Something Is Happening

On May 26 in 1969, John Lennon and Yoko Ono begin their 2nd bed-in for peace at Hotel La Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The Bed-ins for Peace were two week-long nonviolent protests against wars, intended as experimental tests of new ways to promote peace. The idea was derived from a “sit-in” (a form of direct action that involves one or more people occupying an area for a protest), in which the group of protesters remain seated in front of or within an establishment until they are evicted, arrested, or their requests are met. John and Yoko took a stand against the Vietnam War with their now-famous slogan, “Make love, not war.”

I will be grilling up shish kabob for Memorial Day on Monday, but I cook it in pans instead of skewering it. I will be using fillet mingon (or beef tenderloin), sausage, peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes, potatoes and pineapple chunks which I hope will turn out good.

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Respond to this Friday Faithfuls challenge by writing anything about May 26th, or any other thing that you are going through in your life, possibly as a way of recognizing May as Mental Health Awareness Month, or you can go with whatever else that you think fits.  If you live in the US, I want to wish you a happy Memorial Day weekend and if not then I wish you peace on Earth.  If you have a baby that is due on May 26th, 2023, then the most likely time of this conception was around September 2nd, 2022, and going the other way if your baby is conceived on May 26th, 2023, then the new bundle of joy will be due around February 16th, 2024.  It doesn’t matter if the baby was born on May 26th, 2023, or if it will be on February 16th, 2024, as either way it will…

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Nuclear Fusion

Fusion offers a potential long-term energy source that uses abundant fuel supplies and does not produce greenhouse gases or long-lived radioactive waste. Fusion is among the most environmentally friendly sources of energy. There are no CO2 or other harmful atmospheric emissions from the fusion process, which means that fusion does not contribute to greenhouse gas emissions or global warming. Two obstacles to any practical application of fusion power are the magnitude of the plant capital cost and the limited lifetime of the reactor vessel. Among the factors contributing to the high initial cost is the constraint heat removal places on reactor size. It is hoped that some nuclear fusion reactors will be fully operational by 2027.

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Respond to this Friday Faithfuls challenge by writing anything about nuclear fusion, or any other source of clean energy, or you can go with whatever else that you think fits.  We are still decades away from nuclear fusion becoming a viable energy source, if it ever does, but we have started making some progress.  Nuclear fusion is a safe form of energy, because even though it does produce a small number of radioactive materials, it does not create any long-lived radioactive nuclear waste.  A fusion reactor produces helium, which is an inert gas.  Fusion is a self-limiting process and if you cannot control the reaction, the machine switches itself off, so you never have a runaway chain reaction meltdown.  The idea of fusion is to fuse two hydrogen nuclei together to create helium isotopes and our sun is constantly creating fusion reactions all the time, burning ordinary hydrogen at enormous…

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Higher Dimensions

If the known Universe can be adequately described in three spatial and one time dimension, do we really need extra dimensions? From any point in space, you are free to move in any direction you choose. No matter how you orient yourself, you can travel forward-or-backward, up-and-down, or side-to-side and it is also easy to see how the fourth dimension of spacetime fits into our lives. The theories that have more dimensions are taken seriously, because their predictions match the experimental evidence that we see, but nothing is stopping you from rejecting the idea that the universe consists of more than four spacetime dimensions.

The fifth dimension gives us a means of measuring the similarity and differences between our world and other possible ones. In the sixth, we would see a plane of possible worlds, where we could compare and position all the possible universes that start with the same initial conditions as our universe did. In the seventh dimension, you have access to the possible worlds that start with different initial conditions, so time started differently here. The eighth dimension gives us a plane of possible universe histories. In the ninth dimension, we can compare all the possible universe histories, and we would experience different possible laws of physics. In the tenth dimension, we arrive at the point in which everything possible and imaginable is covered. Beyond this, nothing can be imagined by us because of our human limitations.

