About Me

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I'm an artist, an educator, Pastafarian and I write. I also will gamble on just about anything. And I like unusual juxtaposition, but I love my wife...and beer. This blog is observations from a funny old man who gets pissed off every once in a while. Oh, and I mispell alot.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016


One Of My Very Own...

EMAIL: ralph.henry.at.folio.olio@gmail.com

Too soon?

If it looks like a rat and smells like a rat, odds are it's a vegan, black bean, veggie burger and my wife is cooking.


I learned today that the Berlin Wall wasn't created until 1961. Prior they just had a patchwork system of deterrents that were less than optimally effective. People glided out on ziplines anchored by friends and family; they soared out on crude hang gliders; they dug under; and they just made a wish and dashed across the mine field.

Then in 1961 they finally said enough was enough and built more or less a perfect deterrent.
And as we all know, the wall was torn down in 1989...a great victory for US president Reagan.
But few know the true story.

While you peruse images of the line in Berlin where the wall used to be, let me tell you an amazing fact.

In 1989, the Kremlin was scheduled for a news conference and for whatever reason, they sent out an untested underling to face the international press.

This man was asked when the wall would come down and, being extraordinarily unprepared, shuffled through his notes, read the wrong page and uttered the word "Immediately." That news conference was broadcast live all over Germany and the people on both sides of the wall took it very, very seriously. And the rest, as they say, is history.
This ladder was left by a mason in the 1700s and nobody is allowed to move it.

The ladder was forgotten after some construction on the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem. The main denominations sharing property over parts of the church are the Greek Orthodox, Armenian Orthodox and Roman Catholic, and to a lesser degree the Egyptian Copts, Syriacs and Ethiopians. The property owners have to agree to any changes done to the church, and since they never are able to agree on anything, nothing will ever be changed.
High-rise residential tower in Taipei under construction.

It will have trees on every level which will remove 170 tons of carbon dioxide out of the air every year.


On a personal note, I put this blog together at my bar and a young man seated next to me looking over my shoulder saw this and said that he was told that very thing by counselors after his third suicide attempt. Take that for what it's worth.
Then just because it fits here, there is this silliness...

It was stated that this was a 747 lifting off the tarmac in a gale.

Any scientists out there in the ether want to share how much lift (mph of gale) it would need to be generated for this to happen?

You think that a one time snails were a real blight to the crops and considered public enemy #1?
Falling clouds off a mountain.

How absolutely wonderful. It's like the air was fluid. But I guess if we could see air all the time that wouldn't be commonplace.
The bees are trying to feed the new Queen. As the bee keeper swipes his finger across the chamber, the bees surrounding the chamber are easily moved. Much different from a Queen Bee that is not accepted, which the bees would not be more resilient and adhered to the chamber. That post is coming up next, where Queen Bee is not accepted.

The bees are adhered to the chamber, and will attack the Queen Bee once she is released. As the bee keeper swipes his finger across the chamber, the bees are not easily moved. This adherence indicates that the bees are not accepting of the new Queen.

Few images are as stark as one of an execution. On August 27, 1979, 11 men who had been convicted of being “counterrevolutionary” by the regime of Iranian ruler Ayatullah Ruhollah Khomeini were lined up on a dirt field at Sanandaj Airport and gunned down side by side. No international journalists witnessed the killings. They had been banned from Iran by Khomeini, which meant it was up to the domestic press to chronicle the bloody conflict between the theocracy and the local Kurds, who had been denied representation in Khomeini’s government. The Iranian photographer Jahangir Razmi had been tipped off to the trial, and he shot two rolls of film at the executions. One image, with bodies crumpled on the ground and another man moments from joining them, was published anonymously on the front page of the Iranian daily Ettela’at. Within hours, members of the Islamic Revolutionary Council appeared at the paper’s office and demanded the photographer’s name. The editor refused. Days later, the picture was picked up by the news service UPI and trumpeted in papers around the world as evidence of the murderous nature of Khomeini’s brand of religious government. The following year, Firing Squad in Iran was awarded the Pulitzer Prize—the only anonymous winner in history. It was not until 2006 that Razmi was revealed as the photographer.

Neda Agha-Soltan was an unlikely viral icon. On June 20, 2009, the 26-year-old stepped out of her car on a Tehran street near where Iranians were massing in protest of what was seen as the farcical re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The Islamic Republic was experiencing its worst unrest since the 1979 revolution. The state made it illegal to join the demonstrations and barred most foreign media, which meant the burden of bearing witness was largely left to the citizens who waded in, cell phones in hand. It was around 6:30 p.m. when Agha-Soltan was struck in the chest by a single bullet, said to originate from a pro-government sniper, though no one was ever charged. Men struggled to save her as others focused their cameras on the unfolding tragedy. One frame from the footage freezes her final gaze as streaks of deep red formed a web on her face. The image, among the earliest and easily the most significant to ever go viral, commanded the world’s attention. Within hours, footage uploaded anonymously to YouTube had been viewed by the President of the United States—proof that our new digital age could not only connect people; it could pry open even the staunchest of regimes.

