ITEM: Last night (Saturday your time) I decided for whatever reason to look at my blog stats. As you noticed, I have three mostly regular features- this one, Time Machine, and Sunday Message- along with whatever else strikes me. I thought I'd see what difference there would be between the features. Answer: not much.
I averaged 44.35 views on the general posts, 44.7 on Time Machine, 43.57 on MWN (with an upcoming notable exception), and a little less on SM (37 even, prolly due to day of the week as much as subject matter). The notable exception, which I left out of the MWN stats was this post, which for some reason has ten times the normal views, landing it as my 8th all time post. I can't explain it, I would have blamed it on spammers but the posts that get spam comments apparently don't get counted or else the Time Machine post from November 30, 2012, would be trending this week. Outside of that one, the highest scoring posts were three recent Time Machines, a pair of MWN's, the two-part A to Z mash up this year, and a couple of apparently random posts including my birthday at Bixler Lake.
ITEM: (Yawn) Okay, so moving on, today I'm trying something I haven't before. Though I rarely use it for a source (I usually do his stories before he does) I get the e-mail version of Chuck Sheppard's News Of The Weird. Today, I'd like to crib from his recent letter with some editorial comments. So, here goes:
ITEM: The Japanese, especially, report a decline of intimacy (for
instance, a recent estimate found that about a quarter of
30-year-olds had never had sex with another person)--convenient
for a Kyoto research institute's announcement in June that it had
developed a huggable, human-sized, featureless pillow (resembling
"Casper The Friendly Ghost"), with skin-like texture, to serve as
an embraceable intimacy substitute. For people with actual lovers,
the "Hugvie" (retailing for the equivalent of $80) has a mouth slot
for a cell phone to enable running sweet talk with a remote
"companion." [phys.org, 6-5-2015]
Put that up against a later item:
A man was spotted and photographed on a riverbank in Nanyang,
China, carefully (and oblivious to onlookers) bathing his inflatable
I remember when the line from Barry McGuire's Eve Of Destruction:
The eastern world, it is explodin'...
...meant something slightly different...
ITEM: Scotty and Beverly Franklin
of Springfield, Mo., are trying to tempt cowboys to actually wear
leather boots retrofitted to be open-toed sandals. KHOU-TV
(Houston, Tex.) reported that the Franklins, of Springfield, Mo.,
would sandal-up your favorite pair for $75.
Holli, perhaps you could explain why anyone would want to cut holes in the end of cowboy boots...
ITEM: In a recent BBC documentary, the son of renowned cosmologistStephen Hawking (Tim, now 36) revealed that his dad is "hugely
competitive" and showed him "no compassion at all" when he was
growing up. Tim said two of his few avenues of coping with such
a famous, oblivious father were when he used to race around in his
dad's specialized (and expensive) wheelchair (pretending it was a
go-kart) and, for those deliciously awkward moments, adding cuss
words to his father's synthesized speech software.
Not surprising from a man who thinks his intelligence makes him a superior to the concept of God...
ITEM: Jihadists governing ISIS's Euphrates province recently outlawed
the popular hobby of breeding pigeons and threatened violators
with flogging and imprisonment. The ban was initially thought
aimed at frustrating pigeon-messaging to the outside world, but the
published prohibition mentions other justifications--the hobby's
frivolity (wasting time that could better be spent praying) and the
special offense to God (because pigeons are "uncovered," with
exposed genitals). [Daily Mail, 6-2-2015]
|Is this better, or do we need burkhas?|
ITEM: (1) In a June YouTube video reported by various
news sites, Tempe, Ariz., pastor Steven Anderson (Faithful Word
Baptist Church) prayed for God to "rip out the heart" of Caitlyn
Jenner, for whom Anderson expresses "a perfect hatred" for
announcing she was no longer Bruce.
(2) On his "700 Club" TV
program in June, Pat Robertson patiently explained to a grieving
mother why God could have allowed her 3-year-old son to die of
illness--that God saw the big picture and knew, for instance, that
the kid could have become a serial killer or contracted a hideous
disease, and that she should be relieved that God took him early.
[YouTube via RawStory, 6-10-2015] [Mediate, 6-9-2015]
1) Why do so many pastors have trouble with the concept of Luke 9:
51 When the time was coming near for Jesus to depart, he was determined to go to Jerusalem. 52 He sent some messengers ahead of him, who went into a town in Samaria to make everything ready for him. 53 But the people there would not welcome him, because he was set on going to Jerusalem. 54 When James and John, followers of Jesus, saw this, they said, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven and destroy those people?”[d]
55 But Jesus turned and scolded them. [And Jesus said, “You don’t know what kind of spirit you belong to. 56 The Son of Man did not come to destroy the souls of people but to save them.”][e] Then they went to another town.
