Wednesday, April 29, 2009

And then there's ... what?

Just a quick update ...

The house at 7406 Columbia Ave., College Park, Md., 2:33PM, April 28, 2009, near the Metro station and CSX/MARC Camden line railroad tracks.

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Thank GOD we're finally getting some rain and cooler temperatures ... ANYTHING to wash all that pollen out of the air. I've been in agony, not to mention hopped up on various antihistamines.

Here is the five-day panel forecast issued earlier today by the NWS folks at Sterling (LWX) for the District of Columbia. The forecast box includes where I live.

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Changing subjects, I've actually been rather sad and disappointed that I never had the chance to meet Bea Arthur in life. She died this past Saturday at age 86 (and there is not going to be a funeral). I was miffed she didn't attend Estelle Getty's funeral, but I really had no business feeling that way. I'm sure she had her reasons.

Anyway, the best I can now do is view clips on YouTube of interviews and comedy skits that she did in the past. I also I came across this funny image of the late Bea Arthur pictured as Jesus:

Ha ha

Here is a nice YouTube clip of when Bea Arthur was on Rosie O'Donnell's show and Rosie sang to Bea the Maude theme song "And then there's Maude":



I think this was recorded in 2002 (the final year of Rosie's show). It includes as well that clip from the legendary All In the Family episode in 1972 where the character of Maude Findlay -- Edith's cousin -- is introduced. That one appearance prompted Norman Lear to give her her own show.

And here is Bea Arthur with the marionette Madame from 1980 doing a shtick routine involving Madame's lust for Rock Hudson (how ironic on multiple levels is that) and then singing: "A Good Man is Hard to Find":


The local D.C. gayborhood story is that Madame's creator, the late Wayland Flowers (who had the same birthday as I, Nov. 26th) supposedly got the idea for Madame in the mid-1960s from a lady who is still alive and still is involved with Annie's Paramount Steak House on 17th St., which, by the way, is obscenely overpriced.

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Oh, yes, I found a FIVE-LEAF clover (pictured above) a few days ago on campus near Millard Tydings Hall. Does that add any extra luck?? I've always easily found four leaf ones but the good luck part never quite seemed to follow.

I'm actually suddenly busy with assignments for my contracting job, so that's good for me financially and psychologically, except I really need at some point I need to spend several days working on stuff for my single remaining class (see previous entry) ahead of my scheduled graduation / completion next month. Oh, yes, I made it to the campus gym twice this week so far, including swimming, so that's good.

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A biker whizzes around the "M" roundabout on the main campus entrance/exit, University of Maryland, College Park, at dusk after an unseasonably warm spring day, 7:57PM, April 28, 2009.

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Also, I had a preliminary pre-screening sort of job interview today by phone for a climate change and energy analyst position. I was disheveled and in my t-shirt and sweat pants and socks for that one. CLARIFICATION: It was a phone interview, so I was home in my apartment.

Today I am not going to College Park but rather to Bethesda into my old office to pick up a check for $280 and go over the details of a previous assignment. Thereafter, I guess I'll take a walk.

--Regulus

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Remembering Bea Arthur (b. May 13, 1922, d. April 25, 2009); Sudden D.C. Spring Heat and Allergies; & Sundry Other Notions

This first half of this entry features my thoughts on Bea Arthur's passing and the second half features sundry items concerning the weather, my allergies, old inns and bars, the Freemasons (!), school, and my job search.

The old brick "garden apartment" style structure at 7404 Columbia Ave., College Park, Md., 12:55PM, April 25, 2009. This is on the farthest most backstreet of College Park near the Metro station and the CSX/MARC Camden line tracks.

The building looked vaguely haunted there in the warm spring sunlight cloaked by the budding trees.


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I note with sadness the passing of Bea Arthur of eternal The Golden Girls (Dorothy Zbornak) and Maude (Maude Findlay) TV sitcom fame.

There were two nice obituary articles written about her one by The Associated Press and the other by The New York Times.

The AP link (as it appeared 0n Google news) is here and The New York Times online one is here. Note that her Maude character surname Findlay is misspelled in the AP story as Finley.

I agree with the AP story that the 1974 musical movie remake of Mame starring Lucille Ball in which she played Vera Charles was not a good one. That movie was a remake of the Broadway musical that Bea Arthur starred in with Angela Lansbury.

The earlier version called Auntie Mame in 1958 that starred Rosalind Russell was far, far and away better, but that had nothing to do with Bea Arthur's performance.

