Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Hurricane watching in Ohio is typically a "spectator sport" as Noelle says. One watches the incoming fury heading towards distant places with bated breath. Will it intensify? Will it weaken before landfall? Will those crazy people staying put in its path get hurt or will they in fact be OK?

I like the Weather Underground site. I read Jeff Masters' Blog. I read comments on his blog sometimes. There is a weather nut posting a gorgeous satellite picture of Ike in the gulf at night, clouds coiled like beautiful ghostly shell against the darkness. The coastline patched with lights from the cities. Another poster sends a link that allows one to watch four Houston News broadcasts at once.

"Houston, we have a problem..."

One of the features at the WU hurricane site is a projection of the Hurrocane's path. There, Ike was to strike Galveston, move in through Houston, weaken to a category 1, then turns more north, becoming a tropical storm, then a tropical depression as the winds diminished. Then Ike was projected to arc east... and pick up wind speed? Head into the Great Lakes as a Tropical storm then a category 1 as it skids off into Canada?

I was puzzled. Surely not. Some hurricanes do come to die over the great lakes. I remember Katrina sitting on us for days, nothing left of her horrible fury, just fine soaking warm rain.

I asked. Surely the model is in error? No response.

So. Ike tore through Galveston and Houston and Beaumont wrecking havoc, though fortunately with much less loss of life than he could have caused. Then Ike weakened, curled north, then northeast swallowing the rainy warm front that had drenched us... and picked up wind speed, wrapped all that rain into a tighter, heavier block and roared up Ohio tore over Michigan, lake Erie and into Canada.

Here in Youngstown the wind was ferocious and it lasted for hours. It was picking up strongly near sunset on Sunday. It was sunny, hot, humid, and very windy. The trees were bending.


The wind just got worse and worse until midnight, then it howled away for a couple of hours. We are far from the tropics so calling Ike a tropical storm or hurricane up here would be inaccurate. Nonetheless, though the remains of Ike were actually many miles north of my house, the winds here were gusting over 70 mph.

My trees managed to hold on, though branches and leaves were lost.

My neighbors big black Cherry lost hold and crashed into my yard, tearing part of a red maple with it, and crunching my compost fence. The cherry was a lovely healthy tree. The roots were torn right out of the ground.


We got no rain, only the wind of Ike's remnants in the distance. Undoubtably, if we weren't so far north, Ike would have been back to being a category 1. No rain. Only wind.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Long time, no post

I have thought of hundreds of things to post about over recent months, but have not posted. This will be not much of an exception, rather a series of questions and observations.

Why is being a war hero supposed to qualify one to run the country?

Why are people such hypocrites?

Why is the air in Arlington Texas so horrible?

Why do "animal rights" bills that will actually harm animals appear with such frequency?

A note on that question. Michigan has a pet seller bill up, HB 6395 would make it nearly impossible to sell a home raised kitten in Michigan, or to place rescued cats. Only shelters and pet stores would be able to. To home raise and sell you'd have to have a $200 liscense for EVERY county where a buyer might reside along with being fingerprinted and have a police background check done, and it would not be legal to let your kittens sleep in bed with you or get on the couch or run around on carpet. Crazy.

How can people who try to pass themselves off as conservative fundamental Christians be so un-Christian, being pro-war and anti helping the poor?

When republicans talk about "winning" the war in Iraq, what exactly are they referring to? Didn't GW Bush declare the war to be OVER years ago? And what exactly are we trying to "win"?

Why don't the Human resource people and legal people and payroll people and administration actually research the laws that they quote when they change things around supposedly due to those laws?

As a corollary: Why is it that I, who am pretty dreadful when it comes to legal documents, finances, laws, and tax documents, am able to unearth and understand the actual interpretation and exemptions to said tax law in about 20 minutes, when the professionals at my Uni could not find said law or explain it to me in over an hour and a half of office hopping.

If human life begins at conception.. does that mean that most women trying to get pregnant are committing manslaughter everytime the pregnancy fails, or they fail to get measurably pregnant?

Eggs do get fertilized, but fail to develop most of the time.

If a fertilized egg splits and becomes two identical twins, do they have only one life, one soul between them?

If two fertilized eggs fuse and become one baby (it happens) does that individual have two lives/two souls?

Since when do we make religious belief (like when you personally or your church thinks "life" begins) law?


Why did the hot water hose break off the back of my washing machine?