Thursday, May 29, 2008


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An original idea by B. Bacher, with a bit of help from a few friends...
From: Børge Berg-Olsen
(from Jon Singer and Michael Butler)

(taken from Pyro Joe's Hot Flashes, pp 137-151)

Now, kids, it's tahm ta talk about dee-layed gratification.


Here's one that'll tickle ya pink! (Also black & blue if ya stand around
it too long. Take a hint from ol' Joe.)

'menny Whut is it Where d'ya git it

1 1 inch cube of 90% Palladium any good hardware store
with 10% Titanium should have it

1 4 inch length of gold wahr steal from yore sister's

5 gallons heavy water, with 10% steal frum Navy base
DTO (th' "Jolt" version, or borry frum naybors.
heh heh.)

1 cup Lithium Lye, with Deuterium, war surplus store
USGummint #3039924057394XD

1 1 to 3 volt, 30 amp pahr splah hell, bild it, use
pappy's arc welder,
or whutever.

1 special currint reggalater bild it.
(figger 3, end of chapter)

1 Kickass(tm) 8 week ain'tchoo gotta hardware
timer or equiv'lint bin? Call up Bud's
Scientific Splah.
Don't let on whut
it's for.

1 big moonshahn crock, with lid. c'mon, ya gotta know
where ta git basics!

Plus th' usual wahr an' stuff, as requahred.

How d'ya do it, Joe?

Wal, ya find a ol' shack on a hill somewheres that still got pahr goin'
to it. (Elsewise, ya gots ta use a whole lotta ol' truck
batt'ries, which is tuff ta hump around.) Put th' crock in th' shack,
and pour th' Jolt water inta it. Stir in th' Lithium Lye, slow
an' careful. Don't splash none, an' don't add th' stuff too quick, now.
Cover it real taht, so's ya don't lose too much. Y'all
don't wanna hafta sneak inta th' navybase again, do ya? Them guys got
guns & stuff and they ain't afraid ta use it.

So, ennyway, see, ya bild the pahr splah, an' ya bild th' currint
reggalater in figger 3 at th' end of th' chapter, the one with
the special shunt cirkit fer changin' the currint. Thet's whar th'
Kickass tahmer goes. Test it ta be sure that th' current starts
at about 30 amps and goes down ta 10 or 15 when th' tahmer goes off.

Bild th' other stuff lahk in figger 2. Cart th' whole mess down ta th'
shack, and put th' bizniz end inta the Jolt water. Don't
leave th' lid off too long, now. Cover it up good, an' duck tape it,
specially th' place wher the wahrs come out. Ah got me
some motorcycle ground strap, which is read'ly avail'ble an' flat, so it
don't queer up the fit o' the lid. Bolt the straps down
real secure, an' put vaseline on th' bolts.

Now, set th' Kickass tahmer fer 8 weeks, plug th' pahr splah in, make
sure ya got 30 amps, an' take a hike.

'Member, neutrons ain't yer frens. Keep ol' Blue away from th' shack
unless ya want two-headed puppies runnin' around
eatin' too much, probly worrit yore mom no end, an' if ya gotta go in
ther ta check, don't stay long. Ya want ol' Joe's
advice, after around 7 weeks, don't go in ther atall.

This hear makes a real 'hot flash', an' in fact, it's whut this book is
named fer. Y'all kin see th' flash from a couple mahls
away, raht through th' av'ridge wall, so don't go bildin' it in yer
basemit. Got thet? No need ta keep it too close ta home,
raht? Ya kin get caught with it if it's too close. Besides, ya don't
want yer sister fahndin' out wher her earrin's got off ta. She
probly woont lahk it, an' she'll make ya cut her in on the deal.
'Course, thet maht not be too bad, if she's good with a
soldrin' ahrn. Probly bilds good pahr splahs, an that's importunt ta
this 'hot flash'.

Ah got trouble, Joe. Now whut?

