Monday, January 28, 2013

Semi-new bikini pictures of Michelle Keegan

I guess I'm briefly on a tack where I post more female-admiration posts than on subjects of doom-and-gloom, like climate change, space junk, Republicans in Congress, government shutdowns (hint: they're related), pollution in China, and bluefin tuna extinction.  That may not last, there are too many gloom-and-doom subjects to be gloomy and doomy about.

So bear with me and just let me link to the some pictures (latest from November 2012) of the extraordinary Michelle Keegan of the UK, actress in the Coronation Street soap opera.  I used to admire the ability of U.S. soaps to find nubile and lovely young actresses (many times regardless of acting ability, but some of they could act pretty well, too), but with U.S. soaps declining in favor of nighttime dramas like "The Vampire Diaries" and "Arrow", which do well with the babes, I guess I'll just have to let the Brits find the nubiles, and Michelle is one of the most curvy.

See Chelle's on sea shore (OK, that's a little over the top)

A lot more from here (this makes me happy; definitely Wow, but I would have liked one more picture from the rear, because the one is Yummy)

From July, Fabulous magazine cover (she doesn't look very happy, though she's still in a bikini)

On the inside (but she still doesn't look happy)

Sunday, January 27, 2013

There aren't many better

I always admired George Clooney for being able to date Elisabetta Canalis.  It's hard to believe he could move on, but moving on to Stacy Keibler is not too hard to envision.

Still, Elisabetta is built RIGHT for showing off lingerie.  And her tush is exquisite, too.

Elisabetta Canalis and her saucy lingerie campaign (Lormar)

Floating gobs of lava foam

That is just so cool.  I've seen footage of pillow lava forming underwater, I've seen footage of erupting underwater volcanoes, I've seen lots and lots of footage of deep sea hot water vents.

But this is a new kind of underwater eruption - one that forms pumice (that bubbly rock that floats) as a bubbly froth of molten foam.  However you say it, it is just so cool.

They call it a "tangaroan" eruption.

A rock that floats is cool anyway.  Sorry for so many 'cools', but science is great!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

OK, I knew this was going to happen

As long as Michael Bublé stayed on good marital terms with his extraordinarily desirable wife Luisana Lopilato - and there were no indications of any trouble in their paradise - the odds that she would become the bearer of their progeny keep going up.

So it is with no surprise and plenty of vicarious appreciation that I congratulate the both of them on their good fortune.

Michael Bublé and Wife Luisana Lopilato Expecting Their First Child!

This may affect her Ultimo lingerie job.  At least for awhile.   (I recommend the video, and after watching it, you'll probably want to congratulate Michael as well).

Zahia Dehar sighting

Thank goodness for the Daily Mail, or I wouldn't be able to keep up with Zahia Dehar developments.

... former call girl Zahia Dehar poses as a sexy shepherdess....

These pictures have to be experienced to be appreciated.  Here's one.

Back to nature is good, I always say.

(Original link to this one - worth it)

Space junk is a problem, too (as if I didn't know)

I write a lot about climate change in this blog, and that's because I'm an employee of and a proponent for the nuclear power community.  But climate change is not the only human-caused problem I keep track of.  Another major and growing problem, with similar mitigation difficulties, is space debris, aka space junk.  If one checks back at my undangerous 2013 predictions, I predict that there will be a major space junk or satellite collision this year.   My odds of this prediction being right go up every year (as I said). 

This new article from by Leonard David is a very good discussion of how bad the problem is getting, and how little we might be able to do it about it.

Space junk menace:  how to deal with orbital debris

"NASA and the international community, Kessler said, "have already done enough research to know that the environment will continue to get worse if we continue on the same path … the only environmental issue to be resolved is how quickly the environment in various regions deteriorates."

However, Kessler said that current mitigation practices are insufficient, even with 100 percent compliance. Missing in action is a plan to determine what do about the predicted worsening space environment, he said — that is, how to stop or reverse the trend of increased debris resulting from increased collisions."
One idea:

Unfortunately we don't have any Space Shuttles working any more, so this idea won't fly.

World Bank president gets urgent on climate change

The World Bank president Jim Yong Kim wrote an editorial in the Washington Post (and probably appearing elsewhere) in which he well expressed the urgency of climate change - and the need for the world to get to work on addressing it seriously NOW.

Make climate change a priority

"As economic leaders gathered in Davos this week for the World Economic Forum, much of the conversation was about finances. But climate change should also be at the top of our agendas, because global warming imperils all of the development gains we have made.

If there is no action soon, the future will become bleak. The World Bank Group released a report in November that concluded that the world could warm by 7.2 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius) by the end of this century if concerted action is not taken now"
The report is pretty good.  The news it conveys is not.

Damn the skeptics, full speed ahead.  (There are 1,227 comments on this editorial.  I didn't bother reading them.)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

So much for the Australian

Well, I predicted Caroline Wozniacki would win a Grand Slam this year.  Not in the Australian, then.

But Sloane Stephens bouncing an injured Serena bodes well for the other juggernauts in the tournament, Sharapova and Azarenka, who look to be on a No. 1 vs. No. 2 collision course now for the final.    Except for the fact that Stephens is definitely cast well in the role of giant-slayer.

Could make for an interesting distaff weekend Down Under.

