Here’s the No 10 bus stop closest to my house, that I frequently take to go to downtown.
Oaxaca (say ‘wa-HAH-ka’) is in southwestern Mexico and best known for its Zapotec and Mixtec indigenous peoples and cultures.
Look for a Grumpy Cat helium balloon carried by the child in the bottom middle of the picture.
As it happens, helium was discovered 150 years ago to the day, on August 18, 1868, by the French astronomer, Jules Janssen, during a total solar eclipse. There is a strong case to be made that helium balloons be banned.
We have a limited helium supply in Earth’s crust; we cannot manufacture it, and we need it for superconductors and MRI scanners. So putting helium in balloons is a frivolous waste. Once helium ends up in the atmosphere, it is lost forever into space – it is too light to be contained in the atmosphere by gravity.
.. in the Manafort* case. They have been deliberating for two days, and will resume on Monday. Court-watchers say that if the deliberations drag on into Wednesday, there would be cause for concern.
*Paul Manafort (69), Trump’s ex-campaign manager. The jury is deciding his guilt or innocence on 18 tax and bank fraud charges, related to his consulting work for pro-Russia politicians in Ukraine.
The evidence presented against Manafort is very strong. His defence lawyers really did not have much to work with. So why did Manafort not make a plea deal with Special Investigator Robert Mueller? is the question. He very well might spend the rest of his life in jail.
President Trump could offer him a pardon (which would be pretty outrageous, to be sure).
Asked about it, Trump said ‘I don’t talk about that. I think it’s very sad what they’ve done to Paul Manafort’.
Below is the used LEGO Castle #6075 set from 1981 that I had bought from a Craigslist seller in Tacoma.
I had to fill in quite a few yellow brick pieces of my own. I bought it knowing there were no knight or horse minifigures. (Aw). The red drawbridge is also missing its pulley and rope, used to draw it close.
Fun as it was, to build this set, it’s really outdated. The modern medieval sets from LEGO use gray bricks and not yellow, roof tiles, and add in a lot more detail to the castle walls and roofs, and to the minifigure characters (see the picture of ‘Kingdom’s Joust’).
Oops! I realized today, my library books are overdue, better take them back. I hopped on the bus to the Seattle Central Library downtown. Mission accomplished as far as returning the books, I meandered through the treasure trove of magazine racks on the 6th floor. Hmm, here’s Weyerhaeuser World magazine. I worked there for four years, when I first came to the Seattle area, so let’s see what happened in 1969.
Check it out below: a report of a student protest at the University of Washington here in Seattle. The Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) protested against American imperialism – in the time of the Vietnam war and all that, after all. This protest was specifically against Weyerhaeuser’s ‘exploitation of 12 million black South Africans’. I’m not sure if the workers deemed not to be paid fair wages, or if it was about their working conditions. It could have been both. For a long time in those years, wage earners in South Africa, especially in the mining industry, were treated very unfairly.
Anyway: the SDS splintered up and disbanded at the end of 1969, but was an important influence on student activist groups in the decades that followed. A new incarnation of SDS was founded in 2006. My advice to young people: protesting is fine and well, but the nature of the beast is : youreally have to vote. Only 40% of eligible voters typically vote in midterm elections. For young people, it could be as low as half that again: 20%.
Trump’s ex-senior advisor Omarosa* must have struck a nerve, the way he viciously lashed out at her, in a tweet this morning. Who talks like this? Is this the way a President should talk? asked journalists of Press Secretary Huckabee-Sanders. Her answer was basically that Trump is an equal-opportunity insulter.
*Her full name is Omarose Manigault-Newman. She became famous on Trump’s Apprentice reality TV show. She was fired from the White House in December 2017. It turned out she has a recording of the firing, done by Chief of Staff John Kelly in the Situation Room. She says she has other recorded conversations, as well. She has also just published a book called ‘Unhinged’ .. a reference to Trump, of course.
The popcorn movie ‘The Meg*’ is out on the circuit. Even though I have not seen it yet, it’s fun to check the movie’s trailer online, and the posters for it. The movie is a co-production with China, and features actress Li Bingbing alongside Jason Statham.
*Short for Carcharodon megalodon, a really, really big shark (60 ft/ 20m) that roamed the oceans until about 2.6 million years ago.
By Saturday morning the fire of Friday night’s plane crash on Ketron Island had been put out. It was hard to get to the wreckage and the fire, but a little rain fell on Friday and the fire did not spread.
By Sunday evening the remains of the young man (Richard Russell, 29 years old), as well as the flight recorder, had been retrieved from the crash site.
The early take is that depression over financial troubles, was a major factor in the tragedy.
Here is one more picture from Volunteer Park on Friday, of the Conservatory building. The Victorian-style structure is said to be modeled loosely on The Crystal Palace in London’s Hyde Park. It was one of the first buildings to be erected on the young City of Seattle’s Volunteer Park grounds, and completed in 1912.
The Space Needle’s five year, $100 million project is complete. The original structure is still very sound, and not a lot of structural work was needed.