Whut happen Whut ta do

ya hair falls out Dummy! I tol' ya not ta stan' aroun' up
in hanks close-lahk! Thow away yer clothin', an'
take lots o' shahrs. Eat some vitamin E,
an' call th' doc ef'n it don't stop in
a spell.

red skin & funny spots same thing.

juice won't drop to shunt circuit screwed up, or ya bought a cheap
10-15 amps tahmer. Don't bah you no cheap tahmers!

no flash after 8 th' Authority mebbe cut yer pahr. Wait 2 more
weeks is gone bah weeks an' then check fer pahr at the wall
Ef thet don't work, check the pahr splah. Ah
tol' ya yer sister probly bild it better then
you, ya shoulda listened. Also check th'
tahmer. 'Member whut ah sed about cheap ones!

Big wet spot ya crock leak? If no leaks, check the roof. If
the roof leaks, don't worrit yerself. If th'
crock leaks, fix it quick.

'lectrode turns brown probly yer Lithium Lye is contaminatid. Ya can
give it up, or start over.

runs hot only happins once in a whahl. Swipe Grampa's
ol' still-tubin', an' make lahk a li'l still
coil with it. Jes' run th' outlet back inta
the crock. Duck tape the whole mess real good.
If thet ain't enuf, use a truck radiater.
Don't drink the stuff, neither! Taste lahk
hell, take it from one that knows.

Y'all have fun, now. Ef ya hit the sweet spot, th' hill will glow fer
munths. Thet means you done real good! Set up a "myst'ry
spot" sahn, an' charge th' city folks a dollar a look.

Yore Frend,

1. In the beginning there was nothing, then something went wrong.[Murphy's
2. The empty set contains and is contained within all other
sets.[Fibonacci's Rule]
3. Universe has no plural.
4. Space is nothing.
5. Time is an abstraction.
6. Energy is the opposite of mass.
7. Energy is not effected by gravity.
8. In order for two points to exist, a third point must exist between them.
9. Less than enough is not sufficient, more than enough is not necessary.
10.Enough is a finite quantity.
11.That which has been done is not impossible.
12.Pythagoras trisected an angle.
13.Mathematics is a set of languages providing different ways to describe
14.Statistical norms are not real integers even when they are whole
15.A line representing a continuous function contains no discrete elements.
16.A "Field" is a continuous static structure extending to infinity.
17."Field Lines" are mathematical constructs having no existence.
18.Reality is what it is irrespective of description.
19.Ptolomy was believed because his math was correct and it worked.
20.The "Plane of the Elliptic" is perpendicular to and centered upon the
Barycenter of the Solar System (or any other system).
21.All orbits are planes of ecliptic.
22.The eccentricity of an orbit is proportional to the deviation from the
perpendicular to the path of the center of mass. [Kepler's 4th Law]
23.The Earth does not revolve around the Sun, the Sun and the Earth revolve
around the center of mass.
24.There is no error in the orbit of Mercury.
25.A measured value is the sum of its contributing elements.
26.The specific computed values of the elements do not change the measured
27.The measured gravity of the Sun was the same after Einstein as before.
28.The bending of light observed near a star is thermal reflection, a
29.Velocity is measured at two different times, not on two different
30.A zero based measurement is required to know the value of measured
31.The "Aberration of Light" is the same in a column of water as it is in a
column of air.
32. The velocity of light is constant in all media.
33. The aberration of light is a measure of the Earth's absolute velocity.
34. Light is a spherical wave containing no particles.
35. The outside of a wave has more degrees of freedom than the middle, the
inside has fewer.
36. As a wave expands outward from its' source, it expands outward from its'
middle, a red shift.
37. The further away it is, the greater the red shift, coming or going.

38. The energy required to operate a mechanism increases with velocity
while the available energy decreases.

39. There is nothing new here, it's all old stuff. You must get the old
stuff right before you can benefit from the new. D.MURPHY - HCEZJCIA
Furgeson and the Unified Field Theory

In the beginning there was Aristotle
And objects at rest tended to remain at rest
And objects in motion tended to come to rest
And God saw that it was boring, although very restful.

Then God created Newton
And objects at rest tended to remain at rest
And objects in motion tended to remain in motion
And energy was conserved, and momentum was conserved,
And matter was conserved
And God saw that it was conservative.

