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This Just In June 16, 2017

Posted by stuffilikenet in Awesome, Photography.
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 View looking southeastIMG_20170616_204335466 

View looking northwest

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Second-best View on the Block February 22, 2017

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view from scott and barbs

From Scott and Barbara’s house.

HR 8799 Image Animated With Hot Jupiters January 28, 2017

Posted by stuffilikenet in Awesome, Geek Stuff, Photography, Science.
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Scientists have detected thousands of exoplanets in recent years, by watching varying brightness as they occlude their stars. This animation comes from direct imaging methods (not radio telescopes), meaning that the telescopes saw the Jupiter-sized planets directly (hot Jupiters are young planets that still glow in the infrared portion of the spectrum).

Jason Wang at the University of California, Berkeley has combined several observations of HR 8799 into the delightful GIF below. This is years of optical data, folks. “In this video you’re seeing real data,” he told Gizmodo1 of the video above. “I smoothed out the orbits so that it’s as if we’re watching [the planets] constantly in real time.”

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1 I stole the picture from Giz.  I feel no shame at all.  Follow that link, though; there’s much more!

I’m So Stuffed I Could Just Burst November 25, 2016

Posted by stuffilikenet in Geek Stuff, Mutants, Photography.
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From BoingBoing.

Exciting update: Apparently aliens are a thing.  Who knew?

First Real Snow November 23, 2016

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first real snow

My postings have been delayed by iceberg calving down the road. Fortunately, the local market is open, and I can still get egg nog and brandy.

Morning and Evening Here in the Frozen North November 15, 2016

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 morning pano

evening pano

Scary, isn’t it? Forecast calls for rain, but I imagine I will see snow on that little mountain tomorrow. Maybe.

A Walk Around the Neighborhood November 15, 2016

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What I said about living in a forest meadow?  It’s pretty much the truth. Yesterday I went for an evening constitutional and found some traces of fungus among us:

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Men’s size eleven clodhoppers for reference:IMG_20161112_114716

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I’m not sure any of them are edible; after all, the bear doesn’t seem to have eaten any of them.

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As far as I can tell with, uh, casual observation, those are Manzanita berries.

A Shortage of Imagination November 8, 2016

Posted by stuffilikenet in Awesome, Hello Kitty, Photography, Toys.
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hello kitty armour

There are lots of creative notions and flights of fancy I come up with in the shower, after a couple of scotches or in the drowsy state which precedes real sleep.

This is not one of them.

I Haven’t Posted Any Mutants For a While November 7, 2016

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Admit it. You have missed these little oddities, haven’t you?  ‘Course you have. two heads are better than one

Most especially the frightening Two-Headed Shark From Bikini Beach (soon to be a major motion picture).

Custom-Made-Giant-Spider-Costume-With-Randomly-Flicking-Tongue-And-Voice

Sadly, it’s just a costume.

Nelson--A-Hedgehog-Without-Spikes

This is what a hedgehog looks like without the spikes.  Sort of sad, hmm?

future me, at 79 years

This guy (future me)is 79 years old. He should be in a category all his own.

Dinnertime When The Stars Are Right September 28, 2016

Posted by stuffilikenet in Awesome, Mutants, Octopus, Photography, Uncategorizable.
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Where I Live September 12, 2016

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is basically a forest meadow.  Even though I rent a house with a front and back lawn, a vegetable garden and a white fence, I still find bear scat in my back yard.  A fox lives under the tree in my neighbor’s yard.  Deer are so common that we hardly notice them.  My neighbor had a bear break into his pigsty and eat all the piggies’ food (but not the pigs: apparently a vegetarian bear).

Then there are the birds.  I have already described the flocks of black phoebes that colonized our front porch and took flying lessons behind the house (very cute; they practiced touch-and-go flying while the mother bird watched carefully from the mulberry). 

