Daily Archives: July 18, 2013

The Smallpox People Project

The Whale and Dolphin People Project got me talking it over with the topcat around here.


Me:  So, Hydrox, what’s your thinking on this thing of trying to save dolphins and whales by making people of them?

HydroxDoes it concern you at all that if dolphins and whales began behaving like humans there wouldn’t be room in the oceans for any other species?

Me:  Hell Hydrox.  You know better than that.  They’d starve.

Hydrox:  Think about it a minute now.  Try the perspective of a domestic cat.  Back earlier than I can recall you cut my chorizos off so’s I wouldn’t be a part of what human beings think of as a cat-over population-problem.  Same with the rest of that litter.  When you protected all those chickens, both back in Y2K, and later here, killing coons, coyotes, skunks, you got an over-population problem.  Meanwhile you humans, during my own feline lifetime, have possibly doubled your population.  Does that tell you anything?

Me:  I think I see where you’re going with this.  What you aren’t taking into account is that we value human life.  We don’t believe in going around cutting the nuts off human beings and clipping the whatchallits of our females.  We rely on disease, war, hunger and other natural causes to keep our population down.

Hydrox:  Does it occur to you that the natural forces aren’t doing the job?  That the reason dolphins and whales need to be made into people so you can’t kill them legally might be going backward into the problem instead of approaching it head-on?  For instance, if you really want to save those whales protecting them from humans by calling them humans would be a lot less likely to actually save them than calling Bubonic, Ebola, Cholera and whatever other disease you can invent ‘people’ and protecting them.  Get rid of all those damned shots and pills and the whales will do fine just being whales. 

Me:  You’re saying …. hmm.  You’re saying make diseases PEOPLE?

Hydrox:  Actually I’m not.  If you change the wording around a bit you’ll see what I’m saying about what’s a disease.  Heck, if you could just find a disease that would kill off heart surgeons and fast food workers you could take care of a huge part of the problems of dolphins and whales through starvation and heart failures.  Whale and dolphin people my ass!  Tell those folks they’re human, convince them of it, and they’ll be beaching themselves into extinction!  Maybe that’s already what’s causing them to beach themselves to death.  Someone told them they’re people and they believed it. 

Me:  Seems to me we’ve got a failure here somewhere, to communicate.

Old Jules

In Which I Meet the Fluido Machine

Nice pic of Shiva and a bit of terror of the aftermath of having steel plates or something installed in your wrist joints.

Jeanne Kasten Studio

The doctor said I’m ahead of the curve on the healing process and set me up with several physical therapy sessions. I’ll see him again in two weeks, but now I’m allowed out of the splint three times a day for an hour at a time to do the exercises.


First they did all kinds of detailed measurements of how much movement I had in my wrist. Then the therapist checked the amount of grip on both hands. Right hand: 45 pounds. Left hand: 3 pounds. She said the amount of strength I feel is all in the arm, not the wrist.  Then she plugged in the Fluido machine to pre-heat it for me.


The Fluido Machine   is just the right amount of technology. It’s basically ground up corn husks blown around in a container of hot air. The corn husks absorb heat. You stick your arm in it for…

View original post 406 more words

Have Spacesuit Will Travel – Robert A. Heinlein

Came across this book in a thrift store in Kerrville recently and couldn’t resist it because they were having a dime-a-book sale.  As nearly as I can recall it was maybe the 3rd, or 4th science fiction book I read when I discovered the genre in the Portales Junior High School Library around 1958 or ’59. 

I’d qualify it as ‘middling’, probably nowadays young adult, Horatio Algeresque, and a nice evening read if a man has three cats interrupting to punctuate things.  Those times were full of first in orbit Sputink Explorer Cape Canavaral fizzles and it’s clear Heinlein, along with almost everyone else in the US, suddenly realized what an ignorant, poorly educated society we were becoming already.  Spends a considerable while early in the book with a father discussing the shortcomings of the education the young main character was getting for himself and how he, the kid, was going to have to take responsibility for changing that.  Assuming the kid wants it changed for the eventual outcome of his goal to go to the moon.

But there’s also a lot of other social commentary about responsibility, goals, paternalism, and finding a place outside the ‘normal’ shortcomings and flaws of humankind.  Surprising lot of insight as to where science and engineering were going to go, though it naturally overlooked the prospect of the field being increasingly dominated by Asians.  Even though RAH saw the social and educational conditions in the US that led in that direction, in those days nobody’d noticed whatever it was in Asia that would bring it to fruition.

All in all I doubt it would appeal much to the readership of today.  But most would never find it anyway.

Old Jules

Gloobal cooling terror

Good morning readers.

Thanks for coming by for a read this morning. Temps dropped unseasonably a couple of days ago and had enough intermittent rainfall to get the neighbor out burning all the trees he’d knocked down and piled up since the last one. 

I’d been fooling around with one of the longtime experiments of the Burt Lancaster/Kate Hepburn in the Rainmaker movie, so naturally I accepted that I’d made it all happened without having to argue with logic, the Universe, or modern science about the matter.

But the overwhelmingly satisfying result of it all was the cats moving indoors.  They’re not big on rain, not big on gloobal warming.  Naturally a twist to gloobal cooling was to their liking.  Tabby slept purring occasionally with her nose in my armpit last night, which is a major step in the right direction, both in matters of laundryism, and matters of Tabby coming back into the tribe.

If the mud’s not too bad I’ll be tripping to town for groceries today and might actually squeeze in another laundry trip.  Heck, if it works and I load the tank with water before I come back I might have three cats arguing for the armpit position.  Have to grow another arm for the duration of the gloobal cooling crisis.

Old Jules