Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Short Reign of Pippin IV

The story is quite simple. Pippin is pressured by French political leaders in the year of 19-- to accept the crown of France because of his birthright. The poor fellow just wants to record cosmic showers and dwell in the peace of his family. Yet it is not so easy to reject the notion since he is told that France needs him, and who can ignore that? It seems a coincidence that all 42 political sections decide to support monarchy "for different reasons beneficial to" themselves. So Pippin and his family move into Versailles along with 200 penniless aristocrats. And that is where Pippin takes his role seriously as king much to the chagrin of the delegates (and his wife who feels left out and goes to Sister Hyacinthe for advice). In the few months of his rule, the king tries desperately to understand his subjects' conditions and to discern the relationships among power, corruption, and fear. Exactly how Pippin's reign ends in France is a worldly lesson to all on what "the good life" is. As Uncle Charlie warns Pippin,"When a pawn tries to do the work of the government--then the pawn is a fool."

Monday, July 26, 2010

And Now, A Zen Moment

Master; "What is the meaning of bird?"
Student; "What bird?"
Master; "The bird of one's mind."
Student; "Go to Hell!"
Master; "Gosh!"
Student; "Yeah that's what I thought! You think anyone wants a round-house kick to the head while I'm wearin' these Bad Boys? I don't think so!"

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Working Our Way Through France

Day 19; After narrowly escaping the clutches of an overly exuberant Saxon woman, we are back safely in the saddle working our way through France. Rocinante, my trusty steed, is holding up to the rigors of the long journey marvelously! All previous oaths of mine with regards to sending him to the Glue Factory, shall now be proclaimed null and void!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Through Thhe Wormhole

I'm not sure where my fear of German women stems from, but I know one thing, it is not getting any better. Just the other day I was telling a friend about the wonderful new mini-series on the Science Channel called, Through The Wormhole, with Morgan Freeman, when suddenly an older, Teutonic woman who over heard our conversation screamed out, "Tru Da Vermholen!" I began down that decades long inner path of fear and trembling as my friend started up an animated conversation with the lady. Soon, I simply could stand it no longer and had to abruptly excuse myself because as I said, "Somewhere, there is a kettle at full boil, I need a strong cuppa English Breakfast Tea!"

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Meanwhile... Back at The Ranch

Lately, a discouragaing word has descended over the blue skies that blanket the Ponderosa. Some letter-writers, like the football players who administered the shears on him 15 years ago are distressed by Mike Landon, or Little Joe's, long hair. "There are people who write in, forgetting that 'Bonanza' is set in the Old West in the 1870's, and they ask is Little Joe some kind of hippie." Landon shakes his full-thatched head in wonderment. "They've got to be kidding--Ben Cartwright's son a hippie?"

Friday, July 9, 2010

Shadow Biosphere

A shadow biosphere is a postulated microbial biosphere of Earth that uses radically different biochemical and molecular processes than currently known life. While life on Earth is relatively well-studied, the shadow biosphere may still remain unnoticed because our exploration targets our biochemistry primarily.

Benner, Ricardo and Carrigan argue that, if organisms based on RNA have once existed, they may still be alive today, unnoticed because they don't contain ribosomes, which are usually used to detect living organisms. They suggest searching for them in environments that are low in sulphur, that are spatially constrained (for example, minerals with pores smaller than one micrometre), or that cycle between extreme hot and cold.

Other proposed denizens of the shadow biosphere include organisms with chirality opposite of ours, that use some of the non-standard amino acids, or that use arsenic instead of phosphorus.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

That Seventy's Look

Hello and welcome back! We are sincerely excited about our latest project, one that we are not entirely able to share the details of, yet. Stay tuned all Summer long as our new program director has many new ideas and of course, lots of giveaways!