March07 logo
May 31, 2022

May 29, 2022 Storefront and mural in Chinatown SF
Back from 24 hours in the City; this was somewhere in Chinatown. Transportation in/out via Megabus affiliate FlixBus.

May 26, 2022
      Posted the patch from the 79th Space Shuttle mission here recently. Some collect these (although for me it's the stickers, rather than the embroidered patches), and I built a huge table of shuttle mission info with these graphics as the key (and checkboxes which indicate those in my collection). What's their source? According to the first of Ten Things You Didn't Know About NASA Patches, a few months before their launch, Gordo Cooper had a chat with Gemini 5 partner Pete Conrad and said they'd never been in a military unit that didn’t have patches. They decided to fix it. So is the answer simply, the military? They've had flags and insignia for centuries, but in this 1961 article by Colonel Ralph R. Burr, Symbols Rally the Spirit -‌- The Beginnings of Heraldry in the Civil War, the original unit patches were circles of red cloth, the Kearny Patch, sewn first onto US Army caps in 1862. One other note from the Ten Things, A-B Emblems was where Gordon Cooper went to produce the first 100 NASA mission patches for Gemini 5. Since 1971, all NASA mission patches have been made by A-B Emblem, which also produces patches for the military, the Boy, and the Girl Scouts. A-B Emblem also produced the original NASA logo, back in 1962. Note that some entity has since filled in that NASA void; appropriately crude Mercury and pre-Gemini 5 mission insignia certainly exist today.

May 25, 2022
Today, just three YouTubes.

May 23, 2022

May 18, 2022
Make Eye Contact the Residents
Reading in Slate, about How the media botches car crash coverage where pedestrians and bicyclists are involved, we learn that the Colorado Department of Transportation had a campaign featuring employees walking along Denver streets wearing giant eyeballs, which naturally makes one think of the Residents. Did I really see them perform, in 1986? What a weird show that was. Only three were wearing their eyeball-helmets then; one had recently been stolen. Another opportunity presents itself this very weekend, in the City.
  • In which regions of the Fatherland do they call Brötchen Semmeln? Or other things? An entry in the Atlas of Everyday German has a handy map. Aber alles auf Deutsch, natürlich.

  • The BBC reports on the revival of a forgotten American fruit, the pawpaw. I'm familiar with the pawpaw-adjacent cherimoya, but I've never had a pawpaw. Confuse them with May apples, actually (although I really shouldn't -‌- the former is a tree, the latter, barely a bush). Both are back East plants which don't grow out here.

May 13, 2022

May 11, 2022
Orson Welles (1915-1985) really got around. For today, three videos of him, You'll recall another character from Catch-22, Major Major. According to Wikipedia the reason a US five-star is called a General of the Army (instead of Field Marshal, like in other countries) was so George Marshall wouldn't be called Marshal Marshall.

May 7, 2022

May 5, 2022

May 2, 2022

May 1, 2022

April 30, 2022 STS-79 mission patch
Looks like the end of a beautiful relationship. According to Bloomberg, Russia Will Quit International Space Station Over Sanctions.
(archive link)

April 29, 2022

April 27, 2022
  • "The more gas your SUV uses, the more foreigners I have to kill." Those great posters, from just after the turn of the century, where did they go? Ah, here they are, at Propaganda Remix.

  • Without the office, how will I pretend to work? From the "Style" section of the Washington Post (which was known as "For And About Women" back in the day): The pandemic was hard on office suck-ups. Now they're back, and ready to schmooze. The article's authors, Roxanne and Ashley, seem unfamiliar with a 1996 book I found life-changing: Neanderthals At Work, by Albert J. Bernstein, who divided everyone On-the-job into three groups: Rebels, Game-Players and Believers. The last group has faith, surely their hard work will win them raises and promotions, but the Game Players know that's not true, one advances by learning and following their specific workplace's unwritten rules. (The Rebels know secrets, so they needn't play the game -- for example Wally, of Dilbert, is the only one there who understands the financial software.)
    (archive link)

  • At FiveThirtyEight, Why Being Anti-Science is now part of many Rural Americans' Identity. Many rural people disdain anything perceived to be urban -‌- you know, all that Latte-Drinking, Sushi-Eating, and Volvo-Driving, according to linguist Geoffrey Nunberg. I'd lived such a sheltered life up until I worked as a laborer with a masonry company as a summer job, in college, when I came up hard against this anti-book-learnin' mind-set, in the career brick-layers.

April 24, 2022
Turkish LampThe Grand Bazaar in İstanbul is a vast place; this brief, CNN Travel video barely scratches the surface, focusing on a rug seller -‌ but what I found most intriguing there were the nut-sellers with big open burlap bags of all sorts of hazelnuts (not so popular here, but among my favorites (note: they've gotta be roasted)); the wide variety of lokum available; and the lamps crafted from shards of tinted glass. Spotted this one in a shop called Lokum, in San Luis Obispo, apparently a new branch of the original, in Santa Barbara. So what is Lokum? More familiarly known as Turkish Delight, perhaps (but if you're now thinking of that weird Fry's sweet from the UK, you've been fed a red herring). A domestic source, from Washington State, celebrating their 100-year anniversary, calls their version Cotlets.

