Beercan Chicken

sounds like a redneck delicacy, but really it’s a unique way to cook a tasty whole chicken. I got a cook book for my birthday (thanks, Mom!), and this is the headliner act.

Makes a nice, moist, tasty chicken on the grill. Nobody who knows me would think my cooking would progress past ‘how brown is perfect for poptarts’, and neither did I. Neither did I think I’d be forty, but that happened, too.

Life’s a mystery.

Apologia, with Links

OK, it’s been a long time. Sorry. I enjoy blogging, but also enjoy life. I have nothing personal to add today, but would like to point out a couple of links I found worthwhile and enjoyable.

I’ve got one of these now.
via FFM

A-10 photos: the story behind my prior A-10 Warthog photo posts.
via Sgt. Stryker

Corpulent Combatants: Gitmo detainees gain an average of 13 lbs. Inexplicably, McDonalds not blamed.
via LGF

Australians beat Hijacker, plane lands safely. Hijacking again officially a zero-sum game.
via Instapundit

Perhaps tomorrow I will get around to doing my own posting.

Land Rover Detailing

We bought a new-used Land Rover Freelander from the local dealer. We were told it was a ‘service loaner’, and we bought it because it had 9K miles on the clock and a great big discount off the list.

When we were picking it up from the dealer, my brother said, ‘You might want to wash the mud out of the bottom of the radiator”, and, sure enough, there was a little mud in the very bottom of the rad. No biggie.

Two days ago I decided to wash it out, and the water running out of the engine lower cover wouldn’t come clean, so I put my hand in and started pulling out chunks of grass-reinforced mud, and washing out those chunks I couldn’t grab/pull.

Land Rover Detailing45 minutes of that later, I decided I should have a better look, and up on the ramps it went. What you see in the pic is after the car went up on ramps; this was dug out of the lower suspension mounts, out of the transmission webs, and the lower plastic covers.

Funny thing is, we aren’t upset about it, it’s nearly a feature! This is undeniable proof that this Land Rover can and will off-road.

Medical Joke

An oldie but a goodie:

Mrs. Bee, the church organist, was in her eighties and had never been married. She was much admired for her sweetness and kindness to all.

The pastor came to call on her one afternoon early in the spring and she welcomed him into her Victorian parlor. She invited him to have a seat while she prepared a little tea.

As he sat facing her old pump organ, the young minister noticed a cut glass bowl sitting on top of it filled with water. In the water floated, of all things, a condom. Imagine his shock and surprise.

Imagine his curiosity!

When she returned with tea and cookies, they began to chat. The pastor tried to stifle his curiosity about the bowl of water and its strange floater, but soon it got the better of him, and he could resist no longer.

“Miss Bea,” he said (pointing to the bowl), “I wonder if you would tell me about this?”

“Oh, yes,” she replied, “isn’t it wonderful? I was walking downtown last fall and I found this little package on the ground. The directions said to put it on the organ, keep it wet, and it would prevent disease.
- And you know, I haven’t had a cold all winter!”

via AuntSue

Latest terrorist news

Latest terrorist news:
Apparently a teacher has been arrested in the UK in possession of compasses, protractor, and straight edge. It is claimed he is a member of the Al G.ebra movement bearing weapons of math instruction.

(groan)

via SuperMom

110th Birthday Party

Saturday, my dad and I had a 110th Birthday party (I turned 40 this past week, and dad turns 70 next week). We had planned it for weeks, and had invited a lot of family. We had a surprise for dad and mom.

The surprise arrived on party day, my brother and his wonderful wife and bright child. The looks on my parents’ faces was the best present I could have had. The party was fun, and a good time was had by all.

We have spent the last couple of days in deep family fun mode: playing catch, and frisbee, and chatting. Also, our peculiar family fun, installing a gable end vent fan in an attic (Dad, Neil and I working together), works terrifically and quietly.

I am blessed beyond measure, and I know it.

Missed a day

and it’s not all myfault.

For the last month and 17 days, I’ve posted at least one blog entry a day. Tonight, the Direcway connection (satellite) was dead. Restarting did nothing. A call to their tech support was on hold for more than 30 minutes (“…featuring world class customer support…”) and I figured that meant everyone was down, and calling.

So, phooey, I missed a blog day. I apologise, and I’m sure Direcway does, too. (Yeah, right).

Pre-Hypertension?

CNN.com – Red flag raised over ‘normal’ blood pressure – May. 14, 2003

High blood pressure measures 140 over 90 or more. That level hasn’t changed.

Until now, optimal blood pressure was considered 120 over 80 or lower; normal was up to 130 over 85; and levels above that were called borderline until patients reached the hypertension range.

But the new guidelines classify normal blood pressure as below 120 over 80 — and readings anywhere from 120 over 80 up to 140 over 90 as prehypertensive.

“We hope it’s going to catch people’s attention,” Jones said of the new prehypertension category. “This is not to alarm people but simply deliver the message that … they are at higher risk for going on to develop hypertension and they need to take action.”

So, if you’re “normal” then (insert scare quotes) “you’re at risk” (end scare quotes). Well, here’s the action I’m going to take having read this: nada.

