Thanks for standing in for Impish Harry and classy intro I’ll grant, you but you COULD have waited until I got the lid on me travel mug! I think every one between my office coffee pot and the press room is wearing some of me Brown Gold!
No folks Impish isn’t off pretending to consult with his peers on how to save us from Biological, Chemical or Dirty Bomb attacks while actually playing tourist again. This holiday is written into his bloody contract (along with the myriad of others) See, its May Day, or at least it falls at some point this week and Big Brother (with the assistance of the buttinski-we-attempt-to-ruin-rewrite-customs/history-to suit-us-and-our need-to-dominate-your life-taking-the least-bit-fun-out-of-everything- Catholic Church) here in the USA choose to designate May 1st as the Day.
So today especially, but also on and off through out the week (read that last part every time I turn my back for 10 seconds and he can take wing) Impish is/will be off scouring the countryside for signs of ribbon & flower festooned young maidens dancing around a Maypole hope to cull from them a couple of virgins to augment his ever dwindling stock. Poor guy, he just refuses to acknowledge that chaste comely and virginal young women are about as scarce as honest politicians and nearly as mythical as black unicorns!
Mean while thanks to Harry Potter’s overly enthusiastic introduction I’m already nearly out of Brown Gold in my cup…
NO HARRY! DON’T BLOODY DO IT! PUT YOUR WAND AWAY!
I prefer to get my coffee the Muggle way by walking over to the pot and negating the chance of spilling it. Thanks anyway. Hey hang around a bit though Harry won’t you? I’d like to talk to you a bit, I’ve a couple
schemes uh-um BUSINESS OPORTUNITIES that you and that wand of yours might prove a useful partner in.
Beside, if Impish gets himself in trouble (like he usually manages to) having you around to wand him out of it could be handy. A cup of my legendary Brown Gold? Um… ok I’ll trade you for Herminie’s unlisted Owl address! What?! I can’t help it! I’m Irish and she’s a fiery tempered redhead!
Mean while the rest of you enjoy!
Take notes on that Harry!
Traditional May Day celebrations
May Day is related to the Celtic festival of Beltane and the Germanic festival of Walpurgis Night. May Day falls exactly half a year from November 1, another cross-quarter day which is also associated with various northern European pagan and the year in the Northern hemisphere, and it has traditionally been an occasion for popular and often raucous celebrations.
As Europe became Christianized, the pagan holidays lost their religious character and either changed into popular secular celebrations, as with May Day, or were merged with or replaced by new Christian holidays as with Christmas, Easter, Pentecost and All Saint’s Day. In the twentieth and continuing into the twenty-first century, many neopagans began reconstructing the old traditions and celebrating May Day as a pagan religious festival again.
The earliest May Day celebrations appeared in pre-Christian times, with the festival of Flora, the Roman goddess of flowers, and the Walpurgis Night celebrations of the Germanic countries. It is also associated with the Gaelic Beltane. Many pagan celebrations were abandoned or Christianized during the process of conversion in Europe. A more secular version of May Day continues to be observed in Europe and America. In this form, May Day may be best known for its tradition of dancing the maypole dance and crowning of the Queen of the May. Various Neopagan groups celebrate reconstructed (to varying degrees) versions of these customs on May 1st.
The day was a traditional summer holiday in many pre-Christian European pagan cultures. While February 1 was the first day of Spring, May 1 was the first day of summer; hence, the summer solstice on June 25 (now June 21) was Midsummer.
Bonfires, often created by rubbing sticks together, were common features of Beltane celebrations. Related rituals included driving cattle between two fires, dancing around the fires, and burning witches in effigy. Another tradition was Beltane cakes, which would be broken into several pieces, one of which was blackened. They would be drawn by celebrants at random; the person getting the unlucky blackened piece would face a mock execution.
In the Roman Catholic tradition, May is observed as Mary’s month, and in these circles May Day is usually a celebration of the Blessed Virgin Mary. In this connection, in works of art, school skits, and so forth, Mary’s head will often be adorned with flowers in a May crowning. Fading in popularity since the late 20th century is the giving of “May baskets,” small baskets of sweets and/or flowers, usually left anonymously on neighbors’ doorsteps.