2) True so far as it goes, Pat, but since you really DON'T know for sure, and it isn't your place to judge, and the woman might have actually been looking for some COMFORT, perhaps you might pull your feet from your pedestal and your head from your ass and just say, "The Lord has His reasons, and they are not ours to understand in this life." Might save you from St. Peter pulling you over at the pearly gates and whispering a "Hey, jerkweed" in your ear...
ITEM: Sweden has unemployment issues, like most countries, but, still,
the Oliver & Eva sex shop was not prepared for the deluge when
the nation's Employment Service website posted its opening to hire
a "sex toy tester." Until the Service was forced to pull the
announcement, applications were coming in at the rate of one every
20 seconds, with 14,000 e-mails greeting the employer the first
morning. The sex shop emphasized that the tester must be
"driven," "methodical," and "with patience" and a knowledge of
Microsoft Excel. [The Local (Stockholm), 6-25-2015]
Surprised Obama hasn't come across this as a means of mitigating the unemployment numbers with meaningless jobs.
That rounds up the bits I'm giving Chuck the nod to. Now, here's some fun from BBC's News From Elsewhere...
ITEM: Take that, Barack:
Costa Rica's president has welcomed an unusual new addition to his household - a two-week-old piglet named Daniela.
A young girl handed the piglet to President Luis Guillermo Solis during a rally by farmers outside the presidential palace in San Jose, and the president says he plans to keep it, the Efe news agency reports. Daniela can rest easy now that she's a presidential piglet - Mr Solis says she won't end up on the dinner table, but instead will be "the first pet of the republic". He likened the piglet to US President Barack Obama's pets, and the turkey that is traditionally pardoned at the White House each year. "If Obama has dogs and a turkey, then I will have a pig," he joked.
ITEM: Nitpicky, much?
A Danish company has gone to court to try to stop a rival from making square-shaped crisps, it's reported.
Snack manufacturer Kims has been selling the square, ridged Snack Chips for almost three decades in Denmark. But this year saw the arrival of a competitor crisp - Taffel's Super Snacks, which are a similar shape and size. Kims now wants a judge to rule that it has the exclusive right to sell square crisps in Denmark, the Ekstra Bladet website reports. In the meantime, Taffel has agreed to change the shape of its Super Snacks from square to oval - a more expensive shape to produce.
ITEM: What happens when you run an official contest and forget to set parameters...
A competition to design Russia's brand new parliament building will be re-run after none of the initial designs were deemed suitable, it's reported.
Three finalists had presented architectural models of their plans, but the judging committee rejected them all, in part because they have too many windows, the RBK website reports. "All finalists' projects feature a lot of glass," says Yelena Panina, the committee's deputy head. "This will create problems in the upkeep of the building and it will be cold in the winter."
|"Altruism, hell! We want PAID for this job!"|
ITEM: And another idea Obama should consider to alleviate the UEB shortage...
A regional government in Russia is giving away 1,000 sheep to large, low-income families, it's reported.
The authorities in the Siberian region of Kemerovo say that 500 families will be given a ewe and a ram each under the scheme, the local Vse42.ru website reports. Its aim is to ensure food security, according to the region's long-serving governor, Aman Tyleyev. Kemerovo defines large families as those with three or more children. Sheep were chosen for the scheme because as well as providing meat and milk, their wool can be used to make clothing, the report says. But before being selected to receive the woolly duo, local people will have to prove that they have the facilities to look after them - namely somewhere for the sheep to live.
The far east could consider it to cut down on inflatable-doll abuse, as well...
ITEM: First world problems, Russian style...
A campaign to make young people think twice before snapping selfies in dangerous situations has been launched by the Russian government.
The interior ministry's Safe Selfie campaign is a response to a spate of incidents in which youngsters were seriously injured, or in some cases killed, while trying to take pictures of themselves, the Izvestia newspaper reports. The campaign's motto is: "Even a million 'likes' on social media are not worth your life and well-being."
You would think we would "hold these truths to be self-evident"...
ITEM: And finally, a problem Russia should have consulted American school-bus people about...
A low-cost Russian airline has banned passengers from chewing gum on board because it is spending so much scraping it off planes' interiors, it's reported.
The company's CEO claims it costs Pobeda the equivalent of $1,700 to remove EACH PIECE of gum. If this was in Harry Reid's district, I'd sing "look for the Union label"... but as it is, I might suggest that there are 14,000 disappointed sex toy testers in Sweden who might do the job cheaper...