Welcome to Nerdophilia! Don't worry, there's no sex, just R-rated language! And nudity only if it's integral to the plot!
This blog is about anything I consider to be interesting or important, but mostly both. I am a believer in the paranormal and a fan of Nerdist, MythBusters, Ghost Adventures, science, and nerdy stuff.
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Life On Hoth: When Snow Just Keeps Inviting Its Relatives
I know I
promised y'all my friend's guest blog post, but for technical reasons, he
wasn't exactly able to make a draft for me.
Not to mention he has a job now, so he'll have less time to do the post. So, I suggest that we all wait patiently for
him as I share my bullshit with you to tide you over until then. The optional theme song for this week is
a Red Hot Chili Peppers "Snow" Remix.
haven't read my post about the Polar Vortex from earlier this year that made
just being outside completely dangerous, I suggest you PAUSE on reading this current post in order to catch up on
up now? Good. *AHEM!*
resident of the Northeastern (specifically Mid-Atlantic) region of the United
States does have its perks a bit, mostly because we actually get all four
seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn/Fall, and Winter actually take place
here. I've experienced heat waves, the
odd stray hurricane, freezing cold and snow, as well as unusual weather
patterns such as tornadoes north of me in the mountains and the unusual
declaration from school of "flood days". But right now, everything seems off balance
thanks to the fuckers who are not helping us at least slow down the
global warming we have inflicted upon the planet. Not only do we have more and more dangerously
hot weather every Summer (which should just be called Tatooine season at this
rate), but now we are facing a ridiculous Winter. In fact, I'm pretty sure that this is why
Punxsutawney Phil, the famous meteorological groundhog of PA, predicted 6 moreweeks of winter (would should just be called Hoth season at this point); I
actually did wonder why he "saw his shadow", but now I know:
WE'RE NOW GETTING
FUCKED IN THE FACE BY SNOWSTORMS EVERY WEEK!!!
Yes, first it was the Polar Vortex in early January; then it
was Winter Storm Pax last week (which is pretty funny because it not only is
Latin for "peace," but it's also the name of some gaming conventions
that happen periodically every year, with PAX Prime in Seattle, PAX East Boston
and now PAX Australia!), and this past weekend it's another storm called Winter
Storm Quintus, which I'm sure was named after the Pennsylvania Lottery game
known as Quinto!
is it okay to advertise by having snow storms be named after what you're trying
to sell? Since when is it okay to
control the DAVROS-DAMN weather?!?! I'm
frustrated and tired and coming up with ridiculous conspiracy theories, because,
now, the snow isn't going away! People
are barely shoveling sidewalks, putting down salt, and not giving a fuck about
bus stops I use! And that's not the only
Life On Hoth Just Got a Little More Dangerous
below freezing temperatures, sleet, freezing rain, snow, thundersnow, rain,
frostbite dangers, and driving winds. At
a couple of points, it was colder here in the U.S. than in Sochi,
Russia, where the Olympic Winter Games are being held (or were held if
you're reading this in the future)!
But now there's another couple of issues that are not exactly being
covered in the news just yet.
we've got structural damage to buildings, which is hurting business! Yes, I said structural damage, but only
because a building in Easton, PA (or its surrounding neighborhoods) has
actually started to (or already did) collapse under the weight of the snow that
refused to melt! We're also running out
of room to put it all! Seriously, Mother
Nature, can't you give us a fucking break?
Or did someone steal Sean Connery's weather machine and fuck around with
it, making us suffer the consequences?
deep down at its core, EVERYTHING is made of the same "stuff," which
scientists call matter or mass. And you
can't really just erase matter from existence; it can be transformed from one
state to another, converted into energy and back, but it can't be destroyed or
removed from existence all together; it just stacks itself upon itself. All we can do with this STUFF that is
currently called "snow" and "ice" is to move it, mostly
onto bigger and bigger piles of snow and ice.
We're running out of room to put the snow so it can stay out of the way! In fact, I just recently found out from
sources of mine that on Saturday, February 15, 2014, the city of Bethlehem, PA,
closed off part of Main St. that runs through downtown in order to remove a
giant nuisance pile of snow by way of two backhoes and a dump truck! They even closed off the bridge that goes
into that section! Which isn't helpful considering that the historic Hotel Bethlehem (complete with its own room with a "boo") is RIGHT THERE!
