25 February 2007

Random thought

I'm watching a History Channel show on the samurai, and they just went over the beautiful armor. The swords are beautiful as well, especially when you see the details of the surface finish. All of which got me to thinking about the general reputation the Japanese have for appreciating subtlety, and I wonder if this is because in a culture where there was a great uniformity of appearance and behavior, the subtle distinctions are not so subtle any more...

DWI, mobile emergency numbers

I came across an article on how New Mexico is setting up a #DWI cell number so people can call in drunk drivers.

I like the idea, so I wrote FHP and asked them if they had something similar in the works.

They don't - write your state representative and senator, and Charlie, too! - but they sent along a couple of useful links.

Florida has *FHP (*347).

There's also a national list of mobile emergency numbers.

Now, if only they'd actually permanently take away licenses, at least on the second conviction. If nothing else, you'd have a growing group of people keenly interested in improving mass transportation...

Tree of Life web project

Another great science site: http://tolweb.org/tree/

Random humorous sayings

God loves you just the way you are... but that doesn't mean he wants you to stay like that.

It's best to keep your troubles pretty much to yourself, 'cause half the people you tell 'em to won't give a damn, and the other half will be glad to hear you've got 'em.

Ain't never seen a wild critter feelin' sorry for itself.

Never lie unless you have to, and if you don't have a damn good lie, stick to the truth.

Cool site: travel videos, aural vacations

Travelistic. Some of the videos are done by tourism agencies, but some are done by amateurs. My favorite, even though it lacks a soundtrack and the video quality is fair, is Canyon de Chelly. I'd love to visit there and Hovenweep and Mesa Verde and about a hundred other spots in the Southwest.

quiet american's one minute vacation Audio recordings from all over the world. Great with headphones.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention John Farr's live recordings, and be sure to check out FarrFeed as well.

Autism, colossal squid

Subjects are entirely unrelated. ;-)

I read the autism post and watched the video after coming across a mention on Ottmar Leibert's blog, and then saw the squid story on a most-emailed list on the same site (which I've now added to Google Reader).

The autism story is one of those things that jarred me. Her commentary in the video made some good points.

"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy."

Indeed. I of all people should know that.

On to large cephalapods. The colossal squid story is fascinating. The comments are interesting, especially the "killjoy" one.

Update: more on Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni here on the BBC website.

The BBC also have a related story with video about how another large squid species - Taningia danae - flashes light when it attacks. Amazing stuff.

Finally, the premier online reference for all things cephalopod seems to be TONMO.

Calimari will never be the same...