Monday, May 31, 2010

Regulus -- Fat Body and Limited Mind -- SPEAKS

This is either a beech or chestnut tree. I can't quite determine for sure. It is located in the small triangular "park" between 17th and T Streets and New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C., 1:48PM, May 30, 2010.

This shouldn't be confused with the fenced-in dog park at 17th and S Streets and New Hampshire Avenue a block away.

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Update ...


I apologize for the lack of updates. The first half of this update is a reconstituted reposting from my Arcturus blog (and my apologies for that) ...

As it is, I'm VERY depressed because I discovered today how enormously fat I am with man-boobs and a Hefty bag filled with wet leaves (or oatmeal) for an ass that is truly appalling and revolting.

If this job looks stable in a few months, I'll rejoin the gym. Mostly, I have to stop drinking.

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Sign for Gary's auto repair shop, 5200 block of River Road, as seen along the Capital Crescent Trail, Bethesda, Md., 3:29PM, May 30, 2010.

I took a walk along the Capital Crescent Trail this Sunday with Chris T. as explained below.

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Misery Bear Clips ...

So on Saturday I discovered -- via the Hippograms blog -- the "Misery Bear" series that is produced by a British outfit called Roughcut Presents and is also carried by the BBC online under the category of "comedy," which it most definitely is not.

"Misery Bear" features the terribly, lonely, severely depressing "adventures" of a little teddy bear. It isn't an animation or cartoon but rather a teddy bear stuffed animal as he moves through life. He appears to have some money (based on the furnishings in his condo) but is basically a lonely alcoholic who has never caught the slightest break or bit of happiness. I don't see how this is considered frickin' comedy.

Each of the 2 to 3 minute clips feature Misery Bear in some situation. There are at least 5 of these clips (again, here is the link).

What follows are 3 of the clips (they are embeddable).

Misery Bear Prepares for a Date:



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Misery Bear Goes to London:



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Misery Bear Valentine's Day




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These are all severely depressing to watch and I don't see how in the world this is considered comedy.

Yes, I realize this is an inanimate object in and of itself, but that's beside the point. These video clips ruined my mood last night and then I had a shitty time at Cobalt, esp. over $5 I tried to give someone (no, not a bartender) -- and was angrily insulted for it. Last time I'll ever make that mistake.

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Lunch all Week with Saint Dominic ...

The next set of pictures that follow were taken last week during my late lunch hour (or rather, lunch 45 minutes) at Saint Dominic Church about a 6 minute walk from where I work by L'Enfant Plaza.

I went there every day Monday - Friday for about 15 minutes. The pictures that follow were taken during that time.

Monday (May 24, 2010) ...

The spire of Saint Dominic Church as seen from E Street, SW, next to old DOT headquarters (now renovated as "Constitution Center"), Washington, D.C., 1:50PM, May 24, 2010.

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Tuesday (May 25, 2010) ...

St. Dominic Church exterior, Washington, D.C., 1:30PM, May 25, 2010.

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Wednesday (May 26, 2010) ...

Yours truly at Saint Dominic Church on my lunch hour, 1:56PM, May 26, 2010.

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Thursday (May 27, 2010) ...

An alcoved chapel -- with a little sign saying it was refurbished in 1975 -- in St. Dominic Church, Washington, D.C., 1:59PM, May 27, 2010.

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Friday (May 28, 2010) ...

And here I am again at Saint Dominic Church on Friday -- casual dress day -- at 1:40PM, May 28, 2010.

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Capital Crescent Trail Walk ...

The remainder of the pictures in this entry were taken this past Sunday, May 30th, on a walk with Chris T. along the Capital Crescent Trail that sort of ended abruptly by Sibley Hospital instead of continuing on all the way back to Dupont Circle. I made it in time for the 5:30PM mass at St. Matthew's and then later on -- after shopping and going home for a while -- went to Windows and Cobalt.

Walking along the Capital Crescent Trail, unincorporated Bethesda, Md., 3:39PM, May 30, 2010.