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They fully displaced the starlings, for whom I have frankly never cared. And, every morning a pair of sandhill cranes flies in, eats bugs from the meadow behind the house and then takes off in the late evening, making the most interesting cries on landing and takeoff. You can barely see them in this photo:

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Trust me; they are there.  Really they are.  We have also seen a solitary male sandhill crane, but he looks very sad. He may be a widower. Here is a slightly better shot:IMG_20160825_200358

Possibly my favorite bird is this little fellow, who often comes and asks for pumpkin seeds we keep in a jar for him:

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He has perched on my knee while I was seated on the back porch sofa but I didn’t realize he would hold still for a photo, so I missed my opportunity for a very cute photo.

Pointillism is Not Dead September 12, 2016

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Taken in Bidwell Park.

Gluten-free Pie Adventures I September 4, 2016

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Pillsbury’s Gluten Free Dough (it’s pie dough, not pizza dough—do not be deceived!) can be rolled out nicely in a large Ziploc baggie and plopped over a pie tin quickly.  Be sure to bake the crust first if using freshly-picked blackberries as your filling…or else liquidy bottom crust will result in your otherwise perfect and tempting gluten-free blackberry pie:

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I ate a quarter of it before I could stop myself for a picture.  I imagine someone who has baked a pie at least once in their life could make a better-looking crust.  I make no apologies for my initial sortie into pie baking.

This shows how far we have come in only ten years; we couldn’t find ANYTHING like a gluten-free pie crust mix then. Now even mainstream food factories sell gluten-free items, albeit at grotesquely inflated prices.

Lucky S Mine September 4, 2016

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The Lucky S mine is actually quite close to my house as the crow flies…but we aren’t crows.  My wife’s Vanagon does not fly; it crawls, bumps, jounces and bounces over logging roads, Forest Service roads and four-wheeler roads (if you can call them that with a straight face) so that the ten miles to Lucky S mine is an hour’s ride (“ride” is rather more civilized a description than I had in mind, but this is a happy blog, dammit). We used the Beardsley grade road

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to get there which, if you stay on it long enough, will intersect the correct Forest Service road with a sign and everything to get you there.  I strongly recommend this route; the other way really does require skinny 4WD conveyances.

Do not trust this sign, however:

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We first came across the mine itself, which is a little ways from the town proper:

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There is a bog between the town and the mine proper. Do not attempt to follow the south road, as there is a large mudhole in the road even in summer.  I mean, my wife can drive through it in her Vanagon, but I wouldn’t trust anyone else to do it.

Bog pano

In the town, there is a store and hotel, although it’s challenging to tell one from the other.

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No pioneer ghost town would be complete without a relaxation center.  This one is particularly relaxed:

Mount Huff Golf Course Sunset September 4, 2016

Posted by stuffilikenet in Mutants, Photography.
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Golf Course pano

Plumas County apparently has several golf courses, but this one is three long miles from my house. It’s six holes and pretty well maintained for all that Plumas County is pretty far from the mainstream of California golfing and gets several feet of snow every year.

This panorama was stitched together from photos taken after the enchilada feast.  I should color-correct it (and probably will soon) to compensate for my phone’s poor reproduction.

Rossia pacifica (the Stubby Squid) August 15, 2016

Posted by stuffilikenet in Awesome, Octopus, Photography.
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lives 900 feet down.  Not an octopus, however.

Looking Out My Back Door July 17, 2016

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Just One of Those Days June 7, 2016

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Cute Attack!! June 16, 2015

Posted by stuffilikenet in Awesome, Hello Kitty, Mutants, Octopus, Photography, Science.
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Wild flapjack octopus (Opisthoteuthis sp.), a deep sea octopus, spotted on a dive made by the ROV Doc Ricketts. This species is on display in the special exhibit "Tentacles" at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

ROV Doc Ricketts, ©2013 MBARI / Monterey Bay Aquarium

"As someone that’s describing the species you get to pick what the specific name is," researcher Stephanie Bush told Science Friday. "One of the thoughts I had was making it Opisthoteuthis adorabilis — because they’re really cute."

Maker Fair’s Idea of a Photobooth May 17, 2015

Posted by stuffilikenet in Geek Stuff, Mutants, Photography.
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