ME and Ophelia

Sunday, October 31, 2004



This will scare some people

Courtesy of Instapundit reader Pamela Barbey.
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Says something about personality and character


Nobody seems to have picked up on why Senator Kerry makes a show of the yellow bangle he wears. What are we to think of it - that it is a talisman, a good luck charm made from from ivory, amber, enamel, plastic or bone? Whatever it is, Kerry knows it makes a statement. But what statement does he think it makes, I wonder. His wife, Mrs Kerry must be quirky and out of touch with how most people think -- she's not insisted on her husband playing it safe by and wearing things that can't be read into. I'm surprised the Senator wasn't persuaded by friends, family or advisers to "lose" the yellow bangle.

A while back, when I first saw it (how can you miss it?) I thought it was a one-off photo taken off guard. But now it seems he wears it all the time. I've not seen anyone in the media or blogosphere mention the bangle.

To me, it looks like a hospital bracelet - and girly too. I can't imagine President Bush or any man's man soldier wearing something like that. My father once wore an elephant hair bracelet when we lived in Nairobi, East Africa - we all wore one - and, later on in life, he wore a slim plain copper band that he said helped his arthiritis. Knowing my father the old soldier, he'd never wear a yellow bangle. Besides, yellow signifies all sorts of things - including cowardice.

Mr Kerry's side buckled belt in above photo looks flashy too, like he's trying to add something to his personality. I'll bet the yellow bangle has more of an effect on male voters than the Bin Laden tape. If I was an "undecided" voter and did not know what to do, I'd use the bangle and belt as a clue to Mr and Mrs Kerry's personality, character, outlook and style - and play safe by voting for Bush.

Here are fifty Reasons why to vote for Bush in pictures - courtesy Michael Totten.

And, in words by "undecided" American voter Megan McArdle.

UPDATE: A non-blogging friend of mine in England has just emailed me this for info:

The yellow band is for "Live Strong"

Lance Armstrong the greatest cyclist in the world rode and won whilst he had cancer. A large number of Americans and friends paid 1 dollar for the band which is going towards a fund and he's hoping to raise 1 million dollars.

Note: Thanks C. I had no idea. I don't get out - and have seen nothing online of these yellow bands. Now I'm even more convinced the press should have made more of it and explained what the yellow band was all about - it would have been global publicity for cancer. I am online day and night, so if it did get a mention somewhere, it was pretty low-key. Apologies to Senator Kerry but even though I now know what it is, if I hadn't blogged about it, I would never had known the answer, so I still think it is too risky for him to wear anything that can be construed as making a statement - fashion, good cause, or not.
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Urgent: Kerry vows to hunt down terrorists

Here is a copy of a report (including above heading) from China News: 2004-10-30 06:00:56

WASHINGTON, Oct. 29 (Xinhuanet) -- US Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry said on Friday that he will "stop at absolutely nothing to hunt down, capture or kill the terrorists." Enditem

"Stop at absolutely nothing" - what does he mean, The Bomb? My guess is the Chinese might read it that way.
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You can't buy respect - historic Scottish regiments have earned it over centuries

Senior members of the Royal Family have expressed anger at the government's plans to axe Scotland's historic infantry regiments, say campaigners. The Scotsman has launched a campaign and put up a petition to save the country's six infantry regiments from the axe.

Prime Minister Tony Blair and Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon want to scrap one of the Black Watch, the Royal Highland Fusiliers, the King's Own Scottish Borderers, the Royal Scots, the Highlanders and the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders and merge the remaining five into one 'super-regiment'.

It would mean the end of centuries of proud Scottish military tradition. The fact that the Black Watch has been sent to cover for American troops near Baghdad demonstrates that this is the wrong time to cut troop numbers.

To register your protest against these unnecessary cuts, add your name to The Scotsman's petition. The Scotsman will pass on your comments to Mr Blair at No.10 Downing Street.

Yesterday, I added my signature (number 4737) and gave my blog URL as my address.

Here's pinging word of the petition to Gordon McLean and his Scottish webring.

