Lily is here!

lilyBeautiful Lily Margaret Rose arrived Tuesday, 8/25/2015.  She weighed in at  9 pounds, 9 oz!  Susan and Lily are doing great!  More pics below.

 

Happy Summer Solstice!

Four-Year-Olds Playing T-ball

It’s like a basket of puppies.  Here’s Julian playing a little T-ball.

The Easter Bell v. The Easter Bunny

David Sederis in a theological discussion compring America’s Easter Bunny with the Easter Bell of France.

Me: Scottish Laird!

Turns out I’m now a Scottish Laird – I own one square foot of land on the isle of Islay in Scotland! It came free with a bottle of Laphroaig I bought, like a decoder ring in a box of cereal.  Here are pics of my holding.  Someday I’ll go over there and build the tallest, skinniest house in the world.  I bought the Laphroaig based on a suggestion from Steve Smeekins. The whisky is quite good.  You can really taste and smell the peat.  Pics – click to embiggen:

Snow Day!

IMG_20150306_100354As sick as I am of this cold and snow, Julian and I had a great day today.  We did a little sledding in the backyard, Julian rockin’ lime green snow pants.  Then we made a new bow, arrows and a quiver, just like in the picture in his Robin Hood book, followed by several episodes of Scooby Doo and some popcorn – pretty much a perfect day.

Groundhog Day

groundhogMurray So, the nasty little rat saw it’s shadow, meaning six more weeks of “wintery mix” are in our future. Because when are groundhogs ever wrong?

Amirite?

But how did a groundhog get tied up with weather predictions and why on February 2nd?  Well, let me put on my USPS jacket and Cliff Clavin mask and do some hogsplainin’.

The midpoints between the four seasonal equinoxes/solstices  were important celebrations back in the pre-Christian day.  What we call Halloween is the midpoint between the autumnal equinox and the winter solstice; what we call May Day is midway between the spring equinox and the summer solstice.  Likewise, our Groundhog Day is midway between the winter solstice and the spring equinox.

imbolicImbolic was the pre-Christian Celtic name for the festival between winter and spring and marked lambing season.   Imbolc was also traditionally a time of weather divination, and the old tradition of watching to see if serpents or badgers came from their winter dens is probably the basis of our Groundhog Day. A Scottish Gaelic proverb about the day is:

“The serpent will come from the hole
On the brown Day of Bríde,
Though there should be three feet of snow
On the flat surface of the ground.”

candlemas So, when Imbolic was supplanted by Candelmas Day (the presentation of the child Jesus in the temple), the older beliefs remained attached to the day, even though they no longer made sense:

“If Candlemas Day is bright and clear, 
There’ll be two winters in the year. 
If Candlemas brings clouds and rain, 
Winter will not come again.”

Looks like 2015 will be a two-winter year.  Stupid groundhog.

Gigapixels of Andromeda

Here’s the largest photograph of the universe ever taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. It gives a glimpse of how unimaginably vast the universe is – and this is just a small portion of the Andromeda galaxy. Watch and be amazed.

Larry Willmore’s Premier “Nightly Show”

Larry Willmore, the Daily Show’s “senior black correspondent,” took over Stephen Colbert’s time slot and had an impressive premier yesterday on his new show.  Here’s the monologue:

 

NFC/AFC Championship Games Predictions

Swami Ron predicted the Seahawks, Packers game would be a boring Seahawks blowout, and the Patriots, Colts game would be good, close nailbiter of a game,  So  how did that work out?

packersOTpatriotsdemolish

Once again, my unerring sports-spidersense of wrongness was absolutely perfect.

facepalm