Get attacked by a shark and get written up

I found this article about a cookie-cutter shark attack on a great white shark interesting:

What bit this Great White Shark?  A cookie-cutter

But I found this linked article about a swimmer that got bit by a cookie-cutter even MORE interesting.  Especially because said biting constituted a scientifically interesting subject.

The real cookie monster

Here's the reference, grabbed from the above article:

Honebrink, Randy, Buch, Robert, Galpin, Robert, & Burgess, George H. (2011). First documented attack on a live human by a cookiecutter shark (Squaliformes, Dalatiidae: Isistius sp.) Pacific Science, 65 (3), 365-374 : 10.2984/65.3.365

"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy"

Monday, January 21, 2013

How low can they go?

It's gratifying and unsurprising that the Republicans in Congress are held in low-and-getting-lower esteem by the general public.  Maybe if that keeps gnawing at them, they'll ultimately realize that what they're doing is both bad for THEM and also for the country at large.

Poll finds high negative marks for GOP

"The poll found that 49 percent of respondents have a negative view of the GOP, the highest negative marks for the party in the poll since 2008. Just 26 percent said they have a positive view of the Republican Party."
Gee, I wonder why?

They can see everything up there

One satellite in orbit around Mars sees the tracks of the Curiosity rover (and even the rover itself).


Saturday, January 19, 2013

PGP (Pretty Good Player) going to LA Galaxy

With Beckham done, the LA Galaxy had to get another British star - and while Frank Lampard may not have the star power and the Spice Girls wife that Becks had, he's a really good player.

Lampard, LA Galaxy transfer deal

"Lampard might not be the celebrity that Beckham or Kaka is, but he marries significant popularity with plenty of industry.

Despite aging 34-year-old legs, Lampard has been one of Chelsea's leading scorers this season with seven goals in 14 appearances. In fact, Lampard is arguably the greatest scoring central midfielder in Premier League history, notching 194 goals in 584 appearances in England."
That ain't bad.

And his current fiance, Christine Bleakley, is cute, too, but they can't get married until he figures out where he's playing next, and where. 

And his ex-girlfriend, Elen Rives, models lingerie.   I think he'll make a fine player in the U.S.

Expand your universe, and your mind

How it was done:
Absolutely stunning 3D view of a cosmic cloud

Here's another one, of the Lagoon Nebula, which might be even better:

How to make a hockey goalie feel foolish

This is how -- make a silly penalty shot that goes in. (For some reason, to see the whole thing, you might have to click the Play button again after the first view of the goal).

Why oh why couldn't this show be on HBO?

Show about housewives turned prostitutes?  Check.

Starring Jennifer Love Hewitt?  Check.

Lots of lingerie shots?  Check.

She's going to be completely naked this season?  Check and check and check and rewind...


"But in the second season of the Lifetime show, Jennifer will strip completely... according to British newspaper, The Sun.  They write that bosses on the cable channel will 'blur out' Hewitt's more intimate parts and that she is hitting the gym four times a week to make sure she's in tip top form."
Calls for a tape leak, I think...

Well, I guess I'll just have to be content with this, and think that it's not that far from this to nothing.

Looking at the Aussie Open

Tennis, anyone?  So far, Robson's take-out of Kvitova has been the biggest news, but she got bounced by Sloane Stephens of the U.S.   I gotta follow Wozniacki because I predicted she'd win a Slam this year;  but double-bagel Sharapova is looking really good -- were it not for the persistent presence of Serena Williams, she'd probably be the oddsmaker's favorite to win the women's side.

Some interesting matches coming up:  Woz against Kuznetsova;  Serena against Ovi's fiance (and I have to get BACK to that subject); and Ivanovic v. Radwanska.  I still hope and wish Ana could get back in the championship conversations. 

On the men's side, it's business as usual for the Big Three, Djokovic, Murray, and Federer, who are set to get into the semis.  I suppose that it's likely Ferrer will be the fourth, with the only possibility that Berdych gives Djokovic a test.   Murray isn't looking superb, but he's still pretty good.

Some articles about this:

Robson pulls off shock win in thriller with ex-Wimbledon champ Kvitova  (Robson's only 18)

Wozniacki does enough

More concerned about titles than bagels, Sharapova sets up clash with Venus Williams (who she also defeated)

The No. 2-ranked Sharapova overwhelmed Japan’s Misaki Doi in 47 minutes Wednesday, even less time than she’d needed to beat fellow Russian Olga Puchkova two days earlier in her first competitive match of 2013.

No woman had posted back-to-back 6-0, 6-0 wins at a Grand Slam since 1985.

Yet it didn’t excite the 25-year-old Sharapova, who wasn’t even alive when Wendy Turnbull did it at the Australian Open.

“It’s not really the statistic I want to be known for,” Sharapova said in her most matter-of-fact way. “I want to be known for winning Grand Slam titles, not that I won two matches 6-0, 6-0.”

If you can't win honestly, try to win dishonestly

As the article notes, Pennsylvania made an attempt to do this before the 2012 election, but didn't make it.  But as long as Republicans have aspirations to be a ruling minority (and they do, they do), they will keep trying to make ways that their fringe voice can be in power. And that's SCARY.