[Further reading in my previous post on the history of the Black Watch]
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Courtesy Scotsman

Edinburgh author Conan Doyle publishes the first collection of his Sherlock Holmes stories today in 1892. The collection (the stories were previously serialised in a magazine) is an immediate best-seller and would be followed by other collections of the master detective's adventures in the years to come.
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Storms have abated here by the seaside

Today, it is cool, quiet and calm here by the sea. Storms have abated. Sun is shining. Blue sea. Yachts sailing along. Big clean up going on - seaweed and stones everywhere. Ophelia has been out on a long patrol. Her vet has kindly agreed to a house call here on Wednesday for her annual health check and booster shots.


Progress on new proposed internet domains:

.asia - for Asian companies
.cat - for Catalan language and culture
.jobs - for employment agencies/human resources
.mail - to help anti-spam efforts
.mobi - for mobile phones/devices
.post - for postal services
.tel - to help voice over net telephony (two proposals)
.travel - for hotel, airlines and travel firms
.xxx - for pornographers
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'SMELLY' MATES GUIDE SEABIRDS - To avoid mating with a bird that smells too similar is to avoid mating with a bird that is related

Prions are strictly monogamous, although they rarely get to spend any time with their partner

Here below is a copy of a report from the BBC.

Seabirds called prions, which mate for life, find their nests by sniffing out their smelly partners, scientists say.

The birds make their nests in deep burrows, which are very dark, so they cannot rely on any other sense to find them, Science magazine reports.

The birds also actively avoid their own smell, which could be a way of making sure they do not breed with their kin.

Although this use of smell has been observed in mammals, it has never before been seen in birds.


Antarctic prions, Pachiptila desolata, are so-called tube-nosed seabirds.

They are strictly monogamous, although they rarely get to spend any time with their partners. Instead they take it in turns to incubate eggs and find food.

"All the shared life of the birds is inside the burrow because they don't stay together at sea - they just alternate on eggs," said co-author Francesco Bonadonna, of CNRS in Montpellier, France.

Sometimes a prion will forage at sea for up to two weeks, before returning to the nest to begin a stint of incubation duty.

When they fly in from sea, they have to reliably find their own nest among a medley of other nests.

But sight is not much use because they tend to come home at night and their nests are submerged in deep burrows.

"Their burrows are underground and really, really dark," said Dr Bonadonna. "They have nothing other than odour to find their way."


Luckily, prions are rather smelly, so returning birds can locate their nests by following their partner's distinctive smell.

"We found that the birds are able to recognise their partner's odour, and we think they use this odour to recognise their burrows," said Dr Bonadonna.

When they return from sea, they have to reliably find their own nest among a medley of other nests

Not only are the prions attracted by their mate's smell, but they actively avoid their own.

At first the researchers were surprised by this, because they assumed that following its own scent might also lead it to its burrow.

But since the birds spend such a long time at sea their nests are unlikely to smell of them, the team concluded.

But why the avoidance? Dr Bonadonna thinks it is a strategy to prevent inbreeding.

He said: "To avoid mating with a bird that smells too similar is to avoid mating with a bird that is related."
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By Jacquie Lawson, animated e-cards, Christmas cards

A dear friend has just sent me an animated greetings card - from her pet dog Daisy May - to my pet cat Ophelia. Switch the sound up on your computer and click here. Happy Halloween.

# posted by Ingrid J. Jones @ 10/31/2004 0 comments

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Regent Street, 10 am November 20

Apple is bringing the world's most exciting retail experience to Europe for the first time, with a brand new store in the heart of one of the continent's most vibrant shopping districts - London's West End. Excerpt from Apple's email:


Be the first to see the latest in digital music, moviemaking, DVD creation and more. Come and meet our amazing multi-lingual team. Talk to the smartest Mac people in town for advice, problem-solving, repairs and technical services at the 14-metre-long Genius Bar. Talk to our staff of Creatives at The Studio, where your ideas and our help come together to enhance your Mac projects. Sign up for in-depth, hands-on training at a paid Studio Series. Check out the free workshops and presentations for everyone from beginners to seasoned pros at the state-of-the-art 64-seat theatre.

With over 250 special events scheduled throughout the month, it's the perfect time to come and experience everything Apple. So save the date and join us on November 20th at 10 a.m. for a day filled with surprises. It's an event you won't want to miss. More details right here.