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Yellow wood

I didn't want to finish blogging for the day with that rhino image at the top of the blog.  Instead I'll finish with this photo I took last week in my favorite woods in Cass County, Minnesota.  I'm currently using it as my desktop image as an instant mental health break (click for fullscreen).

"Memorial to a species"

Photo credit Brent Stirton, photojournalist, who captured the image at South Africa’s Hluhluwe Imfolozi Park.  This image was the Grand Title winner in the Natural History Museum's Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition for 2017.  Additional photos in several galleries at the link.


But not chocolate-covered - that's its natural appearance.  Tentatively identified as Boletus edulis ("penny bun").

Ocean covered in plastic

The image speaks for itself.  Photographed near Roatan, an island off the coast of Honduras Via The Daily Mail.

"Human-mediated" minerals

Last week I listened to a most interesting podcast about the discovery of new minerals, many/most of which occur as a result of man's interaction with the environment, either intentionally or accidentally.

Divertimento #137

Another gifdump, because readers like them, it's quick, and I have yard chores to do. Girl opens can of beer; frat boys approve.

The President is a great office, not a great man

"Calvin Coolidge never made any pretensions to greatness. "It is a great advantage to a President and a major source of safety to the country, for him to know that he is not a great man," he recorded in his Autobiography."More about Coolidge at the United States Senate webpage.

Flying robots

YouTube link.


When I take an airline flight, I never tire of looking at meanders and oxbow lakes. The term derives from the Meander River located in present-day Turkey and known to the Ancient Greeks as Μαίανδρος Maiandros (Latin: Maeander), characterised by a very convoluted path along the lower reach.

"I Stand For The National Anthem"

"There is a huge tv screen by the food carts right inside the stadium where people gather to watch. We went over there to check it out and we saw him spread the flag out and sit down."Some additional details at Deadspin.

HIgh school pep rally

  YouTube link. When I was in high school, a pep rally consisted of two or three girls waving pom-poms and trying unsuccessfully to get a small crowd to yell "Win team win."  Times have changed.

Why is this image distorted?

This is the greenside area of the third hole at Tianna Country Club in Walker, Minnesota.  The ripples from my failed approach shot have faded away.  What interests me is the birch trees and their reflection in the pond.  In real life they were perfectly upright.

Vintage horsefly blanket

To anyone who has been around horses (or horseflies), the image speaks for itself. Modern versions seem to be made of plastic or fabric.  I found a vintage one for sale on eBay made of leather.  This one appeared to be made of coarse string or yarn.  In the pre-plastic era this would probably be cooler than a fabric blanket.

This is a "fire grenade"

"We found several of these old fire grenades in the attic of a large, old house in Edina [a suburb of Minneapolis, Minnesota].


'Tis the season to start putting the gardens to bed for the winter, watch football games, play some last golf, and do some leafpeeping.  Back in about a week.

"Steve" is a new type of Northern Lights

You might wonder what Steve means. At first it didn't mean anything. It was just a name. Steve comes from the animated movie Over The Hedge.

"Crazy Hair Day" at school

Found in the Funny subreddit. See also Not a Dress Code Violation (2015)

Peacock spiders dance

YouTube link. From Live Science: They're peacock spiders, a group of tiny arachnids that are small in stature but giants in the charisma department, best known for their brilliant colors and energetic courtship "dances" — much like the showy, fan-tailed peacocks that inspired the spiders' name.

Mating rituals of the Peacock Spider

YouTube link.  Remarkable (if somewhat redundant) footage of a tiny (4 mm.) Australian spider.  The coloration and the dance of the male spider are quite extraordinary.

Same old, same old

Excerpts from Harper's Weekly Review: It was reported that the “police profile” of a mass shooter in the United States, of whom at least 56 percent have been white and 97 percent have been male, was not “fit” by the Las Vegas gunman, a white, male, reclusive, itinerant, high-stakes gambler who had purchased 33 guns in the previous year....