Saturday, March 21, 2015

Astronomical Spring Arrives and the Persistence of Winter Cerebral and Mental Aches & Oddities

**This entry was posted March 21, 2015.**

The view from my 5th floor Hampton Courts apartment, Washington, D.C., 1:27PM March 21, 2015.

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Saturday early afternoon.

It's the first full day of Northern Hemisphere astronomical spring -- the vernal equinox having arrived at 2245UTC (6:45PM EST) yesterday, March 20th, 2015. It's a sunny, coolish day with temperatures at the 2PM hour only around 50F here in D.C. Of note, the sunrise and sunset times are not actually equal all over the planet on the equinoxes, including here in Washington, D.C., but I'm not going to get into that now.

Image from the Wikipedia article on the equinox. The caption there reads: "Contour plot of the hours of daylight as a function of latitude and day of the year, showing approximately 12 hours of daylight at all latitudes during the equinoxes."

Note: I made this image sideways for better viewing given the width constraint on this blog.

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Late Season Snowfall - Brief Recap

There was a mix of rain and snow yesterday that actually turned to heavy snowfall for a period of time, although it was extremely sensitive even to the minor elevations in the Baltimore / Washington area as well as urban heat islands, etc., so naturally this part of D.C. where I live and officially at KDCA had zilch -- the usual "trace" -- which held its seasonal total to 18.3 inches or +3.0 inches season-to-date.

By contrast, BWI Airport (KBWI) had 1.2 inches, pushing the seasonal total to 28.7 inches or +8.9 inches season-to-date while Dulles Airport (KIAD) had 0.9 inches, increasing its seasonal total to 36.9 inches or +15.8 inches season-to-date.

The area outside building 33 at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., yesterday late morning, March 20, 2015, in a picture that Gary took and sent to me.

It didn't look anything like that around the parts of D.C. where I live (Dupont / Shaw) and work (L'Enfant Plaza)

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We're still not quite at the final seasonal totals -- i.e., climatologically, there can still be a bit more measurable snowfall in our region -- so these are departures from the overall seasonal 30-year averages of 15.4 inches (KDCA), 20.1 inches (KBWI), and 22.0 inches (KIAD), respectively.

I meant to note last week (but never got around to it) that Boston officially achieved a record-breaking seasonal snowfall with an additional 2.9 inches last Sunday Sunday that pushed the 2014-2015 seasonal total to 108.6 inches, breaking the 1995-1996 record of 107.6 inches by 1.0 inch as measured at Logan International Airport (KBOS).

Here is the note on the BOX NWS website.

Yesterday, another 0.5 inches fell, pushing the KBOS total to 109.1 inches.

Keep in mind, though, that the bulk of this 9 feet of snow fell in one phenomenal 30-day period and the city and its surrounding areas (where more or less fell, depending on the location) are still trying to recover from a slow motion disaster as a result of a paralyzing, multi-storm snow blitz.

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The wooden bar at the place called Mari Vanna -- yes, you read that right -- located on Connecticut Avenue just south of Dupont Circle, 6:54PM March 20, 2015.

I stopped in there (for complicated reasons involving a former co-worker I bumped into on the Red Line leaving Metro Center) for a quick drink. It's an odd place. I think it's Russian mafia run, or at least that's the mystique it is (successfully) attempting.

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Mild Migraine Headache and Friday Night Drinking Time ...

I've been suffering from a low-to-medium grade migraine headache since yesterday (the non-aural sort), although while out drinking last night with Gary and Howie at Buffalo Billiards (where Howie was into the March Madness thing along with the rest of the throng of young, straight people there) and then Larry's Lounge, and then later at Fox & Hound with Jamie, it went away ...

I took one of those Sumatriptan Succinate (Imitrex) that I take for migraines. I also just refilled the prescription by phone. I still have 4 more prescriptions through December, although you only five at a time.

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Persistence of Weird Dream Time ...


I had some really weird dreams last night into the morning until I finally rolled out of bed -- or rather, I rolled out of the pile of quilts, blankets, pillows, and stuffed animals (lots of hippos and monkeys!) that is my sleeping accommodations in this wee dusty apartment. They included one in which I was in a bathroom with no clothes on looking at myself through a sort of hall of mirrors effect. But then -- as so often happens in my dreams involving bathrooms -- I cannot lock the door, and pushing on it does nothing (there are also sometimes multiple entrances).

In this case, my acquaintance, Gloria, was peeking through the crack, and I kind of freaked out about that. Suddenly, President Obama in a suit was outside the door and walked down a hallway, telling people not to peek at me.

Gloomy dusk in the 1900 block of New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, D.C., 7:34PM March 20, 2015.

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Another dream involved being stuck in some weird place in England for another night, but I wanted to get back to a city, presumably London. Gary was going to take a cab but it would have worked out to 50 pounds for me, and I was depressed that I didn't have 50 pounds. (Now I have lost 42 pounds since I rejoined the gym, and probably more like 45 pounds of fat...)

Old British 50 pound note. The images of the current one I found all have "specimen" written over them.

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Finally, in yet another one, I flew into that bar on 17th Street where M. WADE and the Crow Creature rule the roost. By "flew in," I mean actually flying in. I flew atop a large moose head above the bar and knocked it down. I also pulled down a weird colorful flag tacked to the ceiling and broke a lot of glasses.

However, it was suddenly daytime and the bar was empty, and a manager -- a guy in a green shirt -- whom I did not recognize came in and started to notice the damage, and I suddenly felt badly about having done that.

Gloomy dusk along the 1900 block of 16th Street NW, Washington, D.C., 7:35PM March 20, 2015.

That oddly tall building is called "The Tiffany."

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OK, that's all for now. I need to get ready and go to the gym to push through the usual 3-hour ordeal including hour on the treadmill, hour of weightlifting (low to medium strenuousness), and a short swim in the pool.

Oh, yes, I need a haircut, although I am letting my hair grow out a bit. The problem is that the buzz cuts I've been getting more or less for the past 18 months now result in my hair growing in as just a densely thick mass that, after a while, not even the overpriced American Crew pomade I use can tame. I need a haircut that just thins it with only a bit of shortening if I ever hope to do anything "with" my hair, and even that is iffy.

As it grays / whitens, it might just have changed texture and is now the American descendant of an Italian-Polish-peasant-nebbish version of an Afro.

Yes, the Eufro.

Speaking of hair, in one of those dreams I had last night -- or rather, this morning -- I dreamed that my mother had this weird, half-jet black and half-snow white hair with a really coarse texture. It then turned out the black hair was just a crumpled up wig on top of the all-white, and it was all creepy and I woke up disturbed by it.

Ok, that really is all for now. I intend to post a jukebox Saturday night entry.

--Regulus

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