All of these plays and movies were based on the gay Patrick Dennis' original 1956 novel Auntie Mame.

I saw Bea Arthur once in one-woman show "And then there's Bea" at the Warner Theatre in 2002.

On a political note, I recall she was very anti Al Gore, if only because of her extreme animal rights stance (I'm not sure what Gore did that upset her -- she was a vegan). However, she made a film clip that -- I have speculated -- may have very well have swayed enough Nader / vegan voter types in Florida for the 2000 election to allow the Bush Crime Cartel to steal the election. Again, that is just speculation on my part.

On a personal note, I have two Bea Arthur related tidbits ...

I recall the show Maude from my VERY early childhood. The show aired from 1972 -- as a spin off All In the Family -- to 1978. I recall it was on Monday nights at 9PM and my mom would let me stay up "late" to watch it.

This was most likely in 1974 - 1975 -- based on the show's air time I found here when I was 4 to 5 years old.

This was in my mom's pre-Belgium period when she was still living in Eatontown, New Jersey

The second one involves the old and now-gone Yenching Palace restaurant on Connecticut Ave., NW, in Cleveland Park.

That was the place I HAD WANTED to go to lunch with Mr. Sirius, but that never worked out. Boo.

Anyway, on the wall in the foyer of that restaurant was a framed picture of the front page of an edition of the old Washington Star.

As I recall, it was from 1973 or 1974 when a "Red" (PRC) Chinese delegation had come to D.C. to meet with Nixon administration folks.

Yenching Palace -- which was in that long ago era a rare Chinese restaurant, this being long before "Yum's" and other Chinese ghetto - garbage fast food -- was a place from which the Chinese delegation ordered take out.

COINCIDENTALLY, there was a story about Bea Arthur in the lower corner of that front page. The occasion was a resolution past by the Maryland state senate honoring "Maryland native" Bea Arthur (she grew up in Cambridge, Md., though she was born in New York City) for her achievements.

The vote was ALMOST unanimous but for ...

... one state senator who voted against the resolution because of that Nov. 1972 (first season) episode where Maude (who was supposed to be in her late 40s) gets pregnant and opts for an abortion. It was immediately pre-Roe v. Wade and VERY controversial at the time.

Goodbye and Godspeed, Dorothy Zbornak. Thank you for being a friend.

(Sorry, I couldn't resist that.)

I will refrain from any speculation on whether or not there had been -- as widely reported -- acrimony between Bea Arthur and one or more of the other Golden Girls, especially Betty White

That aside, I'm rapidly running out of Golden Girls that I can ever hope someday in this life to meet!


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Changing subjects ...

I need to note that the weather has rapidly swung in the past week from cool and wet to outright hot and humid with AGONIZING levels of tree pollen for me.

Stock internet photograph of trees in a forest.

My allergies are in overdrive and I've had to take a bunch of Benadryl although I hear Zyrtec is better. Benadryl leaves you in a drowsy torpor, as it did yesterday at the Maryland Day festival on the McKeldin Mall on campus.

Some of pictures in this part of the entry were taken as I walked to the campus and then back, while others were taken Friday night at Phil's place.

It wore off last night as I went to Cobalt with Gary and so I had an allergy attack walking there and then while at the bar. This made me look like I was high on cocaine or something -- and some jerk actually said that and I yelled at him to get away from me. I've seen the guy before and he's kind of nuts. Naturally, that guy was friends with some of the bartenders. It always works out like that to maximize how bad I look.

This is the Carriage House & Tap Grill (I've never been there) in the Rossborough Inn on the UMCP campus, 4:00PM, April 25, 2009.

The Rossborough Inn is the oldest structure on campus, well predating the very existence of the University of Maryland, College Park (although most of the current building probably is not original). It is right along Rt. 1 and its history stretches back to its construction between 1804 and 1812, although the marker on the building from 1939 gives 1798 as the year it was built. Supposedly, it and Morrill Hall on campus are both haunted.

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Returning to last night, my bartender friend C/H was on duty upstairs and told some guy repeatedly to move his drinks out of his well.

The crowd wasn't the usual all-gay dance club kind of weekend on as it was some special event whose theme I couldn't determine but it was a mix gay-straight and male-female crowd.