5 songs that will get stuck in your head
Believe it or not, there’s actually a name for when you can’t get that great/grating song out of your head.
It’s called an earworm, a term popularized by James Kellaris, a marketing researcher at the University of Cincinnati. Kellaris says an earworm is a portion of a song that repeats compulsively within one’s mind.
Don’t like the list? Want to complain about it? No big deal. I love you just they way you are …
No. 5: “Just the Way You Are” by Billy Joel
Once upon a time, a knucklehead in the office was doing research on a nifty feature entitled “What Sesame Street Character Are You?” While scanning the Web, he came across an Oscar The Grouch clip on YouTube.
A young Billy Joel was singing this tune to the garbage can guy. “Don’t go changing to try to please me,” Joel warbled to Oscar. “I love you just the way you are.”
The knucklehead had to listen to the song at least 15 times to get over it. He never really did, and now has the entire Billy Joel Greatest Hits 1 & 2 CD’s burned on his iTouch.
He doesn’t even like Billy Joel.
As for the song, it reached No. 3 in the U.S. and won the 1978 Grammy for Record of the Year and Song of the Year. Joel says he wrote it for his first wife, Elizabeth Weber. That’s pre-Christie Brinkley if you’re scoring at home.
No. 4: “Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey
This one most famously accompanied the ending of arguably the best TV show ever: “The Sopranos.”
Tony, Carmella and A.J. are eating in a diner. Meadow tries to park the car. You think they’re all going to die in a bloodbath. This Journey staple is blaring.
At “Don’t Stop…” the screen goes to black, and the viewers get zero closure to the Mafia drama. The song is DRILLED into your brain in the most “HUH?” ending in TV history.
The song was also the theme song of the Chicago White Sox’ 2005 World Series run, with Steve Perry even belting it out at the victory parade.
As for its place on the charts, it reached No. 9 on Billboard way back in 1981.
It’s also one of those rare songs where the chorus isn’t heard until it’s almost over. The actual words “Don’t stop believin'” are revealed with 50 seconds left in the tune. Talk about a delayed earworm.
No. 3: “Come and Get It” by Badfinger
Badfinger didn’t have that many mega-hits. But they did produce a mega-earwormer called “Come And Get It,” which was penned by Beatle Paul McCartney. Bet ya didn’t know that.
As the story goes, McCartney gave Badfinger the song in 1969 as long as they produced it exactly as he instructed.
It was a no-brainer, and Badfinger (at that time called The Iveys) was soon crooning, “If you want it … here it is come and get it …”
The single made it to No. 4 on the charts in the U.S., and was the opening theme for the movie “The Magic Christian,” starring Ringo Starr. Didn’t see that one? Neither did the rest of the world.
As for the original McCartney “Come And Get It” demo, it was released on the “Beatles Anthology 3” CD. It’s a bit slower, and you wonder to yourself, “Who are the Beatles covering here?” Answer: Badfinger.
No. 2: “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree” by Dawn featuring Tony Orlando
It happened while watching CNN during the daytime (which is quite dangerous if you don’t want to see dopey advertising).
On the screen: a svelte Tony Orlando, declaring he had lost a zillion pounds through some weight-loss thing and now sporting a 34-inch waist. Likely story.
Unlikely story? Tony’s lead vocals on the uber-earworm “Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round The Ole Oak Tree.” That 1973 number out of nowhere topped the U.S. charts for four weeks. It’s also No. 37 on Billboard’s list of Greatest Songs Of All Time.
Tony-O doesn’t get top billing, though, because the song was released by “Dawn, featuring Tony Orlando.”
Been three long years since you’ve last heard it? One listen and it’ll stick with you for another three.
That’s not hard to believe.
Thirty-four inch waist? Right.
No. 1: “Free Bird” by Lynyrd Skynyrd
Tunelessly singing “I’m as freeee as a biiiird now …” as annoyingly as you can to yourself is one thing.