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Weird Spiritual and Political Commentary OR Regulus Speaks

So I caught the tail end of
"Meet the Press Whore" with David Gregory (R - Whore) asking the "tough questions" of BP's senior management about the company's criminal negligence in this ecological and human catastrophe of an oil spill that is going to continue until August when the relief wells are completed.

And it was all suddenly so clear that it is all a huge lie, all the reassuring words from BP and the Government just a sort of verbal group grope meant to give endless cover to the amoral, corporate, oligarchical, Spread-Eagle Nordic Gentile elites that run the planet.

A dead tree along the Capital Crescent Trail, Bethesda, Md., 3:43PM, May 30, 2010.

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Now I didn't come up with that line above about Nordic Gentile elites, but rather I read it decades ago circa 1984 in a bizarre book called GOD -- ULTIMATE UNLIMITED MIND -- SPEAKS but I foolishly threw it out a couple of years later.

It was quite a book, as I recall.

(Actually, in writing this entry, I found several Web sites to /by him or one of his spiritual descendants, but I'm reluctant to link to them. I'm sure I'm going to get some weird blog hits now, though.)

The houses at the corner of Norton Street and Sherier Place, NW, Washington, D.C., 4:16PM, May 30, 2010. This is a rather remote corner of D.C. by Sibley Hospital and the Dalecarlia Reservoir.

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This was during my There's-a-New Age Mega-Conspiracy-Everywhere hysteria when I was but a 15 year old lad and thought that THE RAINBOW! was a nefarious NEW AGE symbol as symbol of the ONE WORLD GOVERNMENT of the END TIMES (back then you'd see these little rainbow stickers on the back of car windows).

I was enthralled with the writings of Constance Cumbey, Christian activist author of Hidden Dangers of the Rainbow: The New Age Movement and Our Coming Age of Barbarism (yikes).

The house at 2927 N Street, NW (Georgetown), Washington, D.C., 4:52PM, May 30, 2010.

It's possible I have this reversed and it was 2729 N Street.

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I even wrote Ms. Cumbey a letter also in 1984 (after my mom found her address as Ms. Cumbey is an attorney -- this was waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay before the internet when finding an address was a big deal) and she answered in a very nice letter ("What a smart 14 year old you are! I envy your mom! And then, "YES! GARY HART IS A NEW AGER!!").

This was also loooooooooooooooooooooooong before email when people actually answered handwritten letters.

I then replied and quoted from above mentioned book. She probably thought it was some kind of hoax. Based on her very active blog, though, 26 years later, she's still quite at it. God Bless her.

The 2100 block of O Street, NW, Washington, D.C., 5:04PM, May 30, 2010.

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I was into this stuff at age 14 during the Monday - Hart Democratic presidential primary contest and thought Jesus' Return was nigh. All I was missing was a tin foil hat.

Sigh.

Boy, I was dumb. OK, enough of that. Wait, where I am? Oh, yes, it's time to go to bed.

'Night.

--Regulus

Friday, May 28, 2010

Jersey Shore Mom and Stormy D.C. Night

Here is a picture of my mom on the Cape May - Lewes Ferry on May 12, 2010 as she and Ray (my step dad) were going from Lewes, Delaware to Cape May, New Jersey for a beach holiday along the Jersey shore centered on Avalon.

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Concerning the above image, I think this was the first time my mom was in New Jersey and I was not (we are both from there) since 1987 when her mom (my maternal grandmother) died.

Gary, LP, and I had a nice ferry crossing to New Jersey last August. More importantly, my mom and I are getting along better than ever and I love her very much. It's nice to get along.

Oh, yes, I REEEEEEEEEEEEEALLY hope that she and Ray move there upon retirement -- by which I mean Cape May or Wildwood. Please, Dear God.

Here is a picture my mom (or rather my step dad Ray) took at a seaside hotel (the Golden Inn Hotel and Resort) in Avalon, New Jersey on a stormy, turbulent day last Tuesday, May 18, 2010.