Anyway, the guy threw one of his drinks in Chris's face and then fled. It was Jim Beam and stung. Chris was OK (although he left at that point). The guy fled very quickly but he was sort of stuck out in the event he tries to return. That was basically assault and battery. Naturally, the guy is banned permanently should he be dumb enough to try to come back (which he probably will try).

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Back to the weather ... temps are in the lower 90s Fahrenheit again today (boo), even hotter than yesterday.

Yesterday, Dulles (IAD) reached a daily record high of 92F, while BWI reached 90F and DCA (by the cooler Potomac) reached 87F. The IAD record was one degree shy of the all-time April high temp. record of 93F.

Of note, the IAD low temp. the previous day (April 24) was 36F, so this was a 56F temp. swing in less than 48 hours. The low so far at IAD this month is 31F set on April 9th.

Right now (nearly 4PM on Sunday afternoon, April 26, 2009), it is already 92F at DCA (the first 90F reading of the season) and 91F at IAD and 90F at BWI. There is a 20POP for t-storms today. Looking ahead, it is forecasted to be much cooler (around 70F) with a chance of showers by Tuesday - Wednesday.

Of note, the IAD April record of 93F was set April 17, 2002. IAD records only go back to 1963. The BWI and DCA April records are 94F and 95F, respectively, and occurred on multiple occasions.

There were some t-storms in the area last night with a brief, drenching downpour here in D.C. proper, although officially it only amounted to 0.01" at DCA and IAD and "Trace" at BWI.

Storm clouds building as seen from the 1900 block of New Hampshire Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. last night, 8:00PM, April 25, 2009.

We've almost made up our big precip. deficit for the year so far and ended the hydrological drought conditions, at least for now, that were developing.

Speaking of official weather observations for Washington, D.C., Gary has been going on and on about having met (and how nice is) the guy -- Mark Richards -- who has overseen the weather observations at National Airport (DCA) for the past 30 years.

DCA -- pictured here with downtown DC in the distance -- is the official weather recording station for the District of Columbia (even though it is technically in Arlington, Va.) and has been since 1941. (Prior to that, the records were kept at various places in downtown D.C. stretching back to the beginning of official weather record keeping in 1871.)

Richards has done it for so long (since circa 1979) that his own personal stamp, so to speak, is on a full 30-year climate data set for Washington, D.C. Gary even got to see the magical snow ruler and snow board used for measuring ever-more-elusive snow at DCA.

He even showed Gary the OFFICIAL snow measuring stick that goes up to 40" for measuring snowfall in D.C. (DOUBLE what we would ever get in even the most extreme event). Here it is:

Yes, that is THE OFFICIAL WASHINGTON, D.C., SNOW STICK! This is Mark Richards holding it. Gary took this image on Friday, April 24, 2009 when he met him. (I think he takes the stick home with him this time of year.)

Snowfall is measured once an hour on a snowboard (after having been wiped clean from the previous measurement) during a snow event with 10 measurements and an average then taken of those to get the hourly measurement. In many winters of late, this has been almost a non-issue, or rather, non-event.

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Speaking of images of other strange Washington, D.C., things, here is a picture I took last week I've been meaning to post ...

It is the inside big Masonic Temple located on 16th St., NW, a few blocks from where I live. I discovered last week the place is actually open during the day and I took a tour inside. The place is officially called the the Supreme Council, 33°, Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry for the Southern Jurisdiction, Washington D.C.

On that central "altar" were copies of the Bible, the Koran, the Pentateuch, and the Bhagavad Gita. How very "catholic" and ecumenical. The tour guide -- a young GWU student named Patrick -- said there are 2 million Freemasons in the U.S. He said the next "big" event scheduled there is a biennial something-or-other scheduled for this October.

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Speaking of Gary, here is a picture of him playing Phil's Wii bowling game, Friday night, 11:25PM, April 24, 2009.

Anyway, back to my allergies, I still have a lingering sinus headache. I'm really hoping this frickin' tree pollen does it thing and gets out of the air quickly. My problem period is typically mid-April to mid-May. It is one of the reasons I prefer a cool, wet spring. I also hate hot weather -- weather "dry" or "humid," I don't particularly care.

As it is, I'm pretty much staying inside this Sunday afternoon in my a/c - cooled, dusty, wee efficiency.

My poor little window a/c -- pictured above, and, yes, I keep it on 60F, although it never really gets below about 68F in my apt. -- gets SO much use, including regularly through the wintertime since my place gets so stuffy and warm so quickly, esp. in the winter when others have the heat on and the warm air filters into my apt. whether I want it or not (I usually don't, not that warm anyway).


