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Visualize the Gulf Oil disaster June 10, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Say it like it is, World Affairs.
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I just found this frightening website that allows people to visualize the scale of the terrible Gulf of Mexico BP oil disaster that’s going on right now.  You can put the extent of a spill over a map of where you are right now just to get an idea …

I don’t think we’ve fully grasped what’s at stake.

This is crazy – those responsible should definitely be made to pay …

Hat Tip : Francis

Chinese Painted Dogs ! June 8, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in General Bloggery, World Affairs.
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My God – what will these people think of next ? Children dressed up as Nazis ?  Oh wait, that’s my hometown !

Wrong, wrong, wrong and then wrong some more !!

Boy falls off escalator May 27, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in World Affairs.
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This is just nuts … some kid in Turkey is lucky to be alive after he ran away from his parents and hung on to the outside of a moving escalator – only to fall off when it reached the top.

Luckily for him a concerned passerby saw what was happening and positioned himself underneath to catch him when he lost his grip …

Jaysis, Mary and the carpenter !

Cover Spy May 26, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in General Bloggery, World Affairs.
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A shout out goes to the folks behind the very interesting CoverSpy

People (well New Yorkers anyway) can send in the names of the books they see fellow commuters reading on trains or whatever and they are collated into an interesting page of insight on what New York is reading on any given day …

Jupiter loses a belt May 20, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in World Affairs.
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Jaysis now there’s a headline that grabbed my attention as I scanned the news feeds this morning – Jupiter has apparently lost on of its equatorial belts …

The squiggly lines immediately to the left of the “Great Red Spot” are what we’re on about – the spot itself is actually a huge, raging storm three times bigger than Earth !  The stripe has disappeared (and reappeared) before but astronomers here on earth are at a loss to completely explain the phenomenon.

I must dust off the old telescope and see can I see anything of interest.

Let’s all text the Pope May 14, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Say it like it is, World Affairs.
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Text-the-pope service launched in Italy

I can only imagine why the powers-that-be in the Vatican thought this ‘service’ would be a good idea … sure, the dwindling faithful will text messages of support etc. but I think that the service will simply become unusable very quickly with the amount of abuse and profanity that it will receive.

Of course, the aides in the Vatican are then going to filter the bad ones out and only pass on genuine messages to the man in the funny hat but still, they might spend more time than they think weeding out a significant tirade against the man.

And while I’m on the subject of the Pope (is he still infallible on all things by the way?), he has come out (oops) yesterday in Portugal and said that gay marriage is “an insidious threat to society” … full stop.  What ?  So some men or women choose to sleep with other men or women and you feel threatened ?  And you think the whole world is under threat from this ?  Come on for f*ck sake !!

What business is it of his who a person chooses to sleep with ?  Does he think the entire world might suddenly turn gay and there’d be no children bred forevermore ? … read, no more Catholic children to go to Mass and keep eejits like him in a job !

I mean in this day and age, he should really just shut up about things he knows nothing about !

LPGA player, Erica Blasberg, dead May 11, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Sports, World Affairs.
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I can’t believe this news – I am an avid follower of the LPGA and news has hit the  web of the untimely death of 25 year old Erica Blasberg.

A more poignant account of the story can be found here, including some reaction from her obviously devastated parents … I just think the whole thing is so sad and I hope that the pressures of the game and life on tour hasn’t gotten to her and she resorted to something terrible.

Goes to show we just never know.  R.I.P.  Skip

Hats Off to Jessica Watson April 25, 2010

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Our collective hats off and hearty congratulations must go to young Australian girl, Jessica Watson, who has become the youngest female (if not person?) to sail solo and unassisted around the world.

Her route took her east from Australia, around Cape Horn and across the Atlantic to South Africa before home through the Southern Ocean to Oz …

Well done – go visit her site and see her remarkable story !

Spectacular shots of the Volcano April 24, 2010

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Follow this link for some spectacular shots of the Eyjafjallajokull volcano …

For all its faults (geddit?) its a very picturesque thing !

What volcanic ash does to an engine ! April 21, 2010

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Ever wanted to know what happens when volcanic ash hits a plane’s engines ? Sit back and let this jolly fellow tell you … and then be thankful the airlines are cancelling flights !

Thank You, James Harrison ! March 25, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Fatherhood, General Bloggery, World Affairs.
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I came across this wonderful story about this wonderful man this morning … it’s the man we have to thank for the Anti-D vaccine, given to children with a Rhesus blood incompatibility with their mother.

