Billows of smoke and steam rise above Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida alongside space shuttle Discovery as it races toward space on the STS-128 mission.
The STS-128 mission is the 30th International Space Station assembly flight and the 128th space shuttle flight. The 13-day mission will deliver more than 7 tons of supplies, science racks and equipment, as well as additional environmental hardware to sustain six crew members on the International Space Station. The equipment includes a freezer to store research samples, a new sleeping compartment and the COLBERT treadmill.
Image Credit: NASA/Sandra Joseph and Kevin O'Connell
Available as wallpaper
August 31, 2009
August 28, 2009
From the website:
What would one color be without 499 others?
Introducing 500 Colored Pencils: the only set in the world that matches the span and wonder of human creativity.
Express whatever you dream, with beautiful visual precision.
Each pencil is its own story. A unique hue with an inventive name to inspire the far corners of your creativity.
Together, the colors suggest infinite possibilities.
Quite a few colors I've never seen before; lettuce, mermaid's gown and tragedy. (wow, a color for my love life!!!)
You can have the entire set sent to you, 25 pencils at a time, over the course of 20 months. Each month's shipment will set you back 33 bucks.
Uh, I believe if I need to draw something I will go down to the Dollar Store and buy the Made-in-China off-brand crayons.
When I was involved in the now defunct MSN Groups it was always such a hassle to try to back up my group so I didn't even try. Files and photos could easily be saved/backed-up via the My Network Spaces, but posts had to be copied into a Notepad document and saved, or pasted into an HTML editor and the page saved. (and since people were constantly clearing out their graphics albums in order to save space, the page had to be saved again to save any images) It was a pain.
With Blogger, it's much easier to save each and every post. I've got my settings where I get posts and replies direct to my inbox. I saved them for a while, then decided I didn't really want to keep them. (face it, my posts are not something for the ages)
Another method of saving posts and replies is to use the RSS feed for your blog and save them within Google Reader. Create a folder, name it something like "ToTG" and move all published content to it, easy as that!
I still don't save them, though. I've lost a few posts from here due to some Blogger glitch, but I'm not losing any sleep over it.
August 27, 2009
I'm a lunatic.
Your Name Comes From the Moon
You are a moody person, and you are constantly seeking balance in your life.
You feel connected to all beings. You are very sympathetic and understanding.
You are very influenced by who is around you. Too much negativity is certain to overwhelm you.
You are happiest when you are alone with nature, especially when you're around water.
August 26, 2009
August 25, 2009
August 24, 2009
"Senile Cat", that's what the caption says, but I've heard some cats sound pretty much the same or even more weird than that.
That's the deal about cats; you can't tell if they're fightin' or foolin' around by the noise they're makin'.
August 23, 2009
Urging the local populace to use Palo Duro Canyon State Park, which turns 75 this weekend, is nothing new. Apparently there was some unusual marketing to get more traffic into the Canyon going back to the 1950s.
Don Williams of Amarillo recalls a gimmick initiated by then-superintendent John McCarty back in the 1950s. Getting into PD Canyon was harder in those days, so McCarty, frustrated by that, had an idea to make it worthwhile.
According to Williams, McCarty had fake gold coins made, each one with a serial number, and a Panhandle merchant donated a prize for each serial number. He had an airplane fly over strategic parts of the Canyon and drop the coins.
'I can remember my family of four spending so many Saturdays or Sundays hiking the canyon looking for those coins,' Williams wrote. 'My Dad, Mom, and Sis did find some coins but only three I remember. One was for 100 pounds of potatoes from a Hereford produce wholesaler. Our whole neighborhood shared in this prize. Two was a floor lamp given by Taylor Furniture and three was a dinner for four at Myer’s Fried Chicken.'
For some reason, that sounds something right out of the 1950s.
Gold in Palo Duro Canyon: "
Labels: Palo Duro Canyon
Do you like Jeopardy? I love to watch and play along with the tv quiz show, but sometimes I miss the program. Thanks to KFDA TV in Amarillo, you can now play an abbreviated version of the day's Jeopardy broadcast.
Look at that score! A few years back, they had tryouts for the Amarillo area and I tried and tried to get through with the number they supplied during the show, but the line was constantly busy and it wasn't long until they ran a scroll across the bottom of the screen saying they had reached their quota of possible contestants. Story of my life, actually.
