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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Stray Dog ... Another Early Kurosawa Film

Toshiro Mifune and Takashi Shimura star in this film as two police detectives. Mifune is the rookie, and Shimura is older and experienced.

The plot follows Mifune searching for his gun, which was lifted by a pickpocket and then sold to a man who kills and injures several people with it. Mifune's intensity stems from his feeling of responsibility for the loss of the gun and the crimes it was part of.

The film is really slow by modern standards, but at about 1/3 of the way through, it begins to move a bit faster, though is never an action movie by any means.

Mifune and Shimura appeared together in several Kurosawa films, so their faces are very familiar.

Taco Salad, My Taco Salad ...

Well, except it contains no taco! There is "mesclun blend" lettuce, taco meat with spices and onions, low-fat Mexican cheese blend, chopped tomatoes and sliced black olives. I wished for an avocado, I had none and had no desire to go to the store, so this was my lunch. Very tasty!

It Must Be True, I Read It in the Daily Mail! Song by Dan and Dan

Friday, March 26, 2010

Higher Education for Hippos

Yes, student hippos, welcome to your campus! The flashing area is your section of this playground / university known as the human brain. As all hippos know, your campus is involved in short-term memory assigning and storage, and it also identifies novel sensory experiences, and is one part of a cycle of craving (now where did I put that dark chocolate?).

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

One Wonderful Sunday

I enjoyed this Kurosawa film. It was given only 2.5 stars by Turner Classic Movies, but it was a poignant glimpse into postwar Japan (1947). The young woman is an optimist and her (ex-soldier) fiance is desperately discouraged. Both are in dire straits economically. It was a bit slow moving but a delicate piece of emotional observation. The film aired yesterday, which would have been Kurosawa's 100th birthday.

Book Drop?!?

For those of you who do not recognize the bin, it is for trash. The actual book drop is up a ramp, and lets books fall into the inside of the library.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Backyard Bear

Fumbling, my first attempt! Note gorgeous tee shirt from an Osprey black n white design. Sorry about the ending, I did not know how to edit it, but the next one will be better.

Joe Petersburger Kingfisher Photo

Is this an incredible image, or what? He has a website under construction.

Mmmmm Breakfast Pizza!

This recipe is low in carbohydrates and has adequate protein (for me, that is about 30 grams of protein). The base is eggs and cream cheese with a bit of Romano and seasoning. The toppings are asparagus, black olive slices, cooked meat (book says fish would be very good as well, and vegetarians could use tofu), and jack cheese. There is a lot of fiber in this meal, and it was very tasty! All the cheeses can be low-fat, of course. This is from Sharron Long's cookbook Extreme Lo-Carb Cuisine.

Oh Nooooooo! Not THAAAAT!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Shigs ... or are they Peep?

Remember the movie "O Lucky Man"? the next thing must be Pigmen! See all nine photos here.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Harmony Drawing

Osprey posted this fabulous drawing site, and I did a drawing of my computer desk, the area between my keyboard and the monitor. It was fun and interesting to see what it put in when I scrubbed the mouse across an open space in "sketchy" mode (light grey surface of desk). Left-click on the drawing to see a much larger view of it (nice to see the details).
If you visit, don't be surprised that it is a blank white screen with just a few menus on the top. Just start drawing with your mouse and play with it!

Thursday, March 11, 2010


These old photos of the Netherlands struck me, each of them, and now I see there is a theme, that of adaptation to circumstances. The woman in the gas mask walking her gas-proof baby carriage is possibly the most amazing. For more of these photos visit

Chilean Quake Tilted Earth Axis?

"According to our calculations, the quake moved Earth's figure axis by about 3 inches (8 cm)," says geophysicist Richard Gross of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. The Chilean quake shifted enough material to change the mass balance of our entire planet ..."

He is planning to check it out via GPS points all over the globe. Read the entire article here.

Vacation Plans

This could change at any time without notice ...

We are going counter-clockwise on this map. Portland, Oregon (seeing my sister Betsy!), Wheeler, Oregon, Lake Quinault, Washington, then back to Portland via Olympia, Washington (where we will be visiting Osprey!)