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I'll update this blog later today (Friday) or over the weekend, including why my new job is still up in the air and why that shitty place in Bethesda -- the one where I worked as a wage-slave 1099 contractor for 15 months and prior to that as a wage-slave employee in a ghastly fluorescent-lit cubicle -- is still a millstone around my neck. Fuck them. They can go to hell. Actually, I don't want to give up the biweekly climate change news compendium just yet.

Anyway, we had a nice thunderstorm tonight here in the city with drenching thunderstorm rains that partially "validated" the flash flood watch and severe thunderstorm watch that were both effect -- but I'm sure DCA "officially" got zilch.

Sterling, Va. (LWX) radar in enhanced based mode reflectivity, 11:35PM EDT, May 27, 2010.

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Updated 7:30AM 5/28/2010: DCA got 0.30" of precip but IAD had 1.08" and BWI had a drenching 1.47" of rain.

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As for my day, it was OK (albeit slow) at work and thereafter, Eric M. and I went to Buffalo Billiards at Dupont Circle for what turned out to be a wonderful evening. Thereafter, Gary, Roger, and I went to Cobalt for a bit.

That's all for now. Goodnight, Gentle Reader.

--Regulus

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Greater D.C. Doxology

The peaceful interior of Saint Dominic Church, Washington, D.C., 1:42PM, May 24, 2010.

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So I wanted to write a big, huge blog entry but it is already 10PM and I am VERY tired and I still need to fold my laundry. I also NEED to be in bed by 11:30PM or so as I'm exhausted tired and yet I need to be up by 6:45AM in order to be in the office no later than 8:45AM.

A doorway to a house belonging to some Turkish American "association of associations" or something like that, 1500 block, 18th St., NW, Washington, D.C., 7:57PM, May 22, 2010.

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I'm also feeling a bit light-headed with some tightness in my chest. However, I often feel that way in this apartment except when I'm sleeping.

I've been watching Olbermann tonight -- he's all over the catastrophic Gulf of Mexico oil spill and the Obama administration's Bush Katrina-like indifference and paralysis with BP basically flipping off Ken "Cowboy" Salazar and the EPA.

OK, where's the libertarian to spout some bullshit gibberish about how this ecological catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico is really an example of "free markets and free minds" either "beautifully at work" or it shows a "failure of free markets" in that way that Ayn Rand warned us all about, but -- most importantly -- how ANY effort to punish BP/Transocean/Halliburton for this mess really represents a violation of that most sacrosanct and holy tenet in the libertarian worldview: "contract law."

At least the GOP corporate thieves don't actually pretend to represent anybody but themselves. And corporate lawyers all over D.C. are wetting themselves over the prospect of all the money this will earn them as they establish through falsehood, lies, and injustice the principle "only the poor pay for Big Oil's spills."

Oh, and within a few weeks, we'll be hearing and reading media-whore "analysis" about how the oil spill is really "GOOD FOR THE GOP BRAND!" and how Rahm Emanuel is spending all his time on the phone dropping F-bombs at liberal House Democrats who are criticizing St. Obama for his clueless indifference.

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A wee hours downpour as seen from the balcony at Windows on 17th Street, NW, Washington, D.C., 2:42AM, May 23, 2010.

This entry is long enough and I'll refrain from any weather discussions except to say we are in a deep easterly marine flow. The downpour in the wee hours of Sunday dropped about 1/2" rain with more over Fairfax and Loudoun Counties.

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However, rather than being chronically upset, I am instead watching the Monday night parade of reruns of The Golden Girls on WeTV and later at least the first two of the nightly episodes shown on Hallmark Channel.

I'm also doing my laundry.

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Pearls Before Swine for May 23, 2010 ...

Click on this image for larger version. Kristof -- I think you'll find it pretty funny.

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Also, importantly, I actually have one of those biweekly climate change news compendiums from my previous 1099-misc independent contracting (and prior to that actual) job. I don't want to give up the assignment as it is worth $440 per issue or $880 per month.

As a result, I don't really have a lot of time to post a lengthy entry, though I want to. I managed to at least come up with the outline for the Monitor (that's its name). I can only work on it at home since I'm NOT going to do it at work.