The serious earworm is when you put into words the signature guitar solo to yourself. It sounds something like this: “deer to deer, deer, deer, deer, deer, deer, diddly, deer, deer, deer.” Or something like that.
It’s total southern nuthouse territory. But that’s Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Free Bird” for ya. Earworming it this very second. And this bird cannot chay-a-yange! Lord help me, I cannot chay-a-yange!
As for the charts, the 1974 song only peaked at No. 19 on Billboard.
No. 19? Just goes to show that the classics aren’t always No. 1. But try to stop humming it. That bird you cannot change.
Beltane or Beltain is the Anglicized spelling of the Goidelic name for either the month of May or the festival held on the first day of May. In Irish it is Bealtaine , in Scottish Gaelic Bealltainn and in Manx Gaelic Boaltinn or Boaldyn.
Beltane was an ancient Gaelic festival celebrated in Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man. It marked the beginning of summer and was linked to similar festivals held elsewhere in Europe, such as the Welsh Calan Mai and the Germanic Walpurgis Night.
Beltane and Samhain were the leading terminal dates of the civil year in medieval Ireland, though the latter festival was the more important. It is a cross-quarter day, marking the midpoint in the Sun’s progress between the spring equinox and summer solstice. The astronomical date for this midpoint is nearer to 5 May or 7 May, but this can vary from year to year.
According to Nora Chadwick, in Celtic Ireland “Beltine (or Beltaine) was celebrated on 1 May, a spring-time festival of optimism. Fertility ritual again was important, in part perhaps connecting with the waxing power of the sun, symbolized by the lighting of fires through which livestock were driven, and around which the people danced in a sunwise direction.” The ninth century Sanas Cormaic (or “Cormac’s Glossary”) says the “…Druids used to make [the fires] with great incantations,” and were lit to safeguard against diseases.
In Irish mythology, the beginning of the summer season for the Tuatha Dé Danann and the Milesians started at Bealtaine. Great bonfires would mark a time of purification and transition, heralding in the season in the hope of a good harvest later in the year, and were accompanied with ritual acts to protect the people from any harm by Otherworldly spirits, such as the Aos Sí. Like the festival of Samhain, opposite Beltane on 31 October, Beltane was also a time when the Otherworld was seen as particularly close at hand. Excavations at Uisnech in the 20th century provided evidence of large fires taking place.
According to Geoffrey Keating, the main Beltane fire in medieval Ireland was on the hill of Uisneach, in what is now County Westmeath. There is no corroborating reference to the Beltane fires at Uisneach in the annals, so Keating’s claims cannot be proven. However, there is evidence of large fires and charred bones from excavations at the site, showing it to have been ritually significant.
Beltane regained popularity during the Celtic Revival and is still observed as a cultural festival by some in Ireland, Scotland, the Isle of Man and among their diasporas
Adam & Eve
In the Garden of Eden, as everyone knows,
Lived Adam and Eve, without any clothes.
In this garden, were two little leaves,
One covered Adam’s, one covered Eve’s.
As the story goes on, never the less to say,
the wind came along, and blew the leaves away.
At the sight, Adam did stare,
There was Eve’s treasure, all covered with hair.
And wonder came, under Eve’s eyes,
As Adam’s thing, started to rise.
They found a spot, that suited them best,
A nice big tree, where they began to rest.
Her legs spread wider, and wider apart,
While thrill after thrill, came into her heart.
The head of Adam’s thing, peeked into the hole,
And filled her with passion, beyond her control.
Backward and forward, his thing did slide,
And Eve’s treasure, was all wet inside.
The joy was good, she wouldn’t let loose,
Until Adam’s thing, was all out of juice.
Then down through the years, people did screw,
And now it is time, for me and you.
So pull down your pants, and lay in the grass,
Because I’m in the mood for a piece of that ass!