Then God created Einstein
And everything was relative
And fast things became short
And straight things became curved
And the universe was filled with inertial frames
And God saw that it was relatively general
but some of it was especially relative.

Then God created Bohr
And there was the principle
And the principle was quantum
And all things were quantified
But some things were still relative
And God saw that it was confusing.

Then God was going to create Furgeson
And Furgeson would have unified
And he would have fielded a theory
And all would have been one.
But it was the seventh day
And God rested
And objects at rest tend to remain at rest.

Crazed Physics Questions

1] A shotgun shooting 12 pellets of 00 Buckshot weighing 4g leave the
barrel at 1125 fps. Assuming the average infant will absorb 127.3 f/lbs
before disintegrating, how many babies will the average blast cut
through (rounding off to the nearest whole number)?


2] A 100 kg man is being swung by his entrails in a circle 16'in radius
at the rate of 1600 radians/sec. Find the tension in the man's entrails
(ignoring the effects of gravity).

65,024 Newtons.

3] A pagan priest attempts to vaporize a young virgin by placing her in a
flaming pit. Assuming the woman, weighing 120 lbs, is completely
composed of water, how much energy will he have to use to completely
vaporize her?

130,000 BTU

4] An infant has a tensile strength of 400 psi and has a cross
sectional area of 23.4 sq. inches. Assuming it is 23" long and has an
elongation percentage of .0036%/120psi at roomtemperature, how long will
the baby be before it is dismembered?

about 26.45 inches.

5] A 12 year old blind orphan girl is shot from a cannon at the speed
of 1200 fps at a solid brick wall. Calculate the force of impact given
that the brick wall is 3 feet away from the barrel.

if she weighs 50 lbs, and all of her sticks to the wall,
3.3 million Newtons.

6] A large plane weighing 12.7 M tons carrying 12 tons of nuns and
orphans travelling at 724.46 kph and at an altitude of 40,000 meters
suffers explosive decompression above the center of a 30km diameter
population. Assuming that one passenger is sucked out every second, how
many passengers will land within the population center?

about (give or take a torso or leg) 12.

7] A 1000 lb car is moving at 130 mph and two poodles whose combined
weight is 82 lbs are thrown out the back at 3 mph. Calculate the
velocity of the car.

140.91 happy mph.

8] Farmer Brown is selling apples for 12 cents a dozen in a room where
a torch has a brightness of 120 candela is 12 ft froma 14.36 sq meter
surface.Assuming a light bulb 17.3 cubits fromthe surface has a
brightness of 129 candlepower and gives offheat of 1.27 BTU and the room
is 423 degrees Kelvin; assuming thethe pressure in the room is 1100
millibar; assuming the lightbulb is rotating at 4 pi radians per half
minute, with the power source of the bulb a battery giving off energy at
a rate of 12000000 terajoules per exasecond; assuming the coefficient
offriction at the base of the rotating lightbulb is 1.679 E9;assuming
the room is being launched at 50 times escape velocity;assuming it
collides with the moon in a perfectly elastic collision, when the room
returns to the earth 6 days 4 hours 20 minutes 35 seconds and 12
nanoseconds later, how much does Farmer Brown sell one apple for?

still one cent, but all thats left is well-done applesaus,
She is everything to me,
The unrequited dream,
The song that no one sings,
The unattainable.
She's a myth that I have to believe in,
All I need to make it real is one more reason.

I don't know what to do,
I don't know what to do when she makes me sad.

But I won't let this build up inside of me.
I won't let this build up inside of me.
I won't let this build up inside of me.
I won't let this build up inside of me.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

On the subject of Pluto

Pluto Gets Downsized

Prague - The international committee of astronomers decided this week
to remove Pluto from the list of planets. A spokesman released this
statement, "We're awfully sorry to have to let Pluto go, but this
restructuring is necessary to move this solar system forward. We've got
to tighten our asteroid belt and make difficult decisions. We've really
enjoyed working with Pluto in the past and wish it no ill will. We look
on this event as a great opportunity to revitalize our system."