Quill under an umbrella sky, Dupont Circle, Washington, D.C., 6:32PM, May 22, 2010.

We were going to dinner at Bertucci's on Saturday evening. I was only an hour late from my original stated time.

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By the way, the upload interface for Blogger after an image has been added looks different -- it's weirdly blank, which is why I've been worried that my images weren't showing up. I don't want to check my blog(s) from work but I believe so far the images are there.

Quill holds three plush hippos -- Flippo, Harvey, and li'l Aurora (standing on Flippo) -- as well as my plush monkey Virgil. This was in my messy Wash. D.C. apt on Saturday night (May 22, 2010) with unfolded laundry on a chair, a sheet in the entrance "breeze way" and my Sunshine Buddies on the table.

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As for work, I managed to get to there at 8:34AM this morning -- exactly 27 minutes after leaving my apartment and after being out drinking at Cobalt and Windows last night. The first part of the day was very worrying because it really felt as if my boss were going out of her way to ignore me, but I got some needed feedback and clarity.

Trios outdoor eating area, Washington, D.C., 7:34PM, May 23, 2010.

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Earlier on Sunday, I went to the 5:30PM mass at St. Matthew's Cathedral. Chris T. actually joined me but got there late and sat in a different spot. I've been feeling like going to Church again lately. Fr. Jim Greenfield was presiding. I had a serious issue with him back in 2004 during my annus horribilis, but I don't feel like reliving and rehashing it. Long story short, he started to help me and then quickly turned on me during a very bad time when he realized I wasn't suitable for his Oblates of St. Francis de Sales Order (yes, I actually considered that at one time).

He is certainly a charismatic and progressive priest and orator who can make you feel good. He is the flip side of Mgr. James Watkins, who is a big, flamboyantly gay yet "rightwing" priest whose mass celebrations are basically like big operas, or maybe he's doing his Chita Rivera in Kiss of the Spider Woman.

Watkins and Greenfield are completely public figures so I don't feel any hesitation in writing these things.

Anyway, I went to the 5:30PM mass yesterday at St. Matthew's and it was quite beautiful. The choir (near where I sat in the front but semi-concealed corner) is second to none. Some of the members and the choir director (whose name I can't recall) have been with it since the 1990s. And they sang the "Mass of Creation" version of the Gloria which is by far my favorite version.

Here is a YouTube clip (in black and white) of a church service somewhere with the Mass of Creation version of the Gloria. It was composed by Marty Haugen. A 30-second sample of it is available (I think) here.

One of these days I'll have to talk about Dan Schutte, the very gay Catholic composer, songwriter and liturgist who has written some of the best Church music.

Saint Dominic Church as seen from 6th and School Streets, SW, next to what used to be U.S. DOT headquarters before the agency moved and the building thoroughly renovated, Washington, D.C., 1:21PM, May 24, 2010.

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Speaking of things Catholic, today I stopped by Saint Dominic Church (see above picture) in Southwest D.C. during a peaceful early afternoon. This is a church near L'Enfant Plaza -- it is the first time I've been there since 2002 when I worked at the U.S. CLIVAR Office (another failed job) when it was housed in the building at the corner of 4th Street and Virginia Ave., SW, and the small side avenue called School Street.

Here is a picture that Chris T. took on Saturday in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware as sea fog came rolling in off the ocean. He went there with Gary this past weekend while I stayed back in D.C.

Long story short, I worked down by L'Enfant Plaza and later at 1717 Pennsylvania Avenue (after the US CLIVAR and USGCRP Offices moved) during 2002 and then at that stupid NASA astrophysics / cosmology science writing job in 2003 during in what was the "peak" of my D.C. life before everything fell apart.

Now I'm trying to get back to where I was, or at least as a wiser and more humble and cautious person. However, I don't think I can fix certain things.

Today I went back to the Atrium Cafe in that same building. Unlike most of these Asian-run "lunch bucket" places where is there is a big hot bar filled with blah food this one is a kind of deli with whole cooked (heated) turkeys, chickens, and hams turned sliced into good sandwiches.