Instead, new floor-to-ceiling glass panels were installed, staircases were widened, and on the observation deck, floor-to-sky structural glass was added. The erstwhile solid steel floor is now ten layers of glass, designed so that the top layer can be replaced, once it gets a little worn out and scratched.
P.S. A bizarre event started to unfold at 7.32 pm tonight at Sea-Tac airport. A suicidal 29-year old man (ground service agent) took off in an empty Bombardier Q-400 from Horizon Air (a turboprop plane that can carry 76 passengers). It scared the daylights out of everyone; two F-15 jets were scrambled from Oregon, and tried to get him to land. He died when he crashed the airplane on Ketron island in south Puget Sound, some 30 miles from the airport. Miraculously, no buildings were damaged, and no one else was hurt.
Vice President & Trump Pleaser Mike Pence talked about Trump’s proposed Space Force today. Trump wants the new proposed branch of the military (the 6th, after Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard) in operation by 2020. Um. It’s a moon shot alright. 1. The new Space Force would have to be authorized by Congress. 2. How about a Cyber Force first, to shore up our cybersecurity? 3. Where will the money come from? The United States is 20 big Apples (trillions) in debt, and will now add another every year (Trump tax cuts). 4. Impeachment proceedings may very well start in 2019.
So .. 90 days now, until the 2018 midterm elections. Political pundits point to all kinds of special elections the past 18 months, as evidence that a lot of Republicans will be run out of office (enough to make the Democrats the majority in the House of Representatives). In many cases where Republicans had a 10 or 15% advantage before Trump’s election, that is now all gone. In places that used to be a toss-up – well, those will go blue (Democratic).
Time is running out for Special Investigator Mueller to make some radical moves ahead of the election. If he had not issued a report or more indictments by Labor Day (Sept. 3), he will have to wait until the election is over (Nov. 6).
In the meantime, the Trump Administration scandals never stop. Today: early Trump 2016 endorser, New York Republican Congressman Chris Collins. He was indicted for brazen insider trading crimes. (Got confidential news of a failed drug trial, developed by a company he had shares in, and was a board member of*. Frantically dialed up his family and told them to sell their shares).
*Just an aside: why are members of Congress allowed to sit on boards of publicly traded companies?
I wanted to know where the phrase ‘the dog days of summer’ comes from – and if there is a date range associated with it. Well, it is a reference to the star system Sirius, and yes, there is a date range related to it.
We had great Mexican food at Poquito’s here on Pike Street on Capitol Hill. The restaurant opened in 2011. The neon sign outside is much older and from the 1980’s. It was salvaged in South Seattle and given a second life after it had been taken down from a restaurant in Seattle’s Greenwood district.
Well, it’s August. The warmest part of summer is probably behind us here in Seattle. It’s been a bad week for Paul Manafort, ex-Trump campaign manager. His trial started and the prosecutor showed his lavish taste in clothing and decorating, and today, that he cheated with his tax returns to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Trump defended Manafort in tweets, and still tries to rally his base supporters with claims of the ‘Russian Hoax’. This week, the press was called ‘the enemy of the people’ by the President of the United States. Jim Acosta from CNN engaged White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee-Sanders about it, wanting her to disavow what Trump said; gave her a second chance. Nope. She could not do it.
Someone noted that the media should simply stop covering Trump’s rallies, and not even show clips on television. Send a pool reporter and report the idiotic things and lies spouted by Trump in print. Done.
Apple Inc. has a market cap of $1 trillion .. wow. Once, there was Exxon, General Electric, IBM and Microsoft, at the top of the heap, but Apple made it to $1 trillion first. (PetroChina briefly hit $1 trillion in 2007 on the Shanghai Stock Exchange, only to plummet to less than $260 billion by the end of 2008. According to Bloomberg, this represents the largest destruction of shareholder wealth in world history).
So we will see what happens. China is a huge market for iPhones, but a risky one. And will Americans be willing to shell out ever more for a new iPhone? Another thought: Maybe – 30 years from now – a company that builds fusion reactors (that produce 100% clean & cheap energy), will be the world’s most valuable.
2017 was a bad wildfire year in California, and 2018 is probably going to be worse. One of the state’s worst wildfires ever, rage near Redding, home to 92,000 people. More than 1,000 homes have now been burnt to the ground, and 6 people (including two firefighters) have lost their lives.
FOBO is Fear of Better Options. FODA is Fear of Doing Anything. Both are quandaries a decision-maker may find himself or herself in, when faced with lots of options. These states of mind definitely apply to me sometimes!
1.For everyday things, I do what I call “Ask the Watch.” I whittle something down to two options and then assign each item to a side of my watch. Then I look down and see where the second hand is at that moment. Decision made. It sounds silly, but if you try it — asking the universe — you will thank me.
2. For the big things, I try to think like a venture capitalist. I write everything down on the topic — pros, cons, and so on — and I read it out loud. That process is basically like writing an investment memo for a V.C. investment, but in this case the investment is of your time, your money, your energy.