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Gender: Male
Hometown: Detroit, MI
Member since: Fri Oct 29, 2004, 12:18 AM
Number of posts: 75,786

Journal Archives

Florida man tries to throw shark from Naples pier in viral video

NAPLES, Fla. – A Naples man is gaining attention for all the wrong reasons after a video he was in went viral from Friday night.

In the video, it shows the man attempting to throw a shark off the Naples Pier and back into the water. However, it all turns into a disaster when the shark never makes it off the pier and slams onto the ground.

According to the man depicted in that video, it all started when another fisherman had the shark hooked on his line. That’s when he decided to help, lifting the shark onto the pier and holding it for pictures. .........(more)


Homesick bear treks 90 miles back to Traverse City

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — An apparently homesick bear who was moved from an area in northwestern Michigan where he had raided bird feeders and trash cans has traveled about 90 miles back to the same location.

A radio collar placed on the bear indicates he's back in Grand Traverse County following his removal in April to the Alpena area, the Traverse City Record-Eagle reported Friday. ......... (more)


Boy, 2, dies after falling from tractor in Oakland County; driver was drinking

A 2-year-old boy fell from a tractor in Oakland County and died, authorities said.

The boy was riding with a 33-year-old driver Saturday in Brandon Township. The man told officers that he had been drinking alcohol prior to the tractor ride, the sheriff's office said Monday.

The Sterling Heights boy was taken to Ascension Genesys Hospital in Grand Blanc Township. The cause of death was blunt force trauma. ..........(more)


Amtrak unveils details, cost of corridor expansion plan

Amtrak yesterday provided more details about its "Corridor Vision" plan, which calls for more frequent intercity passenger-rail service to more than 160 more communities and 20 million more riders annually by 2035.

To be implemented in collaboration with states, local communities, the Biden administration and other stakeholders, the Corridor Vision builds on the railroad’s national network, integrating new and improved corridors to expand the existing system, Amtrak officials said in a press release.

"Now is the time to invest in our country’s infrastructure and future," said Amtrak Chief Executive Officer Bill Flynn. "New and improved rail service has the ability to change how our country moves and provides cleaner air, less traffic and a more connected country."

Amtrak’s plan to expand service includes 39 potential new routes and more trips or other enhancements on 25 existing routes, creating the potential to expand or improve rail service for 20 million additional passengers each year. The plan also calls for improved service in major cities that currently are underserved by rail, such as Houston, Atlanta and Cincinnati, as well as new service to cities such as Las Vegas, Nashville, Columbus, Phoenix, and Wichita, with increased access for many towns in between. .............(more)


Chlorine shortage drives prices up

As temperatures rise, more people might flock to the pool this summer, but nationwide chlorine shortages might impact the fun.

Chlorine supply is low after a 2020 fire at a chemical plant in Louisiana that produces much of the nation’s chlorine tablets. Company officials say the plant is currently being rebuilt.

Consumers might notice chlorine is harder to find and costs more money. Experts are urging consumers not to buy more chlorine than what they need.

The City of El Paso is feeling the impact too. Two of the city’s pools require the type of chemical now in short supply, Grandview Swimming Pool and Pavo Real Swimming Pool. The city first relied on stockpiled supplies when the shortage first hit, but those supplies have now dwindled. ................(more)


L.A. Metro Board approves proposed project for North Hollywood to Pasadena BRT corridor project

The Proposed Project for the North Hollywood to Pasadena Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Corridor Project was approved by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (L.A. Metro) Board of Directors.

The $267-million, 18-mile project aims to build a high-quality BRT line that will connect the San Fernando and San Gabriel valleys, traveling east-west between the North Hollywood Metro B (Red)/G (Orange) Line Station and Pasadena City College with stops in North Hollywood, Burbank, Glendale, Eagle Rock and Pasadena.

The board approved L.A. Metro staff’s recommendations, which included refinements in Burbank, Glendale and Eagle Rock. In Eagle Rock, the proposed project includes dedicated, primarily center-running bus lanes on Colorado Boulevard with two design options east of Eagle Rock Boulevard.

One of those options, which incorporates several elements from a community-developed BRT concept for Colorado Boulevard, would convert a travel lane in each direction into a dedicated bus lane, while the other would convert portions of the landscaped median and street parking to a bus lane while preserving existing travel lanes. .............(more)


As the pandemic slowly abates, humanity will have to reckon with historical trauma

As the pandemic slowly abates, humanity will have to reckon with historical trauma
History reveals how previous generations coped with comparably traumatic events

PUBLISHED MAY 30, 2021 10:00AM

(Salon) Last year in May, only a couple months after America entered a state of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I found myself in an interview with Dr. David Reiss. I was wondering even at that time how people would react to the fear of getting sick or dying, to the frustration of not being able to resume their normal lives and to the unhealthiness of so sharply curtailing their social interactions.

