leprechaun hazards

March 9, 2008

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crow cam

October 5, 2007

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Barreling down the 101 this morning, hopped up on triple brev√© cappuccino from Palermo’s, I heard an interesting story on NPR. I had to calm my over-caffeinated self down a bit so I could pay better attention. What I heard was that a group of scientists noticed a crow, (named Betty by the way), take a straight piece of wire, bend it into a hook, and use it to get food out of a tube.

Pretty amazing!

But they figured, well, Betty here, she’s a captive crow. They wondered if wild crows ever made and used tools.

So they trapped a few wild crows on some tropical island and attached video cameras to their little crow butts. Yeah, you heard me, a camera, to their butts! A crow cam if you will.

The footage they gathered was a little amateurish, being wild birds and all. You’d see a flash of wing here a black crow leg there, and a lot of cawing. Pretty fascinating stuff. You can read the whole story here. But what they found out was, that crows will use twigs and blades of grass to aid them in looking for food. If they think a particular twig is pretty useful, they might even hold on to it. Smarty pants birds!

Another score for the animal kingdom! Humans think their so big because they discovered fire and invented the wheel…oh yeah, and iPods!

it’s still raining

September 23, 2007

This morning I woke up with the strangest image in my head. Turkeys. Because, you know, when in rains, one often thinks of turkeys. Actually I was reminded of that urban myth about turkeys being so dumb, they look up in the sky when it rains, and thereby drown. A story obviously perpetrated by the turkeys themselves to gain sympathy around November.

A little digging around on the internets revealed the fact that turkeys don’t have binocular vision (i.e., the ability to focus both eyes on the same object). A turkey’s eyes point sideways, so looking up into they sky to check the weather; not likely to happen. Whew, that makes me feel better. This, of course should curtail any future turkey suicide attempts.

So now, it’s Saturday night and it’s raining. Tom and I are at our computers, working on our respective projects. Radio Paradise serves as our soundtrack, playing one remarkable gem after another. Tom is uploading photos taken earlier. I’m working on a cartoon idea I came up with upon waking this morning. The tantilizing aroma of spaghetti sauce fills the air. Yes, I am cooking. Cooking for the first time in months. The house is immaculate, because we had an appraiser over this morning (we’re refinancing our home loan). Soon we’ll be firing up David Lynch’s new flick “Inland Empire”, while we enjoy our spaghetti dinner. Does it get any better than this? Maybe, but I can’t think of anything at the moment.

raining in L.A.

September 22, 2007

Something amazing happend today. Rain! Yes rain, cloudburst, precipitation! In fact I just came in from the garage, where I’ve been sitting captivated by the smell, feel and music of the rare wet stuff. Light from the lamp post outside our house reflects and dances off the drenched streets, making them sparkle. Even the distant barking of the neighbor’s dog, annoying on most nights, has a mysterious and romantic quality tonight. I am a rain fan.