Practicing to be Nudists
Father Guido Sarducci’s Five Minute University
(I’m pretty sure this is where Impish got his college degree)
Can’t see the video? Blog is that way =>
Folklorist James Frazer associates the Green Man with May Day celebrations, and with the character of Jack in the Green, who is a more modern adaptation of the Green Man. Jack is a more specifically defined version of the nature spirit than the earlier Green Man archetype. Frazer speculates that while some form of the Green Man was probably present in a variety of separate early cultures, he developed independently into a variety of newer, more modern characters. This would explain why in some areas he is Jack, while in others he is Robin of the Hood, or Herne the Hunter in different parts of England. Likewise, other, non-British cultures seem to have similar nature deities.
The Green Man is typically portrayed as a human face surrounded by dense foliage. Such images appear as far back as the eleventh century, in church carvings. As Christianity spread, the Green Man went into hiding, with stonemasons leaving secret images of his face around cathedrals and churches. He enjoyed a revival during the Victorian era, when he became popular with architects, who used his visage as a decorative aspect in buildings.
Legends connected to the archetype of the Green Man are everywhere. In the Arthurian legend, the tale of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is a prime example. The Green Knight represents the pre-Christian nature religion of the British Isles. Although he originally confronts Gawain as an enemy, the two later are able to work together – perhaps a metaphor for the assimilation of British Paganism with the new Christian theology. Many scholars also suggest that the tales of Robin Hood evolved from Green Man mythology. Allusions to the Green Man can even be found in J.M. Barrie’s classic Peter Pan – an eternally youthful boy, dressed in green and living in the forest with the wild animals. Today, some traditions of Wicca interpret the Green Man as an aspect of the Horned God, Cernunnos.
Great photo of a USAF C-17
Being Impish’s friend/keeper (and our wives will tell you bromance partner) I tend to give him a bit of a proper going over, usually according to him, this going over involves running him over with a metaphorical bus.
Being a Marine I also tend to be disposed towards casting aspersions on “the baby” of your armed services, The Air
Farce FORCE, I MEAN THE AIR FORCE!Don’t get me wrong now I have NOTHING but respect for Impish’s career with the Air Force Reserve and what he does. He has awards plaques certificates and teaching requests enough to wall paper a fair sized house to prove he is a master at a very important survival skill and teaching it. We’re I going back to war I’d want him teaching my refresher.
I figured in light of this it was time I posted something “pro Air Force” despite the personal ribbing and going over by other service members this was likely to earn me. So here goes:
Here is one of the best photographs of the always forgotten ugly duckling of the USAF and RAF fleets… the Boeing C-17 Globemaster 3.
So why should this be the case. The answer is simple…It’s not a fighter…It’s very big…It doesn’t make much noise… It doesn’t do aerobatics and it doesn’t travel at twice the speed of sound. No, it’s a transport aircraft.
However, in this unique photograph I feel its full glory is captured perfectly. The landing gear is fully extended as are all of the flaps, spoilers and other aerodynamic devices needed to bring this expensive and heavy piece of military hardware in for a perfect landing.
Also note how the crew has the aircraft perfectly configured in a slightly nose up attitude so as to ensure this elegant transport lands perfectly balanced at its destination without causing excessive loads on either itself or the runway.
Study the high resolution photograph carefully because maybe you will spot something that’s not apparent to others especially from this unique angle.
This aircraft will never have quite the appeal the of the F-15, F-16 or F-18, but this photograph will bring the C-17 pretty close.
Technical feedback is much appreciated. When ready click the link below.
Finding your teenager’s Facebook page open on her laptop brings to mind that climactic scene in the Indiana Jones movie where the Nazis remove the cover from the Ark of the Covenant. Part of you wants to look, but part of you is afraid your face will melt off.
8 Things You Can Do With Peanut Butter
Unusual uses for your favorite spread
For some, peanut butter is merely the humble glue that holds two slices of whole-grain bread together. But for others, the nutty spread is an exalted food group deserving of its own layer of the pyramid, its own compartment of the MyPlate. Fierce battles erupt between the camps of creamy and crunchy. And don’t even get them started on the inferiority of almond butter.