 GOP's new campaign strategy?  Double down on gerrymandering

"The GOP's redistricting successes enabled Republicans to maintain their House majority, even  though the Democrats got more votes. If every state awarded its electoral votes by these  gerrymandered congressional districts, Romney would have won by a 276-262 margin, despite  Obama's popular vote margin, calculated David Wasserman, the nonpartisan Cook Political  Report's House expert."

Public service for expiration dates

The HuffingtonPost has an article giving the amount of time past the "best by" (or"Sell by") dates on food that they should still be safe to eat.  This at times has been  a point of contention in my household.

As a public service, I'm putting all 23 foods in an easy-to-read list, so it can be seen here rather than having to click through each picture. 

The article provides links to other sites that provide information on more foods.  EatByDate appears to be pretty good.

Ketchup:  Six months, refrigerated

Olive oil:  18-24 months, refrigerated or not

Eggs, Raw, in-shell:   3-5 weeks

Milk:  1 week.  In my experience, skim goes bad before whole.

Yogurt:  7-10 days past Sell By date - refrigeration expected, of course

Mayonnaise:  at least 2-3 months, refrigerated. This does not apply to picnics!

Peanut butter:  3 months pantry, 3 more months refrigerated.  About the worst that happens is oil separation.

Pickles:  1 year!  (also olives and capers in brine)

Soy or almond milk:  same as regular milk

Sour cream:  two weeks, covered in refrigerator

Vinegar:  never spoils

Honey:  never spoils

Store-bought mustard:  1-2 years

Whipped cream, 3 months;  Cool Whip, 7-10 days (after thaw)

Butter:  2 weeks.  Frozen butter:  9 months.

Liquid cream:  5-7 days.   Liquid coffee creamer (my own experience):  3-4 weeks.

Ground coffee:  3-5 months.  Whole bean coffee:  6 months.

Dry pasta: 1-2 years.

Deli meats - this is one that frequently comes up, so I'm quoting:
"Packaged lunch meats last about 7-10 days longer than the best by date,  whereas fresh meats will last around 5-6 days. Salami and pepperoni  last much longer -- around 2-3 weeks."

But the problem is:  is the date stamped on the store-bought package of  fresh deli meat a "Best by" or "Sell By" date?   Either way, it's usually the day it's bought, so I'm going with "Sell By" - which might mean a couple of more days than anything with a "Best By" date.  I.e., if I bought deli ham and the date on the package is the day of purchase, I would figure that the Best By date is at least two days after that, so that gives me 7-8 days from date of purchase on the fresh deli ham.  NOW, ham is made to be less perishable than, say, roast beef or chicken, so I'd be more forgiving toward deli ham than deli roast beef or chicken.

Syrup:  never spoils, according to the article.  (But mold sometimes forms on top -- and can be skimmed off).

Tea:  6 months to a year

Spices:  2-3 years.  But in my experience, an opened half-used container of just about any spice is not as strong as something just opened.

I hope that this helps reduce some contention in YOUR household.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Golden Globes 2013 sexiest dresses

Oh, I know there's been lots of Golden Globes red carpet fashion coverage.  So I figured I'd rate who wore it best indicating that what was under it was really good.

Kate Hudson once again had me put her on a pedestal of amazingness, Jessica Alba looked totally magnificent (and I'm a sucker for a waterfall of diamonds in the bodice), Katharine McPhee showed that God had smiled upon her in the bosom department, Jessica Lopez was slinky and curvy, and Salma Hayek was just simply a mother I'd like to ... repeatedly.

Kate Hudson - amazing after 2 kids

Jennifer Lopez - nude becomes her

Jessica Alba - my night was complete with this look

Katharine McPhee - cleavage as a fashion accessory

Salma Hayek - it would be a dream to come home to her every night

How unbelievable is this? (GOP shutdown talk continues)

It seems impossible to take such shenanigans that may have significant and severe economic repercussions seriously, but apparently the idiotic GOP members in Congress are serious.  Remember one of my predictions:  national parks closed in the summer.   This may be one of my more LIKELY predictions, sadly.

The other sad thing is that the Republicans are touting the line that they're so crazy they can't control themselves.  Heck of a way to try to convince the public that you are trustworthy enough to actually GOVERN the country.

Double trouble:  House GOP eyes default, shutdown
"Republican leadership officials, in a series of private meetings and conversations this past week, warned that the White House, much less the broader public, doesn’t understand how hard it will be to talk restive conservatives off the fiscal ledge."
 To which I ask, how the f*ck did these jokers get elected to national office in the first place, if they don't understand what it takes to govern responsibly?

Marsha Blackburn, Tennessee Representative: Government Shutdown Is An Option 
She was asked if her constituents supported a government shutdown. "Yes they are, yes they are. But if they want us to be thoughtful in what is done. And this is the good thing: you know, maybe it's better to keep it open so we can keep cutting it. What we want to do is look at all of these ramifications. If you were to do the shutdown, exactly what is going to continue, who is going to hold the purse?"