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Eagle Lays Egg (No Joke!)

Watch the Nest Cam video of an eagle laying an egg, then launch it live on your home computer! I launched it and heard great pre-dawn singing but it was still completely dark there. I think you have to be patient to watch her lay the egg, so get into your bird-watching mode.

A Belated Happy International Women's Day To You!

The Green Belt Movement has also formed a partnership with the Lambi Fund of Haiti to reforest the small nation and work on community development. In the current circumstances that is probably on hold, but it seems important to work on that aspect of Haiti's health as well. See the entire article
here. Women together have the power to make huge changes!

Sunday, March 07, 2010

The 39 Steps!

The 39 Steps has been parodied wildly and though I had not heard of the comedy version, we saw it tonight and it was so much fun!

Tonight's performance was a preview, and there were a few glitches, but the cast of four pulled it off admirably. The Alley Theatre cast were doing quick changes of costume, props and characters so rapidly we barely caught our breath from laughing before we were laughing again.

Make Animal Fur Type NOW!

Frankly, I would never have thought of this adaptation of type, nor would I ever want to do this nor would I use it if you created it ... but that is just quibbling.

The idea is fun, and you can see the entire tutorial here.

jQuery ... Free and Fab! (Or So They Tell Me)

Here is an answer to a problem I have personally encountered. Many sites use Macromedia Flash to build interactive bits, which means that when I access them from my iPhone I cannot see some of their content. This tutorial explains how to use jQuery for various embedded fun interactive stuff. It works better for more browsers, and that it is also FREE to the website producer.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Scientists Who Are Concerned ...

For a lot of us this past winter, global warming sounded kind of nice in comparison to our local weather, and it is difficult to connect warming with local cold and snowy weather.

Therefore, I am blogging the following informational article from the Union of Concerned Scientists:

Global Warming 101

Global warming is well underway and will have wide-ranging consequences for our health and well-being. The primary cause of global warming is from human activity, most significantly burning of fossil fuels to drive cars, generate electricity, and operate our homes and businesses. Tropical deforestation accounts for about 15 percent of global warming emissions.

When too much global warming pollution is released into the air, it acts like a blanket, trapping heat in our atmosphere and altering weather patterns globally and here in the U.S. We need to deeply reduce the heat-trapping emissions causing this effect if we are to address global warming.

By choosing to invest in clean and efficient energy technologies, industries, and approaches, we can greatly reduce the consequences of our changing climate. We have ample technology and ingenuity to reduce the threat of global warming today. By ramping up our use of renewable energy and energy efficiency, and increasing the efficiency of the cars we drive, we can take essential steps toward reducing our global warming pollution, and in the process transform our energy system to one that is cleaner and less dependent on oil and other fossil fuels.

For more than 20 years, UCS has worked together with leading climate experts from the scientific community to educate U.S. decision makers and the public about climate change and implement practical solutions at the federal, regional and state level. Our experts include climate scientists and economists, as well as technical experts in the energy and transportation sectors. We also work on international solutions to climate change, with particular emphasis on preserving tropical forests.

Koala From Hell!

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Saturday Night Dead

The Thingie

Yesterday my Faithful Dog Bear and I went for a walk in another part of The Neighborhood, and we found ... This Thingie. Embedded in the top of a storm drain, it was mysteriously spiraling, filled with concrete that did not match the drain cover itself, and made of what looked like tar. If you know what this is, you can keep it to yourself, because I LIKE IT!

On another storm drain in the same Area, we discovered a small sign that read, "DO NOT DUMP: this storm drain empties into Galveston Bay". So ... should we dump into some other body of water? No, seriously, I could not believe people would dump (what? oil? gas? body parts?) into a storm drain in the first place, so the sign astonished me even more than the Mystery Spiral Symbol.


To see more adoptable robots, go to Adopt-A-Bot!

It Came from The Cow ...

Tuesday, March 02, 2010


This modular kitchen is so great looking I want one now and I would have nowhere to put it! LOL!