peeling walls – exploring abandonment across the midwest

exploring abandonment across the midwest

Source: peeling walls – exploring abandonment across the midwest

Having grown up in the Cleveland, OH area, I found this site interesting  – especially as I had always wondered what became of the Aquarium. Cleveland has more than its share of urban decay, although it probably does not compare to what has happened to Detroit, MI.

Top 10 Reasons the GOP Does Not Want Hold Confirmation Hearings For The Supreme Court


10) They are still looking a secret treasure that Justice Antonin Scalia is rumored to have buried in his office.

9) The GOP are still combing through the Constitution for a “If I can’t have my way; you can’t either” loophole.

8) Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell still bitter after getting called “Mr. Magoo” by all of the popular Congress kids.

7) They have to wash their hair that day.

6) Their psychic advisor warned against making any decisions for the next year because Mercury is in retrograde.

5) They need to check with large corporate special interest groups to see if it’s o.k. first

4) Leaving the such an important decision to President Donald Trump makes perfect sense. (and people say the GOP are out of touch!)

3) There is a movie marathon on Lifetime television, and they just want some “me” time right now.

2) They are still in-fighting about whether or not to host “bring your daughter to work day,” but are struggling to figure out what they actually do for a living to be able to explain it.

1) Obstructionism, pure and simple.

Senate GOP: No hearings for Supreme Court nominee

Strange Women Want To Talk About Your Genitals


The latest rounds of commercials have various women wanting to talk about the “romantic arts” that involve male genitalia.  Nobody knows who they are.  They invite complete strangers  into their luxurious homes. then suddenly, they want to be confidants and advise us about what our partner (it’s not like she’s asking to see the results of taking these ‘little blue pills’) wants. There is also no mention of credentials that involve training or certification of a medical or psychological nature.  We don’t even get to hear a mention of any counseling in this woman’s background.  Sounds risky, even before considering that taking the advice of a random female to apply to another relationship is inherently foolish and/or dangerous. Imagine THAT conversation!

Would you discuss your genitals with a complete stranger on an elevator? In the check-out line in Wal*Mart? What if this woman step out of a non-descript van with the words “Free Candy” spraypainted on the side of it? THE ANSWER IS NO. Which, of course, leads to the question of who is the target audience is.  There are many different scenarios where this (and the competitor) can be used, even in non-romantic scenarios.  Had this woman and her counterparts had some medical training, they might have known that. Does this woman even know what happens after “lasting longer than four hours??”  Try surgical intervention.

Maybe even Kelly Hu (Actress who plays Deathstrike on the X-Men movie series) who has joined the odd bevy of genital-curious women could even a strange portent ….as she plays a character that have adamantium claws (what was that about ‘surgical intervention?). It’s not like we really know her either, nor is she any more likely to want to see what happens with pill administration here, too. Goes to show you that you can’t believe everything on television.


Consider yourself warned!


Exploring The Improbability Of A Zombie Apocalypse

Author note: This post was inspired by a recent discussion I have had with friends. While I am a big fan of horror movies (and reading horror, as well); this zombie thing is just silly.


Zombies have obviously captured the imagination of the masses. I know that The Walking Dead television show is incredibly popular.  However, there isn’t enough science for me to capture my imagination.

First of all, there is some pathogenic cause to becoming a zombie.  The evolutionary success of a “zombie germ” would likely be:

  • fairly communicable
  • able to survive outside of a host
  • without any obvious or specific initial symptoms
  • debilitating, but not immediately fatal

So, being bloodborne is a fairly good start.  Getting bitten by a zombie has possibilities.  However, some strains are so virulent (28 Days Later, and 28 Weeks Later) that being splashed with zombie blood…and, at one point, having one zombie blood drop fall into a victim’s eye turns that person almost instantly.  Minutes before that scene, one person defends themselves with a baseball bat – that all sorts of blood splatters everywhere. Main characters must have a stronger immunity, huh?  The time between exposure and infection can vary, as well.  Probably having a lot to do with the significance of the role of affected character than actual immune response. It’s not clear on how long the zombie pathogen can survive outside the body.  Hoards of zombies roam the streets, at some point, which is an infectivity buzz kill.  The germ can’t mutate if it is no longer spread among hosts. Zombies, in theory, would just die off and take the infection with them.