There’s a lot to celebrate about peanut butter: it’s full of magnesium, potassium, protein, and MUFAs. Plus, the nutty stuff works equally well in savory and sweet dishes. So dig out your favorite spoon, apologize to the roof of your mouth, and let’s get sticky.
Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies
1 c crunchy peanut butter, preferably organic
1 c brown sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp all-purpose flour (for shaping cookies)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
HEAT oven to 350°F. Coat several large baking sheets with cooking spray.
COMBINE peanut butter, brown sugar, baking soda, and ¼ tsp salt in bowl. Add egg and vanilla extract and beat until smooth.
SHAPE dough into 24 balls and arrange on prepared pans. Dip tines of a fork into flour and gently press a crisscross pattern into top of each cookie.
BAKE until lightly browned on bottom, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to rack to cool. Store in airtight container at room temperature.
Chocolate Chunk Peanut Butter Cookies
1/4 c + 2 Tbsp dark brown sugar
1/3 c trans-free vegetable oil spread
1/4 c crunchy peanut butter, preferably organic
1 lg egg yolk
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 c all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 oz semisweet baking chocolate, broken into 36 small chunks
HEAT oven to 350ºF. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment.
COMBINE sugar, spread, peanut butter, egg yolk, and vanilla extract in large bowl and mix until well combined. In medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and 1/8 tsp salt. Add to peanut butter mixture and stir until well combined.
DIVIDE dough into 36 cookies, using 1 generous teaspoon per cookie, and place on baking sheets. Lightly press each cookie down with fingers until slightly larger than a quarter and about 1/4″ thick. Bake until lightly golden, 9 to 11 minutes.
REMOVE cookies from oven and immediately press a chocolate chunk onto center of each. Cool completely on baking sheet or chill 15 minutes to firm chocolate.
Chocolate–Peanut Butter Pie
1 c milk
1/3 c creamy peanut butter, preferably organic
1 package (3.5 oz) instant chocolate pudding mix
1 container (8 oz) frozen light whipped topping, thawed
1 prepared graham cracker or chocolate cookie pie crust (9″ diameter)
Chocolate shavings (optional)
BEAT milk and peanut butter in large bowl with electric mixer on low speed until smooth. Add pudding mix and continue to beat until thickened, about 2 minutes. Gently fold in half of the whipped topping.
SPOON mixture into prepared crust and smooth top. Cover and chill overnight.
DOLLOP pie with remaining whipped topping and sprinkle with chocolate shavings, if desired.
Peanut Butter and Banana Streusel Muffins
3 Tbsp whole grain pastry flour
3 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp honey
2 c whole grain pastry flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c pureed banana (about 1 med)
1/2 c unsweetened applesauce
1/2 c brown sugar
1/3 c peanut butter, preferably organic
1 lg egg
3/4 c milk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
HEAT oven to 400ºF. Coat 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray.
MAKE streusel: Stir together flour, sugar, butter, and honey in small bowl until wet crumbs form. Set aside.
PREPARE muffins: Whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and ½ tsp salt in medium bowl until combined. In large bowl, whisk together banana, applesauce, sugar, peanut butter, and egg until blended. Whisk in milk and vanilla extract. Stir in flour mixture just until blended. Do not overmix.
DIVIDE batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Crumble streusel on top of batter. Bake until wooden pick inserted in center of muffin comes out clean, 16 to 18 minutes. Remove from pan and serve warm.
When Impish got wind of the fact that this weeks recipes were ‘peanut butter centric’ he started whining and wheedling as only a pushy dragon can about either getting samples to taste or a peek at the recipes so he could try making them himself.
Finally out of a sense of self preservation (to say nothing of desperation) I threw him the muffin one hoping the peanut butter would glue his tongue to the roof of his mouth for a while and I would get some peace so I could finish the issue.
He was kind/grateful enough to bless us (??!) with his thoughts on the above recipe in time for the issue.
I found that my peanut butter and banana streusel muffins did not come out looking like the picture at all. Well, I suppose you can’t expect everything. But taste-wise… oh man! Delicious!