The interior of Saint Dominic Church, Washington, D.C., 1:35PM, May 24,2010.

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Thereafter, I went to St. Dominic for a little while. It is a vestige of Southwest D.C. before it was completed "renewed" in the 1950s in I.M. Pei's nightmare "Modernist" vision and is all sliced apart by freeways and train tracks and filled with hideous office buildings and apartment buildings that resemble some long-ago Jetsons idea of the 21st Century.

Inside the nearly empty church, you could hear the muffled swooshing roar of the traffic rushing along I-395.

After work, I actually walked home back to Dupont Circle. I discovered the short cut / back entrance out of the building that leads to what is known as L'Enfant Promenade -- itself a road to no where -- but that at its north end runs underneath DOE's elevated Forrestal Building and puts you at Independence Avenue right at the south side of the Smithsonian by the Enid Haupt Garden.

I actually met Chris T. by his office as I walked across Pennsylvania Ave., and we walked back to Dupont Circle. He told me I am in a mid-life crisis, except I think one has to have had a life before one can have a crisis midway through it.

The U.S. Capitol as seen from the L'Enfant Promenade above the Amtrak / CSX freight / VRE tracks, 5:15PM, May 24, 2010

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Anyway, I think that's all for now. I need to wrap up this entry. I probably won't update this blog until Friday.

--Regulus

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Six Year Anniversary and Libertarian Delight

The row house of / at 1710 Swann St., NW, Washington, D.C., 7:19PM, May 21, 2010.

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**Please let me know if the pictures are not visible in this entry. Blogger's picture upload function is acting screwy. I see the images but that could just be because the JPEGs are on my computer.**

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Interior of St. Matthew's Cathedral, Washington, D.C., 5:45PM, May 20, 2010.

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This is just a quick update to say that I plan to have a full entry posted by Monday. I updated my Arcturus blog if anyone wants to go over there and take a look at it. I won't link to it from here but it's not hard to find. Just Google "Arcturus" and "D.C."

Today is the six year "anniversary" of my Mr. Sirius slapping incident -- and, of note, the days of the week actually match up, so May 22nd is Saturday and May 23rd is Sunday in both 2004 and 2010.

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I wanted to go off on a riff about that idiot Rand Paul -- whose very first name is his father Ron Paul's moving tribute to Alisa Rosenbaum Ayn Rand -- and the idiocy that is libertarianism -- a philosophy that in the end forces you to excuse any corporate crime no matter how huge because of its central tenet of the perfection and infallibility of "the free market" no matter how catastrophic the outcomes.

Only in America would such a loopy philosophy be taken seriously -- and if ever actually implemented fully, a complete wipe out of civilization and barbaric corporate fascism. The libertarian must excuse everything or else the whole stupid and silly philosophy collapses. It's ever bit as insular and closed to outside facts as Communism was in its day.

This is what happens when a college undergraduate philosophy is allowed to be elevated to the level of actual social and economy policy.

And, of course, as Joe Conason has pointed out, it gets mixed up with American religio-crazy fundamentalism and assorted conspiracy theories, plus and a healthy does of "paleo-conservative" racism / anti-Semitism, and all whipped up by DICK Armey's FreedomWorks and other bullshit "Astro-turf" organizations that are fronts for the forces of corporate reactionary intrigue.

And, of course, in a libertarian world view, you excuse the corporate malfeasance that brings us ecological and human catastrophes such as the ongoing Gulf of Mexico / Deepwater Horizon oil spill because this is merely "the free market" at work. Hence Rand Paul's excusing of BP and the whole massively subsidized and corrupted oil industry. What a jackass.

I'm sure Kentucky voters will flock to him and he'll win big. That's America.


On a related note, Bill Maher's New Rule column from yesterday is worth reading.

"Compare this to England, where they just had an election two weeks ago and, power changed hands -- but the party that lost is working WITH the part that won -- they are not accusing them of being Bolshevik Zulus out to destroy the Magna Carta. Because the English are grown ups, including their conservatives who enjoy a wonderful luxury that conservatives on this side of the pond do not. They're allowed to be sane. They don't have to pander to creationists and anti-intellectuals. Only in this dumb country do liberals and conservatives argue over things like 'evolution' and 'climate change' and whether 'sick people should be left to die in the street.'"

