I got about a foot of snow dumped on me by the latest storm, when the prediction the day before had been for about 3-5 inches. Boy were the predictions wrong for this one! Last night the Boston Globe weather blogger tried to explain “Why was there so much more snow than predicted?”
Now that the big storm is over, I am looking at why this was such a poor forecast. The basic reason was a bit more cold air than expected, more moisture and it lasted longer. No one expected so much snow to fall from 4 AM this morning until mid-afternoon. Storms usually need to be at roughly 40 degrees latitude and 70 degrees west longitude to give us a major snow event. Meteorologists around here call this the benchmark. If a storm passes near the benchmark, and it’s cold enough, we are often in for a good snowstorm. This storm passed hundreds of miles further east than that typical spot for a major snowstorm. One of the reasons I was confident in not seeing this size snowstorm, was the predicted distance of the storm from our area. That prediction by the models turned out to be pretty good. Temperatures were also forecast to be about 4 degrees milder. As it turn out, it’s sort of a good thing it ended up being colder because heavy wet snow of these amounts would have been catastrophic to the power situation.
I see . . . well, not really. Anyway, the stuff is melting already which is a good thing, because I wasn’t able to shovel my driveway out completely yesterday. We’re supposed to get temperatures in the 40s and 50s for the next few days, so I guess that will rescue me. Now what’s in the news today?
I see that Kentucky Senator Rand Paul is really full of himself after his “talking filibuster” the other day.
He’s got an op-ed in the Washington Post bragging, “My filibuster was just the beginning.”
If I had planned to speak for 13 hours when I took the Senate floor Wednesday, I would’ve worn more comfortable shoes. I started my filibuster with the words, “I rise today to begin to filibuster John Brennan’s nomination for the CIA. I will speak until I can no longer speak” — and I meant it.
I wanted to sound an alarm bell from coast to coast. I wanted everybody to know that our Constitution is precious and that no American should be killed by a drone without first being charged with a crime. As Americans, we have fought long and hard for the Bill of Rights. The idea that no person shall be held without due process, and that no person shall be held for a capital offense without being indicted, is a founding American principle and a basic right.
I certainly agree that the president shouldn’t have the power to kill Americans without due process, but I’d be more impressed with Paul if he supported other constitutional rights like equal treatment under the law for minorities, women and LGBT people. I can’t take anyone seriously as a defender of the Constitution if he opposes civil rights and the right of a woman to control her own body.
According to Grace Wyler at Business Insider, Libertarians Believe Their Moment Has Finally Arrived. On the other hand, Chris Cillizza explains why Why the Rand Paul filibuster might not be such good news for the GOP.
Sequestration cuts, anyone?
While the Village media types focus on either fawning over or condemning Rand Paul’s performance, local journalists around the country are reporting on the damage being done by sequestration cuts.
The debate over sequestration this past week has come down to two questions: Was the administration exaggerating the impact of the spending cuts, and did they really need to shut down White House tours because of them?
It’s been the predominant theme at the White House briefings, a constant subject of discussion on cable news and a topic of fascination on Capitol Hill. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) even took up the cause at a press briefing this week, saying: “I think it’s silly that they have insisted on locking down the White House, which the American people actually own.”
Beneath that debate, however, is a different type of conversation about the impact of the $85 billion in cuts. While the national media has focused on those two questions, local coverage has been more directed at the tangible impact the budget restraints will have. The Huffington Post reviewed dozens of local television news broadcasts, using the service TVeyes.com, to survey coverage of sequestration outside of the Beltway.
Check out the many examples of real pain for localities at the link. And besides, according to Buzzfeed, Nobody Liked The White House Tours That Much Anyway. They’re only rated 3.5 on Yelp. Read the negative reviews at the link.