A woman from Dumas won the local contest and I happened to catch the show on which she competed. The category topics were nearly all of things that I was interested in and knew well: Potent Potables, Sci-Fi, Literature, Movies, Football, WWII, etc. I think I knew the answers to at least 75% of the questions (actually, knew the questions to the answers as per the Jeopardy format). The woman from this area came in dead last with only a few hundred dollars as her score. I honestly think I could've done better.
Oh heck, who am I kidding. I'd probably would have frozen like a deer in the headlights. It's one thing to "win" at these things in my living room, but another when you know there are millions of people (that will be) watching you.
Test your trivia knowledge! Play Jeopardy
A naval captain in the 1800s sees an enemy flotilla of 5 ships. He yells at his aide, "Quick, get me my RED SHIRT!" He puts on his red shirt, battle is waged, and the captain and his fleet destroys the enemy flotilla.
His aide asks, "Captain, I did as you say, but why? Is that a lucky shirt, sir?"
The captain replies, 'No, it's that if I get wounded I don't want my crew to see me bleed and think all is lost. That is all.'
The next day, the captain is alerted to a full fleet of 50 enemy ships. He then yells to his aide,
"Quick, get me my BROWN PANTS!"
Labels: bad jokes
August 22, 2009
I don't have a dog, but I'd get one if someone would buy this for me.
I'm also a Cowboy fan, and having any sort of Philadelphia Eagle gear would normally be the last thing I'd want, but if I had a dog, I'd gladly outfit him in his own sweater.
Only $39.99 plus S&H
Hunter Philadelphia Eagles Custom Pet Jersey
What the heck; buy me a dog, too. (+ a few year's worth of food, vet visits, etc.)
August 21, 2009
stultify \STUHL-tuh-fahy\ , verb:
1. To render useless or ineffectual; cripple.
2. To cause to appear stupid, inconsistent, or ridiculous.
3. Law To allege or prove insane and so not legally responsible.
I have mild dyslexia and sometimes transpose letters in a word, even leave some out.
At first I read this word and thought the definition would be "to try to emulate Britney Spears". I had to look at it again and see it was "ST" and not "SL" that started the word.
Come to think of it, she'd fit all three definitions anyway.
August 20, 2009
You Should Watch a Comedy
You are a fun loving person who is able to laugh at all aspects of life.
Some may think you're light-hearted, but you're also able to be amusingly dark.
You can see both the best and worst in people. More importantly, you understand how absurd life can be.
You find a well written comedy to be intelligent and even insightful. Anyone can make a good movie, but only a genius can make a hilarious movie.
How does the internet see YOU?
From the website:
Personas is a component of the Metropath(ologies) exhibit, currently on display at the MIT Museum by the Sociable Media Group from the MIT Media Lab. It uses sophisticated natural language processing and the Internet to create a data portrait of one's aggregated online identity. In short, Personas shows you how the Internet sees you.
Enter your name, and Personas scours the web for information and attempts to characterize the person - to fit them to a predetermined set of categories that an algorithmic process created from a massive corpus of data. The computational process is visualized with each stage of the analysis, finally resulting in the presentation of a seemingly authoritative personal profile.
In a world where fortunes are sought through data-mining vast information repositories, the computer is our indispensable but far from infallible assistant. Personas demonstrates the computer's uncanny insights and its inadvertent errors, such as the mischaracterizations caused by the inability to separate data from multiple owners of the same name. It is meant for the viewer to reflect on our current and future world, where digital histories are as important if not more important than oral histories, and computational methods of condensing our digital traces are opaque and socially ignorant.
This is my persona created with my name. Click for larger view.
The problem with "my" persona is that there was nothing about ME (that I could see) but instead it used mentions of other people with my name: an author, a police chief, etc.
August 19, 2009
furbelow \FUR-buh-low\ , noun:
1. A pleated or gathered flounce on a woman's garment; a ruffle.
2. Something showy or superfluous; a bit of showy ornamentation.
My cat has fur all over, don't you know.
He's got fur on top, and furbelow.
That's much nicer than the poem I was thinking of posting.
August 18, 2009
August 17, 2009
You Are Fantasy / Sci Fi
You have an amazing imagination, and in your mind, all things are possible.
You are open minded, and you find the future exciting. You crave novelty and progress.