Nicely put.

Thanks to Joe for sending this link to me. He's now in England for the next six weeks -- and too far from Kristof, who hopefully should be back by the end of the year.

The alley connecting Riggs Pl. and S St., NW, Washington, D.C., 7:15PM, May 21, 2010.

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Anyway, I have to go now. I will try to have a fuller update by Monday.

--Regulus

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Still Uncertain OR Starchild Speaks

The Tarantula Nebula or 30 Doradus located 170,000 light years away in the Large Magellanic Cloud, one of the Milky Way Galaxy's satellite galaxies. This European Space Observatory image was the May 18, 2010 Astronomy Picture of the Day.

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I had intended to update this blog tonight but I ended up updating the other one and it's now almost quarter after midnight and I totally have to get to bed. I also don't have a lot of pictures to post.

I'm now worried. I was happier earlier as the job seems to be going well despite my general incompetence and 14-year old-level of EQ maturity in life, I got paid from my contracting job and I can look back and think I survived that way for 15 months (plus the year before when I worked there as a regular employee) and now it is thankfully over.

The same Tarantula Nebula but focused on its central star-forming region. These are among the largest and most massive stars known -- and such giant stars are now thought to play a key role in more general star formation. The above image was the Dec. 11, 2005 APOD.

This is an unusual image in that you are actually seeing individual stars in another galaxy -- albeit a nearby satellite one. This is something you cannot do with even the nearest big galaxy, the Andromeda under normal circumstances.

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I'm depressed and worried because ... first I had a crummy rush hour walk home from L'Enfant Plaza ... I deposited aforementioned $880 check at my Bank Ho' America but the ATM reader couldn't read the amount and now I'm worried ... and then I had an unexpected email from my boss on my Yahoo account (I can't access my work account from home, at least not yet) in which it's not clear if she wanted me to do more on one of two assignments. Maybe she's mad at me and my five month "at will" position will just end.


The classic visible (composite) image of the 2 million light year distant M31 Andromeda Galaxy, which along with the Milky Way Galaxy and the attendant satellite galaxies of each form the Local Group. All the individual stars you see in this picture are in our own galaxy -- and essentially in the "foreground." Individual stars in the Andromeda are not visible, only their collective glow.

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On the good side, I have been getting in before 9AM for the first three days -- including 8:30AM Monday, 8:37AM Tuesday, and 8:55AM today. I'll try to get in around 8:40AM today. I also have only taken half hour lunches in the depressing mall of the architectural and spiritual agony that is L'Enfant Plaza, so I can actually leave by 5PM, though it has been closer to 5:20PM (and 6:00PM on Monday).

In other words, if you only take a half hour lunch, you actually only have to be "at work" for 8 hours rather than 9 hours if you take an hour lunch.

As it is, today I was moving very slowly on the other assignment.

Here is the exception to the rule of not being able to see a single star in a distant galaxy: A Supernova! This was actually the Dec. 30, 1998 APOD.

For a brief period of a few days / weeks, a supernova can outshine its entire host galaxy.

In this case, it is an image of Supernova 1994D (a Type IA) at the edge of the distant galaxy NGC 4526 located approx. 55 million light years away deeper in the Virgo Cluster that is near the center of the Virgo / Local Supercluster and of which our Local Group is an outlying member.

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OK, that's all for now. I'll try to have more down-to-earth pictures in my next entry.

--Regulus

Monday, May 17, 2010

First Day of Work OR Under the Umbrella Sky*

*Yes, the title second half is borrowed from Sinatra's Summer Wind song.

Here is that same scene I've photographed multiple times since February: the sunken, open-air Watergate Shops Promenade on a rainy night, Washington, D.C., 8:55PM, May 17, 2010.

This picture was taken with my new cellphone camera.

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OK, just a quick update. I appreciate all the inquiries as to how my day went.