Behind the scenes however, things were reportedly more heated. Rumors
abound that Pluto orbited slower than other planets, often appearing
sluggish and possibly intoxicated. Some have reportedly complained
about off color jokes directed at Uranus. Lawsuits by several asteroids
demanding inclusion in the solar system reportedly also motivated the
committee to take a hard line on planet definition. An original plan to
use the world "Pluton" was rejected by their lawyers as demeaning and

Others have defended Pluto, claiming the decision to downsize was based
on unjust discrimination. One anonymous insider claimed, "It's a new
solar system, and if you're not wearing rings, or you're too small,
you're just not flashy enough for the kids today. Besides, the
committee was always uncomfortable with the attraction between Pluto
and its long-term partner, Charon. It's just prejudice I tell you."

Pluto's press agent released this statement, "While Pluto is saddened
by this turn of events, it's not bitter, rather Pluto looks on this as
an opportunity to explore new and exciting projects."

Deep Sky Person

You know you're a Deep Sky person when...

1. ... you consider the moon a major annoyance.

2. ... you consider Jupiter 'light pollution'.

3. ... you spend most of your time looking at or for objects you can
barely see.

4. ... your favorite objects are objects you can barely see.

5. ... you enjoy looking at faint fuzzies with the smallest possible

6. ... you enjoy looking at faint fuzzies with the largest possible

7. ... you like to choose objects that are easier to imagine than to

8. ... your observing schedule demands that you search for objects in

From:Jay Reynolds Freeman (

9. keep thinking that if only the stars would go away, it
might really get dark.

10. wonder how your favorite objects missed getting included
in the New General Catalog or the Index Catalog.

11.'re not sure that anything in this solar system counts as
astronomy any more.

12.'re amazed that anyone needs artificial light to read charts.

13. could do a Messier Marathon from memory, if you still bothered
with Messier objects.

14. can read all the NGC abbreviated visual descriptions without
using the key, but you have to be careful not to cheat by just
remembering what things look like.

15. view a major earthquake as an opportunity for a close-in
dark-sky star party.

16. ... you are attending a major star party (guess which one), and you
ask the organizers to turn down the Milky Way.

17. ...You believe M13 ruined your dark adaptation

18. ... You observe M42 at the _end_ of the sessions because it DOES ruin
dark adaptation!

19. ...Your choice of a new vehicle is determined by the size of your

20. ...Vacation time is planned around the Winter and Texas (or other)
Star parties.

21. ...Arp is not a funny sound, but the name of one of your favorite
galaxy catalogues.

22. ...You challenge friends by saying .."Lets do something stupid"
you hunt for deep sky objects on a hazy, full-moon nite because you are
faint-photon starved.

23. ...You find auroras a complete anoyance because they ruin sky contrast
and dark adaptation.

24. memorize the NGC, PGC, UGC, MCG, & ESO catalogs and can recite
type and magnitude off the top of your head when asked "What is NGC

25. ...Your ideal site would require oxygen.

26. ...Your ideal vacation would be in Namibia, but...

27. ...Your ideal telescope would be immovable.

28. ...You take deep-sky pictures during a total eclipse of the moon.

29. ...You bitch about severe light pollution when the limiting magnitude
is "only" 6.5.

30. prep your eyes by applying pupil dilating drops until they open
to 10mm...

31. ...when you have elective surgery to replace your eye's natural lenses
with f/0.8, oil-spaced, apochromatic triplet objectives designed by Roland

32. ...You wear red sunglasses all day in preparation for viewing that

33. ...You wear an eyepatch during the viewing session.

34. ...You paint the LED's on your equipment with red fingernail polish so
that they are dimmer.

35. ...You always set your scope up so that you can't move your car until

36. ...You bring a gallon of coffee (or 12 pack of Diet Coke) to the
viewing session. If the caffeine doesn't keep you awake the urge to "go"

37. ...Night lights are a nuisance in your house.

38. ... You talk out loud to yourself all night long to hoping to keep the
skunks away.

40. ... You welcome (and have even considered instigating) power cuts, but
only if they occur on clear moonless nights.

41. ...You pay $3500 for a pupil enlargement operation even though you own
1 1 m light bucket.

