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Archive for February, 2006

Naked Science

Last night I made the mistake of watching Naked Science on the National Geographic Channel.  The Travel Channel and the Discovery Channel were both showing specials on the Bermuda Triangle – and I couldn’t make a decision as to which one to watch, so instead I watched Naked Science – Super Volcano. 

And let me tell you, it scared the Bejesus out of me. 

As it turns out, Yellowstone National Park is really a ginormous volcanic caldera.  Yellowstone isn’t a volcano like the one that destroyed Santorini –
Volcano2or the one in Costa Rica that looks just like you think a volcano should look –
Dsc00478Or my personal favorite – Vesuvius –
Mtvesuvious

Umm, yeah, Yellowstone isn’t like all of these other dangerous volcanoes.  Yellowstone is thousands of times bigger.  Yellowstone is such an enormous volcano that you can’t even see the crater from the air.  Because it is that big.  So, naturally, it has taken us a long time to even realize that Yellowstone is a volcano. 

Aren’t we stupid?

Grandprismaticspring_sm_1"Look!  Look!  Isn’t it cool how the water comes shooting out of the earth boiling hot?!  How neat!  Let’s get closer and take pictures!  And look at how the ground bubbles green and blue and yellow and smells funny!  I wonder why it does that?  We should totally see how many people we can get to come stand in the middle of the volcanic crater and build hotels and restaurants and make it accessible to everyone!"

Oh, and not only are we sure that Yellowstone is a volcano – it is an active reoccurring super volcano. 
YnparkBut don’t worry, if you live near Yellowstone, if this sucker erupts you won’t be the only one affected.  And it appears that there are a few other super volcanoes around the world

Let me give you a time line of what the Naked Science people said will happen if this thing erupts.  First, we should be given at least a couple of days notice before she blows.  Yellowstone is being monitored around the clock and supposedly the earth in Yellowstone would do all kinds of crazy things indicating the impending doom, like earthquakes, cracks in the earth, the ground will raise up, etc.  So then they would try to evacuate everyone within 60 miles of the caldera. 

Because when it blows, everything within 60 miles will be covered in Pyroclastic flow, which is an ash cloud full of incandescent gases, rocks, and ash.  This will cover everything and kill everything it covers.  You can’t outrun this thing.  And you don’t die from the rocks – you basically suffocate.  The scientist on tv told me that there is no where to run and no where to hid and when you breathe in these gases your lungs basically melt and your brain explodes from the heat.  This is what happened in Pompeii, although in a very contained area and not in the way it would happen in Yellowstone.  The people in Pompeii also knew that Vesuvius was about to blow and most everyone got out.  They weren’t stupid. 

This would happen in the first hour or so.  In the next three days ash would fall over a 1000 mile radius – and within a 500 mile radius the ash fall would be quite heavy.  Denver could get 3 feet of ash.  Wet ash weighs six times more than wet snow, so many roofs would collapse, hospitals would close, people would be trapped, roads would be useless, lawlessness could take over. 

Fs20053024_fig_12The areas farther away – outside the 500 radius – might not have the problems from the amount of ash – but they are still in trouble.  Because, volcanic ash isn’t actually ash.  The ash is basically air born pieces of rock.  And the air born pieces of rock that make it 1000 miles from the source are going to be very, very fine.  Not really even rock anymore, more like glass shards.  Air born pieces of glass that will be in the air we breathe. 

So, instead of dying almost immediately from the rocks and gas that are actually on fire, you will end up with glass in your lungs and die a slow death as your lungs shut down.  The scientists on tv said it would be a painful, lingering death. 

I took a look at the map and figured that as long as I was in Georgia I would be okay – and not die from this disaster.  Then they told me that the immediate impact of the ash and the pyroclastic flow and stuff would not be the real problem.  The real problem would be all the sulfuric acid that would be released into the atmosphere, which would cloud the atmosphere, and cause the earth to receive less sunlight, cooling the global temperature by about 10 degrees.  Which doesn’t seem to serious, except it basically means we would see snow in the tropics. 