My first day of work went very well, and while I probably won't be at DOE HQ any time soon, I will still be working near L'Enfant Plaza and the firm's office there.

HOWEVER, I still have one important issue to be resolved. It was not resolved today but was rather ambiguous and initially worrying. This could still torpedo the whole thing.

Yours truly just before leaving for my first day at my new job, Washington, D.C., 7:52AM, May 17, 2010.

I'm so not a morning person.

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Nevertheless, I was in a good mood, sort of, when I got home -- except, as I anticipated, my $880 check from my 1099 contracting job had not arrived. I heard my friend / the office manager sent it out on Friday.

Rainy - gloomy dusk, 1900 block of New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C., 8:10PM, May 17, 2010.

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I suppose expecting it to arrive 8 miles from Bethesda over the weekend is unreasonable for the U.S. Post Office, which in D.C. functions more like a Third World country's mail delivery system. I don't care about a delay -- but I don't like the idea of an $880 check just floating around out there. I'm practically out of money ($90) and I don't get paid from my new job until June 10th.

Lady under her umbrella, rainy - gloomy dusk, 1900 block of New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C., 8:13PM, May 17, 2010.

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Oh, and my cellphone and cable/internet bills are way behind as usual -- combined two months for both totaling about $496, which is actually ridiculously high.

Sigh.

Rainy dusk just south of Dupont Circle along New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C, 8:30PM, May 17, 2010.

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It was a nicely wet and cool day with showery rains although precipitation totals were only around 1/4" at DCA and BWI and 1/2" at IAD, and DCA is still about 28 percent below for the year.

I was going to walk after work from L'Enfant Plaza down the National Mall and over to the Watergate to the Safeway and then back up New Hampshire Avenue and home. However, I rushed home instead -- just to find that the check wasn't there. Later, I walked down New Hampshire Avenue anyway from U and 16th where I live to the Watergate to that little Safeway, as opposed to my usual 17th Street one, and then back home.

A strange pyramidal structure with an oddly glowing purple orb atop it in front of the house at 842 New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C., 8:46PM, May 17, 2010.

This is in the Geo Washington Univ. / Foggy Bottom district -- and I finally realized that nearly all the houses there are basically GWU campus housing.

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A rainy spring Washington, D.C. night as seen from Washington Circle (which is a busy traffic circle) looking NNE up New Hampshire Avenue, NW, toward Dupont Circle, 9:21PM, May 17, 2010.

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Oh, yes, my mom and Ray are actually in New Jersey in Avalon. This was the first time in about 23 years -- since just before my maternal grandma died in Feb. 1987 -- that she has been there, or at least there and I spoke to her on the phone. At all other times, it has been the other way around. I hope that she and Ray move to the South or Central Jersey shore in retirement.

OK, this entry is already getting too long so I'll end it now.

--Regulus

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sunday Calm OR Eve of Disaster? (Part 2)

View from the Beacon Hotel rooftop Sky Bar looking at the intersection of Rhode Island Avenue and 17th Street, NW, Washington, D.C., 11:13PM, May 15, 2010.

Gary, Chris T. and I were there Saturday night for Gerry's joint birthday party, which was being held downstairs.

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OK, I was going to write a whole entry tonight and explain, at least obliquely, what is wrong and why I am so worried. However, it is nearly 11PM and I need to be in bed by 12:30AM in order to be up by 6:30AM and be at my employer's place by L'Enfant Plaza at 9:00AM.

I've been in panicked agony all day.

I plan now instead to update this blog tomorrow (Monday) night.

More hippo portraiture: Flippo (left), Harvey (right), and little Aurora (center), my three plushest and goodest hippos.

I refer to them as the "Flower Drum Hippo" trio.

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Today ended up actually being quite a nice day although I didn't get out of the apartment until nearly 3:30PM. I spent the late afternoon and evening with Chris T. and he treated me to dinner at this curious little restaurant called Pines of Florence (one of at least two in the D.C. area with that name).

It is located at 2100 Connecticut Avenue, NW, about a half mile north of Dupont Circle in an otherwise residential district of ornate mostly condominium buildings.