A purple-lavender flowered azalea bush at the corner of Dartmouth Ave. and College Ave., College Park, Md., 4:18PM, April 25, 2009

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As for my job search, I was unable most of the weekend to get into the careers Web site for a consulting company that has a number of climate and energy related research assistant and associate positions. I applied for two positions last week and the site finally was back up and I applied for a third one. I have three more to go.

As for school, I really need to focus on my ONE class this semester. My other class is really just an easy 1-credit seminar whose only grade is based on attendance, although the noontime Friday meeting time has proven challenging for me because my life is so out of whack these days.

My main class is an energy policy one. I've done essentially zero work for it. I have to write up three summaries (each just 1 page) on the readings (few of which I've done) and then a 15 page paper. My topic is something about cellulosic ethanol (as opposed to corn based ethanol) or other such biofuels.

Memo To All: Switchgrass holds a really big eco-friendly promise of transportation fuel and greenhouse gas emissions reduction salvation.

The trouble is I'm as burnt out on school as I am with office cubicle life, except I never really started my post-academic "career" life in any meaningful way.

I also don't even need this class to graduate -- I graduate in May 2009 no matter what as I have finished all my requirements and electives, and whether I get an "A" or "C" in it (no, that's not my goal), it won't make the slightest difference in my upcoming prospects, and there is zero chance of impressing the professor and having him want me to stay on as a Ph.D. student (he doesn't really like me).

This is masters degree no. 3. Sigh. My GPA now is 3.5/4.0.

Here is a picture of Phil with Oliver taken Friday night at Phil's house, 11:39PM, April 24, 2009.

Stephanie, if you're reading this, Oliver took that raw hide bone treat out of the kitchen cabinet his'self ...

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So that's about all for now. My next planned update will be mid-week.

--Regulus

Friday, April 24, 2009

Springtime Rebounding and Redounding

I need to update this blog but I might not be able to do so until Sunday.

This image above is once again looking into the yard at 4800 Calvert Rd., College Park, Md., just like in my previous entry. However, in this case, it is a sunny day with a bit more of the yard visible. It was taken 2:09PM, April 23, 2009, Thursday.

I was already a half hour late for my Thursday class. Sigh.

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Here is the view looking along the fence of the aforementioned house, looking west along Calvert Rd. (away from the College Park Metro station):

I think those flowers are creeping phlox, but I'm not sure. Naturally, my cellphone camera image was crummy. Picture taken 2:09PM, April 23, 2009.

The mulch, by the way, that gets put down everywhere this time of year really smells awful. I've never liked it. To me it smells like perfumed shit.

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Tomorrow (Saturday) is Maryland Day at the University of Maryland and I've volunteered to work the public policy school tent's between 1PM and 230PM.

After a nice cool and wet period, the weather has suddenly warmed up -- and pollen levels have skyrocketed and I am in misery and have to take allergy medication, much of which makes me groggy since I couldn't readily find any anti-drowsy kind. I also need lots of eye drops since my eyes get so watery and itchy.

It's supposed to be near frickin' 90F tomorrow and Sunday, which most people love but I don't.

This was the view outside my apartment building at 6:41PM, April 21, 2009 (Tuesday) during an early evening thunderstorm / downpour here in D.C.

The air was rather unstable and the downdrafts brought quite a bit of cold air to the surface so temps were only around 48F after wards. This pattern has ended. Boo.

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I applied for three jobs this week, two of which I might have a chance at any interview. The third -- an EPA job with the U.S. Government -- is an impossibility. People such as I don't get Federal jobs applying "cold".

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In a bit of political commentary, please read Glenn Greenwald's good commentary in Salon.com on the American whore-media's role of complicity in wanting to excuse the Bush torture memo authors and enablers. He refers to it as the media's "three key rules" in "framing" the torture debate.

Here is picture is of Glenn Greenwald. He is a Constitutional and civil rights lawyer, a blogger, and a liberal pundit. He is also gay. (I'm not sure if he lives here in D.C. but I've never seen him.) He is 2-1/2 years older than I am.

On a personal note, Greenwald is basically what a "successful" version of me would have been like rather than the nearly 40-year old, barely-hanging-on failure that I am.

