Thursday, August 15, 2013

A small lesson from the climate change front.

My tongue hurts.

Because?  Well, because blackberries (the berry kind) don't grow in Minnesota; it's too cold.  We have black raspberries, red raspberries, lotsa other berries, but the true blackberry- nope.  They're all over Wisconsin (the southern half) and Iowa (the southern half) - but - none of my neighbors know what a blackberry is.

Which I've usually been very thankful for.  Raspberry vines/canes are thorny- but blackberry vines will tear your shirt, your jeans, and your skin, bigtime.  I've fought through blackberry tangles enough in other places that I'd rather not have them around.

But.  Now- they're here.  Seed dropped by birds, most likely- and they've been getting established near the Little House for a couple of years.  Almost fruited last year- but the drought really kept anything from happening.  This year is wet- and so-

Looks yummy, huh?  And there are tons of them.  Could be making two pies a day.

They're wild- but they're big.  Like 3 times as big as our wild black raspberries ever get- so; very tempting.  My hand, which takes an XL glove.

I've been feeling fatalistic about it- if the birds are dropping seed- they'll drop more next year.  If the plants are surviving - then, they'll survive.  So.  Might as well enjoy this luscious free wild fruit, right?  Of course!  Going to lose the fight to keep them out anyway.  I go out in the morning, pick 5 or 6 handfuls and inhale them for breakfast.  And lunch.  And dinner.  Why wouldn't you?

Now it's been years since I've eaten many blackberries.  They are a bit seedy- but you just crunch up the seeds, and it becomes part of the whole "sweet/sour/juicy/crunchy/wild berry" mouth experience.

And, I'm sure I knew this as a kid, in Indiana and Ohio- but I'd forgotten.


I know this for a fact; because- one of the crunchies got to me before I crunched it- and bit me on the tip of my tongue- hard.

I spit him out- but not fast enough, and my tongue still hurts.

I'm still shoveling them in.  But I do now, usually, give the various critters also enjoying the berries just a little time to scurry out and away, before inhaling.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Yep, they knew.

TEPCO knew about water flow two years ago

That's the headline today on NHK.

"A spokesperson for Tokyo Electric Power Company says the company has known for the past 2 years that a massive amount of groundwater was flowing beneath the Fukushima Daiichi power plant.

"Masayuki Ono said on Friday that TEPCO experts estimated hundreds of tons of the water could reach the ocean daily.

"Ono said the estimate was based on rough records of groundwater that TEPCO workers had collected.

"Until last month, TEPCO officials had denied the possibility that contaminated groundwater was leaking into the ocean.

"Ono said he is unable to explain why it took two years to disclose this fact.
Aug. 10, 2013 - Updated 07:48 UTC"

The URL, which will only work for a few hours:

In case you missed it- I told you here I knew this- 2 years ago.  How?  Based on published information about where what kinds of radioactive materials were found.  Tinkerbelle does not go about creating Cesium 137 just for the fun of it- it had to come from someplace.  There is no "well, we're not sure" possible.

The greater question, still unasked by the media- why are our own nuclear scientists silent on this point?  I'm not one; I'm an evolutionary ecologist, which means with some training in chemistry and geology and weather.  But- the physicist in your university has to have known this- or is an idiot, take your pick.

What else do we know?  Three reactors have melted entirely through their containers, and are likely to be still melting their way to the earth's core- or will as soon as they quit pumping sea water in to cool - and leak.

And?  "Plausible deniability" is obsolete.  "Implausible deniability" is now quite adequate for government purposes.  Other world governments will back you up.