When asked whether she would risk default or shutdown if she didn't get the spending cuts she wanted, Blackburn said, "I think that there is a way to avoid default. If it requires shutting down certain portions of the government, let's look at that. Let's put these options on the table, be very thoughtful, but get this spending pattern broken."
 The woman is not even lucid

John Boehner's secret

If a solid chunk of House conservatives buy into this – and if they are backed by opinion-shaping voices on the right like Rush Limbaugh, Jim DeMint and Fox News – then Boehner should be safe. He can get a debt ceiling hike through and then force a showdown with Obama less dire overtones. In that event, the worst that would happen is that the sequester as currently constituted would go into effect, delivering a blow to the economy – but nothing nearly as severe as a default. Or the C.R. would expire and the government would shut down in the absence of a new agreement. It’s just a guess, but if the 1995 shutdown (Clinton vs. Gingrich) is any clue, public opinion would side against the GOP and quickly yield a deal more favorable to the White House’s terms. Either way, Boehner would probably get credit from the right for putting up a real fight.

China ain't happy with the air it's breathing

Numerous reports all over Twitter and the Web about the horrific air quality situation in Beijing right now.   As I've predicted before,  I'll predict again that lack of environmental laws might eventually turn into a civil unrest situation that could possibly result in the end of the totalitarian rule in the country.  There are small signs that the government is being more open about the badness of the situation - and there's a faint echo of how the Chernobyl disaster forced the Soviet Union to be more open about THAT situation, eventually contributing to the breakup of aforesaid union.

Media and blog coverage:

Beijing's hazardous pollution sparks Chinese media anger

How air pollution in China has hit previously unimaginable levels

This, from a government-run newspaper:
“The public should understand the importance of development as well as the critical need to safeguard the bottom line of the environmental pollution. The choice between  development and environment protection should be made by genuinely democratic methods…“The government cannot always think about how to intervene to ‘guide public opinion.’ It should publish the facts and interests involved, and let the public itself produce a balance based on the foundation of diversification. ”The government is not the only responsible party for environmental pollution. As long as the government changes its previous method of covering up the problems and instead publishes the facts, society will know who should be blamed.”

beijing experiences worst pollution in recent memory

 It will be interesting to see the Chinese government’s reaction to this episode. We already have one depressing reaction – Xinhua’s tweet about the “fog” – though no one’s buying it and it’s hard to believe they can get away with this sort of spin much longer. What is more interesting to me is the unfortunate timing of this pollution event. After all, the Chinese government has just racked up a couple of positive wins in air pollution control, ...

Beijing's Smog Prompts Chinese Government To Be Unusually Transparent About Air Pollution 

 If this kind of thing keeps up, people are bound to get MAD.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

A word I've never used

Now, I've used the word "ramification" numerous times.  And heard it a lot in common English usage.  But it occurred to me the other day to wonder if "ramify" was a word.  It turns out that yes, it is a word, but obviously since I wasn't sure if it was, I've never used it.  

So I was wondering if anyone else has ever used  it?  Ever seen it in a book?

Feel free to answer, or not.

intransitive verb
1: to split up into branches or constituent parts
2: to send forth branches or extensions
transitive verb
1: to cause to branch
2: to separate into divisions 

OK, this amused me

Tequila ad with George Clooney, Cindy Crawford, Stacy Keibler, and Cindy's husband Randy Gerber.  Made me chuckle.

I guess California isn't so bad off after all

A couple of years ago, California was a punching bag for conservatives claiming that high taxes and immigration were messing things up there, and business was leaving in droves, and there was a major budget problem.

Not any more.  Under a liberal governor, California is back on track, budget is balanced, and important priorities are being funded.

California Budget Surplus? Governor Introduces Plan That Eliminates Deficit 

"California job growth tops the national average, unemployment has fallen below double-digit levels for the first time in nearly four years, and voters in November approved a tax increase that closed most of the lingering budget gap.

The state Department of Finance on Thursday projected unemployment will fall to 9.6 percent this year and 8.7 percent in 2014.

California faced deficits of $9 billion just a year ago and $25 billion two years ago. Brown noted that federal government issues could challenge California's forecasts and warned the state not to get over exuberant."

Wow.  Who would have predicted that?

Favorites and a surprise

Katie Cassidy (Arrow) and Morena Baccarin (Homeland, and of course, Firefly) are two of my current TV favorites, and though I'm not really fond of the pants, they were still way cute at the People's Choice Awards. Katie has gone from starlet bombshell to a much more mature beauty very easily.

The surprise was Rachael Leigh Cook, who I had completely lost track of, and discovered that she'd been on'Perception' last year, and was in 'Psych' recurringly, about the time I stopped watching that show. She looked great and glamorous, and was NOT wearing pants.

Pictures of them on the red carpet:

Morena Baccarin

Katie Cassidy

Rachael Leigh Cook

 And an obligatory yummy shot of Cassidy, here as Laurel Lance in Arrow in a nice red wrap dress for her date with Tommy Merlyn (which didn't end up going too well):

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Who's talking shutdown?

Well, let me guess... ideologue conservative Republicans !!

Sean Hannity: Republicans Need To Shut Down Government 'Until The President Cuts Spending'

 "And if they have to, only essential areas of government get funded," Hannity said. "They have to be willing to shut it down until the president cuts spending."

Club for Growth President:  Government shutdown may be better than alternative (video)

GOP:  Government shutdown better than 50-50

"Top House leadership aides said that the GOP is mapping a plan to reject new taxes and demand a dollar-for-dollar spending cut for every added dollar of debt. "We will have all GOP members united with Speaker Boehner and the leadership," said a House leadership advisor. "The president has gotten the last nickel of new tax for the remainder of his presidency."

