3.02.2015

In Boston—all-time snowiest (since 1872)

99.4 inches of snow fell (so far—it’s not all over yet) and mean temp was about 4 degrees lower than average. 

NWSChat - NOAA's National Weather Service

3.01.2015

Presumably before Blue Cross

More than 200 skeletons found under Paris supermarket - NY Daily News

"The site where the modern-day supermarket is situated was formerly a hospital."

Also the coolest snow shovels. Ever.

February all-time coldest month in Bangor history — Bangor Daily News

Why do I keep thinking this spells p-a-r-t-y?

Border surge harming crime fighting in other parts of Texas, internal report finds - Houston Chronicle

"The report also said that millions spent to bring state police officers and guardsmen to the border and give them time to develop relationships with local law enforcement helped push the cost of Operation Strong Safety II beyond $100 million."

I know. Shame on me, right?

Where the Sunshilne State don't shine

Florida Shooter: I Shot A Pregnant Woman. Don't Jail Me. - The Daily Beast

"In a letter denying Bryan’s case, King wrote that in Florida, an accidental discharge of a firearm that kills someone—even if it is the result of gross negligence—cannot be prosecuted."

Musical accompaniment

Makes sense to me

Why you should stop giving your kid a bath every night - The Washington Post

"wash your kid if he stinks or is visibly dirty"

(Or, as my grandmother would say, you’ve got to eat a peck of dirt before you die. You can look up “peck” for yourself.)

But not Mexico (they say)

New York towns consider seceding to Pennsylvania | New York Post

"Local officials stung by a recent decision to ban natural gas fracking have raised the idea of redrawing the Keystone State’s border. Even though they don’t expect it to happen, members of the Upstate New York Towns Association hope the specter of secession will result in something — anything — good for a struggling part of the state peering enviously over the state line."

2.28.2015

Go Boston (just stay away from here)

Snowstorm Heading for Boston Could Break City's All-time Snow Record - Yahoo

"This is in anticipation of another round of snow on the way Sunday evening. Boston has experienced its second snowiest season so far with 102 inches of snow, only 5.6 inches away from the all-time record set during the 1995-1996 season."

(We could get another three inches tomorrow night, but sooner or later it’s got to stop, right?)

Because ice

Wet ice. It was just below freezing this afternoon, but sunny. That makes for wet ice, and lots of it, on the sidewalks. And wet ice is slipperier than, well, ice.

I tried two different routes to the grocery store, gave up on both, and visited the nearest junk-food emporium instead. That's my excuse. Open season on junk food until Monday.

We might get over freezing a few times next week and maybe some of this stuff will just go away.

The not-imaginary month

Coldest Month Ever: Northeast Bids a Bitter Goodbye to February - NBC News.com

"The Northeast woke up to another frigid morning on Saturday. And the first day of March should feel — well, a lot like the end of February. The forecast low for Sunday is 15 in New York, 2 in Buffalo and an even zero in Albany, New York."

Warmer soon, but first one more winter storm, say forecasters.

2.27.2015

Not until just now

The Slurpee Waves of Nantucket — Stay Wild Magazine

"Dang! Have you ever seen waves get so cold they turn to slurpee?"

Bye, February


But might not be swimming for a while. 

Back to work after 30 years



Thanks, Charlie!

We're feeling just a little better now

Donald Trump says he's 'serious' about 2016 bid. Shark, jumped? - CSMonitor.com

"Trump will move to Maine and raise beets before he runs for president. It’s not happening, no way, no chance, let’s be real."

A lot of physics in this

The Science of Why No One Agrees on the Color of This Dress | WIRED

"The fact that a single image could polarize the entire Internet into two aggressive camps is, let’s face it, just another Thursday."

We'll settle for some good old DST

Jet Lag Is Worse on Mars - The Atlantic

"‘When we landed the Mars Pathfinder, we did Mars time,’ Trosper said in a phone interview from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. ‘That’s the first time we ever did Mars time.’ They stayed on Mars time for only a month. Having an extra 40 minutes to the day every day quickly added up—the difference between 6 p.m. on Earth and 6:40 p.m. on Mars one week turned into the difference between 6 p.m. on Earth and 11:20 p.m. on Mars a week later. Unlike time-zone differences, where the time on the clock is different but days pass in the same 24-hour increments, the time differences between Earth and Mars compound quickly."

And good news, too

Why Everyone Was Wrong About Net Neutrality - The New Yorker

"It has been a tough year for what once passed as conventional wisdom."

Getting trashy in Boston

Snow hampers Boston’s trash collection - Metro - The Boston Globe

"With weeks of debilitating storms that covered the city in more than 100 inches of snow, trash collection has become a daunting mission. In some areas, garbage bins and dumpsters sit buried deep in snow, hidden behind colossal snowbanks or dangerously perched atop mounds of snow. Drivers must navigate icy roads with remarkable skill and precision to avoid damaging vehicles on the street."

ISIS schoolmarms in Wisconsin

Scott Walker steals the show at CPAC | New York Post

"Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said Thursday that his experience taking on thousands of union protesters in his state helped prepare him to take on terrorists across the world."

And this guy they applaud?

We've come a long, long way…

…when we can be happy the President is involved in “no major scandal."

Axelrod: No 'major scandal' in Obama White House | TheHill

"‘I think that says a lot about the ethical strictures of this administration,’ he added. "

Indeed.