Which brings us to the implausible anatomy and physiology of the zombie.  Anatomically, the zombie is an open mechanical system of muscle and bone.  The bone supports the frame, and the muscle provides the framework for movement.  But the system is leaking fluids, the skin is compromised, and the fluids are exposed to air. Things dry out, unless replenished. Muscle and bone without the fluid would become fibrous and immovable, at least, at some point. Physiologically, the system would also need a means of fuel – as well as the removal of the waste (as no energy generation is completely efficient) – needs to occur.  As decay has visibly set in, and open system would not support the energy exchange either.

So, with a great deal of embellishment and massive amounts of “suspension of disbelief;” zombies perpetually stumble around – but still manage to catch up with humans healthy enough to survive (Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs having been met, for the most part) can still get caught and infected.

Sorry. Zombies do not float my imagination boat.

The Walrus: Dissolving The Dead

Dissolving the Dead.

Unpleasantness aside, both traditional methods are also environmentally damaging. According to DeathLab research, cemeteries in the United States put more than 3 million litres of toxic embalming fluid in the ground every year, some of which invariably seeps into the soil and contaminates groundwater systems. Building the caskets that (at least temporarily) contain those fluids takes 82,000 tonnes of steel, 2,500 tonnes of copper and bronze, and 71,000 cubic metres of wood annually. Cremation uses fossil fuels and releases toxic gases into the atmosphere. And, while the effluent from bio-cremation can be used as fertilizer, flame cremation ­renders corpses ecologically useless.

This is an article on a topic that I find interesting.  It discusses the impact the funeral industry has on the environment, and the better (yet, controversial) means of disposing of dead people.  I remember reading about this in Mary Roach’s book, Stiff.

One of the things mentioned in Mary Roach’s book was the Body Farm, if I remember correctly. It is part of the University of Tennessee. They place donated bodies in various conditions to study how they decompose. Morbid, perhaps, but still interesting.

Sparkonit: Are You A Genius? Are You A Genius?

Have you ever wondered what geniuses have in common? A number of experiments have been conducted to find that out and some peculiar behaviors have been observed among people with high IQ. How anyone turns out to be genius is due to their genetics. So genetics of geniuses definitely differ from “not so genius” ordinary people, but these brainy people do have similarities in their genetics that lead most of them to possess similar qualities. How would you recognize a genius if you come across one?

I liked this article. The content does hit, somewhat, close to home. I am not saying that I am a genius. I do consider myself creative, but I do feel that my mind works differently than others. I am not about to share details about some of the more personal things the list reveals, but I will say that #3 which has to do with socialization rings true.

However, I am horribly disappointed with the accuracy of one point on the list. If only #18 were actually true. =(

18. Being Skinny

Obesity has been shown to decrease IQ over time. A research led by French scientists found that people with Body Mass Index of 20 or below do better in vocabulary test than people with BMI of 30 or more.

Proof: High BMI Tied to Poor Cognitive Function in Middle-Aged Adults

Top 10 Signs Your A Bad Barista


10) Name tag either says Larry, Curly, Moe or Shemp

9) Barely made it through coffee clinical

8) Lungs still sore over break room ‘cinnamon challenge’

7) Unable to concentrate during training because of the large mole on trainer’s forehead.

6) Still kinda freaked out after bombing the “extra toppings” exam

5) Frustrated that a customer said I probably couldnt find my butt with two hands and a flashlight.

4) Became upset when wasn’t able to find my butt with two hands and a flashlight

3) Feeling horrible after starting the Dr. Oz “take all herbal supplements that begin with ‘G’ ” diet

2) Worried that the boss might find out about being a Waffle House double agent.

1) Haven’t quite overcome strange, irrational fear of “everything” bagels. (What EXACTLY do they put in those things!?)


Five Word Poetry Challenge: Bubble, Book, Random, Vivacious, Ransack

(Author note: A reader sent me five random words that I have to put together in one poem. The winner gives the next challenger their five words.)



My heart’s a bubble
Carried delicately on Emotional wind
Its contents, a book
Filled with verse, rhyme and statements
Would you care to look?
Random memories
Cascade before my mind’s eye Warm and bittersweet
Love, ripe off the vine
She’s buoyant and vivacious
I’m more than lucky
Sad moods can ransack
Let the dazzling light of faith Scatter the darkness.

Who will be my next challenger?