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As for the crazed, self-devouring Republican Party's current role of all-torture, all-evil, zero-policy ideas all-the time, it's a bizarre thing to watch. I like Talkingpointsmemo blogger Josh Marshall's take on it, namely, that the GOP is acting like a military junta party immediately after it loses power but still flails about in a scary but increasingly powerless way. At least I hope that's the case.

Ha ha -- go right ahead and secede, Perry. That will INSTANTLY give the Dems a fillibuster proof Senate majority.

One of his readers wrote an interesting counterpoint that says today's GOP is similar to the GOP of the early 1930s shortly after FDR assumed power.

The writer argues that then, as now, the Republican Party was a leaderless, agitated, and highly regionally concentrated one. Of course, there are some differences: back then it was the Southern Democrats at the time who filled the socially reactionary role since the end of Reconstruction, to wit, that of the black-oppressing racists in old Dixie.

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I took a walk from the UMCP campus (Van Munching Hall) to Prince George's Plaza via the trail in the woods into College Heights Estates and University Park. I went to the Macy's at the mall to buy a few clothing items. Above is the forested trail, 6:07PM, April 23, 2009.

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I don't think the Southern Democrats were -- like today's GOP -- both a regional racist - reactionary party AND the party of Big Business, of corporate plutocracy and kleptocracy. True, the Democratic Party leadership in Washington is almost as bad when it comes to whoring themselves out to Big Business, but at the end of the day, the GOP simply is fascist, whether in a red meat socially reactionary way or in a corporate-plundering kind of way.

I think that's enough political stuff for now.

The plush-grassy intersection of Chansory Lane and Calverton Drive at the dead-end of College Heights Estates, Md., near the foot trail in the woods to the UMCP campus, 6:09PM, April 23, 2009

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I may update this entry later tonight to include more pictures I took this week. I'll also explain all the trouble I had breaking a $100 bill in the campus cafeteria, including why I had such a large note ...

--Regulus

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Rainy Monday Mornings and 4AM Secret Societies

OK, I need to update this blog, although I'm really tired as I explain below...

A rainy, wet, spring green yard behind a wrought iron fence surrounding a house on Calvert Road, College Park, Md., 4:26PM, April 20, 2009

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I'm tired because I stayed up all last night to 9AM this morning finishing a report, and then I only got about 5 hours of sleep and had a relatively full day that has now spilled into another late night.

Anyway, I got up late on Sunday after a crappy Saturday night and got ready to go to Rockville to meet my friend LP. While walking to the Dupont Metro, I came across Gerry waiting at the light at Q and New Hampshire Ave., and he offered me a ride all the way to LP's Grosvenor Park place.

Driving up Wisconsin Ave., NW, past the National Cathedral at 3:02PM, April 19, 2009

Gerry and I usually do our drives into the suburban and exurban purgatory of Northern Virginia (he's from the Commonwealth like Mr. Sirius) rather than suburban Maryland.

I got to LP's place and (after one of our characteristic delays) went to a really late lunch, or maybe an early dinner, on Rockville Pike.

Here is LP at the Hollywood Diner on Rockville Pike, 4:35PM, April 19, 2009

LP then drove me to my friend Joe's apt. in upper Northwest DC, detouring near the water tower by Glenmont Metro in order to show me how it is strangely covered in tarp and scaffolding. Joe and I had arranged to go to see Bill Maher's documentary on organized religion, Religulous. That name, a combination of "religious" and "ridiculous," looks a bit like my blog name Regulus...

Here is a scene in Religulous where Maher goes to a theme park called The Holy Land Experience in -- where else? -- Orlando, Florida and talks to "Jesus."

It's quite a documentary / movie and I really liked it despite the criticism it was too preachy and heavy-handed at the ending in its ironically messianic-like condemnation of religion. The editing and juxtaposition of interview scenes and humorous clips makes some of the movie hysterical. Ditto the scene where Maher was gibberish was ranting Scientology gibberish at Speakers' Corner in London's Hyde Park.

Joe's plush dog Bushyness -- I think that's the right spelling and so named for the fact Joe won him at the Busch Gardens amusement park in Virginia -- watched the movie with us. My Flippo was home under the covers with the others.

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I got home and finally started working on that memo for my on-again, mostly off-again contracting job by 11PM. I actually stayed up all last night and did not actually go to bed until 9AM. I did so all for the princely sum of $200 on top of the $80 I earned last week doing another memo. This topic was "hot" issues in higher education, a subject I'm not exactly expert on.

Staying up all night is an interesting and for me peaceful experience -- and how often do I find anything peaceful?