The U.S. Congress, of course, is the greatest work avoidance club on the planet

Dem: Believe science or ‘senator with the snowball’ | TheHill

"Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) on Thursday…said that you could either believe ‘every major American scientific society,’ the Navy, NASA, and Pope Francis that climate change is real or ‘you can believe the senator with the snowball.…

"Inhofe threw the snowball as part of an effort to dismiss climate change. The Oklahoma Republican said the snowball was from outside in Washington, using cold weather to argue against claims that greenhouse gases are behind an increase in the earth’s temperature.

"'It’s a snowball. And it’s just from outside here. So it’s very, very cold out. Very unseasonable,' Inhofe said. "

2.26.2015

Dummy down


Ouch. Cold, dry, dry weather will loosen joints. Don't let this happen to you.

And you thought being a Congresscritter was an easy job

Lawmaker's Quest for Cookie Crumbles - Heard on the Hill

"‘Uh oh! Noooo!’ he said, as he looked at an empty cookie rack. ‘Say it isn’t so!’"

Don't let this happen to you (and other chilly stories)

New round of winter weather dumps more snow on the South

"A pipe that burst during Michigan's deep freeze is being blamed for flooding the lower levels of a mostly vacant 38-story building in downtown Detroit with 2 million gallons of water."

2.25.2015

The drip cycle


Ooops

Obama Administration Using Century-Old Racist Case Law to Block Citizenship | Mother Jones

"Over the past century, Congress has passed laws guaranteeing birthright citizenship to residents of US territories, including Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands. But American Samoa, a Pacific Island chain that is home to some 55,000 people, is the lone exception. American Samoans are classified as noncitizen nationals."

What ever happened to just plain…books?

Book Review: 'A Darker Shade of Magic' By V. E. Schwab : NPR

"A Darker Shade Of Magic reads with the ease of a young-adult novel, with short paragraphs, quick-moving prose, and plenty of action. But it's grimmer even than the current bout of post-Hunger Games YA."

The book in question is described as an adult (as opposed to young-adult) (and also as opposed to “adult,” which is a whole other thing) novel. I am confused.

Fortunately I don’t like “magic’ books much, but still. On what shelf would one put, say. A Tale of Two Cities today? Ancient-adult, maybe.

Dream big

This Is the Best Reason Why a Newspaper Has Ever Withheld a Source's Identity | Mother Jones

Lakes both Great and very cold

The NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory is showing total ice cover of 84.4 percent as of Feb. 22, 2015, well above the long-term average and closing in on last year's mark of 92.5 percent coverage on March 6, 2014. This image was taken on Feb. 23.(NOAA / NASA)

Re-thinking a career in physics?

Why a coffee is more likely to spill than a latte - The Washington Post

"Emilie Dressaire, who's now an assistant professor at NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering, started thinking about the integrity of foamy liquids when a Starbucks employee told her she wouldn't need a lid stopper to keep her latte from spilling. Her colleague Alban Sauret, now a researcher at the French National Center for Scientific Research, had recognized the same difference in foamy beers."

Meanwhile, we have tons for free

Massachusetts man ships snow from his yard cross country | New York Post

"At first he shipped 16.9-ounce snow-filled bottles for $19.99, but he found the snow melted by the time it arrived at its destination.
"So he came up with a new plan, selling six pounds at a time. He tells Boston.com even if the snow melts a little by the time it arrives, the package can still make 10 to 15 snowballs."

Or so we hope

Fitzgerald: Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren; Give us a break | Boston Herald

"The great difference between snowstorms and politicians is that the snow eventually disappears."

Imagine

Dan Quayle set to co-host super PAC fundraiser for Jeb Bush - The Washington Post

2.24.2015

But who's counting?

What happened to the cooked ones?

Raw: animals rescued from private Mexican zoo

Win a few, lose a few

After 8 centuries, rats exonerated in spread of Black Death. Gerbils implicated. - The Washington Post

"It’s always the cute ones you have to watch out for, isn’t it?"

Rats.

OK then, kick back and relax

Study Predicts Another 5 Years Without Global Warming | The Daily Caller

"But scientists warned of accelerated temperature rises once the global warming hiatus has ended."

For a while.

A winter look at the (Cold &) Windy City

Chicago Just Had Its Coldest Winter In History. Here's Proof.

Oh no, not the kitchen

Woman loses half her border-straddling home in tax blunder | Fox News

"Rosanne Di Guilio’s kitchen, living room and porch now belong to her neighbor Alethea Jacob, 52, who snatched up .2 acres of the half-acre plot for $275 at a county auction after it went into foreclosure in 2010."

Gives new meaning to borrowing a cup of sugar from your neighbor. 

But by next week it might get above freezing—and snow again

Dr. Jeff Masters' WunderBlog : Reviewing Last Week's Remarkable Cold Wave | Weather Underground

"Unusually cold air will prevail across most of the Eastern U.S. for yet another week, making some inroads into the central states. Snow and ice continue to plague parts of the South and Atlantic: significant sleet and freezing rain are possible today from northeast Texas into Mississippi. Another round of wintry precipitation is likely midweek across parts of the mid-South, with the focus beginning to shift westward in a long-awaited pattern change by next weekend.

"Apart from these events--and the record snow burying most of New England--it’s the cold that’s made its mark on the eastern United States this winter."