July 22, 2003Hey Harry, thanks for the kind words on yesterday's comment section. It's always great to hear about regular readers whom I don't know personally already...
Old News of the Moment
Back from the end of March, a Slate.com Explainer talks about Why Is Iraqi Anti-Aircraft Fire Visible on TV?...the answer is, of course, tracers put in to make aiming easier, but mentions that during the Cold War, they've started color coding 'em, so people know who's shooting at whom: "In Vietnam, North Vietnamese Army and Viet Cong tracers were designed to leave green trails while American and South Vietnamese tracers were designed to leave red ones. The New York Times reports that the color scheme is similar in Gulf War II: Americans, red; Iraqis, green."
Why I find that amusing is because on the G.I. Joe cartoon, good guys shot red lasers and bad guys shot blue. I had NO idea that there was any basis in reality for that kind of color coding!
I found that screenshot at this amazing site called qktheatre.com (named after Quick Kick, a popular martial artist 'Joe.) The Episode Summaries are incredibly detailed, three or four pages with dozens and dozens of screen captures. And it reminded me--even back in like fifth and sixth grade, I thought Lady Jaye was hawt--my preference for short-haired kinda butch women was formed even then.
Ramble of the Moment
There's something cool about listening to far off lightning over AM radio...can't see the lightning, can't hear the thunder, but it can make its presence known. I guess it's not all that impressive, if the station's signal isn't very strong then my blinkers and even the engine itself can make their electromagnetic presence audible through the stupid radio. Conceptually, it is kind of cool though.
And think about it...man, every radio station's signal your car radio can pull in, and every tv station your tv can use an antenna to pick up, and then some, is passing through you right now. An entire cacophony of possible sound and potential image is flooding over us all the time, but we're completely blind and deaf to it.
UPDATE: Louis Nick III sent in an NPR link of a guy who listens to the radio sounds of the Nothern Lights. (Ties in nicely with today's title theme of "pretty colors" as well!)
Bad News of the Moment
I know I posted something on this story last January, but wow, this is really nightmarish in a goofy kind of way: there's a good chance that bananas will vanish from store shelves in the next few years. How weird is it to think that our children might not know what a banana tastes like? How convenient fun they are (were?) to peel and eat, how good they taste, alone, or with peanut butter or nutella? Bizarre. Something tells me "they" will figure something out, but I dunno. In the meanwhile, expect about a billion jokes along the lines of "yes we have no bananas".