Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Lighthouse of the Week, December 10-16, 2017: Robben Island, South Africa

South African lighthouses were so appealing last week, ending up with the Cape Agulhas light as the featured location, that I figured I might as well go back there this week.

I was going to go with Donkin Hill, but after I saw one image from Robben Island, I decided Donkin Hill has to wait a week.

The reason I chose Robben Hill is the amazing view of Cape Town across the water that it possesses.

(And the fact that this island is where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for many long years.)

(And the fact that this was the first location of a coastal light signal in all of South Africa.)

Cape Town Heritage:  Robben Island Lighthouse
"The Robben Island lighthouse was built in 1864 by Joseph Flack. It is 18 metres (59 ft) high and was converted to electricity in 1938. It is the only South African lighthouse to utilise a flashing light instead of a revolving light. The light is visible for 24 nautical miles."

More info:
Robben Island (from Lighthouses of South Africa, a relatively ancient Web site)

The classic shot

Just the lighthouse

The lighthouse, the island, and Cape Town, all on a book cover

Just the view

Fossils (not volcanoes) under the City of Angels

We know from what's gotten trapped and then recovered from the La Brea Tar Pits that there were lots of Ice Age animals wandering around what is now the environs of greater Los Angeles.

Now, as the subway gets extended, they're finding even more Ice Age fossil specimens underground. Fortunately, not hot molten magma, no matter what Anne Heche and Tommy Lee Jones think. Of course, that's geologically impossible.  LA has enough trouble with regular fires anyway.

Los Angeles subway work uncovers array of Ice Age fossils (Update)

That's cool. For the record, I am not planning to ride that subway. Ever.

That one missed us by a few seconds

Asteroid 2017 VL2 zoomed terrifyingly close to Earth and NASA didn’t see it coming

NASA Fails To Spot Whale-Sized Asteroid That Skimmed Past Earth

It's never comforting when we find out about a big-enough-to-cause-problems asteroid that missed Earth, after it missed Earth -- and didn't miss by much.

And as a wise sage once said, "The one that's going to get us is the one we don't see coming."

Sobering thought, that.

(Unfortunately, after what Donald Trump did with respect to Jerusalem, our general chances of getting killed in a random lone-wolf terror attack, or an organized automatic weapon gunning-down, have gone up, and that's far more likely than an asteroid strike, even if it would kill fewer people.)

'Tis the season for foxy lingerie

Play on words there -- Megan Fox shows off lingerie, and the benefits of having both a personal trainer (I'm pretty sure) and the dedication to get in shape after multiple childbirths.

Pretty darned amazing, and just in time for the holidays.

 Article: (includes a video!)

'Tis the season! Megan Fox shows off her incredible figure in lacy lingerie as she smolders in new holiday campaign for Frederick's Of Hollywood

Megan's Frederick's of Hollywood collection

Megan Fox Spotlight from Frederick's of Hollywood

And you would be expecting a picture, too, I believe.

The danger of investigating Mueller

E.J. Dionne of the Washington Post really lays it on the line here.

The attacks on Mueller push us closer to the precipice
"Only recently, it was widely assumed that if Trump fired Mueller, many Republicans would rise up to defend our institutions. Now, many in the party are laying the groundwork for justifying a coverup. This is a recipe for lawlessness."
And terror.

Not terrorism. The kind of terror where normal people are scared out of their wits.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

"Supergirl" borrows a line from "Superman II"

In the four-part superhero crossover saga called "Crisis on Earth X" just aired on the CW network (which was very well done and had several moments of believable peril, as well as emotional drama), many of the characters had to confront their lookalike alter-egos (or doppelgangers, if you prefer) from the alternate universe.  And there were a ton of "Easter eggs" and homages to movies and TV shows from the past.

This one was my favorite.

England crashes in the Ashes (2nd Test)

On Day 5 of the second Ashes Test match, this being the famous five-match cricket series regularly played between Australia and England, England was poised for a heroic offensive attack that would be the stuff of legend, scoring a record number of runs in a massive comeback to turn the tables on the Aussies and take the match.

Instead, they got stuffed.  Needing 176 runs, they only got 51, and Australia celebrated going up 2-0.  If they win the next Test match, the Ashes urn will be theirs, and there will be a lot less interest in the last two matches.  So I hope England wins the next one, to keep things interesting for a longer time.  But England just doesn't seem to have offensive depth.

I'll bet we see a couple of personnel changes for the Brits in the next match.

Mitchell Starc takes five wickets as Australia blow England away on day five of second Test to secure 120-run victory and move into 2-0 series lead