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Respond to this Friday Faithfuls challenge by writing anything about Geometry, Physics, reality, or you can go with whatever else that you think fits.  A zero-dimensional object is nothingness, so nobody can see it, however in math we call this a point, and a zero-dimensional object looks like a dot.  Anything that you can see has dimensions, so the dot has length and width.  A one-dimensional object is a line, or a line segment (straight or curved) having only length, and because it has no width or thickness, we can’t see that either, so we just need to use our imagination to visualize a line.  A line is a concept that describes propagation in a single direction and lines drawn on a paper are not mathematical lines, because these lines are 1-dimensional, and we live in a 3-dimensional world.  In our 3D world we need at least two dimensions for…

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Mathematical Space

Math starts with pattern recognition and if a pattern emerges, humans are able to invent mathematical concepts in our brains abstracting elements from the world around us, defining shapes, lines, sets, groups, and so forth that is either done for some specific purpose or could be for fun. By discovering and studding the connections among those concepts, math becomes more advanced. Mathematics is more of a study than an invention, one that developed slowly over thousands of years with the help of thousands of people. Over the years, different cultures have discovered different forms of math that they needed to perform certain tasks like understanding groups and relationships, sharing food, looking at seasonal patterns, astronomical data, and attempting to understand the wonders of the universe and resolve the mysteries that would otherwise be undecipherable. There are probably forms of mathematics that were understood by people we don’t even know existed and after our universe is dead, math will survive, even though nobody would have the ability to understand it.

Advanced mathematics can be traced to ancient Greece where Euclid defined Geometry from a small set of axioms and Pythagoras is linked to the discovery and proof of a theorem. The ancient Greeks were great thinkers and Socrates relentlessly questioned everything giving us the Socratic method. Parmenides held that the multiplicity of existing things, their changing forms and motion, are but an appearance of a single eternal reality. Plato developed his Theory of Forms which asserts that the physical realm is only a shadow, or image, of the true reality of the Realm of Forms unchanging concepts or ideals that transcend time and space. Mathematicians created definitions to elucidate, explain, expose, illuminate, illustrate, imply, interpret, reveal or make the meaning of a term clear and understandable. When an object is defined in a corollary, lemma, proposition or theory it becomes a significant alternative method for knowing how it works. From the definitions, a conjecture, hypothesis, lemma, postulate, proposition or statement can be formed which may lead to a remark, statement, supposition, or an axiom for which a proof is needed. Mathematical space is where all of these ideas are worked out.

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Respond to this Friday Faithfuls challenge by writing anything about Math or Science, or you can go with whatever else that you think fits.  Math is not just about numbers, as it is the scientific study of motion, shape, space, connections and relationships, attributes and patterns that work with mathematical symbols.  Space is an abstract idea in math, it is extraordinarily general, but it is also a supremely important concept.  Space is where things happen, and spatial coordinates provide us with our reference system, they are necessary to define unique locations of any particular point or any object.  The words space and structure can be used in essentially all the same situations, but you could think of a space as being a geometric formation and a structure as more an algebraic foundation.  So, structures are places when we do algebra, and spaces as places when we do geometry.  Mathematical space…

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Our Sun orbits around the center of the Milky Way Galaxy pulling the rest of our solar system along with it. We are moving at an average velocity of 828,000 km/hr. (514495.34 m/hr.). Even at that high rate, it still takes us about 230 million years to make one complete orbit around the Milky Way! It is thought that we have made this journey some 20 times since the earliest days when our sun was just a protostar. Our Sun lies near a small, partial arm called the Orion Arm, or Orion Spur, that is located between the Perseus and Scutum-Centaurus arms. The Milky Way is a barred spiral galaxy, having a central bar. There may be four primary spiral arms emanating from its center bar with an unknown number of smaller offshoot arms. The other two arms are called the Carina-Sagittarius Arm and the Orion-Cygnus Arm. Our Sun lies about 8 kpc (1,000 parsecs or 3,260 light years) from the center of our galaxy, so we are 26,080 light years away from the super massive black hole that resides in the center of the Milky Way.

