lake is a favorite of ours, with good amenities and miles of trails for hiking, as well as being the closest state park to where we live. Great for a two night quick getaway.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Different Canvas

Lenses don't always have to be glass.

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