This severe of a drop in temperature would cause mass global starvation in the years following the eruption.

Yellowstone has erupted in the past – approximately 2.0, 1.3, and .6 million years ago.  So scientists think that the next eruption could be any time in the next 100,000 years.  But don’t worry, they think that it is unlikely that it is going to happen anytime real soon.  Let’s cross our fingers. 

I probably shouldn’t watch National Geographic channel. 

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Madea’s Family Reunion

Okay – I think a lot of people missed Diary of a Mad Black Woman.  But my mom bought it, and I have to say that it is an absolutely hilarious movie.  If you missed it – try to get your hands on a copy because it one of the funniest movie I’ve seen in years. 

If you don’t want to rent Diary of a Mad Black Woman, go see Madea’s Family Reunion in the theaters.  I’m so excited about it – I think I might go see it tomorrow afternoon. 

The mastermind behind this movie is a guy named Tyler Perry.  I think he is genius.  And he has an amazing story.  He went from being homeless to being a multimillionaire.  I love his story.  He now lives in a mansion on a 12 acre estate outside of the ATL.  Here is what he has to say about his house:

"I wanted this house to be vast. I wanted to make a statement, not in
any grand or boastful way, but to let people know what God can do when
you believe," he says. "I don’t care how low you go, there’s an
opposite of low, and as low as I went I wanted to go that much higher.
And if there was an opposite of homelessness, I wanted to find it."

Diary of a Mad Black Woman was originally a play, and when they made it into a movie, Perry’s house was used as one of the sets.  So if you want to see what the house actually looks like – watch the movie. 

He was on Oprah a couple of weeks ago and I have to say that of all the famous people I would be excited to run into in the ATL – he is number one on my list.  Go to Oprah’s website – there is a lot of great stuff on Perry. 

Just thought I would give you all a heads up and make sure that you see the movie you know what an amazing story is behind it.  Read the article – it makes me want to cry. 

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…and make me feel like I am crazy:

1.  Rolling up my yoga mat.  C-Ra-Zee.  I can never make it roll right. 

2.  Folding towels and washclothes.  Just don’t watch me do it.  Seriously – it will make YOU crazy. 

3.  My laptop power cord.  I’m getting better about this.  First year it was a real problem. 

4.  Fans that blow my hair in my face when I’m trying to sleep.  I like sleeping with the fan on – but only if it isn’t blowing my hair in my face. 

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A Generic Email

To:  Anyone
From: Charlsie
Re:  …

        I didn’t sleep well last night.  I don’t know what the problem was, I very rarely have a hard time sleeping.  It might have been the fact that I didn’t get out of bed until noon yesterday, but I think this is a poor excuse.  I mean, maybe that would have kept me up till 1 or so – but I didn’t finally drift off to slumber until around 3.  Luckily – I was finishing my novel – The Devil Wears Prada – which I highly recommend. 

I’m so glad it wasn’t pouring down rain when I woke up this morning.  I think I would have started crying.  It poured all day yesterday – and for some reason I am incapable of not getting soaking wet when it is raining like that.  My poor little shoes had to stay home today and recover because they have pneumonia.  They really don’t want to go into the dryer, so hopefully they will be able to recover on their own. 

My ears are ringing today.  Which probably means I’m too ill to be at school.  I’ll chew some gum and see if that makes it better. 

I wonder if Neiman will call on me today?  Hmmmm….I really wouldn’t mind coming to class if I didn’t have to worry about being humiliated in front of 100 of my peers.  Obviously I have a high tolerance for humiliation, but what ev. 