Compared to most people, you are quirky and even a bit eccentric. You have some wacky ideas.
And while you may be a bit off the wall, there's no denying how insightful and creative you are.
From the site:
Waiting on someone to do something for you?
Send one of our specially trained monkeys to remind them!
Monkey On Your Back is your to-do list for things that you want other people to do.
Create a monkey for each task you want to delegate to someone else. We'll send that person email reminders about the task, and email you a reminder when the deadline for the task has expired.
Monkey On Your Back
NOTE: This is a test of a new feature which integrates items I've read in my Google Reader and can send to Blogger. I don't plan to make a habit of it, but thought it was a neat thing.
TOMATO FEST: Sassy Smoky Salsa: "
“It’s difficult to think anything but pleasant thoughts while eating a homegrown tomato.”
– Lewis Grizzard
Each summer I can hardly wait until I start seeing red globes peeking out from between the green leaves of our tomato plants.
There are a million salsa recipes out there, and I have tried my share of them over the last 30 years. Trust me on this – I grew up a few miles from the Mexican border and I have eaten hundreds of salsas. If I am a connoisseur of any one thing, it has to be salsa! This recipe is my absolute all-time favorite! Roasting about half of the tomatoes quickly at a very high heat give a wonderful roasted smoky flavor, but keeping half of the tomatoes raw gives it the perfect freshness and texture. And, the chipotle chile powder and smoked paprika are delicious in combination with tomatoes.
Don’t skip the EVOO. Olive oil used with tomatoes improves BOTH their flavor and health benefits exponentially.
I love to make gallons (literally) of our family’s favorite salsa and then cruise around the neighborhood like “The Salsa Fairy” handing out pints to friends or leaving them on doorsteps as a surprise treat.
You may even be tempted to sit down with a bowl of this with a very large spoon. No, I am NOT kidding.
SASSY SMOKY SALSA
Juice of two limes (about 1/4 cup)
Zest of two limes (about 2 teaspoons)
4 cloves garlic
1 large bunch cilantro
About 12 large ripe tomatoes (to make 8 cups smashed)
2 bunches green onions, tops included
1 bell pepper, any color
4 to 6 fresh jalapeños
1 tablespoon each chipotle chile powder and smoked paprika
2 teaspoons salt (or more to taste)
2 tablespoons olive oil
A few dashes Tabasco sauce, to taste
Cut tomatoes in half and squeeze out all juice and seeds. Place half of tomatoes cut side down on a baking sheet and spray with a little oil. Broil about 3 inches from heat for about 5 minutes, until tomato skins begin to blacken in spots. Let cool. Drain off liquid from pan and then pulse roasted tomatoes and remaining uncooked tomatoes in food processor until tomatoes are in small chunks. DO NOT PUREE. Place tomato mixture in a large bowl.
Place lime juice, lime zest, garlic and cilantro in food processor and blend until smooth. Remove seeds and pulp from jalapeños and mince. Remove ends and outer skins of green onions and mince. Remove seeds and white pulp from bell pepper and mince. Add chile powder, salt and olive oil. Stir all ingredients together and let sit on counter for at least one hour for flavors to blend. Taste. If necessary because tomatoes are acidic, add in a little sugar to taste. If salsa is too runny, stir in a can of tomato paste. Cover and refrigerate for up to 10 days. Serve at room temperature. Makes a HUGE batch!!
Variation: To make salsa hotter, add more hot peppers, such as serranos. Also, leaving the seeds in will make the salsa hotter after seeds have had a chance to blend with other flavors.
– posted by Donna"
August 16, 2009
bowdlerize \BODE-luh-rise; BOWD-\ , transitive verb:
1. To remove or modify the parts (of a book, for example) considered offensive.
2. To modify, as by shortening, simplifying, or distorting in style or content.
Whatever the opposite of bowdlerize is, that would describe this blog.
We only put in the parts that are offensive.
For greater detail, click on the link "View Larger Map" at the bottom of the embed.
View Larger Map
I've got it set to the intersection but you can drag the map upwards* to see the farm house.
*Go up/North by dragging the map DOWNWARDS with your cursor.
Since I couldn't put a "push pin" in the map, I wasn't for sure just how I would pinpoint the locations, then found out by opening up the larger map, then clicking "More" and checking the box "Photos", there were a couple of photographs of each location, allowing the viewer to zoom out and see a better map by selecting "Map" at the top of the Google Map page.
