Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Winter Solstice 2016 Wee Hours Blog Potpourri -OR- Zsa Zsa In the Sky with Her Diamonds ...

Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster decoration in the rectory yard of the Church of the Holy City - National Swedeborgian Church, Washington, D.C., 9:34PM December 18, 2016.

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Sigh.

Just after 1AM and I have to go to sleep. I was unable to go to the gym tonight because I had to finish a big assignment at work and didn't leave the office until nearly 10PM.

It was too late to go to the gym so I took the Metro from L'Enfant Plaza to McPherson Square and walked home, detouring into No. 9 for about 45 minutes. (Trade had some kind of raucous drag act going on and I wasn't up for that.)

Gloomy day outside my apartment building, 2000 block New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, D.C., 4:31PM December 18, 2016.

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The L'Enfant Plaza Orange / Blue / Silver platform was more than a little sketchy at the 10PM hour with young predator-types on the prowl looking for whatever opportunity through either cajoling or brute force. Two were skulking with that cold dead eyes look and another was on bended knee before some young woman giving a sob story.

Steps of the House of the Temple (Home of The Supreme Council, 33°, Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, Southern Jurisdiction), Washington D.C., 4:37PM December 18, 2016.

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He practically looked like he was serenading her as she sat on the cold smooth stone bench. (Initially, he approached me with the "Sir, sir ...," but I didn't linger long enough. I always get approached because physically I offer an easy target -- and I'm aware of that.)

I think Metro management likes having that situation abound in its System -- muggings and robberies all while those stupid recorded announcements are incessantly played ("... we thank you for your patience as we continue to upgrade and improve the Metro rail system ...").

Yours truly at Logan Tavern, Washington, D.C., 5:06PM December 18, 2016.

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So I'd like to go to the gym tomorrow morning -- and just go into work in the afternoon, but I don't know if that's feasible. I may just go tomorrow night and then again on Friday (which I'm more or less taking off, although I'm not going to visit my mom and Ray until Saturday and returning on Monday, which is the official Christmas federal holiday that falls this year on Dec. 26th).

And, again, yours truly at Logan Tavern, 5:06PM December 18, 2016.

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The Weather ...

Tonight is a cold, still night -- the cold really penetrating even though it isn't windy. The actual air temp is about 29F at the 1AM hour (that's at KDCA, so it's colder everywhere else). (KIAD is down to 24F and KBWI is 26F.) Of note, today is the winter solstice.

The weather is supposed to warm up and there is precisely zero chance of a white Christmas this year (or, really, any year in the Metro D.C. area).

2-meter temperature anomalies (in Fahrenheit) for the North Hemisphere's Arctic and sub-Arctic regions as forecasted by the 12Z Dec. 20, 2016 GFS valid at hour 54, 18Z Dec. 22, 2016 and as prettied up by WeatherBell.com.

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Speaking of the weather, read this CWG entry (link embedded): Pre-Christmas melt? North Pole forecast to warm 50 degrees above normal Thursday.

I was going to repost the entry in full but even the headline speaks for itself although I've posted three images from it. In short, there will be temp anomalies at the geographic North Pole of 40F to 50F on Thursday -- bringing the air temp to nearly freezing (0C/32F). Meanwhile, parts of Putin's interior Siberia will have anomalies of -50F to -60F.

Arctic region temperature departures for November 2016 from the 1981 - 2010 average.

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The entry must have been picked up by some rightwing misinformation and entertainment site since there are numerous comments from the climate change denying Know Nothings and fundamentalists. I spent about a half hour having a bit of fun with that but you really can feel your life force draining away in that context.

Time series of average Arctic temperature for the region poleward of 80N latitude for 2016 through December 19th (in red) compared to the 1958 - 2002 mean (in green). Y-axis temperatures are in Kelvin (with 273.15K or 0C/32F denoted by the blue line; X-axis is the day of the year for 2016 (1 - 366).

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I've said it before and I'll say it again: In some ways, the United States -- or at least a segment of it with an electorally outsized influence -- never left the 19th Century.

On a brief political tangent ...

This Saturday Night Live cold opening December 17, 2016 needs to be watched:



Ditto this interview with Bill Maher:



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Also, I should note this 170+ tweet storm by author / self-described futurist Eric Garland on December 11th that got quite a bit of attention lately: A Patriot Game Theory. The sub-headline is: A friend explains the century so far.

Here are just a few of the tweets -- appended together -- that collectively form the political commentary equivalent of a rich mine of rare earth elements. They describe succinctly how and why America got to the horrific place it is now with a Trump kleptocracy and GOP one-party rule.

Just some of Eric Garland's December 11, 2016 tweets. Click on image for larger version.

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Remembering Zsa Zsa Gabor

Also, how could I not note this: Zsa Zsa Gabor has died at age 99. Alas, she didn't quite make 100.


Remember the time she bitch-slapped that Beverly Hills cop after he pulled her over in her Rolls Royce -- driving on an expired license and with an open bottle of vodka -- and the whole theatre of the absurd trial that ensued?? Now THAT was frickin' hilarious. I didn't appreciate it nearly enough at the time.

Excerpt from New York Times obituary article (linked above):

"Zsa Zsa Gabor, the Hungarian actress whose self-parodying glamour and revolving-door marriages to millionaires put a luster of American celebrity on a long but only modestly successful career in movies and television, died on Sunday in Los Angeles. She was 99.

The cause was heart failure, her longtime publicist Edward Lozzi said.

Zsa Zsa with her sisters Magda and Eva Gabor, 1955.

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Married at least eight times, calling everyone "Dahlink," flaunting a diamonds-and-furs lifestyle and abetted by gossip columnists and tabloid headline writers, Ms. Gabor played the coifed platinum femme fatale in plunging necklines in dozens of film and television roles, many of them cameos as herself. Her career, which began with the title Miss Hungary in 1936, was still going strong in the 1990s, outlasting those of her sisters, Eva and Magda, celebrities in their own right. She was the last surviving Gabor sister.

Ha ha

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"A girl must marry for love, and keep on marrying until she finds it," Ms. Gabor once said. Her husbands included a Turkish diplomat, the hotel heir Conrad Hilton, the actor George Sanders, an industrialist, an oil magnate, a toy designer, a divorce lawyer and a man often referred to in the news media as the Duke of Saxony. Another marriage that nobody counted -- a case of bigamy at sea with a has-been Mexican actor -- lasted only a day and was annulled.

Zsa Zsa's awesome mugshot, Beverly Hills Police Department, June 14, 1989.

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In 1989, she was arrested for slapping a police officer who had pulled her over for a traffic violation and found that her license had expired and that she had an open vodka bottle in her car, a Rolls-Royce Corniche convertible. Breezing into court, she took the stand and, by turns haughty, coquettish, weepy and coarse, spoke of Gestapo tactics in Beverly Hills. The judge gave her 72 hours in jail.

"You just cannot drive a Rolls-Royce in Beverly Hills anymore, because they have it in for you," she said after things had blown over."

Change that to "BMW" and "in D.C." -- and keep the total lack of any sense of irony -- and you have a perfect M. WADE Tipamillyun quote (after calling 9-1-1 because someone parked in his parking spot and having the operator laugh at him and hang up).


Goodnight, Dahlink ...

--Regulus

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