"When things are very uncontrolled and uncertain, people who are vulnerable can really fall into an existential type depression," Reiss told me. "And then that kicks off in both serious depression for others who aren't as vulnerable. It just could create a lot of uncertainty, a lot of anger and reactivity."

As vaccines slowly but surely begin to roll back the tide of the pandemic, we are entering a phase in which people undergoing this deeply traumatic experience will now have to rejoin society despite their suffering. While usually trauma victims' experiences are individual, however, here they are far from alone: Just as we need to figure out how to rejoin society, society needs to figure out how to recover from the collective trauma it has endured.


The question for the COVID-19 era is, what can we expect from the future based on the trauma we have endured since 2020?

One likely change is that it could spawn more hypochondriacs, or at least germophobes. Indeed, the pandemic seems to have more of us worried about our health.

"The pandemic has made everybody concerned about their health. And I think that once the pandemic passes, that concern will continue, which is a good thing rather than a bad thing," Dr. Ellen Langer, a professor of psychology at Harvard University, told Salon by email earlier this year. .............(more)


Plague of Mice in Australia Overruns Farms, Shops and Bedrooms

(NYT) TOTTENHAM, Australia — The stench hits you first, pungent, musty and rotting. Then you hear them: a sound like ocean waves, or pouring rain hitting concrete. And the occasional squeak.

The horror lurking in the darkness is a throng of thousands of mice swarming above, around and inside a storage bunker of wheat at the Fragar family’s farm seven hours west of Sydney, Australia. After a long and painful drought, the mice are ravaging the family’s first good harvest in years and endangering the next one, putting their business on the brink of ruin.

Their farm is just one of thousands along the country’s eastern grain belt that are contending with what local residents call the worst mouse plague in living memory, with far-reaching consequences both in the fields and in rural communities.

It’s like “watching the mice eat away at your future,” said Kathy Fragar, 51.

For what has been half a year but felt to many like an eternity, the rodents have chewed a swath through southern Queensland, New South Wales and northern Victoria, the flip side to the good fortune of the break in a once-a-century drought. ............(more)


Arizona's iconic saguaro cactus is flowering "wrong" -- and no one knows why

Arizona's iconic saguaro cactus is flowering "wrong" — and no one knows why
For the first time in recorded history, the cactus that blooms from its tips is suddenly blooming from its sides

PUBLISHED MAY 28, 2021 7:00AM

(Salon) The saguaro is to the American southwest what the Empire State Building is to New York City: A breathtaking icon and a symbol of the region. A cactus that branches like a tree, the saguaro can grow to be 40 feet tall with roots spread over 100 feet of ground. They can live for longer than 150 years, meaning there are saguaros alive today that were born when Ulysses S. Grant was president. As the colder seasons give into warmer ones, the saguaro famously sprouts beautiful white flowers that blossom from the tips of their trunks and arms.

At least, that is what they normally do. Arizona news outlets are reporting that many of the cacti are budding on their sides, a phenomenon never seen before. It is a development that has researchers curious — and a little worried.

Obviously, something changed in the saguaros' environment that triggered a mass mis-sprouting. Some researchers believe the culprit may be environmental.

Dr. Benjamin T. Wilder, a desert ecologist and Director of the University of Arizona's Desert Laboratory on Tumamoc Hill, told Salon by email that he suspects the unusual growths may have been caused by normally reproductively active areoles (the bumps on cacti that produce clusters of spines) being damaged by last summer's drought — particularly since the summer was extremely hot and dry. This could have caused the cactus to revive older areoles, which would be lower on the stem, in order to create flowers. ...........(more)


Southwest Airlines postpones return of alcohol sales after incidents with unruly passengers

Southwest Airlines has ditched its plans to resume alcohol sales in June and July given a spike in in-flight incidents, including a an altercation between a flight attendant and passenger that sent the flight attendant to the hospital Sunday.

"Given the recent uptick in industry-wide incidents of passenger disruptions in-flight, we have made the decision to pause the previously announced restart of alcohol service onboard,'' Southwest spokesman Chris Mainz told USA TODAY. "We realize this decision may be disappointing for some customers, but we feel this is the right decision at this time in the interest of the safety and comfort of all customers and crew on board.''

The airline did not say when it plans to resume alcohol sales. Other airlines have already brought alcohol back to some degree, but not all have. American Airlines is still not serving alcohol in economy.

To passenger cheers, Southwest last week announced the return of alcohol. It planned to resume service on Hawaii flights June 24 and other flights July 14. ...........(more)


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