Steven and Sean on the Polar Bear Cam
Steven and Sean on the Polar Bear Cam

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Going Postal

How I'm feeling today (right-click to Play or Stop )

Well, we're 11 days past the vernal equinox, 10 days past Easter, and into a new month.

On the educational front, I'm considering publishing a book, "Steven's Middle School Adventures-- How One Mother Managed to Avoid Going Postal", but the problem is that I don't think I'm qualified to write this as I'm pretty sure my sanity is leaking out the top of my head even as I write this.

The other possibility I'm seriously considering is to go ahead and actually commit all the acts I keep fantasizing about, then write a book from my jail cell entitled, "Why I Did It: The Neurotic Rantings Of A Sleep-Deprived Mother".

Is the entire world going crazy, or is it just me?

I'm a news junkie, and browsing the news today, while it hasn't helped me to feel better about my own sanity, has at least made me realize I may not be alone.

In Antarctica, it appears that some penguins have made a miraculous evolutional adaptation to the problem of trying to survive in such a harsh winter environment.

A friend directed me to YouTube today, and to my dismay every single "Featured Video" on their front page redirects here. I guess I got rickrolled.

I go to Google's home page and I find that their latest project is a establishing the first human colony on Mars.

The folks who volunteer to colonize Mars will need internet, so in support of that effort Google is hiring engineers to work on high-density high-delivery hosting (HiDeHiDeHo).

For those of you who are tired of email and prefer paper, GMail is launching two new services. One is GMail Paper, a service that allows you to request a paper copy of any email you are reading.

The other new Gmail enhancement is GMail Custom Time, which allows you to pre and post date any email you send.

Click for a larger picture

BMW has rolled out a new instant messaging feature in their cars, using Reactive User Sound Electronic particles in the windshield, basically you can say something and what you said will appear in your windshield, allowing you to communicate with other drivers on the road.

There's a new caffeinated breakfast cereal called Spazztroids, being promoted as "one healthy bowl of cereal and one-and-a-half strong cups of coffee all rolled into one!" I'm planning to buy a case of it and send it to my St. Jude friend Di Di, who lives out in the Tennessee backcountry with her five homeschooled boys and notoriously unreliable satellite internet service. Why would anyone use satellite when they can get TiSP for free?.

And in honor of April Fool's Day, I'd like to relate my all-time favorite April Fool's day story ever.

Mount Edgecumbe, April 1st 1974

From the book, Alaska from the Air, by Fred (PHT) Hirschmann:

One event that caught just about everyone by surprise was the eruption of Mt. Edgecumbe on Kruzof Island near Sitka. This imposing volcano looks a bit like Japan's Mt. Fuji. It had been dormant an estimated nine thousand years, but on April 1, 1974, Sitkans arose to black smoke rising from the summit crater.

It just so happens that Sitka harbors a group of pranksters known as the "Dirty Dozen." One of it's members, Oliver J. "Porky" Bickar had been plotting for four years to stage a little excitement for the town.

"I stockpiled about a hundred of so tires to take over to Mount Edgecumbe," admits Porky. "I tried all the helicopter outfits in town, but none of them had the nerve to help me out. Finally, Earl Walker, a helicopter pilot with Temsco in Petersburg, said he would make the flights. In two trips we sling-loaded gas, Sterno, smoke bombs, and tires to the summit. I also took along ten cans of black spray paint. In the snow, I stomped out 'April Fools' in fifty-foot letters, then sprayed black paint in the footprints. We torched the tires and let the excitement begin!"

The "eruption" was announced on the local radio station, and pilots reported it to the FAA. The Coast Guard commander sent a chopper from Gustavus and a whale boat from Sitka. When the Coast Guard helicopter arrived on thescene, he radioed to the commander, "You've been had. All I see is a bunch of smoldering tires and 'April Fools' written in the snow.

Happy April 1st!

- Kathleen

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