Key advisors said the initial result will likely be a shutdown. Two top aides put the likelihood at 50 percent."

Matt Salmon On Government Shutdown: GOP Rep Says 'It's About Time' We Have Another One 

"Rep. Matt Salmon (R-Ariz.) appeared on 'CBS: Face the Nation' on Sunday, voicing firm support for a suspension of government services. He cited 1995's federal stoppage, pegging that event as the "impetus" for "some real serious compromise."

Additional Republicans pledged this past week that a government shutdown was in the cards without spending cuts and entitlement reforms. In an interview on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) said that his party needed "to be willing to tolerate" that possibility. Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) used an op-ed in The Houston Chronicle to express similar sentiments, adding that "it may be necessary."

Luetkemeyer says will back government shutdown during debt-limit talks

 "U.S. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-St. Elizabeth, says he’s prepared to shut down the federal government and block a debt-ceiling deal, if that’s what it takes to force President Barack Obama to accept dramatic budget cuts – especially in the entitlement programs."

GOP divided over government shutdown 

"Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., said a partial shutdown would be “a hell of a lot better” than allowing Obama to raise taxes or increase spending. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, had a similar take: “I think we have to be prepared to go so far as to shut the government down if we don’t get some serious policies to stop the out of control spending to tackle the debt.”

There should be no debate over the debt ceiling.  If the Republicans want to shut down the government, all the blame for doing it should fall on them, and them alone.

A January sonnet


A glimpse, a momentary view into
what normally resides behind the doors
which open only by an invita-
tion; now they take a way that just ignores
convention, giving them a chance to stay
in private rooms and yet in public too.
Why do they let us leer and stamp and stare
at that which lovers have purview? I muse
that those who say they wish to be desired
are right -- that even if they grant their hues
and cries of ecstasy to one, to be admired
requires a multitude to be aware
of beauty which is usually obscured,
and priv'leges esteemingly preferred.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Did we think Pacific bluefin were in good shape?

If we did, that's a misperception.  They aren't.

Overfishing causes Pacific bluefin tuna numbers to drop 96%

"If current trends continue, the species will soon be functionally extinct in the Pacific, and the frozen bodies held in a few high-security Asian warehouses will be the last gasp the species.

More than nine out of 10 of the species recently caught were too young to have reproduced, meaning they may have been the last generation of the bluefin tuna.

Amanda Nickson, of the Pew Environment Group, which produced the latest report, said: "There is no logical way a fishery can have such a high level of fishing on juveniles and continue."

She called for fishing of the species to be halted as a matter of urgency. Although there are measures to manage the exploitation of bluefin tuna in the Atlantic, and some measures in the eastern Pacific, the main spawning ground for Pacific bluefin tuna in the western part of that ocean is not managed. The main fishing fleets exploiting the stocks are from Japan, Mexico, South Korea and the US, and the high value of the few remaining fish is a further encouragement to fishermen to hunt down the last of the species."

I guess they'll notice when they stop catching anything - ya think?

Early line on the VA governor's race

Right now, it's close.

We'll have to wait for Cooch to make some really outrageous statements and scare the beejezus out of the slightly right, but not wacky right, electorate.

Cuccinelli, McAuliffe neck-and-neck

"Though he has been lieutenant governor since 2006, Bolling appears to be the least well-known of the three men, as 72 percent of voters said they did not know enough about him to form an opinion. Sixty-one percent said the same of McAuliffe, while 41 percent have no opinion of Cuccinelli, who is viewed favorably by 33 percent of voters and unfavorably by 25 percent."

That'll change once he actually starts talking, I think.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Stormy skies in paradise

La Reunion, the French version of Hawaii (complete with 1,000 foot waterfalls and an active volcano), got hit by a tropical storm a couple of days ago.

Tropical Cyclone Spotted Slamming Indian Ocean Islands

Videos (flooding)

Wave action (and some of the island's impressive landscape)

In case you don't get enough of a sexy Chriqui

If anybody doesn't get enough Emmanuelle Chriqui (raising my hand to signify 'Me'!), I found this music video in which she as acceptably and wonderfully flirtatious.

Jeff Goldblum is in it too, but that's not why I'm excited about finding it.

And the music is kind of R&B quirky, but it's OK as an accompaniment to watching Emmanuelle.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

I hope that's not the only reason

Hot on the heels of my posting about Gerard Butler dating the incomprehensibly gorgeous Madalina Ghenea comes this Daily Mail article stating the obvious - Gerard might just possibly slightly have been attracted to her for her physical attractiveness.

Yes, I indeed think that is possible.  (Ha ha ha.)

So THAT'S why he's going out with her! Gerard Butler's girlfriend Madalina Ghenea poses in revealing lingerie for a racy photo shoot

The third picture in this article nearly melted my screen, but specific parts of my physiology were affected reversely.

Is anybody paying attention up here?

I'm sure that those Down Under are noticing, but up (north) here in this hemisphere, climate skeptics are trying to find any scrap of cold and snow news they can find.

But Australia is nearing or setting temperature records during what is, of course, their summer.

Hmm... where have we heard THAT before?