Bonus: Turkish Delight at XKCD

April 22, 2022

April 21, 2022
Back from a long weekend driving. I remember the novelty, decades ago now, when we first heard that the person taking your order at the drive-thru might not actually be on-site, could possibly be on another continent. I encountered contact-free check-in at the motel office in San Luis Obispo, where upon entry I realized, nobody was there. Instead, greeted by a friendly voice from the terminal on the counter, the clerk actually in the Philippines (although her Zoom background was a photo of the motel). ID scanning, credit card swiping, authorising signatures, key-card issuing, all effected through peripherals of the terminal.

And hardly anybody wearing masks, the entire trip -- seems the plague is over. In California.

April 16, 2022

April 14, 2022

April 12, 2022
  • At Amusing Planet, Twisted Skyscrapers Around The World, which I reached looking into the Evolution Tower in Moscow, noticed (as it reminded me of certain crafts involving popsicle sticks) in Peter Zeihan's excellent How Russia Will Die.

  • Religious web-sites carry more malware than porn sites...according to research from security firm Symantec.

  • Fascinating (if you're of a certain age) -‌- the Dave Clark Five at Lost Bands of Yesteryear. I didn't get into rock&roll until a couple years after the Beatles' first appearance on Ed Sullivan (which I missed) but later that year, in the waning days of 4th grade, I remember sitting in class with girls in the un-air-conditioned June heat who were writing both of those bands' (and their members') names on their arms, with ball-point pens.

April 9, 2022

April 7, 2022
Then I began to live!
Random panel from an EC SuspenStory from 1951, "Premium Overdue."

April 3, 2022
Note that if you're thwarted, acccessing these (and many other articles behind paywalls) they can now be seen via Or try copying the URL into the Internet Archive (they're not the same).

April 2, 2022

March 31, 2022

I've always wanted an analog night clock, in its simplest form, two concentric rings of twelve little light-bulbs, with maybe a central dot for reference. I remember in middle school drawing up schematics of how such a clock might be wired, using Christmas lights, after seeing one depicted in a Bedroom of the Future somewhere; but I never tackled the construction -‌- until now. A few days ago the Dot Clock appeared, unearthing all these old memories, and its unintuitive 24-hour-dial prodded me into action. While using Processing to realize my dream, modifying somebody's clock sketch example, I discovered the same thing was possible with HTML5 in a browser (in a completely different way), using stylesheets and some Javascript, so I've been heads-down focused, coming up with what you see here. The project really enhanced my CSS skill-set (I hadn't touched this site's stylesheet in 15 years) but I still don't get how that structure of nested <div> tags makes it happen. It's also available, all by itself on a dedicated Clock page, or just click the dial above. Click it again, to resize. (Sorry, this probably doesn't work if you're reading this on your cell.)

Soundtrack for today, from Coldplay.

March 30, 2022

March 25, 2022
Do you remember, back in '62, When Linus got glasses? In her blog of the Peanuts Museum in Santa Rosa, Schulz' widow recalled questions received about them (and a cassette tape), in 2014. And it wasn't just her Sweet Babboo seeing the ophthalmologist, around the time of their first Christmas special -‌- Sally Brown's lazy eye had her wearing an eye-patch (those strips begin here) and that sequence wound up in a 1968 book, Security Is An Eye Patch. Linus Gets Glasses was made into a book also. And speaking of Jean Schulz, did you know she was the target of a kidnapping attempt, in 1988? Good Grief. Feb 13, 1962 PEANUTS last panel: Snoopy wearing Linus' glasses (detail)

March 20, 2022

March 17, 2022
flag of the Sami people
Here's a good flag -- it's of the Sámi, the Nordic indigeneous we used to call Laplanders. One of the best of the 'slow videos' is two hours of a sleigh ride through their snowy world.

March 15, 2022

March 13, 2022

March 10, 2022
  • Another new search machine: Marginalia Search, an independent DIY search engine which focuses on non-commercial content, and attempts to show you sites you perhaps weren't aware of.

March 8, 2022

My students would always tell me, March 8th, it's Womens' Day, and I would explain the holiday is little-known in the US. I would ask, how to celebrate it? It's my opinon all of the females should get the day off, with pay. Wouldn't that teach the guys, if it became really widepread? Reminds me of another extreme holiday, Shut It All Off Night, no electric power for 24 hours, reboot everything. Never happen, but just imagine.

March 6, 2022

March 4, 2022

*   *   *
Rash.log Archives:
complete index of archive pages, going back to early 2000.
Please visit the muthership: banner
(and its affiliate
purveyor of unique games)

Home | Prose | Links | Misc | Contact