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Sea level is the base level for measuring elevation and depth on Earth.  Since the ocean is one continuous body of water, its surface tends to seek the same level throughout the world.  Global sea level has risen between 6 and 8 inches (15-20 cm) over the last 100 years.  As you increase in elevation, there is less air above you thus the pressure decreases.  As the pressure decreases, air molecules spread out further because there is less pressure to push them together (i.e., air expands), and the temperature decreases.  Decreased air pressure means that there is less oxygen is available for breathing.  Water takes less time to boil at increased elevations because there is less pressure, and you don’t need to apply as much heat.  An elevation higher than 8,000 feet or 1,6 miles above sea level or higher, could put you at risk for normal breathing.  Mount Everest…

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Excuses to Get Out of Doing Things

  1. Meeting the prospective in-laws for the first time.
    Spilled coffee on my clothes.
  2. Going to your partner’s firm’s social evening where you know it will be talking shop all night.
    The game is on tonight.
  3. Not going to school on a test day.
    I don’t feel well.
  4. Broken a window whilst playing outside
    Shit happens.
  5. Having gone shopping, spent all the money, but not bought anything on the list.
  6. Damaged the car
    It wasn’t my fault.
  7. Late for work
  8. Forgotten to do your homework
    We all forget things.
  9. Insurance claim for damage to property
    What am I paying for anyways?
  10. Ruined an expensive piece of clothing.
    I have been meaning to buy some new clothes anyway.

Written for Di’s Fibbing Friday.

Celebrating Pot

I read that weed may be effective against diabetes, because it is thought that it can lower insulin resistance in diabetics. Research has shown that marijuana users may have increased insulin sensitivity. In a large study, scientists observed that the fasting insulin levels of users were 16 percent lower than those of both former users and nonusers. The levels of insulin resistance among this group were also 17 percent lower on average. Diabetes is one of the most prevalent, and hard to treat, diseases today and millions of people suffering from the disease are looking for relief from both the symptoms and the high costs healthcare associated with treating the disease. For people with diabetes, it is critical to manage blood-glucose levels and manage the associated symptoms of the disease to avoid the worst outcomes, including vision loss, kidney damage, and limb amputations. Marijuana use may be able to help with managing your blood sugar levels, and it could help to improve insulin resistance with type 2 diabetes while reducing arterial inflammation which is a common fallout of diabetes. It is thought that it can improve blood circulation and lower blood pressure also.

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Respond to this Friday Faithfuls challenge by writing anything about cannabis, or you can go with whatever else that you think fits.  Every dog has its day and yesterday is when marijuana was celebrated.  Ok I am a day late, but cut me some slack, because I was busy consuming lots of weed yesterday, so that is why I have a delayed reaction time.  I am also late for bicycle day, which celebrates the first lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) trip ever taken, which was on Wednesday.  As the rock poet Jim Morrison wrote in his poem Stoned Immaculate, “Back in those days everything was simpler and more confused.  One summer night, going to the pier I ran into two young girls.  The blonde one was called Freedom, the dark one, Enterprise.  We talked and they told me this story.  I wanna tell you about Texas Radio and the Big…

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Invest In Our Planet

Climate change is a real thing and the stakes can’t get much higher for us to start cleaning up our planet and finding a sustainable form of energy that will allow us a future. We need clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, parks for recreation, and we must protect all of the endangered species on our planet. You don’t have to be an environmental activist to show some love to the amazing place that we all call home. Just turn off your TV, take a break from your blog, go outside and enjoy the sun on your face and the wind in your hair and if you want, then go hug a tree.

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Respond to this Friday Faithfuls challenge by writing anything about Earth Day or go with anything else that you think fits.  We are 8 days away from another Earth Day celebration and I am not sure if anything has actually improved since this was started 53 years ago mostly by hippies, back on April 22, 1970.  Back then hardly anybody recycled anything, but I read that a lot of the stuff that we put in recycling bins, ends up being thrown out as trash.  Some things seem to be improving, as there is a big push now for electric vehicles, but the clock is still ticking on global warming.  A train derailment occurred on February 3, 2023, when 38 cars of a Norfolk Southern freight train carrying hazardous materials derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, United States and toxic chemicals have been found in air, soil, and water samples surrounding the…

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Easter Bunny and Easter Eggs

Easter is a holiday that relies on the lunar calendar. In one of his lives, the Bodhisattva (one whose goal is awakening) was born in the holy city, Varanasi, as a hare. He had four friends, a monkey, a jackal, a fox and an otter. They decided that they would practice the Perfection of Generosity on the up-coming fast day, for it was said that for those who observed the virtues at that time, the merit was greatly multiplied. So, the next day, the otter brought seven red fish that he had collected on the banks of the Ganges. The jackal had captured a lizard and pilfered a pot of curd from someone’s house. The monkey brought some mangoes that he gathered from the trees. The fox returned with a bird’s nest. They intended to offer these things to some beggar as act of charity. But the hare, out browsing grass as usual, felt that grass was not a suitable donation, so after some thought, he decided he would offer his own body as an act of charity.