This incompatibility is quite common and happened in our 2 kids – normally the doctors will check for blood type late in the 3rd trimester and then make the decision to administer Anti-D when the child is born … I thought it had been around for years but no !  The vaccine was developed when doctors discovered an antibody in this man’s blood – he has made nearly 1000 blood donations over the course of his lifetime.

So from the bottom of all our hearts Mr. Harrison, go raibh míle mhaith agat !

Read about him here …

Blood donor saves two million babies – Yahoo!Xtra News.

Leprechaunism March 19, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Ireland & the Irish, World Affairs.
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So given the week that’s in it, I thought I’d give out about one of my pet peeves – people dressed as leprechauns !  I mean, have you ever seen anything more ridiculous in your entire life as three or four grown men at a football match donning cheap sandy beards and puke green jackets and hats ?

I mean look at the state of the guy !

I hereby vow never to let any child of mine dress up like a leprechaun – even for Hallowe’en !!  The trouble is, people think its the thing to do – but as you can see from this story – dressing up as one of the wee folk will ultimately get you nowhere !!

Diddly-dee me arse !

Alleged assassination plot March 10, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in World Affairs.
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So it seems that a number of people were arrested here in Waterford yesterday over an alleged assassination plot – the plot is linked to a Swedish cartoonist who depicted the Islamic prophet Muhammad having the body of a dog.  Something that is most offensive to Muslims.

There are many facets to the argument of whether it is wrong to ridicule someone’s religious beliefs and as to whether it is OK to publish said ridicule, whilst knowing that the subject will offend.  In the case of Muslim people, their religion being of the utmost importance to them, ridicule of their religion offends deeply.  I mean why bother offending someone ?  To sell papers ?  To defend the freedom of speech ?

So I think that, within reason, we should not offend anyones religion – Muslim, Catholic, Jew, whatever – if we are of another faith or none at all.   We know people get so offended and go to different extremes to show their anger … simply, why bother offending someone ?  Is it irresponsible to be going around printing stories about terrorists and so on when these people have not yet even been charged ?  Will the damage not have been done ?  These days you have to be very careful about what is printed in the media because of the damage words can cause.

If a story was printed in mainstream media about the Holocaust not having happened, or Mary being a bit of a floozie, or Buddha being fat or whatever, do you think there would not be outcry by those offended ?  I mean, for God’s sake (ooops) we now have a law in Ireland making it a crime if someone takes umbrage to your comments on their beliefs – so the Muslims are not the only ones who get angry.

I think it just might be a little daring at the moment to make fun of the Muslim reaction to their religion being criticized.

Oblivion for 65,000-year-old tribe February 5, 2010

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Oblivion for 65,000-year-old tribe as last of the Bo takes her language to grave .

An interesting and sad story from the Indian Ocean this morning …

God, I miss blogging  !

Dinner lady faces sack July 7, 2009

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A dinner lady faces the sack from a school in Essex, for telling parents the full details about an attack on their daughter.  The kid was tied up with a rope and beaten about the legs and arms in a disgraceful bullying incident !

The school wrote (!) to the parents telling them about the attack but excluded some details … I mean first of all, why would you just write and not hop straight in a car and drive the poor kid home, via a cop shop to scare the shite out of the perpetrators !?

Anyway, now this dinner lady is facing the sack because she discussed a school matter outside – even though she told the parents of the bullied child concerned !

This world is gone PC, stone mad !!

Read the full article here.

Thriller June 26, 2009

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For the day that’s in it !

I was never a big Michael Jackson fan although I am sad that he is gone. My one outstanding memory of things Whacko Jacko related is when the video “Thriller” came out in the 80s we were banned from watching it !

Dead people dancing about !?  Not for my young eyes !

Embedding is disabled on You Tube but you can see the video here.

Move over Tiger ! June 9, 2009

Posted by Rambling Man in Poetry & Humor, World Affairs.
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Continuing with the theme of North Korean madness …

N. Korea’s Kim Jong-il shot 38 under par his 1st time out !

via WorldTribune.com

-38 !  30 f*cking 8 under par in the one round …. wait now a minute !  That’s eh … 34 shots !  Most professionals would be happy to shoot that over 9 holes !

So he’s a fantastic golfer on top of it all … so come out from behind the curtain Mr.Kim – the world needs ya !  We bow “Dear Leader” in humility before your greatness !

Now where did I put that bloody holodeck key ?