Interesting book review at The Daily Beast
They were the employees of the gigantic uranium-enrichment plant at Oak Ridge, Tenn.—those who lived and toiled in this purpose-built secret city in the Appalachian Mountains, many of them young women, had only been told that their efforts would help bring home American soldiers. Then, when atomic power was deployed against an enemy nation for the first (and so far, last) time, Oak Ridge residents realized what they had been working toward, and why their every move had been monitored, their every utterance policed, and their every question stonewalled.
In The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II, Denise Kiernan recreates, with cinematic vividness and clarity, the surreal Orwell-meets-Margaret Atwood environment of Oak Ridge as experienced by the women who were there. They were secretaries, technicians, a nurse, a statistician, a leak pipe inspector, a chemist, and a janitor. “Site X” began construction in late 1942, and was also known as the Clinton Engineering Works (CEW) and the Reservation. Staff members were recruited from all over the U.S., but particularly from nearby Southern states, and were offered higher than average wages, on-site housing and cafeterias, and free buses.
More importantly, they were offered the chance to join the 400,000 or so American women performing non-combatant roles in the armed services, as well as those keeping vital industries afloat and helping the men on the front lines. But whereas a female Air Force pilot or munitions factory worker understood precisely her contributions to the war effort, the women at Oak Ridge were kept in the dark about the actual purpose of their workplace, a mystery heightened by the apparent lack of anything ever leaving the site. Provided with “just enough detail to do their job well, and not an infinitesimal scrap more,” workers at all levels were forbidden from taking the slightest interest in anyone else’s duties. “Stick to your knitting,” in the words of Lieutenant General Leslie Groves, head of the Project.
That sounds like a fascinating book!
ABC News reports on a scary new virus–the coronaviris.
Health officials are warning of a new virus that has sickened at least 14 people worldwide, killing eight of them.
There are no known American cases of the coronavirus, known as hCoV-EMC, but the U.S. Centers for Disease Control is urging doctors with patients who have an unexplained respiratory illness after traveling to the Arabian peninsula or neighboring countries to report the cases to the CDC.
Doctors should also report patients with known diseases who don’t respond to appropriate treatment, the agency said its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Close contacts of a symptomatic patient should also be evaluated.
The novel virus, which is associated with severe respiratory illness with renal failure, was first recognized last September and caused alarm because it is genetically and clinically similar to the SARS virus, which caused hundreds of deaths worldwide.
Read more at the CDC website.
A new archaeological theory about Stonehenge
Centuries before the first massive sarsen stone was hauled into place at Stonehenge, the world’s most famous prehistoric monument may have begun life as a giant burial ground, according to a theory disclosed on Saturday.
More than 50,000 cremated bone fragments, of 63 individuals buried at Stonehenge, have been excavated and studied for the first time by a team led by archaeologist Professor Mike Parker Pearson, who has been working at the site and on nearby monuments for decades. He now believes the earliest burials long predate the monument in its current form.
The first bluestones, the smaller standing stones, were brought from Wales and placed as grave markers around 3,000BC, and it remained a giant circular graveyard for at least 200 years, with sporadic burials after that, he claims.
It had been thought that almost all the Stonehenge burials, many originally excavated almost a century ago, but discarded as unimportant, were of adult men. However, new techniques have revealed for the first time that they include almost equal numbers of men and women, and children including a newborn baby.
I’ll end with this “chart of the day” from Business Insider:
I hope that’s enough to get you started on the day. Please share your recommended reads in the comments. I look forward to clicking on your links!
Have a great weekend!!
I have to take my daughter to her dentist appointment in Atlanta this afternoon, so I am writing this post early…way early! If any of these links I have to share with you are repeats, sorry about that.
By now everyone has heard the shocking news out of Vatican City: Pope Benedict surprises world, steps down citing frailty
Pope Benedict surprised the world on Monday by saying he no longer had the mental and physical strength to cope with the demands of his ministry, becoming the first pontiff to step down since the Middle Ages and leaving his aides “incredulous”.
The 85-year-old German-born Pope, hailed as a hero by conservative Catholics and viewed with suspicion by liberals, said he had noticed that his strength had deteriorated over recent months.
