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Gender: Do not display
Current location: Virginia
Member since: Wed Jun 1, 2011, 07:34 PM
Number of posts: 6,728

About Me

Navy brat-->University fac brat. All over-->Wisconsin-->TN-->VA. RN (ret), married, grandmother of 11. Progressive since birth. My mouth may be foul but my heart is wide open.

Journal Archives


Looks like SpaceX’s Starlink — Elon Musk’s bid to establish his space company as a heavyweight internet service provider using constellations of small satellites — receiver dishes are attracting local cats on cold days. In a recent Starlink customer’s tweet, we counted at least five cats cuddled up on one of the dishes, apparently to stay warm and take advantage of the heat it produces.

“Starlink works great until the cats find out that the dish gives off a little heat on cold days,” Twitter user Aaron Taylor tweeted on New Year’s Eve.

Starlink is SpaceX’s internet service that uses orbital satellites, some of which recently kicked off an international incident after the Chinese space station had to swerve out of their way — but there may be no avoiding the cute, terrestrial feline infestation as long as the dishes aren’t in use.

he dishes appear to be attracting felines when their “Snow Melt Mode” is engaged, according to Tesmanian. It’s possible the dishes also attract other small critters, and one Reddit user even went so far as to use thermal imaging to determine why animals may congregate around their dish.


Parents arrested after 11-year-old son was found home alone over the holidays

The parents of an 11-year-old boy were arrested in Arizona this week after sheriff's deputies alleged he was left alone at home and had not attended school for at least two weeks.

On Dec. 12, sheriff's officials received a call about a welfare check at a home off of Coral Lane in Elfrida, Cochise County Sheriff's Office posted on social media. The caller reported a boy was possibly there alone for an undetermined length of time.

Deputies went to the home and found the boy alone. The boy's mother had left to go out of state before Thanksgiving, and his father followed shortly after Thanksgiving, according to sheriff's officials.

The boy had been alone until deputies arrived. He told deputies that he had frozen food, and he had not been to school for at least the two prior weeks.


An abusive Christian boarding home operated in the shadows. It also took teens' babies.

On a humid evening in August, Nancy Davis Womac paced anxiously on her front deck. Her hands trembled as she stared at a text message from her firstborn daughter, Melanie Spencer, saying that she was minutes away.

The two had never met.

Forty-three years ago, Womac was pregnant and living in an orphanage when she was sent to the Bethesda Home for Girls on the outskirts of Hattiesburg, Mississippi. It was run by Baptist preachers who forced girls to memorize Bible chapters and scrub carpets by hand. Staff members beat the girls with wooden boards if they broke a rule.

Womac said the home’s owners controlled every aspect of her life — from how much toilet paper she was allowed to use to what would happen to her baby once the child was born. In the 1970s and ’80s, Bethesda forced pregnant girls to give up their newborns for adoption to Christian families who paid a $250 “love gift” to the home, according to an NBC News investigation based on court records and interviews. A former judicial officer recently called the facility a “baby selling factory.”

Womac, 16 at the time, fantasized about running away and raising her baby on her own. But the home’s doors were always locked, and she didn’t have a chance.

The Magdalen Laundries existed here too!

Covid surge shuts down baby delivery unit at Fort Lauderdale, Florida, hospital

A South Florida hospital has temporarily shuttered its labor and delivery unit amid an increase in Covid-19 cases causing "critical staffing levels," a spokesperson said.

Pregnant women planning to give birth at Holy Cross Health in Fort Lauderdale will have to seek accommodations elsewhere, the hospital said in a statement Monday to NBC News.

"Due to the COVID-19 surge, Holy Cross Health has reached critical staffing levels in Labor and Delivery. In the best interest of patient safety, the Labor and Delivery unit is on diversion until further notice. The NICU and Post-Partum remain open," the statement said.

"People are out sick due to the surge in Covid cases," Holy Cross spokesperson Christine Walker added in an interview with NBC Miami.

If I lived there (which I wouldn't, but that's beside the point) I'd be planning a home birth

700,000 US Teens Navigate School Without Family Support or Permanent Housing

Luisa, age 19, was fed up with her mom’s demand that she complete all the household cleaning, from scrubbing the toilets, to washing the dishes, to doing the laundry. “I couldn’t take it anymore,” she tells Truthout. “I did not want to be the only one in the house doing chores, so I left. I told my school that I had no place to stay and they sent me to Covenant House where I now share a room with another girl. I’ve been here for three weeks.”

Other residents of the New York City-based Covenant House tell different stories about how they got there. Princess, 18, says she left home because she was constantly being berated, taunted with names like “bitch” and “ho.”

“My family was getting in the way of me being successful,” she says.

Others, like Ruby, were booted out when they became pregnant. “Since coming to Covenant House six months ago, they’ve helped me with food, clothing, diapers for my son and post-natal care,” she says. “They even helped me finish high school.”

We had one for awhile, who had to leave after he knocked his stepdad down the stairs for abusing his mom

Whistleblower warns baffling illness affects growing number of young adults in Canadian province

A whistleblower in the Canadian province of New Brunswick has warned that a progressive neurological illness that has baffled experts for more than two years appears to be affecting a growing number of young people and causing swift cognitive decline among some of the afflicted.