Lord Shakra (Indra), king of the gods, got wind of this, and he decided to test the hare’s motivation and determination. He disguised himself as a sadhu (an old man) and went up to Hare to beg for food or ask for alms. The hare was delighted at the opportunity to practice this ultimate act of Generosity, so he asked the ascetic to pile up some sticks and kindle a fire so that he could roast his own meat as a gift of food. Shakra made a fire appear and the observant hare, not wishing to break the first precept, shook himself three times to ensure that there was no tiny insect in his fur. Then he threw himself on the heap of burning twigs, but the rabbit, was not burnt.

So impressed was Lord Indra, that he revealed himself, saying, “Virtuous Hare, your generosity will be famous throughout this entire eon!” To honor the Great Being, Shakra placed the image of the leaping hare atop his own palace. So that all beings should know and be inspired, he also placed the image of the hare on the face of the full moon where we all can see it to this day and recall the hare’s great sacrifice. It is said the lunar image is still draped in the smoke that rose when the rabbit cast itself into the fire. Many people see pictures on the Moon, based on the dark and light patterns on the Moon’s face.

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Respond to this Friday Faithfuls challenge by writing anything about the Easter Bunny, or easter Eggs, or go with anything else that you think fits.  I found many different versions of the same stories on different gods and goddesses and I have come to the conclusion that many different versions of the same story seem to exist.  Let’s go down the rabbit hole together so we can try to separate fact from fiction.  Easter is a Christian holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus (after his crucifixion).  The exact origins of this religious tradition are disputed.  Some accounts trace Easter to the Latin term hebdomada alba, or white week, which got its name from the white clothes worn by people who were baptized during that time.  Through a translation error, the term later appeared as esostarum in Old High German, which eventually became Easter in English.

The Easter Bunny is a…

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TicTok Time Running Out

Lawmakers seem skeptical that the TicTok app could be made safe for domestic users and an outright sale or ban is looking increasingly likely in the next 12-18 months. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), which reviews transactions that could affect national security, has been pressuring ByteDance to spin off its U.S. subsidiary or sell it to an American company, but they remain opposed to any forced sale. The RESTRICT Act, a bipartisan bill introduced in the Senate this month, allows the U.S. Commerce Secretary to ban foreign technology companies, as well as encourages the intelligence service to declassify information on potential risks, but a move to outright ban a software program would be unprecedented. There was a House hearing yesterday which was part of widespread House Republican investigations of the Democratic Biden administration. Republicans called the hearing about alleged Biden administration suppression of social media posts. Democrats responded by saying that only the government can censor and Facebook and Twitter make their own decisions on what they will publish. Republicans claimed censorship of social media posts, even though the government doesn’t control the companies. It turned into a shouting match and some reporters compared the goings on to a Monty Python skit. The hearing was about a lawsuit Missouri and Louisiana filed accusing the White House and FBI of pressuring Facebook and Twitter to suppress posts about the origins of COVID-19 and the efficacy of lockdowns and wearing masks. I guess with all the Trump indictments going on, the Republicans are trying their best to make something stick to Biden, but that is what you get when you back a candidate who is most likely a criminal.

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Respond to this Friday Faithfuls challenge by writing anything about TikTok, the Chinese short-form video hosting service owned by the Chinese company ByteDance, which allows users to submit short videos, which can range in duration from 3 seconds to 10 minutes, or go with anything else that you think fits.  Last Thursday on March 23, members of Congress grilled TikTok CEO Shou Chew during a hearing and many called for TikTok to be banned in the U.S. because this social media site is seen as being a potential national security threat.  This ban could weaken the relations between the U.S. and China and could also upset some very loyal users of the app that spend hours each day making and consuming short-form video content.  TikTok collects every user’s email address, phone number and date of birth along with a lot of data about user activity, which they share with third parties…

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