atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#3803: I have been doing this nearly every day for seven years.

That's right! On April 3, 2006, I put up the first Fungus post, and the world has not been the same since.

You'd think I'd be running out of things to say by now, but it just ain't so.

* * *

Monday evening, Mrs. Fungus and I went to Applebee's. She had "Sizzling Skillet Fajitas" and I had "Sizzling N'awlins Skillet".

...we're sitting there, having eaten our appetizers, sipping sangria and trying to relax, when they bring out our entrees and set them before us. Two cast iron "skillets" with food on them, sizzling and steaming away, huge volumes of vapors rising precipitously; we had only just begun to dig in when suddenly SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE the f-ing smoke alarm starts going off.

So the restaurant staff opened the doors and one waitress waved a menu in the direction of the smoke detector and everything quieted down, and the restaurant returned to normal while I cracked jokes about the place having to limit orders to one "sizzling skillet" per table.

Then the Matteson Fire Department showed up. *sigh* And it seems that a fireman had to come into the restaurant and visually verify that the entire kitchen wasn't a blazing inferno, because of course the average line cook isn't smart enough to tell the difference between no fire at all and oh shit get out it's going to blow.

...or else the remote fire alarm can't be reset by someone in the building because no fire doesn't mean there isn't actually no fire, and only a trained professional fireman knows the difference. *rolleyes*

(I had to go back and re-parse that sentence a few times to make sure it's gramatically and semantically correct. It is.)

Anyway, it was an entertaining ending to an entertaining day. At least we didn't get billed for the "fire alarm and fire department" part.

As for me, I refused (successfully) to be embarassed by what happened. Time was that I'd be wanting to crawl under the table and hide because OMGSOEMBARASSED but WTF, I didn't put the smoke detector over our table and I didn't pick the table, and if they can't serve something featured on their menu without garnering a visit from the local fire department maybe they should change their menu.

* * *


...over at they say this:
"Comet PanSTARRS and Andromeda were almost touching each other," says Vauhkonen. "It was an impressive sight in photos from the frozen lake of Konnevesi, Rautalampi."

In fact, no physical contact has occured. The comet is still in the solar system while the pinwheel star system is 2.5 million light years away. The conjunction is only apparent as Pan-STARRS passes just a few degrees from Andromeda this week.
I honestly don't know who would be looking at a site like that and who wouldn't know that a comet is a solar object while a galaxy is, shall we say, slightly extrasolar. WTF.

And "star system"? Seriously? The solar system is a "star system". A galaxy is about a trillion star systems.

...and in the very next bit they're talking about using "Calcium K filters" to image "magnetic froth" on the Sun's surface. Oh, you'd better explain what magnetic froth is and where it's located! "The magnetic froth appears to be in Earth's sky, but is actually on the surface of the sun!" or something!


* * *

How long before I can get one for $19.99? A device which automatically hangs up on robocalls--that's just what I need.

* * *

Hey, the cellphone is 40 years old today. Wait--40, seriously? It was first used in 1973! Yep, and here's an interesting interview with the guy who came up with the concept.

* * *

Looks like severe clear outside. The sky is blue and temps are in the 40s. Welcome to typical early spring in the Fungal Vale.

* * *

Mrs. Fungus' mother gave me a $25 gift card for Best Buy for Christmas. That was before she was my mother-in-law, of course; a week before my wedding, when I was still merely affianced to her daughter, which made it an extra-nice gesture on her part.

I used the gift card--a couple of weeks ago--to buy a Jeff Lynne CD and a USB hub. The CD was (it turned out) a bunch of covers, but not a waste of money; the USB hub was meant to enable me to hook up my printers without buying another USB extension cable.

Of course, I haven't gotten around to that yet. I don't print or scan often enough that I need to have everything all connectered all the time. But soon, soon....

Anyway, the USB hub I picked up was a 4-port Rocketfish hub. It's all I need, and it was $15. The next-cheapest hub to be had at Best Buy was also a 4-port hub, Dynex brand, and it didn't come with anything the Rocketfish lacked and cost f-ing $30. It wasn't even a USB 3.0 hub. WTF.

* * *

Karl Denninger has some bad news for us. I especially don't like this bit:
To go along with this are rail car loadings. The trouble here is that baseline is in a serious downtrend -- and after halting its decline from 2008 to 2009 over the last year it has slid severely once more. There will be those who argue that this is "no big deal"; I disagree.
I've talked before about seeing unit trains of empty well cars, not even moving empty containers (how would you tell from a distance? Sound?) but moving nothing at all--and that's something I have never seen, not before these past few years.

You expect to see empty unit trains in some commodoties; particularly things like coal, because coal has a specific origin and destination, and very, very few deviations from those routes. But containerized freight has to move everywhere; if a railroad is moving an empty unit train of well cars they're not doing it gladly.

* * *

You know, in the description of my day of wild abandon, yesterday, I forgot to mention playing WoW. Oh well.

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