Saturday, February 28, 2015

Snowmelt Saturday

OK, enough snow and ice - let's get back to Texas weather...
  • It was fun at first, but I was starting to get cabin fever.
  • Beforer:
  • Afterer:
Hello, hello, hello - Is there anybody in there...?
  • The roof ice formed sort of a visor on the windshield, with the wipers carving out a 2-3" undercut.  Don't worry, visibility was excellent in all directions.
  • The initial nitwittery following the Eddie Ray Routh conviction/sentencing seemed to subside pretty quickly.  I was surprised that a lot of people's opinions on the case seemed to hinge on what they perceived was Chris Kyle's character - whether they thought he was a hero or villain.  If I had been on the jury, it would have been a non-issue.  Routh killed two men who had not harmed him in any way.
  • Clemens' quote about lies and statistics is a favorite of mine.  The nabob on the Oscars who nattered something about more black men incarcerated in the U.S. today than were held under slavery established his reputation as a liberal darling - even though the comparison was neither particularly relevant, nor was it accurate.
  • Taking those in reverse order, it's inaccurate, because it's simply not true.  Rudimentary fact checking shows that around 1860 there were nearly four million slaves, an astonishingly high number certainly - almost 13 percent of the population.  But the number of persons incarcerated in the U.S. - of all stripes - as of 2011 was a bit under three million.  African-Americans account for roughly 15% of the U.S. population, about 46 million people.  But even if we assume a 3:1 disproportional representation in the prison/jail population, there'd still only be 1.3-1.4 million blacks incarcerated, about a third as many as were slaves, despite a 10-fold population increase.
  • On the relevance front, what exactly would be the proper ratio of slaves to prisoners?  The institution of slavery was, of course, wrong.  It exists no more, so the comparison is meaningless, except as an ersatz factoid.  While it's true that the U.S. incarcerates a larger percentage of its population than any other country, and there's room for honest debate as to why that is and whether it should be the case, using made up statistics doesn't add to the discussion.
  • The always colorful late Molly 'Shoot-from-the-lip' Ivins once penned a column wailing about the injustice of there being more Federal Firearms Licensees (many - or most - of whom were so-called 'kitchen table' dealers) than McDonald's franchises.  I'm somewhat familiar with ratio analysis, but for the life of me, I'd never seen an expected range for that ratio.  Another utterly useless statistic.
  • In some ways, I'm a natural skeptic.  Watching a PBS show about tea, I heard the claim that Bangladesh consumes 55 million kilograms of tea leaves per year.  My BS meter went on alert, until I researched the population of Bangladesh, did the math, and found that it works out to about 3/4 pound of tea leaves per person.  I can believe that.
  • If this girl had been in your high school class, would you have dated her?
Yes, you would have.  In your Dreams.
  • I like Michael Che on SNL's Weekend Update, but they need to lose the Riblet (Bobby Moynihan) bit.  Moynihan's Drunk Uncle is OK, but Riblet just isn't funny.
  • To make a sammich awesome, 'splooge' slather some of this on your bread:
Not for the benefit of Mr. Kite.
  • I snagged some poppy seed kaiser rolls at the Kroger and used the horseradish mustard to make the Wurst Semmel in the history of alles Semmels.  As Hans Mueller hat gesagt: Unsere Wurst ist der beste!   Yummy?  Javoll!  (Edit: Maybe they are Chia seeds - wonder if they'll help fill in that thinning spot on my scalp...?)
  • When I was in 7th and 8th grades, there was a Delikatessen about 2-1/2 blocks from the Villa, our school's Junior High building.  While there was a student-run concession in the school that sold Wurstsemmels between B and C periods for about 10 Schillings (back when the exchange rate was about AS 20 = 1 USD), they often ran out and the lines were long - so three or four of us would run down to the Deli to get our own, fresh Semmels.  At least until the administration caught wind of it, and put the kibosh on our swash-buckling ruffian enterprise.
  • I'm a virtual teetotaler these days, but an artisinal sandwich masterpiece called out for something other than my world famous iced tea house blend.  So I copped a Sierra Nevada IPA from a six-pack I was going to give a friend.
The [made in U.S.A.] Hamm's church-key was a necessary accoutrement 
- this ain't no twist-off bottle.
  • It's all good.  I'll just make up a mixed six-pack with some Pumpkin Ale and no one'll be the wiser, Bud.
  • Ruh-roh!  I just Googled 'splooge'.  Where was Inigo Montoya when I was writing this post?  I do not think it means what I thought it meant.  That'll teach me to co-opt terms from other bloggers - I thought it was just a made-up word.
  • Tonight's church service was most excellent.  Brandon and Susan co-delivered the message.  It was the last in the "This is Bliss" series about marriage.   In an earlier installment, Brandon criticized the '50 Shades...' franchise by name;  Susan referenced it indirectly tonight. It's been a great series, albeit one that's left me feeling all dressed up and no place to go...
  • This was on the Kroger newsstand:
If I get much closer, people are gonna look at me funny (funnier?)
  • I grant you that chick is probably super-hawt (I didn't open the mag to check it out), but I would contest that she is 'the most desirable woman in the world'.  By whose standards?  What constitutes 'desirable'?

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