A Vatican spokesman said the Pope had not resigned because of “difficulties in the papacy” and the decision had been a surprise, indicating that even his closest aides were unaware that he was about to quit. The Pope does not fear schism in the Church after his resignation, the spokesman said.
After examining his conscience “before God,” he said in a statement that reverberated around the world on the Internet and social media sites, “I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise” of his position as head of the world’s one billion Roman Catholics.
A profoundly conservative figure whose papacy was overshadowed by clerical abuse scandals, Benedict, 85, was elected by fellow cardinals in 2005 after the death of John Paul II.
Fox News had this picture up with its article reporting Benedict’s resignation: Pope Benedict to become first pontiff in 600 years to resign
Innit cute? Almost like he is taking his hat off in a goodbye salute…its a much better image for this story than the picture that Fox News had up earlier this week on a story about traditional gender roles.
This afternoon, author Jessica Valenti hilariously pointed out that a Fox News column about traditional gender roles in marriage is accidentally accompanied by a photograph of two lesbian newly-weds exchanging a kiss.
The FoxNews.com column in question was written by Suzanne Venker, the niece of social conservative hero Phyllis Schlafly, and previous author of the roundly-panned column on how it’s all women’s fault that there is a “battle of the sexes.”
Venker’s latest column, titled “To be happy, we must admit women and men aren’t ‘equal’” laments that in modern marriage, “men and women have no idea who’s supposed to do what,” all because of “feminists” who preach a “new way” of thinking about gender. Men and women now believe they can do the same things “without ramifications,” she wrote:
“Being equal in worth, or value, is not the same as being identical, interchangeable beings. Men and women may be capable of doing many of the same things, but that doesn’t mean they want to. That we don’t have more female CEOs or stay-at-home dads proves this in spades.”
Knowing the author and subject of the column, it’s pretty much a given that the featured image is an unintentional (but, indeed, hilarious) inclusion:
Turns out, that’s a stock image of Alaskan same-sex couple Stephanie Figarelle and Lela McArthur, who were wed atop the Empire State Building early last year…
Fox eventually took the picture down and replaced it with the generic stick figure image you usually see on restroom doors:
Oh well, it was funny while it lasted.
Now a couple of weather stories…
You need to click the links to these next articles because they are a bit too involved to quote from.
It happened again.
A major storm hit the northeast U.S. and the U.S. global model lagged badly behind the predictions of the European Center for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (ECMWF) . Just as with Sandy.
For a century, schoolchildren have been taught that the massive ocean current known as the Gulf Stream carries warm water from the tropical Atlantic Ocean to northwestern Europe. As it arrives, the water heats the air above it. That air moves inland, making winter days in Europe milder than they are in the northeastern U.S.
It might be time to retire that tidy story.
This next article makes me think of the scene from Monty Python’s Holy Grail…the one where the old lady is beating the cat against the wall…Do Not Try to Recreate This 16th-Century German Cat Bomb at Home
Illustration, cat and bird with rocket packs (University of Pennsylvania).Think you’re the first person to consider the offensive capabilities of cats and birds in a hypothetical war against zombies space invaders enemies of the Holy Roman Empire? Think again!
The Germans beat you to it by about 425 years, as proven by this painting, which BibliOdyssey found and The Appendix Journal posted to its Tumblr. The manuscript from which it was drawn was called “Feuer Buech,” which I’m guessing translates from the old German to English as “Fire Book.” It’s a “treatise on munitions and explosive devices, with many illustrations of the various devices and their uses.”
Well, I am not sure how they could get the cat to walk into the fortification on its own…it probably would need to get a little help from its friends:
Since we had a cat story, how about a dog story? According to the BBC: Dogs understand human perspective, say researchers
Dogs are more capable of understanding situations from a human’s point of view than has previously been recognised, according to researchers.
They found dogs were four times more likely to steal food they had been forbidden, when lights were turned off so humans in the room could not see.
This suggested the dogs were able to alter their behaviour when they knew their owners’ perspective had changed.