I’m going to Augusta today.  Katie finally found someone to sublease her room, and I have some furniture and stuff in the room that I need to take home.  And Travers and Elizabeth are going to be there this weekend and I haven’t seen them in forever.  Another exciting part of going to augusta is that I can catch up with the tivo all the television I have missed lately.  I know it is hard for you to imagine that I’ve missed any television lately – but the damn networks keep switching everything around for the olympics and american idol and other such nonsense.  But they can’t fool tivo.  Bella and Bo also miss me and want to hang out. 

I love coffee.  Have I ever told you that?  LOVE IT.  I also love chocolate chip cookies. 

What should I eat for lunch today?  Maybe Quiznos?  K-Bob?  Gyro Wrap?  Decisions, decisions.  I’m starving and I still have FOREVER before I get to eat!

Also – the laundry – it is taking over my life. 

Okay – I’m going to pretend to pay attention and read for a class I have in ten minutes.  Let me know how your day is going. 

Kisses –

Charlsie

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Today is such an enormous improvement over yesterday.  The sun is shining, and although it is rather cold – the air feels like the chill is temporary is will be gone by lunch.  Honestly, when was getting in my car this morning I could have closed my eyes and imagined myself on the golf course in early April with a pimento cheese sandwich and an azalea in my near future. 

Seriously – I’m already so excited.  I LOVE SPRINGTIME!

First – there is spring break for school – then a couple of weeks later I go home and celebrate Augusta’s spring break. 

Caleb claims his reasons for moving to Augusta include the fact that it is the only city he knows of where the whole town  celebrates a mandatory  spring break.  I concur.

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Forecast – Dreary

The weather is really terrible here today.  I have spent part of my day in class, part of it on the phone for hours, and part of it watching movies.  Oh, and I read my book for a while. 

I am bored.  And I almost never get bored.  It is super cold outside. 

I didn’t sleep very well last night.  Because I took a nap yesterday afternoon.  Pretty stupid. 

I can’t wait for it to turn pretty and warm permanently.  Late February and early March are the worst time of year as far as I am concerned.  Because I turn into a hypochondriac (more so than usual) and I get really tired of the chilling rain. 

Sorry I’m being down today, I’m just in a bit of a funk.  Tomorrow will be better.  I’m not actually down, I’m just a bit restless.  I can’t tell you where I would rather be. 

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Happy Valentine’s Day, Loves!  I have some yummy sugar cookies with me today, and after I try to pacify C. Ron with a few, they would love to be consumed by anyone and everyone.   Please come find me and eat cookies, I am in room J right now and then I’m headed to C – where I will be for two hours. 

C. Ron isn’t necessarily mad at ME – I mean, he is made at me, but he is also mad at our whole class.  For being late all the time.  I tell Maggie every day that people need to stop being ten minutes late to class.  Then, this morning I ended up being ten minutes late.  Of course, today was the day when he decided to yell at everyone for being late.  Now, I chose a seat next to the door, at the end of the aisle, because I know I am sometimes late, and I know I get claustrophobic sometimes and have to get up in the middle of class. 

So, the whole class is being yelled at for coming in late, and I stroll in at the conclusion of this speech.  And what do you know, someone is sitting in my seat.  So I can’t even slink into my chair and hope C. Ron doesn’t notice.   But he isn’t talking, and I refuse to look, but I’m pretty sure he is staring at me.  So I walk over to the corner and put my stuff down on the ground, and look around for a seat. 

He stopped talking – and stared at me while I tried to find a seat – and he said – "Is there a chair?"
and I said – "I don’t see one, someone is in my seat" –
and he said – "I don’t want you to have to stand all class"
and I say – "it is okay, I should have gotten here on time"

And
then someone finally pointed out a seat to me, in the middle of a row
of 2Ls who all think I should probably throw myself off the balcony of
the library after this humiliation.  But I did get to sign the attendance sheet.  And I won’t be coming in late anymore.  I am only motivated by fear.  It is good that the anger was directed towards me. 

Update:  C. Ron didn’t want any cookies, so I have lots.  Also, he apologized for embarrassing me, I told him I was okay with it and I apologized for being late.  So I think we are on good terms now. 

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