Speaking to the Guardian, an employee with Vitalité Health Network, one of the province’s two health authorities, said that suspected cases are growing in number and that young adults with no prior health triggers are developing a catalog of troubling symptoms, including rapid weight loss, insomnia, hallucinations, difficulty thinking and limited mobility.

The official number of cases under investigation, 48, remains unchanged since it was first announced in early spring 2021. But multiple sources say the cluster could now be as many as 150 people, with a backlog of cases involving young people still requiring further assessment.

“I’m truly concerned about these cases because they seem to evolve so fast,” said the source. “I’m worried for them and we owe them some kind of explanation.”

At the same time, at least nine cases have been recorded in which two people in close contact – but without genetic links – have developed symptoms, suggesting that environmental factors may be involved.

What is most troubling is that the provincial government appears to be attempting a coverup

She Was a Child Bride. He Still Shares Custody of Their Kid

Last year, Ash Pereira called the police in her hometown of Enterprise, Alabama, to report a rape.

The date of the alleged crime was nearly 15 years earlier; the accused, her now ex-husband, Jason Greathouse. Pereira, now 30, was locked in a bitter custody dispute with the man, a former youth pastor who impregnated her when she was 15 and he was 25.

What ensued was shocking to Pereira and many observers: Her ex was allowed to plead to a misdemeanor, did not have to register as a sex offender, and maintains partial custody of their 14-year-old daughter.

Pereira, meanwhile, had to defend herself against accusations that she was an unfit mother and that she was using the statutory rape accusation as a cudgel to get Greathouse to give up his child.

The battle has now pitted mother against daughter, with Pereira claiming her mother was the driving force behind her childhood marriage and her mother claiming Pereira is simply out for blood.


Where have all the truck drivers gone?

The thing Mickey Weaver hears most from prospective truck drivers is that they want to be home every night. The second thing they want is money, but, he says, it’s funny — a lot of people are willing to sacrifice the money to be home daily. But that’s also a big ask. “I can get you money, any way you want it,” Weaver said. “If money’s all you care about and you don’t care where you’re driving or when you’re going out, I got 40 ways from Sunday to hook you up on that.”

Weaver, who’s based in Arkansas, runs We Hire Truckers and Truck Jobs 4 U, which, if you couldn’t guess from the names, recruit truck drivers to open positions. He started this work a little before the pandemic; in March 2020, hiring slowed down a bit, but last fall it began to skyrocket again. Now, there is no shortage of open jobs. “I’ve got more jobs than I’ve got drivers,” he said.

The United States is experiencing a shortage of more than 80,000 truck drivers, according to an estimate from the American Trucking Associations. The ATA also estimates that about 72 percent of America’s freight transport moves by trucks, which shows just how dependent consumers are on the drivers who deliver turkeys to stores or gas to pumps or the Christmas presents to you order to your doorsteps.

This is not just an American problem. Trucks haul comparable amounts of freight in places like the European Union and China, and countries and regions around the world are experiencing driver shortages. The International Road Transport Union documented shortages in a survey of 800 transport companies in more than 20 countries; according to the survey, about 20 percent of positions went unfilled in Eurasia last year.

This is also not a new problem. Analysts and industry groups have warned of truck driver shortages for years, around the globe. But supply chain disruptions during the pandemic and surges in demand in places like the US have made this slow-rolling crisis much more acute.


Is the Western way of raising kids weird?

"Is he in his own room yet?" is a question new parents often field once they emerge from the haze of life with a newborn. But sleeping apart from our babies is a relatively recent development – and not one that extends around the globe. In other cultures sharing a room, and sometimes a bed, with your baby is the norm.

This isn’t the only aspect of new parenthood that Westerners do differently. From napping on a schedule and sleep training to pushing our children around in strollers, what we might think of as standard parenting practices are often anything but.

Parents in the US and UK are advised to have their babies sleep in the same room as them for at least the first six months, but many view this as a brief stopover on their way to a dedicated nursery.

In most other societies around the world, babies stick with their parents longer. A 2016 review that looked at research on children sharing not just a room but a bed with one or more of their parents found a high prevalence in many Asian countries: over 70% in India and Indonesia, for example, and over 80% in Sri Lanka and Vietnam. Research on bedsharing rates in countries across Africa is patchy, but where it does exist suggests the practice is near-universal.

Debmita Dutta, a doctor and parenting consultant in Bangalore, India, says that despite Western influences, bedsharing remains a strong tradition in India – even in households where children have their own rooms. "A family of four has three bedrooms, one each for each child and for the parents, and then you would find both the children in the parent's bed," she says. "It's that common."


Major fire at South African parliament in Cape Town

A large fire has severely damaged the Houses of Parliament in the South African city of Cape Town.

Video footage showed a plume of black smoke filling the sky, with huge flames coming out from the roof of the building.

President Cyril Ramaphosa visited the scene and called it a "terrible and devastating event".

A 51-year-old man was being held and questioned by the authorities, police said.

The blaze, which began shortly after 06:00 local time (04:00 GMT), came the day after Archbishop Desmond Tutu's state funeral at St George's Cathedral, near parliament.

Mr Ramaphosa said news of the fire was a "terrible setback to what we were basking in yesterday" and added that Archbishop Tutu would also have been devastated.

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