I wonder if a dog would alter their behavior because a human put a rocket backpack on it?*
The experiments had been trying to find whether dogs could adapt their behaviour in response to the changed circumstances of their human owners.
It wanted to see if dogs had a “flexible understanding” that could show they understood the viewpoint of a human.
*Note, my comment was snarky and not in the best of taste, but I needed to put some perspective on these stories. Animals have been used during wartime throughout history.
Check this out: 6 Insane Uses of Animals in Wartime (That Actually Worked) **
(**Uh, just a post script to my note….that link goes to a 2011 Cracked Magazine post, but they cite real articles and state true facts, go figure!)
Last story for you this afternoon, and it deals with a monster from the reptile world…no it is not another story about the Church, World’s largest crocodile dies in Philippines
February 11, 2013 Lolong, world’s largest saltwater crocodile in captivity, pictured in Bunawan, the Philippines, on September 21, 2011 Enlarge Lolong, a one-tonne, 6.17 metres crocodile believed to be the biggest to have ever been caught, is seen in a caged pen in the southern Philippine town of Bunawan, on September 21, 2011. Lolong has died, 17 months after the suspected man-eater was hunted down and put on display for tourists, according to his caretakers.
You may remember this beast from a story I shared with you a couple of years ago: Monster crocodile gets own park in Philippines
Philippine villagers examine the giant crocodile after its capture on September 4. A monster crocodile which is reputedly the world’s largest is the star attraction at its own nature park which opened in the Philippines this weekend, weeks after the beast’s capture.
That is one picture I haven’t forgotten, I am pretty sure you probably haven’t forgotten it either. Oooof!
This is an open thread…
This is going to start out as a self-centered, nostalgic post. I hope it doesn’t bore you too much. I’ll post some current news links down below.
Thirty-five years ago today, the Boston area was buried under about four-and-a-half feet of snow in the wake of the Blizzard of ’78. When the storm started on Feb. 6, we already had at least 2 feet of snow on the ground. When it was over, amounts ranging from 29-36 additional inches of the white stuff had fallen, depending on where you lived. We didn’t even know it was coming. Famed Channel 4 weatherman Don Kent had predicted just a normal snowfall.
By afternoon it was clear that this was a “storm of the century” situation. Kids were sent home from school and workers left work early. Unfortunately, there were hurricane-force winds and the the snow was falling 1-2 inches per hour. Hundreds of commuters were stranded on Route 128 (AKA I-95).
Here’s audio from WBZ radio’s Gary LaPierre and Gil Santos talking about the storm, followed by Don Kent’s updated weather forecast. Love those Boston accents!
Governor Michael Dukakis declared a state of emergency on Feb. 6th and then renewed it on Feb. 7. Finally he ordered the entire state shut down for a week. No one was allowed to drive except for emergency vehicles. Employers were ordered to pay their employees for the lost time.
Here’s part of a local report on the storm toward the end of the week. Check out the cardigan on Governor Dukakis!
In those days, I lived on a narrow street in Somerville on the second floor of a two-family house. When the storm was over, you couldn’t even tell there was a street. The snow stretched straight across from the front porch of our house to the front porch of the house across the way. There was no way anyone was going to come and clear of our little street, so we all went out and dug out the street as best we could. Toward the end of the week, the plows came and then later the loaders came to cart the snow away. There was no place to put it.
Anyone who lived through the Blizzard of ’78 remembers where they were and what they were doing when the storm started. It was a disaster, especially along the coast; but for those of us who didn’t lose our power and got a week off work or school it was kind of fun in a way. As always in disasters, people pulled together and found things to laugh about.
The reason why I’ve been thinking about that long-ago storm is that there’s a nor’easter bearing down on New England on Friday and Saturday. We’re already under a blizzard watch beginning Friday morning and going through late Saturday afternoon. From AccuWeather.com: Blizzard to Bury New England at the End of the Week
Two storms will merge quickly enough to bring colder air, heavy snow and increasing wind to New England. Some areas will be hit with an all-out blizzard and a couple of feet of snow….
