G4 Rocket

Tanagers

For the past few weeks, I'm running into these pretty Black-masqued Tanagers everywhere online. This is the latest example. I'm not sure that I've ever seen one in person. They live in the mountains in South America. Lovely little jewel-coloured birds, for all that the ones here are a bit rough-looking after their adventure.

Original posted at https://rain-gryphon.dreamwidth.org/136324.html
G4 Rocket

In Another Land

Ah, the French... They're completely insane, but manage somehow to be endearing at times nonetheless.

*****

PHIVOLCS is calling "scream like a little girl and run away" for Taal. Fox has photos of the impressive ash column, with lots of lightning, so you can tell what kind of turbulence must be going on in there. The fine cauliflower-like structure of the cloud persists a long way up the column before finally starting to smooth out into larger billows. The fine structure shows that the fragments in the column are still outgassing under pressure so that the turbulence remains high, whch in turn gives an idea of how much pressure there is to begin with. I'm darkly amused by the line "Those evacuating on Sunday said they fled the area quickly".

Taal itself is just cartoonishly dangerous-looking anyway, a tiny little irregular island in the middle of an enormous caldera lake. The island itself is made up crater piled upon crater, with a smallish caldera of its own. The big caldera in which the island sits has scallops cut out of the shoreline - it appears to be literally a caldera formed of numerous, overlapping calderae.

Original posted at https://rain-gryphon.dreamwidth.org/135622.html
G4 Rocket

Those Indiana Boys, Pt III

Words fail me. I suppose in some sense he might be considered a one-man crime wave, although that generally connotes some sort of overall criminal goal and systematic attempts to reach it. This guy's goals and plans, such as they were, seem to have been randomly chosen, if energetically pursued, and never extended beyond the next few minutes. He's entertaining to read about in the same way that "Beavis and Butthead" is entertaining to watch. My hat is off to him for actually swimming the river in January to escape the police. The ploy might have been more effective were it not open parkland on the other side, with a bridge about a hundred feet away so the police can drive across while you swim.

Original posted at https://rain-gryphon.dreamwidth.org/135413.html
G4 Rocket

The World at War

A grey day of endless rain and wind, perfect for watching that bleak masterpiece, "The World at War". The local PBS station used to show an episode each Saturday afternoon in '73 or '74, not too long after it came out in the UK. It was perfect timing for me. I was beginning to develop a sense of history, and the impermanence of the present. I loved hearing family and acquaintances talk about what they remembered of that time, like a distant age of myth to me, but something that, for them, was relatively recent in their memories. It's like no documentary I've seen before or since. Olivier narrates it, and, I suspect, had substantial input into the narration. He uses silence to great effect, and sounds so resigned, so matter of fact when narrating horrors that are almost past imagining. It's that quiet manner that gives the narrative so much power. These things really happened, and all the tears, and all the regrets that ever were, cannot unmake one bit of it.

A rainy afternoon just completes the mood for me.

Original posted at https://rain-gryphon.dreamwidth.org/134959.html
G4 Rocket

The Skepticism. It is upon me.

BBC has footage of an AA missile hitting that airliner. Given that it was almost certainly incompetence on Iran's part, the question still remains of why they'd permit civilian traffic to operate in a combat zone in the first place.

*****

Tragically, the prison seems to have accidentally erased all of the CCTV footage of Epstein's cell. IMHO, the best way forward would be to charge the two guards with murder, and see what evidence they can produce in their own defence.

Original posted at https://rain-gryphon.dreamwidth.org/134798.html
G4 Rocket

Said I to the Orange Man...

Dear POTUS:

I sincerely hope that the Ayatollah's Tomb is among the "cultural" targets designated in Iran. We should have blown that to rubble ages ago on general principle. Quite apart from questions of morality, it is self-destructive for a civilization to tolerate monuments built in praise of evil and barbarism. I can't help but imagine that its destruction would give heart to the Iranian Resistance as well.

Original posted at https://rain-gryphon.dreamwidth.org/134506.html