42. ... you remove the LED on your drive control panel, because THAT ruins
your dark adaptation!

43. preparation for another DSO bout, you carefully massage your eyes
to make sure all your rods are discharged.

44. actually know how to USE setting circles

45. consider the milky way 'light pollution'

46. actually USE 'uranometria', and can quote page numbers

46 1/2. you frequently disagree with Burnhams, and have seriously
considered publishing your OWN "observer's guide"

47. see absolutely no value in using a Telrad

48. ...your principal finder scope is larger than 80mm

49. consider 15 minutes to be a 'quick' exposure

50. see more DSOs on your laptop screen during an evenings'
observing session than you do through the eyepiece

51. have seriously considered starting up your own anti-sattelite

52. ...'What meteor? Was it THAT good? Shucks, I missed it again'

53. consider meteors 'light pollution'

54. actually know where to get billberry jam, and make a point of
consuming some prior to observing sessions.

55.'ve been thinking that a 14th century black monk's hood is a
pretty cool idea

56. have blackened the edges of your eyeglasses

57. ...the domelight of your car is painted red

58. ...You are briefly taken aback by the brightness of a normal flashlight
under "normal flashlight" circumstances (power outages, e.g.)

59. ...You think GM's Daytime Running Lights are some kind of evil alien

60. ...You can make ten trips lugging equipment back and forth across a cow
pasture without stepping on a single cow pie (using only the illumination
of that garishly bright Milky Way to guide you.)

61. ...You consider the HII regions of distant galaxies as individual
observing targets.

62. ...You wear sun screen during full moon periods

63. ...You wear sun glasses during full moon periods

64. ...You're caught by the police climbing light poles at night trying to
"unscrew" the bulbs.

65. ...You complain you can't really see the faint stuff because the
Gegenschein is too bright.

66. ...You consider how to blow-up the SUN in order to reduce light

67. ...hire a crop duster to spray the surrounding area because
last night the fire flies kept ruining your dark adaptation.

68. keep a cross-index of stuff that you have looked at on 3x5 file
cards organized by object catalog number, so you can easily find your
logged observations of any specific object.

69. ...most of your friends think that is a bit much.
(with apologies to Jay!)

70. have logged M51 and M57 and it isn't even really dark yet.

71. think about how to smash the nearby streetlight without getting
caught.......or you think about how much the penalty would be for smashing
the nearby street lamp.

72. begin to realize that even the deepest red flash light is
affecting your vision.

73. ...if you are a permanent eye glass wearer) you plan to get your
glasses fully multi-coated or get new ones made of ED glass.

74. ask your eye doctor if it is possible to get the lenses in you
eyes fully multi-coated.

75. ... you ask you eye doctor if it is possible to get the lens in your
eyes enlarged.

76. ...You use an infrared flashlight.

77. ...You ask your neighbors over to star gaze, so they will know to turn
out their porch lights.

78. ...while spot checking the collimation of your dob, you note that with
concentration you can just begin to detect spiral structure in the dust
coating your primary.

79: ...You drive a thousand miles with no sleep, to sit in the darkest area
you can find, with no sleep, with a bunch of people who haven't slept for
days either, just to look for the faintest of all fuzzies! ;-)

81. ...You can understand what someone talking with a flashlight in their
mouth is saying!

82. ...You park your car in the driveway because the garage isn't big
enough to store both the car an your telescope.

83. ...You think the best reason to stop smoking is that the glow of the
cigarette hurts your dark adaptation*.

84. look upon a total solar eclipse as an opportunity to break the
current record for the most DSOs observed visually by a ground based
amateur in the daytime.

85. ...Lying on the living room floor you try to pick out detail in the
dust bunnies under the sofa.

86. ...when at new moon all your duties are neglected.

87. ...When you have two Collins I3 Pieces for your binoviewer.

88. When your main criterion for retirement is a dark sky home.

89. print out and keep all the "You know you're a Deep Sky person"
posts for reference!

Venture Cord Hike

Hi guys, I failed Venture Cord Hike before it started! I think there is no one more epic than this.