I'm not a big fan of theocracies...as one would image. But when you give those same lunatics nuclear weapons? Damn.
I am still in awe that Israel has laid off the Iranians this long. What do you think if the US found out Cuba had nuclear weapons...oh, yeah, we threatened mutually assured destruction to stop it.
Grizzly Bear - sedated to be tagged.

I heard on a documentary that the polar bear was the largest land predator. Think about that...larger than that bad boy.
An instrument for cartoon sound production back in the days.

Original clip with sound: https://youtu.be/a1R8Rx2db9c
And it is well worth the quick listen.
The Floating Islands of Lake Titicaca

Lake Titicaca, on the border of Peru and Bolivia, is notable for a population of pre-Incan people called Uros who live on artificial islands made of floating reeds called totora. The purpose of the island settlements was originally defensive, and if a threat arose they could be moved. The largest island even retains a watchtower almost entirely constructed of reeds.
(That was educational, but the real reason I posted it was that the name "Titicaca" has got to the the greatest name anything has ever been named.)
Let's think about a make believe scenario. At the end of the Civil War in America, every Confederate soldier was pushed to the west coast and with all their weapons took refuge on Coronado Island off the coast of San Diego. Now lets suppose that the US government thought that the human cost of removing them was too great, so the rebels were allowed to stay...until this very day in 2016.
Question #1: Could the island just declare itself an independent country with all the rights that ensues?
Question #2: Would the US be in their legal right to deny them the right to become an independent country?

Well, that perfectly describes Taiwan. It was a place of last resort for a defeated army that somehow remained to prosper...something that befuddles me.
Antarctica Without Ice

The CVS cashier asked me how I was doing as I put the diarrhea medicine on the counter. I told him it was called situational awareness and he needed it.

This was called a tank because the British wanted to keep it secret...as in, "The tank factory needs another 500 pounds of steel." It proved to be a game changer if there ever was one.

Now I want you to try to imagine the game changers the US, Russia and China are building right this very minute.
I will go further, if you can imagine it, they are building it. The things you are not equipped to imagine are on their drawing board.


Updated version of the popular 1970s toy with immiscible sand-like substances interacting under gravity to create images that evoke landscapes and mountains or ocean waves.

Slow motion (240 fps) captures the intricate flow patterns of these particles (flips 3 and 5). Your mom is a lady of the night. The dark particles are larger and more dense than the light colored particles limiting how much the two types can mix. The particles also have rough edges, a property that contributes to the interesting flow patterns. -PhysicsFun

Speaking of game changers...

I wonder how any days of my life I have spent in search of sugar?


This is not just your environment. It is shared by others who should have a say as to what they have to look at every single day of their lives.
And you bombers, aren't you just the least bit embarrassed by a quality work like this?


How to drive real fans up the wall...




Both need a well formed "What if" motivator.

Cartoons worth sharing.




If your holy books tells you not to question, you know it is bullshit.

Want an insane quote? Well, here it is:
"If a man meets a virgin who is not engaged to be married and forces her to have sexual relations with him and people find out about it, the man must pay the girl's father about one and one-fourth pounds of silver. He must also marry the girl, because he has dishonored her, and he may never divorce her for as long as he lives."


Anonymous said...

You don't even know my mother!

(Yes, we do actually read it all)

Ralph Henry said...

I'm so sorry, but I have no idea what that refers to.

Senph42 said...

Dear Ralph, You should write a lot more posts in the bar, this one came out really well put together!
Regarding the non-dominant hand trick: is that limited to two weeks because after that you gain a lot more control over that hand so the technic becomes useless? I used to use my other hand for drawing in cases I wanted an illustration to look like it was put on a paper by a drunk elephant or a retarded seal, but after a while I "learned" unintentionally to control that hand too.
Now, for the 747 lifting off the tarmac: I'm not a scientist, but by some plain simple logic, isn't the required wind speed for that lift equal to the speed of the plane running on the runway before takeoff? Theoretically, the principle of the liftoff is the same.
And last, Antarctica without ice: is that a map of the continent with the ice that "magically" dissappeared, or in case all that ice melted? I suspect the latest one...

Ralph Henry said...

Thanks for the writing at the bar advice. I works for me on multiple levels...he wrote from the bar.
I don't know about the ice thing. I just found the image.

Chuck said...

I believe the first comment refers to:
Slow motion (240 fps) captures the intricate flow patterns of these particles (flips 3 and 5). Your mom is a lady of the night. The dark particles are larger and more dense than the light colored particles limiting how much the two types can mix. The particles also have rough edges, a property that contributes to the interesting flow patterns. -PhysicsFun

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