N.Korea sentences U.S. journalists to 12 years June 8, 2009

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North Korea on Monday sentenced two American journalists to 12 years of hard labor in a case widely seen as a test of how far the isolated Communist state was willing to take its confrontation with the United States.

via NYTimes.com

What the hell is taking shape over in North Korea ?  12 years hard labour for 2 journalists ?

This situation is rapidly getting out of hand … next thing we know, Kim Jeong-il will kick the bucket and all hell will break loose ! Remember that North Korea has the 5th largest army in the world and recently carried out several missile tests, despite threatened UN sanctions … it’s giving out warnings, creating exclusion zones around its borders, saying it will respond with extreme measures … oh and they also pulled out of the armistice governing the end of the Korean War (in which there was never a peace treaty signed) …

Is this all the work of a leader who believes himself to be so close to being invaded that he feels the need to do something … or the results of a madman’s mind !

Isn’t it amazing the way dictatorships work ?

Ian Parsley June 6, 2009

Posted by Rambling Man in General Bloggery, Ireland & the Irish, World Affairs.
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Ian Parsley is running in the European Elections for the Alliance Party, in Northern Ireland.

I had to do a double take on the name as I thought the “Big Man” himself had decided to come out of retirement …

Best of luck to them all …

via Ian Parsley – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Air France incident – what is going on ? June 5, 2009

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‘Up to now, no material from the plane has been recovered,’ Brigadier Ramon Cardoso, director of Brazilian air traffic control, told reporters in the northeastern city of Recife late last night.

That contradicted a statement Brigadier Cardoso made earlier when he said a palette and two buoys plucked from the Atlantic by navy crews were the first pieces of the Air France crash.

In fact, Mr Cardoso admitted later, they were nothing more than sea ‘trash’ – probably from a ship, as was a big oil patch originally described as a fuel slick from the French jet.

via RTÉ News: Debris not from missing Air France jet.

So let me get this straight – several days later, they have no knowledge of where the plane is – either intact or in pieces – and not one single solitary piece of debris or personal item from anyone or anything on board … ?

Curiouser and curiouser !

Air France Crash June 2, 2009

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“The Airbus A330-200, carrying 228 passengers and crew members, is believed to have vanished in a towering thunderstorm with no word from its pilots that they were in crisis.”

via Search Is On for Wreckage of Missing Air France Jet – NYTimes.com.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims of this terrible tragedy and to the family members left behind.  It is one of the worst aviation disasters in the last decade and one can only imagine the heartbreak that families all over the world – including Ireland – will be feeling this morning.  It is the ‘not knowing’ for definite that would be the worst.

Once February 26, 2008

Posted by Rambling Man in Ireland & the Irish, World Affairs.
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Many, many congratulations to Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, who won Best Song at the Oscars in Hollywood over the weekend.  Their song is called “Falling Slowly” from the film, ‘Once’.

As Marketa herself says at the end of this clip … “Fair play to those who dare to dream … !”

Castro resigns as Cuban leader February 19, 2008

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It appears this morning that Cuba is facing the end of an era with the announcement that it’s leader of almost 50 years, Fidel Castro, has resigned as President.

Castro, 81 – the world’s longest serving leader – has been ill and frail for some time and handed over power to his brother Rául in 2006. Writing in the Cuban daily paper Granma he says :

“I neither will aspire to nor will I accept – I repeat – I neither will aspire to nor will I accept, the position of president of the council of state and commander in chief ”.

Cuba’s national assembly are due to meet this Sunday to decide various positions, possibly including the now resigned position of president. Having never visited Cuba, I am sad that I now will never see the country during the reign of Castro as I’m sure it will change at a fast rate. I wonder will McDonald’s be one of the first ??

Curry sandwiches anyone ? November 16, 2007

Posted by Rambling Man in General Bloggery, Ireland & the Irish, World Affairs.
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Not content with trying to kill us with kindness and calories (at least they’re kind calories) Tesco, in their infinite shopping wisdom have brought out a new product they think will hit the shelves running, so to speak …

Wait for it !  CURRY SANDWICHES !

Tis true for ya – read all about it here.

What’ll they thinka next ?  An Irish breakfast in a roll ?

Pissheads November 15, 2007

Posted by Rambling Man in General Bloggery, Ireland & the Irish, World Affairs.
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If we didn’t know it already and boring fellows like me weren’t shouting it from the internet rooftops, a recent report has confirmed that the Irish are second top of the drinking leagues in all of the “Western” or developed world.

The report fails to say which country comes first – what an accolade – but it’s either the Finns or the good old Germans, I reckon.