I've chatted with about the weather while riding home on the bus actually asked
if the snow is being dumped into the river that separates South Side Bethlehem
from the rest of the city. I am not sure
about this info, but I'm kind of leery about it. You see, streets are indeed made from
asphalt, but it's also often soaked in petroleum products, like oil and
whatnot. This "street-oil" is
actually what lends cause to a driving phenomenon known as hydroplaning, where
the car just slides along the surface of the street in wet weather with loss of
traction and some control, mostly because oil tends to float on the water that
seeps into the asphalt whenever it rains and lubricate the surface even further. So, if you're plowing snow out of the way,
you're also scraping up not only pieces of asphalt but this oily residue stuff
with the snow. Which means that it might
not actually be safe to be dumping into the water, I fear.
yellow snowis an issue, but it's easily identifiable, and not as prevalent
as a problem.)
issue with the added mass of snow that isn't melting or going anywhere at the
moment is the combined weight of it. You
see, you have layers of snow and ice and snow and ice not just landing in the
streets and on top of cars, but also on top of buildings. It's not necessary to remove snow from the
rooftops—that is, unless the structure of the building is unable to hold the
weight of the snow.
Just this past Tuesday (February 18, 2014), a carousel building at the old, abandoned, historic, hard-to-restore amusement park known as Bushkill Park actually collapsed under the weight of the snow. I kid you not, I was like, "NOOOOO!" because I actually went there and skated at the roller rink! It's like, your favorite tree on your property getting cut down and it stings quite a bit because it was a part of your life. At least the carousel wasn't damaged and nobody was hurt; in fact, the carousel wasn't even there: it was sold a long time ago already, according to my half-Vulcan Spockish father.
heard from him that fairly recently, in the Bethlehem area, the 24-hour
Wegman's off of Center St. had a collapse scare. One day, the manager showed up to work to
find out that the steel pillars of +25 roof support that are located throughout
the store have started to flex "near the roof"! I'm not making this up! He actually freaked out a bit and said,
"WE NEED THIS CHECKED
OUT!" The fire department showed up
and kicked everybody out for safety reasons!
The store was closed for17 hours (overnight) while the
employees and manager had to wait for an assessment of the structure by an
inspector. The inspector said that the
place will hold the weight, despite the weirdness of FLEXING STEEL POLES (that aren't from Poland; sorry for the stupid pun), and they reopened at 2:30 PM EST on Sunday, February 16th, reassuring everyone that it will be okay. However, I'm typing this while having images
in my head of that Wegman's being the center of a story about how an inspector
gave the green light on the structural safety, only to have the building
collapse days later with some casualties.
Of course, this was out of concern thanks to media influence
sensationalizing such stories and making it near impossible to think "Just
fucking trust the inspector," without thinking about the possibility of
false structural positives turning into bad news for people working in that
building as it collapses onto their heads.
So I beg
you, with this in mind, BE CAREFUL! Make
sure that the tops of your cars, trucks, buses, SUVs, etc, are cleared off so
you don't wind up killing people with frozen blocks of snow falling off the
roof of the vehicles/shipping containers/buses on bridges only to slam into the
cars trying to pass underneath. Stay
warm, and make sure you keep an extra supply of tauntauns on hand and share if
people need them!
BONUS! Ascent of the
Cubes: A Way to Make Sure You Don't Go to Bed On Time
Oh, my...Davros/Cthulhu! This poster is full of WIN!
recently, I've been listening to one particular episode of the Nerdist podcast
over and over (because I enjoyed it a lot), with Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson as the
guest. And in the episode, he described
higher spacial dimensionality. Please,
allow me to share his ideas so that you may experience the liquification of
listened to that, let's take it further: if the four-dimensional cube has eight
three-dimensional cubes as boundaries, isn't the five-dimensional cube bounded
by ten four-dimensional cubes, which each have eight three-dimensional cubes as
boundaries? *offers tissues for bleeding
noses and painkillers for readers who can't quite grasp that concept* It's so crazy to think about!
Anyways, I shall
leave you writhing in agony like that, while I go hunt down some chocolate to
celebrate a belated Singles Awareness Day by myself. Please don't hate me for making your brain
FIVE-DIMENSIONAL TACQUITOS! #boobs #EXCELSIOR!