If you are looking for the epic motorcycle journey blog that I've written, please see the Miles By Motorcycle site I put together. 
  • Subscribe to this RSS Feed
  • Unexpected consequences of global warming - spread of disease
    05/05/2006 11:07AM
    As reported by the Washington Post:

    "Global warming -- with an accompanying rise in floods and droughts -- is fueling the spread of epidemics in areas unprepared for the diseases, say many health experts worldwide. Mosquitoes, ticks, mice and other carriers are surviving warmer winters and expanding their range, bringing health threats with them.

    Malaria is climbing the mountains to reach populations in higher elevations in Africa and Latin America. Cholera is growing in warmer seas. Dengue fever and Lyme disease are moving north. West Nile virus, never seen on this continent until seven years ago, has infected more than 21,000 people in the United States and Canada and killed more than 800."

    You can read the full article at the post.
  • EPA doc on Marine Engines and Ethanol Gasoline
    05/02/2006 11:06AM
    Chesapeake Bay Magazine has a small article in this months edition pointing to this page on the epa site:

    http://www.epa.gov/otaq/rfgboats.htm
  • Caribbean coral suffers record die-off
    04/01/2006 10:51AM
    In the "oh this is not good" category CNN reports:

    'And with global warming, scientists are pessimistic about the future of coral reefs.

    "The prognosis is not good," said biochemistry professor M. James Crabbe of the University of Luton near London. In early April, he will investigate coral reef mortality in Jamaica. "If you want to see a coral reef, go now, because they just won't survive in their current state."'

    You can read the full depressing report at cnn.

  • DC Metro Area Needs Rain Badly
    03/31/2006 8:22AM
    The Easter Fire is currently at risk due to dry weather conditions. We need a serious rain.

    According to the Washington Post:

    "Today will probably wrap up the most arid March on record locally, said Richard Hitchens, hydrologist at the National Weather Service's Baltimore-Washington forecast office in Sterling. As of yesterday, the Washington area had received a minuscule .05 inches of precipitation for the month."

    Read the full article at the Washington Post.
  • Murphy's Laws of Combat
    03/30/2006 9:16AM
    Back when I was a kid working on DOD contracts for my fathers company, I would occassionaly get Xerox copies of jokes or cartoons. One of these was Murphy's Laws of Combat, which I regretfully misplaced. I never thought to look for them online. While this isn't exactly the set I remember, it's hilarious nevertheless:

    Murphy's Laws of Combat


    1.  If the enemy is in range so are you.
    2.  Incoming fire has the right-of-way.
    3.  Don't look conspicuous, it draws fire.
    4.  There is always a way.
    5.  The easy way is always mined.
    6.  Try to look unimportant, they may be low on ammo.
    7.  Professionals are predictable, amatures are dangerous.
    8.  The enemy always attacks on 2 occasions:
            1.  When your ready for them.
            2.  When your not ready for them.
    9.  Teamwork is essential, it gives them someone else to shoot at.
    10.  If you can't remember, then the claymore is pointed at you.
    11.  The enemy diversion you have been ignoring will be the main attack.
    12.  A sucking chest wound is natures way of telling you to slow down.
    13.  If your attack is going well, you have walked into an ambush.
    14.  Never draw fire, it irritates everyone around you.
    15.  Anything you do can get you shot, including nothing.
    16.  Make it tough enough for the enemy to get in and you won't be able to get out.
    17.  Never share a foxhole with anyone braver than you.
    18.  If your short of everything except enemy, you'r in a combat zone.
    19.  When you have secured an area, don't forget to tell the enemy.
    20.  Never forget that your weapon is made by the lowest bidder.
    21.  Once you pull the pin, Mr. Grenade is no longer your friend.
    22.  Friendly fire isn't.
    23. There is no such thing as an atheist in a foxhole.
    24. Give an order, then change the order, will get you disorder.

    These come from murphys-laws.com and is a much more complete list. Read More for some more.

    These come from murphys-laws.com and is a much more complete list.

    Laws of War for Helicopters

    • Helicopter tail rotors are naturally drawn toward trees, stumps, rocks, etc.
      While it may be possible to ward off this event some of the time, it cannot, despite the best efforts of the crew, always be prevented.
      It's just what they do.
    • The engine RPM and the rotor RPM must BOTH be kept in the GREEN.
      Failure to heed this commandment can adversely affect the morale of the crew.
    • The terms Protective Armor and Helicopter are mutually exclusive.
    • "Chicken Plates" are not something you order in a restaurant.
    • The BSR (Bang Stare Red) Law:
      The louder the sudden bang in the helicopter, the quicker your eyes will be drawn to the gauges.
      Corollary: The longer you stare at the gauges the less time it takes them to move from green to red.
    • Loud, sudden noises in a helicopter WILL get your undivided attention.
    • The further you fly into the mountains, the louder the strange engine noises become.
    • It is a bad thing to run out of airspeed, altitude and ideas all at the same time.
    • "Pucker Factor" is the formal name of the equation that states the more hairy the situation is, the more of the seat cushion will be sucked up your butt.
      It can be expressed in its mathematical formula of:
       S (suction) + H (height above ground) + I (interest in staying alive) + T (# of tracers coming your way).
      Thus the term 'SHIT!' can also be used to denote a situation where a high Pucker Factor is being encountered.
    • Running out of pedal, fore or aft cyclic, or collective are all bad ideas.
      Any combination of these can be deadly.
    • Helicopters have been described as nothing more than 50,000 parts flying in close formation. It is the mechanics responsibility to keep that formation as tight as possible.
    • It is mathematically impossible for either hummingbirds, or helicopters to fly. Fortunately, neither are aware of this.
    • LZ's are always hot.
    • There are 'old' pilots and 'bold' pilots, but there are no 'old, bold' pilots.
    • Ch-53's are living proof, that if you strap enough engines to something it will fly.