I couldn’t find any pastry flour, but when I looked it up on line, while standing in the grocery store, it said that pastry flour was fairly close to cake flour, so that’s what I used. It probably came out a little fluffier than it would have, but it was still really good. The peanut butter taste was probably a little heavier than the banana, I think I would have preferred it the other way and I think next time (and there will definitely be a next time) I will add just a touch more banana. Overall, a GREAT recipe, as is usual with the stuff that Lethal offers. Thanks for the chance to try this one out!- Impish Dragon
Peanut Butter Milkshake
1 1/2 c milk
1/4 c French vanilla–flavored nondairy creamer
2 Tbsp peanut butter, preferably organic
1 tsp ground flaxseed
1 tsp sesame seeds, toasted if you like
1 c ice cubes
COMBINE all ingredients in blender and puree until smooth.
(I’d skip the flax & sesame seeds personally)
Popeye Peanut Butter Hummus
1 can (15 oz) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
3 Tbsp peanut butter, preferably organic
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp cumin
1 clove garlic, mashed with a pinch of salt
5 oz (½ pkg) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
COMBINE all ingredients except spinach in food processor.
ADD 1/3 cup warm water and ½ tsp kosher salt and process until smooth. Quickly pulse in spinach until combined.
TRANSFER to serving bowl.
Hummus is very healthy for you. Many lose weight and healthy eating sites recommend using it in place of mayo for healthier lower in calorie & fat sandwiches. The thing is those little tubs are expensive. Hummus is actually extremely easy to make but most people baulk at having to keep Tahini which is a paste made from ground, hulled sesame seeds used in North African, Greek, Turkish and Middle Eastern cuisine on hand for it. Well tahini tastes pretty much just like peanut butter. For me the primary differences at in texture and thickness, the tahini paste being a bit softer and runnier than PB. Will you have 100% authentic Hummus? No, but then again you won’t be paying for a specialty item you’ll only likely use in a single recipe either and that should taste pretty good to you!
Simple fast & easy Asian accompaniment to any dinner. Goes great with Teriyaki skewers. In a real hurry? Use 2 packets of Ramens Noodles. Cook the Ramens in only 1 package of the flavoring and drain.
8 oz whole wheat spaghetti
5 Tbsp creamy peanut butter, preferably organic
3 Tbsp seasoned rice vinegar
1 Tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
½ c chopped scallion greens + ¼ c slivered scallion greens
PREPARE pasta per package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid and drain pasta in colander.
WHISK together reserved cooking liquid, peanut butter, vinegar, soy sauce, and chopped scallion greens. Add to pasta, tossing to combine well.
DIVIDE among 4 serving bowls and top with slivered scallion greens.
Peanut Butter Banana Split Sundaes
½ c semisweet chocolate chips
¼ c peanut butter, preferably organic
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
4 medium bananas, halved lengthwise
1 pint frozen yogurt (any flavor)
¼ c salted roasted peanuts
COMBINE chocolate chips, peanut butter, vanilla extract, and 2 Tbsp water in microwaveable bowl. Cover and microwave 30 seconds. Uncover and stir. Repeat process until mixture is melted and smooth.
DIVIDE banana halves among 4 dishes and top evenly with scoops of frozen yogurt. Drizzle with sauce and sprinkle with peanuts. Serve immediately.
Two delicate flowers of Southern womanhood were conversing on the porch swing of a large white-pillared mansion.
The first woman said, “When my first child was born, my husband built
this beautiful mansion for me.”
The second woman commented, “Well, isn’t that nice.”
The first woman continued “When my second child was born, my husband bought me that fine Cadillac automobile you see parked in the drive.”
Again, the second woman commented, “Well, isn’t that nice.”
The first woman boasted “Then, when my third child was born, my husband bought me this exquisite diamond bracelet.”
Yet again, the second woman commented “Well, isn’t that nice.”
The first woman then asked her companion, “What did your husband buy for you when you had your first child?”
The second woman replied “My husband sent me to charm school.”