Strong winds will not only cause white-out conditions but can result in massive drifts.
At the height of the storm, snow can fall at the rate of 2 to 4 inches per hour and may be accompanied by thunder and lightning.
Of course you never know with these nor’easters. It could be a snowpocalypse or it could be a complete bust.
The intense snowfall rate anticipated is making the forecast especially challenging. A matter of an hour of intense snow versus 8 hours of intense snow will make the difference between a manageable few inches and a debilitating few feet of of snow. Nearby to the southeast of this intense snow, rain will be falling for a time.
It probably won’t be as bad as the one in ’78, but it could drop more than a foot of snow and possibly more than two feet of snow on the Boston area. So wish me luck!
Now for a little current news.
I’m not sure why there has been such a sudden furore in the corporate media about Obama’s having claimed the power to assassinate American citizens, since we’ve known about this for years now. But I guess once The New York Times decides to discuss it, the rest of the media automatically follows suit.
It was the topic of the day yesterday, and after massive pressure President Obama has said he will let Congress see the legal memos justifying the policy. The LA Times reports:
WASHINGTON — President Obama, who has championed lethal drone strikes as a major part of U.S. counter-terrorism efforts, bowed to pressure Wednesday and agreed to allow the Senate and House intelligence committees to review classified legal memos used to justify a drone strike against a U.S. citizen in Yemen in 2011.
Senators had demanded for months to see the Justice Department opinions that provided the White House legal authority to order the targeted killing of Anwar Awlaki, a New Mexico native who became an Al Qaeda leader.
Complaints by several Democrats over not receiving the documents had cast a shadow on the Senate confirmation hearing Thursday of John Brennan, the White House counter-terrorism advisor tapped to be CIA director.
An administration official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss classified material, described the decision to release the classified Office of Legal Counsel material as “part of the president’s ongoing commitment to consult with Congress on national security matters.”
Joe Coscarelli at New York Magazine: Why the New York Times Outed a Secret U.S. Drone Base Now
When the New York Times revealed the location of the U.S.’s top-secret drone base in Saudi Arabia today, after months of keeping the information quiet, the other most important news outlets in the country sheepishly admitted they’d known about it, too. Along with the Washington Post, which said it had “an informal arrangement” with the government for more than a year, the Associated Press added last night that it “first reported the construction of the base in June 2011 but withheld the exact location at the request of senior administration officials.” Asked why the Times acted now, the paper’s managing editor Dean Baquet told public editor Margaret Sullivan it was simple: John Brennan’s big day.
“It was central to the story because the architect of the base and drone program is nominated to head the C.I.A.,” Baquet explained. Brennan’s confirmation hearings start tomorrow, and the Times decided it was important to discuss his pivotal role in U.S. operations in Yemen, where dozens of suspected terrorists have been targeted by drones, beforehand.
Previously, the government worried that the Saudis “might shut it down because the citizenry would be very upset,” so when the location “was a footnote,” the Times complied, Baquet said. “We have to balance that concern with reporting the news.” (Fox News, too, appears to have published the Saudi Arabian base location briefly in 2011 before switching to the more general “Arabian Peninsula.”)
Remember when the media was “the fourth estate?” Now they’re just part of the government. Amy Davidson has a thoughtful piece on the DOJ white paper: WHOM CAN THE PRESIDENT KILL?
About a third of the way into in a Department of Justice white paper explaining why and when the President can kill American citizens, there is a citation that should give a reader pause. It comes in a section in which the author of the document, which was given to members of the Senate Intelligence and Judiciary committees last year—and obtained by Michael Isikoff, of NBC, on Monday—says that this power extends into every country in the world other than the United States, well beyond those where we are engaged in hostilities. The reference is to an address that John R. Stevenson, a State Department legal adviser, gave before the Association of the Bar in New York in May, 1970, to justify the Nixon Administration’s incursion into Cambodia. Does that make everyone, or anyone, feel better about what the Obama Administration has decided it can do, or the extent to which it thought through the implications, unintended consequences, precedents, and random reckless damage it may be delivering with this policy?