How hot Down Under?

"In Western Australia, readings Thursday topped nearly as high as the vast state's all-time maximum temperature of 49.8 degrees C, or 121.6 degrees F.

The hottest spot, from data available to, was Red Rocks Point, which soared to 48.6 degrees C, or 119.5 degrees F. Red Rocks is located in the southeast of the state, right along the chilly waters of the Great Australian Bight."

Australia's [Tasmania's] Hobart experiences hottest day

"Australia's southern island of Tasmania has experienced its hottest day since records began, with the capital Hobart sweltering at 41.8 Celsius (107.2 Fahrenheit) on Friday.

The Bureau of Meteorology said the temperature in Tasmania, where records have been kept since the early 1880s, beat the previous high of 40.8 Celsius set in January 1976."

And not just by a little - a whole degree C.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Too bad we can't grab this one

Just found out about a really close pass (inside the geostationary orbit distance) of a small, but consequential if it hit us, space rock, also called an asteroid, of course.

Near-Earth Asteroid 2012 DA14 to Miss Earth on February 15, 2013 

Here's the pass configuration.

The thing is, NASA is floating plans to grab an asteroid using a big bag (no "Big Bag Theory" jokes, please), put into lunar orbit, and use it as a Mars mission jumping-off base.

Yup, really.

So even though this one's a little small, maybe it would be good practice, and also something to study for a bigger catch-and-orbit attempt later.

Downstream drought effects

The ongoing Midwestern drought is causing significant water level problems in the Mississippi and Missouri rivers, which in turn is causing barge transport difficulties, which could have economic ramifications.

Tell that to conservatives who don't think climate and weather are important economic issues.

Barge operators continue to sound alarm about low Mississippi River levels

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers say that they're going to keep the channel open and deep enough for traffic, but when you have to excavate rock (instead of just bottom sediments) to do that, well, that means the situation is getting serious.

This was unexpected, and interesting

I've written a few things about Padma Lakshmi on this blog.

Like this, recently.

And this, first time I commented on her pregnancy.

And then this, commenting on the possibility that billionaire Ted Forstmann was the father of her baby (as yet unborn).

Finally this, in which the father's identity was revealed, though at the time it was merely speculated.

Subsequent to the birth, Lakshmi and true father Dell had a bit of a tussle about his role in the child's life, ultimately settled.

But now comes this interesting article, in which it was revealed that Forstmann would have raised the baby as his and provided for her over her whole life - if Padma didn't tell the world who the real father was, and let the world think that the baby was his.

Ah the webs we weave when first we practice to deceive.  Ultimately Padma went with the honest route, which I think was prudent in this day of accurate DNA tests. 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

I'm guessing she's not a virgin anymore

Julianne Hough several times indicated that she would likely not have sex before marriage.  But when you're in a pretty long term relationship with Ryan Seacrest, and you're young, hot, and sexy, that might not be possible.

First, some links about her stance on virginity:

Julianne Hough on her virginity and her fear of dating "powerful" Ryan Seacrest
(in this article she is quoted as saying that the Mormon religion says no sex before marriage, and that's how she was raised)

7 Celebs Who Vowed to Stay Virgins
Quoting Hough:  "I'm not trying to preach consequences here, but I think when you say no, down the line it will be a better decision.”

Julianne Hough "No Sex Before Marriage"
has the full quote:  “I want to be with that special person,” she tells CosmoGIRL! in excerpts posted on “I think [the choice] to have sex before marriage is an individual one, but if you’re just with one person, it’s only for one good reason, and [waiting to have sex] will strengthen that relationship. I’m not trying to preach consequences here, but I think when you say no, down the line it will be a better decision.”
(note that this was in 2008)

And now, here are some pictures of her in a bikini from the movie Safe Haven,

which is coming out in February,

and which is why she's on the cover of the next issue of Cosmopolitan. (By the way, after seeing the outfits that she wore in the cover shoot video, I can't believe what they chose for her to wear on the cover.)

And the accompanying article starts with this anecdote:

"As Superstorm Sandy descended on New York City, rain and storm winds rattled the windows of downtown's Crosby Street Hotel. Inside, actress Julianne Hough and her boyfriend, Ryan Seacrest—Hollywood's fast-rising, workaholic power couple—were stranded and alone. Their cell phones were, for once, strangely quiet.

So they curled up in a king-size bed and hibernated with fellow bears: the potty-mouthed comedy Ted on the hotel TV and an enormous canister of gummy bears open on the duvet. "We couldn't work," Hough says, the next day. "We just got to stay in our bed and in our pajamas—until the power cut out."

Let's just say they probably never saw the end of that talking-teddy-bear flick. "It was great," says Hough, smiling conspiratorially. "We put on some candles, had some sexy time....Ha!"
OK, dear reader, you decide.  To V or not to V, that is the question.

Now, is it a big deal?  Not really.  But I have always thought that the fascination with celebrity procreation is that it partly proves the Beautiful People are indeed Having Sex, which we cannot otherwise prove except for the occasional accidental or purposeful sex tape leak.  Given the climate of the times, the atmosphere of Hollywood, and the fact that Ryan Seacrest is a young good-looking and wealthy silverback who has really staked his claim to the alpha female in the form of Julianne, I would be perfectly stunned if she hadn't already abandoned the V vow and got down to doing what comes naturally with Ryan.  Besides the fact that she says she loves him and he appears to love her and they are doing all the right things, relationship-wise (at least publically).  Which then makes one wonder why they don't get married.  But we have seen that marriage can screw up an otherwise perfectly good romantic relationship.