“Charm school!” the first woman cried “land sakes, child, what on Earth for?”
The second woman responded, “So that instead of saying ‘who gives a
flying f@!##’, I learned to say ‘Well, isn’t that nice’.”
HEAVEN FORBID we should have any ‘deep thoughts’ or ‘serious and/or meaningful dialog’ as to what is wrong with the country’s governing or the monumental problems we are facing. The order of the day (judging by all the comments approving of Impish’s nothing but humor posts) is burying your heads in the sands of meaningless frivolity.
OK by me. You want meaningless frivolity, that’s cool. How about we talk about the weather? Can’t get much more meaningless than that!
Before I arrived in Texas like most of the US I was familiar with Texas’ claim that ‘Everything is bigger in Texas’. Like most of you I too figured it was all hype. Then I came here and learned different. Everything IS bigger here, travel times, distances between things (prime example I now live in a city nearly as big in area land wise as the entire state I came from. It took less time to drive diagonally across Connecticut than I cane make it diagonally across Houston). One of the things I would have never believed was ‘bigger in Texas’ though was the weather. I mean ok hot is hot and while Houston DOES get hot there ARE places that get hotter than Texas in the US.
What I didn’t stop to consider was the effect of that statement on storms, and in particular violent ones. In Connecticut we got the occasional violent T-storm with accompanying ‘micro downburst drafts and even the occasional Tornado or Hurricane. We’ve even had significant damage from Hurricanes and not just on the coast but extremely far inland, in fact about as far inland as you could get and still be in Connecticut.
These event don’t compare however the ‘Everything is bigger in Texas’ sized Violent storms however. Images like this happen every year it seems:
The last year or two these severe violent storms seem to have been getting stronger and more prolonged along with the frequency of torrential rain storms that while brief result in ‘white outs’ and severe hydroplaning on the roads. Those of you who live in ‘snow states’ undoubtedly understand the term ‘white out’. For those who do not I’ll quickly explain. A white out occurs when the snow is falling so hard as to totally obscure visibility making any sort of travel impossible. The general yardstick of measure for this is when visibility is reduced to less than 1/8 mile (under 660 feet).
Now that you understand the concept envision just how hard it has to be raining to accomplish that and just how much water that represents. Now consider that from my home office window to the gable end of the building opposite me is exactly 26’ 3.5” (I’ve measured it) and that there have been times I have not been able to see the two story gable end of the building that distance away from me and the sodium light on it was only at best a dim indistinct glow.
Saturday Houston saw such a storm. Fortunately here at Casa de Curmudgeon we didn’t suffer anywhere near the full power of the storm, just some stiff wind a LOT of thunder and lightening and some short bouts of torrential rain that were far enough apart the flooding was not too much of a problem.
That could not be said for downtown Houston in the area of Reliant Stadium however where the full fury and duration of the Texas sized violent storm were felt.
HOUSTON – As severe weather moved through the Houston area on Saturday, hail collected around Reliant Stadium forming small rivers of ice as the rain water drained in the streets.
KHOU 11 Photographer George Jensen shot this video from the eighth floor of the facility looking down on the streets.
Some motorists tried to drive through the streets with little success
There was so much rain and large hail that now only did it impede driving and require pedestrians to seek shelter wherever they were able but it actually created a moving stream of hail in the streets around Reliant!
You think that is just a ‘Texas sized tall tale’?
Then click that Irish Texas state outline above there and watch the video for yourself! when he zooms in on the Pickup with the trailer that white stuff moving just below the pick up is large chunks of hail in all the rain run off. So is all the white edging around the area of Reliant Stadium on the grass. BTW it’s that dark and the video was taken sometime between 3 and 5 PM which should give you an idea just how bad & strong the storm was.
Well hope your all happy, I couldn’t think of a topic more inane, pointless, time wasting or completely frivolous than this so you wouldn’t have to think or (heaven forbid) form an intelligently informed opinion about an important issue. Lord knows we can’t have that, as it’s apparently wholly unacceptable to most of you!