After following those convoluted instructions, you should see something like this:
The top photo is the location of the farm house; the bottom one is the intersection.
Google Maps won't let you zoom in too close, but at least by having the two photos as "placemarks" in lieu of "push pins", you can have some idea of just where the locations are.
If you have the Google Earth application, you can download a .kml file with the locations at this page on Waymarking.com
Here are the two main posts about those locations:
Cast Away Crossroads
Arrington Ranch House
Edit to add: I had noticed my Cast Away posts were still among the most searched for articles in my blog and decided to check them - to correct grammar errors, "clean up" a few sentences, center the photos, etc. and I noticed that when I followed the directions to view the photographs in the larger map that they had disappeared - meaning that whoever had uploaded them had deleted them or their account(s). I'll see if I can upload my own photos to those same spots on the map.
August 15, 2009
The extreme zip lines have fascinated me since I found several vids on You Tube and the regular visitors to this blog may remember a year or so ago when I posted several of them. When I was a kid, some friends of mine and I put up a small one, much like the one in the following video.
I think this might be the last zip line vid I'll ever post.
There might be some cursing, but it's fairly unintelligible. If it'd been ME on the zip, you'd have heard a bunch of cussin'. You probably would've seen me throwing up, too.
Was just notified that I had won a 12 serving sample pack of Arbuckles coffee from my entering the current Marlboro sweepstakes.
I don't smoke Marlboros these days, but I appreciate the prizes I've won. I got my bottle opener the other day but have yet to receive my money clip.
I'll have to divide that bag up into several servings, though, because I have only a 4-cup coffee maker. That's about as much coffee as I can stand to drink in a day and even that gets me pretty jittery. 12 cups of coffee would keep me up for days!
(keep me "up" going to the bathroom, actually)
August 14, 2009
You Are Navy Blue
You're a true adventurer. You constantly find yourself drawn to new experiences, people, and places.
Sometimes you feel quite scattered and bored. If something exciting isn't going on, you feel a bit lost.
Blue - LeAnn Rimes
From the email archives:
The Postal Services created a stamp with a picture of President Obama on it, but they noticed that the stamp was not sticking to envelopes.
This enraged the President, who demanded a full investigation. After a month of testing, and $1.73 million in congressional spending, a special Presidential commission presented the following findings.
1. The stamp is in perfect order
2. There is nothing wrong with the glue
3. People are spitting on the wrong side
August 13, 2009
August 12, 2009
Once upon a time, a guy asked a girl
"Will you marry me?"
The girl said "NO!" And the guy lived happily ever after and rode motorcycles and went fishing and hunting and played golf a lot and drank beer and scotch and had money in the bank and left the toilet seat up and farted whenever he wanted.
From the website:
More than 50 free printable medical forms and medical charts that you can download and print. Choose from forms for personal use, medical diaries and journals, forms for medical offices, forms for schools and daycare centers and more — all free. Or, download customizable versions for just $3.99. (Or download the entire collection for $27.)
Here's a sample of the Blood Glucose Testing Record, very handy for me!
(click to view; converted from pdf file)
August 11, 2009
With this quiz
Your Walk Says You're Approachable
You are intelligent, thoughtful, and even philosophical. You like to go unnoticed for the most part.
Other people see you as humble and down to earth. You don't put on airs.
You are careful, thoughtful, and detail oriented. You tend to test people's patience, but your patience pays off.
You tend to be all work and very little play. You are too responsible to let loose.
August 10, 2009
August 8, 2009
Obese Texas inmate hides gun in his flabs of fat
HOUSTON — An obese inmate in Texas has been charged after officials learned he had a gun hidden under flabs of his own flesh.
Twenty-five-year-old George Vera was charged with possession of a firearm in a correctional facility after he told a guard at the Harris County Jail about the unloaded 9mm pistol. The Houston Chronicle reported Thursday that Vera was originally arrested on charges of selling illegal copies of compact discs.
The 500-pound man was searched during his arrest and again at a city jail and the county jail, but officers never found the weapon in his rolls of skin. Vera admitted having the gun during a shower break at the county jail.
I started to post the photo of the guy at the above link, then thought I'd go find an animation or clipart to illustrate this story.
You know, try to make it funnier than it already is.