So I don't know if Julianne and Ryan are having sex, like many, many, many, many, many romantically linked couples are.  I suspect, based on the foregoing, that they are.

And if they are - damn, I'd like to see THAT sex tape.

(And this is still one of the main reasons why, even though the bikini shots are appealing, too):

Robert Reich agrees with me

Back a few posts ago, I said that 'The Tea Party is Winning'.  Well, Robert Reich, HuffPost columnist and former Secretary of Labor for the Clintons, agrees with me on that.

The Ongoing War: After the Battle Over the Cliff, the Battle Over the Debt Ceiling 

 "On it goes, battle after battle in what seems an unending war that began with the election of
Tea-Party Republicans in November, 2010."

"But they're not debating this, because the federal deficit is not what this war is about.

It's about the size of government. Tea-Party Republicans (and other congressional Republicans
worried about a Tea-Party challenge in their next primary) want the government to be much smaller.

"My goal," says conservative guru Grover Norquist, "is to cut government in half in twenty-five
years, to get it down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub."
So as long as the Tea Party forces a battle over a thing like the debt ceiling -- which they should never do, because they don't want to tank the economy (we don't think)* -- then they are winning.

And when they're winning, they're also f*cking up the whole country, because nothing they are doing or trying to do has any basis in reality.

 * Quoting Greg Sargent from the Washington Post's Plum Line:

"Indeed, you can read through reams of the coverage without learning three basic facts about this fight:
1) Republican leaders will ultimately agree to raise the debt ceiling, and they know it, because they themselves have previously admitted that not doing so will badly damage the economy.
2) Because of the above, a hike in the debt ceiling is not something that Democratic leaders want and that Republican leaders don’t. In other words, it is not a typical bargaining chip in negotiations, in the way spending cuts (which Republicans want and Dems don’t) or tax hikes (which Dems want and Republicans don’t) are.
3) And so, if and when Republicans do agree to raise the debt ceiling, it will not constitute any kind of concession on their part — even though they will continue to portray it as such to demand concessions in return. It will only constitute Republicans agreeing not to damage the whole country, which does not constitute (one hopes) them making a sacrifice."
 So it is now up to us -- and to me -- to write directly to John Boehner and President Obama and tell them that we will not accept any negotiation over the debt ceiling increase -- BECAUSE WE KNOW THAT THE REPUBLICANS WILL EVENTUALLY VOTE TO RAISE IT.

Either that, or seriously risk getting blamed for tanking both our economy and the rest of the world's.

Japan No Nukes? Not So Fast

The Japanese Prime Minister is indicating that Japan will likely build more nuclear power plants, bucking the public sentiment that developed after the Fukishima Daiichi event.

Japan's new PM says government will 'endorse' new nuclear plants

"During the campaign for last month’s House of Representatives elections Mr Abe said he would determine “the optimum power-generation makeup” for Japan within 10 years. Before taking office last month, he said he would review the Democratic Party of Japan-led government’s policy of not allowing new nuclear plants to be built.

In his latest statement, Mr Abe said the Japanese people are worried about having sufficient electricity in the immediate future. He said parties that called for a shift away from nuclear energy were therefore “not trusted” in the recent election."
Reality bites, which is exactly what I've been saying for months.  I'm sorry that they had a nuclear incident due to a once-in-a-lifetime tsunami.  But now they know what can happen with a coastal unit.  They can fixt that.   The article notes that several other plants in the quake zone did pretty well (in fact, maybe better than the North Anna unit after the freakish Northeast U.S. earthquake that had an epicenter almost directly under it).

Yet another global warming positive feedback

Real interesting science here - first-year ice is thinner than multi-year ice, I would think (obviously), so that it would make sense that more sunlight penetrates a layer of first-year ice, causing more warming of the ocean water under the first-year ice, as compared to the water under multi-year ice.

But even though that's an obvious supposition, in order to prove that is actually the case, you have to make measurements.  And that's what these intrepid Arcticologists did.

Light absorption speeding Arctic ice melt

Yet another indication we are on a very hard course to reverse unless we come up with a way to cut emissions drastically and start augmenting sinks for carbon.

Cutting emissions drastically = more nuclear power. Especially in a power-hungry world.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Daphnis makes waves

Saturn's micro-moon Daphnis, inside the ring's Keeler Gap, makes waves in the ring material as it goes by.

You've got to look close, right in the middle, to find the moon and the waves.

With a closeup:  Daphis is back!

More on this later... really, Anne?

Anne Hathaway thinks she has a "plain vanilla'' image that reduces her sex appeal.

I'll analyze this, but I think that some people have just plain NOT been paying attention.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Smart play, Gerard

I never posted this, when lothario Leonardo DiCaprio had a brief dalliance with Italian model Madaline Ghenea:

"Which brings us to DiCaprio.  This article has the whole potential  bedmate list. 