During the night (as it clouded up and started to rain outside), I watched TV sitcom reruns on Hallmark Channel and TV Land. I also saw a TV show on M*A*S*H hosted by Shelly Long (of Cheers fame).

I also watched a rather fascinating documentary on secret societies on the History Channel featuring the Council on Foreign Relations, the Freemasons, Skull & Bones and ...drum roll ...

The Bilderberg
.

Apparently, the Bilderberg Group runs the planet.

Then there's the "secret" Masonic symbolism apparently built into the street layout of the original City of Washington (that subset of the Federal Territory and later the District of Columbia). And to think I walk past that Masonic temple No. 33 everyday.

In addition to being a peaceful time for me, the middle of the night is also a strange time overall and this documentary fit in nicely with that sense.

I've often that that I should just start listening to that radio show Coast to Coast AM radio show, formerly with Art Bell and now George Noory. America is a weird place in the wee hours.

Once it got to about 4AM and cable TV descended into infomercial hell until dawn, I just tuned to music channel 887. This is the RCN "smooth jazz" station and it made for nice background music.

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Anyway, by 9AM it had turned into a very rainy morning. Indeed, here was the morning radar ...

This was the Sterling LWX radar this morning at 8:24AM 20 April 2009 showing a large area of steady, moderate rain over the "South Atlantic" including the Washington - Baltimore - Northern Virginia Combined Statistical Area (a.k.a. the Baltimore/Washington area).

I got up around 2PM (so I got about 5 hours of sleep in all) and got ready and made it to College Park on the Metro and then I walked over to campus where I had an early dinner (actually, I guess it was my breakfast and lunch, too) and went to the policy school computer lab for an hour.

Thereafter, I FINALLY went to the gym and had a decent cardio workout, did some weightlifting, and went swimming. I left shortly after 9PM.

Despite this, I'm still flabby, miserable, and out of shape, though. I'm probably now about like the second to last figure on the right in the image above. Boo.

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Farm Drive on campus near the CCS Building on a foggy, showery night, 9:21PM, April 20, 2009

It was a weirdly foggy, showery, mild night with a couple flashes of lightning and reverberations of thunder. I walked all the way to the College Park Metro and waited for a train back into D.C. and got home by quarter to 11PM. It took just over 90 minutes to do that -- which is a typical amount of time for me to do anything.

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As for rainfall, the three regional airport rainfall totals for April 20, 2009 included: 1.19" at DCA, 1.44" at BWI, and 1.63" at IAD.

Stock photo of a rainy Appalachian day near Gatlinburg, Tenn.

This was the most precip at DCA since 1.26" on Jan. 7. Also, it was only the 6th calendar day since June 1, 2008 that there has been 1" or more of precip at DCA. The most in that time was 3.50" on Oct. 6, 2008. The second most was 1.66" on Dec. 11, 2008.

This was only the second event with 1" or greater of precip for the year at DCA and IAD and the most at IAD since an anomalous 5.11" fell on Sept. 6, 2008. IAD has actually been "dry" for most of the past five years since the record wet year there in 2003.

Anyway, the rainfall today further helped to end, at least for now, the drought into which the area was trending.

Here are the updated precip stats for the main regional airports:

DCA
Month-to-date: 3.71" +1.89" (normal: 1.82")
Year-to-date: 8.71" -2.55" (normal: 11.26")
BWI
Month-to-date: 5.55" +3.58" (normal: 1.97")
Year-to-date: 10.61" -1.78" (normal: 12.39")
IAD
Month-to-date: 3.77" +1.68" (normal: 2.09")
Year-to-date: 9.17" -2.29" (normal: 11.46")

Oh, yes, here are the final winter snowfall stats: DCA: 7.5" or -7.7"; BWI: 9.1" or -9.1"; and IAD: 8.0" or -13.2". When the next 30-year normals come out for 1980-2010, these averages are going to drop substantially (again).

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Here are a few more images from Friday night.

Here Stephanie holds Oliver while Eric sits next to them, April 17, 2009

Here Gary sits with Oliver, April 17, 2009

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OK, it's already after midnight and I'm supposed to go to an EPA career fair at the Reagan Building here in D.C. tomorrow early afternoon in my probably futile-attempt to find gainful employment before I run out of money by early July and have to leave, but I'm not going to talk about that right now. Suffice it to say, I'm not going to College Park to campus tomorrow.

--Regulus