Let’s apply this to other aspects of medicine / life. Wear glasses? Preblind. Have skin? Premelanoma. Have teeth? Precavities. Have hair? Prebald. Get the picture?

Here’s the problem: if we (meaning the medical profession) continue to define normal as ‘pre-abnormal’, we’re going to be the little boy who cried wolf, we’re going to be ignored, and rightly so.

Killer D’s Return. Goody.

OK, so the Killer D’s are coming home, to do more of the business of Texas. I have some random thoughts:

1. So, if my kids decide thay don’t want to take a test, and they just skip school that day, that test didn’t happen? Yes the test happened, and they failed. Just like these Dems. You fail, and failing is bad; failing as a leader is worse.

2. I’m guessing that these are now the 51 easiest-to-beat incumbents in Texas. It’ll be hard to defend running away to Texans. This is the state of the Alamo. Running away isn’t Texas Macho.

3. Burning bridges with the one Democrat group that was going to be big winners (African Americans would have had their first-ever majority congressional district) wasn’t smart. In any way. Stupid, in fact.

4. I absolutely guarantee some of these idiots are going to present their Oklahoma travel expenses as State buisness for reimbursement. They deserve the ridicule they get.

5. Why Oklahoma? Shreveport, LA at least has gambling. They can’t even plan a getaway spot well. And don’t tell me this was spur-of-the-moment; what group of highly driven egomaniacs all pick the same Holiday Inn in Ardmore?

6. And, given that it had to be coordinated: Texas Dems have good internal security. Had word of their impending departure leaked to the Republicans the pre-run press heat would have cause at least some to fold, and would have made it a bigger scandal (yes, a scandal).

I’m glad none are my personal representatives. It’s keeping me from getting an ulcer.

Birthday #40

Wow, I’m the “Big 4-0″. I really never thought I’d live to be forty years old.

I’m having a joint birthday party with my dad, who turns 70 next week. (It happens this weekend). We’re having a ’110th Birthday’. Smoke alarms will be going off in the house from the birthday candles, and, hopefully, we’ll have a 130th in ten years.

Who thought I’d live this long? I hope I live to be one hundred, if my life keeps getting better at this rate!

Close the Oklahoma Border

The Texas Legislature is in session, and nobody is safe. Even Oklahomans.

Seems the Democrats in the Texas House are going to lose seven seats in the latest round of redistricting. They wish to avoid this outcome, so…THEY LEFT THE STATE, 53 OF THEM! Leaving the legislature lacking a 2/3 majority, and unable to take the vote.

This is good for Texas. We get 90 days every two years for the Legislature to screw us over represent our interests, and this is how they spend their time?

The missing are allegedly in Ardmore, OK, which no doubt deserves better. Amusingly, on a vote of the Republicans in the House, now the Texas DPS (Highway Patrol, for those in other states) is empowered to return the legislators to the State Capitol.

The best times are watching the Texas Lege.

From CNN

Plague Prof Professes Probity

I’m kind of late to this, but…
From CNN, Dr. Butler, an ‘internationally renowned plague researcher’ is being charged with smuggling plague, in addition to lying to investigators about destroying plague samples (first reporting them stolen). He has plead innocence.

Where did he smuggle plague? To federal labs in Ft. Dietrich, MD, Ft. Collins, CO, and to the country of Tanzania. Ft. Dietrich is home of USAMRIID, “… the lead medical research laboratory for the U.S. Biological Defense Research Program”, and Ft. Collins, CO, is where the CDC’s ‘Parallel Lab’ for their Atlanta lab is located. And Tanzania is where the plague samples he used originated.

The Lubbock Avalanche Journal reports that the smuggling charge resulted from not identifying these samples when he flew home, for not having permits to move the samples to the government labs, and for shipping them to Tanzania without the proper description (labeled as lab equipment instead of plague).

Without getting into the whys, it strikes me as really stupid that the government is charging him for smuggling samples into federal labs. I can understand their being bent about the rest of it, and I can even understand their tax charges (they no doubt scoured his finances to see if he sold the plague, etc, and found that he cheats on his taxes, too), but I don’t get charging him with providing the government with samples from a recent plague epidemic for study.

“Butler, 61, faces a maximum of 74 years in prison and a $3.6 million fine if convicted on all counts, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.”

Please note I’m not for anyone running around with plague, and that some of the things he is accused of warrant punishment, but this set of charges is stupid.

Signs for Our Times

FFM Funny Signs

How Patients Remember Me

One of my colleagues was asked to examine a wound today, prior to removing their sutures. (He recounted this tale to me). He said he was impressed with the closure, and asked the patient who her doc had been.

“I don’t recall his name”.
“What does he look like?”.
“He has gray hair, a moustache and is heavyset”.

Holy crap. Gray hair doesn’t bother me, but…now I really need to lose weight.

ED Poetry

Whilst preparing to intubate a comatose patient today, one of the nurses held forth:

“Roses are Red,
Violets are Blue,
Wake up right now,
Or I’ll intubate you”

Perhaps you had to be there.