Some of the babes may have just been inaccurate rumors, some of them flings (lucky, lucky), but there was definitely Kristen Zang in the 90s, and then this amazing run:

- Gisele Bundchen, who would be virtually impossible to surpass unless you wanted a girl with a little more curve than length, in which case you could then land

- Bar Refaeli, who combines a sweet face with a devilishly soft and curvaceous body, which we've seen virtually all of;  they stayed together awhile, but perhaps her level of sophistication as a fashion model wasn't quite on par with Leo's worldliness, but breaking up with someone of her attributes had to be really hard  unless you could then end up with

- Blake Lively, an accomplished actress, back in the lengthy mode, perhaps more glamorously pretty than the swimsuit model ravishingness of Bar, but it seems that maybe Blake sensed that Leo was still  longing for the purer lingerie look so they didn't last long, and  now Leo ends up with, if truth can be believed,

Madalina Ghenea. 

I'm arguing here that each step in this progression could be construed as a step up, or at least level with the previous titleholder of DiCaprio main squeeze.  But how could you possibly, arguably, SURPASS Bundchen, Refaeli, and Lively?  Again,

Madalina Ghenea. 

When I first heard about this, I obviously looked up Miss Madalina, and I immediately formed the following opinion  of her:

She's the most beautiful woman I've ever seen.  Now, I obviously have seen pictures of a lot of other beautiful women, and there are clearly women who are (or were) closely competitive with Madalina - several Playboy playmates, Victoria's Secret models, a few of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit models, a number of actresses, because there is a range of attractiveness and there are a number of different combinations that are very appealing.  But in terms of a combination of facial features and stunning figure, Madalina is classically exquisite. 

Fortunately she's a lingerie model, which means there are LOTS of pictures of her demonstrating how frighteningly gorgeous she is. My selection below is intended to highlight her various looks  and isn't comprehensive.  It is very easy to go on a Madalina Ghenea image search and not come back for a long long time. 

And it's worth the trip. 

So here's my advice to Leo.  If you've been searching for the ultimate girlfriend, at least in the pulchritude category, you can't, can't do better than this.  Plus, you're 37.  Marry (or at least establish the basis for a long-term relationship with), enjoy as much lovemaking as the human body can handle  with her, impregnate her to establish the foutainhead, and then look back on a romantic life well-lived."

Well, quite obviously (or obliviously), Leo did not take my advice.  But it now appears that the wily Gerard Butler has.  And that, in my book, is real, real, real, smart.

Gerard Butler and girlfriend Madalina Ghenea styles are in sync on the red carpet



It can't get much better than this

Happy AND sexy


Undangerous 2013 predictions

Last year I did pretty good with my not-too-much-of-a-stretch predictions (revisited mid-year here).  I was getting worried at the end but Andy Murray and President Obama came through for me.   So here on the first day of 2012 are my "undangerous" predictions for 2013, with short comments.

One surprise I didn't realize until I looked back at them - while I predicted (hopefully) that Khloe Kardashian would get pregnant, I mentioned that Kanye West appeared to be in a baby-making mood with new girl (at the time) Kim.   Well, surprise surprise, she turned out to be the one preggers at year end.

Well, here are my predictions for 2013.   Actually, these are considerably riskier than last year.  I expect I'll be lucky to get five of them right.

1. Caroline Wozniacki wins a tennis Grand Slam
-- I think it's her time, if Serena falters.  Hard to tell with Sharapova.  Kvitova and Vuvuzela (er, Azarenka) are tough.  Woz is down to #10 in the rankings, so this one might be risky.

2. McCauliffe elected governor in Virginia

-- If hard-line, pugnacious, take-no-prisoners Cooch the Gooch Cuccinelli gets elected, God Help Us All.

3. Arctic sea ice doesn't set new minimum record;  skeptics publicize this everywhere
-- After all, you can't have a minimum every year, unless global warming is  accelerating and the positive feedbacks are dominating.  Wait a minute...

4. Jennifer Aniston has a baby
-- I think, just to get the paparazzi off her back, she'll either get pregnant or adopt. I'm leaning toward the Katherine Heigl strategy - keep your gorgeous looks and  adopt.  However, Justin Theroux might prefer the natural method, because that would keep Jennifer on her back a lot.

5. Mitch McConnell has a heart attack and dies (only wishing here - skip that one)

5. The GOP House fights another pitched battle over raising the debt ceiling, and only capitulates when China threatens to cause us economic harm because our pending recession is hurting their economy.
-- Only makes sense, the Chinese will only put up with this nonsense for so long.

6. The U.S. Men's Soccer team fails to qualify for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
-- They don't have any real scoring stars to take them there.   I think they will be shocked by two losses to Jamaica. Sorry, Jurgen.

7. Playboy will make an inspired choice for Playmate - Audrey Nicole (@msaudreynicole).
-- I have to toss one in here that I just basically want to happen; I'm not sure how likely it is but she's amazingly gorgeous.

8. Due to the nation's budget problems, several large national parks will close for at least a few days during the summer vacation season, to demonstrate how bad the situation is.
-- This would be a smart way to sway public opinion.

9. Joe Lieberman gets a position in the Obama administration.
-- Maybe head of the CIA.

10. A major satellite collision in space emphasizes the space debris problem.
-- The odds of this keep increasing every year!

So, there you have it.  Any comments? (I'd be stunned)