The white paper is a summary of something that had long been sought: the Obama Administration’s legal analysis of its killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, an American citizen in Yemen who was hit by a drone strike in 2011. That memo has been described to reporters but never released. It needs to be. The question isn’t whether al-Awlaki, who worked with Al Qaeda, was an innocent—the question is at what point he crossed the line and became killable without any judicial proceedings, and when, by extension, the rest of us could be put on a “kill list.”
The whole article is well worth reading.
Here’s a little Karma for you: Go Daddy sued over revenge-porn site
Go Daddy has been named lead defendant in a Texas lawsuit filed by 17 women whose nude photos were published without their permission on a “revenge porn” website hosted by the Scottsdale-based company.
The lawsuit exposes an obscure Internet pornography niche that often involves jilted ex-boyfriends posting nude or semi-nude cellphone pictures of their former girlfriends, with each photo usually accompanied by personal information such as the woman’s name and city of residence.
Regardless of the lawsuit’s merits, legal analysts said, it’s unlikely the case will stand against Go Daddy, which merely hosted revenge-porn site Texxxan.com. Go Daddy hosts roughly 50 million websites.
What a shame. At least they’ll be inconvenienced by having to go to court and paying for legal representation.
John Nichols at the Nation discusses the Republican austerity agenda that is bringing down the Post Office.
The austerity agenda that would cut services for working Americans in order to maintain tax breaks for the wealthy—and promote the privatization of public services—has many faces.
Most Americans recognize the threats to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid as pieces of the austerity plan advanced by House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI), and the rest of the Ayn Rand–reading wrecking crew that has taken over the Republican Party. But it is important to recognize that the austerity agenda extends in every direction: from threats to Food Stamps and Pell Grants, to education cuts, to the squeezing of transportation funding.
But the current frontline of the austerity agenda is the assault on the US Postal Service, a vital public service that is older than the country. And it is advancing rapidly. On Wednesday, the Postal Service announced that Saturday first-class mail delivery is scheduled for elimination at the beginning of August—the latest and deepest in a series of cuts that threatens to so undermine the service that it will be ripe for bartering off to the private delivery corporations that have long coveted its high-end components.
“USPS executives cannot save the Postal Service by tearing it apart. These across-the-board cutbacks will weaken the nation’s mail system and put it on a path to privatization,” declares American Postal Workers Union president Cliff Guffey.
Obviously, it’s also another GOP effort to put labor unions out of business. Don’t they need to explain how they have the power to destroy a government entity that was enshrined in the Constitution by the founders of this country?
Have you heard about the crazy freak who’s running for the Senate seat in Georgia that will be vacated by Saxby Chambliss? Alex Parene: Paul Broun enters Georgia Senate race
You know that unfair caricature elite coastal liberals have of conservatives as a bunch of mouth-breathing idiot religious fanatic white Southern racists? Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga., is that guy we’re all thinking of, and we’re about to see if that caricature can make it to the U.S. Senate….
If recent history is any indication, Broun and all of his primary competitors — very likely a bunch of extremely conservative white men — will fight to see who can out-true conservative the others. In that fight, Broun has some huge advantages, because he is loudly and proudly stupid and extremist.
A couple of Broun’s greatest hits:
That’s all I have for you today. What are you reading and blogging about?
I’m having a hard time figuring out what’s going on with Hurricane Sandy, because whenever Washington DC and New York City are involved in a weather event, the national media only want to talk about what’s happening in those two cities. I noticed this last year when New York City had a rare blizzard and even though conditions were much worse up here in New England, we heard nothing about it on the national news.
From what I can see from some quick surfing, the effects are being felt very widely all along the East coast. I grabbed a few photos off the ‘net from various places.