I only got this frickin' blurry image of the restaurant interior -- taken at 8:21PM with my cellphone camera -- as we were leaving. That's as best as I could do. I was talking too much the rest of the time and didn't get a proper picture.

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Stephanie -- Good talking to by text message.

Right now, I'm watching the tail end of a very interesting show on the History Channel called America: The Story of Us. Quite fascinating. This two-hour episode is called Metropolis and it is actually one of six such episodes. Toms "No Chin" Shales of the WaHoPo didn't like it -- which means the show must therefore have some value.

The tranquil tree crown view from a window at Chris's place near the Taft Bridge, Washington, D.C., 5:08PM, May 16, 2010.

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Frank Rich's piece in today's Sunday New York Times is worth a read. And Michael Lind's May 11, 2010 Salon piece Will the great recession lead to World War IV? is also excellent. (In his reckoning, the Cold War was really World War III.)

Remember: The 1990s Washington Consensus / Third Way / Free Trade / Clinton Democrats / Blair Labourites / Robert Rubin economics / Obama GOP appeasement and Washington Post Editorial Board embody this view produces the EXACT OPPOSITE outcome of what it was intended to do.

A giant cumulonimbus cloud complex with anvil-headed top of a thunderstorm about 20 miles west-southwest of Washington, D.C., 6:06PM, May 14, 2010.

This storm -- which sort of missed the Dupont Circle area as it dissipated and another cell formed over Bethesda into Silver Spring -- dropped 1" hail and torrential rains. DCA itself got squat, as usual.

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Oh, yes, I wanted to quote George Will from his Sunday WaHoPo column since it is, well, kinda funny (even though Will is mostly just a Washington Consensus conservative):

"If money represents, as [Ralph Waldo] Emerson said, the prose of life, the euro reflects a determination to make European life prosaic. It is an attempt to erase nationalities and subsume politics in economics in order to escape from European history. The euro pleases dispirited people for whom European history is not Chartres and Shakespeare but the Holocaust and the Somme. The euro expresses cultural despair."

Ha ha

I think many agree -- from Krugman to Will -- that the euro has mostly been a disaster. The U.K. was VERY wise to avoid.

KRISTOF! What does Slavoj Žižek think??

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Intersection of Kalorama Road and 19th Street, NW, Washington, D.C., 4:49PM, May 16, 2010.

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So according to Statcounter, I have had 206 hits on this blog today -- nearly all Google image ones -- and that's frickin' too many. I also had 140 hits on my Arcturus blog -- practically all Google image ones of that stupid "David Tutera - David Bromstad" joint image that I once created / posted, or else variations on whether or not Tutera is married.

The house at 1821 19th Street, NW, Washington, D.C., 4:41PM, May 16, 2010.

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OK, to any of those internet searchers, here's your GAY101 Gaily Lesson: David Tutera is completely, totally, openly, 100 percent gay, and he doesn't try to hide it, so don't query whether or not he's "married" -- since by "married" you most likely mean is he married to a woman.

Any other kind of marriage sets Middle "Red" America off into moral panic where you they can't stop voting for the party of trillion dollar corporate theft. Got it?

Ditto David Bromstad, but he's also (unlike frumpy and doughy me) a hot gay guy.

As for that other blog to Mr. Sirius, I'm tired of it and know I shouldn't even have it. I had really weird dream involving him the other night.

This lady was walking her little, tired and old looking French bulldog along R Street near 19th Street, NW, Washington, D.C., 4:38PM, May 16, 2010.

I heard her say to the dog: "Mommy's got some banana flavored doggy ice cream left for you at home ... Just two more blocks to go ..."

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At my next entry, I will know if in fact this job is going to work out or if a particular requirement that I don't want to mention here (but that some of my friends know to what I refer) means I may not make it.

If it doesn't, I'll be quitting and, well, pretty much dropping dead, or at least going to Florida for a time.

At least it is going to rain for much of this week. Good.

The NWS forecast panel for Washington, D.C., valid 16 - 23 May 2010

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OK, that's all for now.

--Regulus