If you'll go look for yourself, you'll find out why I decided against it.
Checking the Feekjit counter just now, I noticed several hits in a row from Ireland, England and the Netherlands from search results on this blog's Cast Away posts. There's always an increase in visits when the movie is aired here in the U.S., so I figured it must have been shown on the BBC, and sure 'nuff, checking their website's Cast Away listing, it came on earlier this evening. (England is six hours ahead of CST here in the Panhandle)
In case you've stumbled across this blog and did not know that we're up at or very near the top of search results for the movie locations, here are the posts:
Cast Away Crossroads
Arrington Ranch House
Those are the two main posts, but I've mentioned the movie in several others.
August 7, 2009
August 6, 2009
The inmate on death row is scheduled to be put to death by firing squad. He doesn't request a last meal or anything special for his last day.
As he stands before the firing squad he says, "Actually, music is my life. One thing I would really like would be to sing my favorite song, one whole time through, with no interruptions."
The guard nods solemnly and tells him to go ahead.
The inmate starts: "One billion bottles of beer on the wall...."
Labels: bad jokes
You Kiss Like a Man
For you, kissing is a very sexual act. It's all about physical attraction.
You tend to take the lead with kissing. If you're attracted to someone, you want to kiss as soon as possible.
You prefer aggressive kisses. You like to test limits and see where a kiss goes.
Kissing makes you feel closer to your partner. You see kissing as a fast track to intimacy.
August 5, 2009
This came through my reader via one of the freebie sites to which I subscribe.
Sign up and receive a pen and a deck of cards.
The site seems to be an "awareness" one concerning hepatitis and its affects.
I didn't sign up because:
(a) I have plenty of pens
(b) I don't need a deck of cards
(c) I'm afraid I'd be signing up to donate my liver
Wonder if you get onions with a new liver?
Among them are lavender, bacon, garlic and even Viagra.
(I'll skip the gratuitous jokes -you're welcome)
The one most off-putting to me would probably be the haggis flavored.
(and that would be "flavoured", since it's found at Harrods in London)
World’s Strangest Ice Cream
August 4, 2009
Firefox 3.5.2 fixes the following issues:
- Several security issues.
- Images with ICC profiles now render properly on all monitors.
The object is to balance the scale as fast as possible
Add a weight by pressing and holding your mouse button. While holding the mouse button your weight will grow. When you release, the weight will fall. If you overload the side, add weight to the other.
You have a limited number of weights per level; if you run out, the game is lost.
August 3, 2009
desultory \DES-uhl-tor-ee\ , adjective:
1. Jumping or passing from one thing or subject to another without order or rational connection; disconnected; aimless.
2. By the way; as a digression; not connected with the subject.
3. Coming disconnectedly or occurring haphazardly; random.
4. Disappointing in performance or progress.
It's amazing how many of these Dictionary.com Words of the Day fit this blog.
Your Defense Mechanism is Humor
When life gets you down, you just have to laugh. And that's a very healthy reaction.
It's not that you don't take your problems seriously. You do. You just don't let them control you.
You are able to make the best of things, even when things look very, very bleak.
Some people may consider your sense of humor to be dark, but it has served you well!
August 2, 2009
From the website:
Nearly a hundred free printable labels, including mailing labels and return address labels that you can download and print for free. You can print your labels on regular paper, and glue or tape them onto envelopes and packages. These free label templates are compatible with peel-and-stick label stock.
NOTE: These are .doc files, so you'll need Microsoft Word to open and edit them.
Labels: free stuff
August 1, 2009
arcane\ar-KAYN\ , adjective:
1. Understood or known by only a few.
Yep, that's me 'n my blog. The blog is known by only a few because I don't link to many other sites nor do I submit it to blogrolls and search engines. I'm known by only a few because I don't have many friends and try my best to keep my name off the Pampa News police report.
The blog is understood by only a few because...well, it's hard to understand. Really. Just take a peek around. There's no rhyme nor reason and not but a few rants and raves. I'm understood by only a few because...well, you'll have to ask my few friends, I guess. It might be because I mumble a lot.
From the website:
Deferred Sender is a free service that allows you to schedule emails from any email application or website to be sent in the future. Send reminders, notifications and more!
Easy to get started! Enter your email address, agree to the ubiquitous terms of service, check your email for instructions to activate your account and start using Deferred Sender!