More photos of the storm are collected at The Boston Globe
Here are a few recent news links on the storm:
Wall Street Journal: East Coast Braces as Sandy Strengthens
Fox News Latino:Hurricane Sandy Slams Northeast
The Boston Globe: Power outages at 172K as storm strikes
So, any of you Sky Dancers who are feeling the impact of this giant storm, please tell us what’s happening where you are. And whatever you do, please stay safe!
I’ve spent the day getting another tattoo…so I’m clueless as to what sort of things you have been discussing this afternoon. I also am in the dark about a lot of the news stories I just scanned over in my feeble attempt to catch up.
So, let’s just stick with some lighter news links tonight. I must admit, there was a part of me that wanted the Cruise/Holmes thing to hit the fan, I bet Katie knows some big Scientology secrets…well, if she did we will never find out because Cruise has reached a settlement. Attorney: Holmes, Cruise reach an agreement
I saw this next story the other day, it looks like it has been picked up by the news media: Cape Cod kayaker experiences close encounter with shark - You may have seen this image, it certainly is scary…like something out of a nightmare…or a Spielberg flick.
Photo by APWalter Szulc Jr., in kayak at left, looks back at the dorsal fin of an approaching shark at Nauset Beach in Orleans, Mass. in Cape Cod on Saturday, July 7, 2012.The giant dorsal fin sliced through the sparkling blue water, trailing an oblivious kayaker. Closer to shore, bathers splashed in the waves. One tourist shot video of the idyllic scene.The only thing missing was the ominous soundtrack from “Jaws,” the 1975 blockbuster about a great white shark eating its way through a seaside resort.That, and terrified hordes fleeing the water. But this came soon enough, after a paddleboarder spotted the huge fin behind the kayaker and shouted the one word sure to clear swimmers from the sea: “Shark!”Within seconds of Saturday afternoon’s shark sighting, Nauset Beach on Cape Cod resembled a scene from “Jaws,” as bathers rushed for the sand and kayaker Walter Szulc Jr. paddled faster to get away from the 12- to 14-foot great white shark tailing his tiny boat. “I had a deep swallow, that ‘Oh my God’ moment, then I just paddled,” he told the Boston Globe.
Makes you want to run out and take a dip doesn’t it?
There is supposed to be a break in the heat wave, Heat blamed for at least 46 deaths, relief on the way
Two weeks of scorching temperatures are being blamed for at least 46 deaths across the United States, and the sweltering heat has shattered more than 2,100 temperature records since July 1 – and it’s only three weeks into the summer.
While millions of Americans from the Midwest to the East Coast are getting a bit of a break Monday from the oppressive heat – thanks to a massive cold front pushing in from Canada – out West, they won’t be so lucky. A high-pressure system is already pushing temperatures well above 100 degrees in some cities.
The blistering heat has taken its toll on the nation’s infrastructure. Phillip Dugaw snapped a photo of his U.S. Airways flight in Washington, D.C., Friday. The trip was delayed for three hours after the plane’s wheels sank into the melting tarmac.
“The pilots went out and they were kind of chuckling that because of the heat,” Dugaw said, “the plane had sunk several inches into the asphalt.”
From Madison, Wis., to Minneapolis, Minn., roadways buckled under the scorching sun. It was so hot in Maryland, the Metro track expanded, forced three train cars to derail and triggered big delays.
See, I thought that headline was a little too optimistic, no mention of any cool down…unless I just missed it…nope, nothing in that CBS story mentions a cool down. Hmmmm…
January to June 2012 was the warmest first half of any year on record for the contiguous United States, according to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The average temperature during that period was at 52.9 degrees F, which is 4.5 degrees above the typical average. Twenty-eight states east of the Rockys were had record warm temperatures, with an additional 15 states in the top 10 for warm temperatures. Every state across the contiguous U.S. had warmer than average temperatures, except Washington.
Here it is, 8pm EST and check out the temps:
Try and stay cool tonight, it looks like it will be another scorcher tomorrow.
This is an open thread.