I mentioned the sargassumfish I caught the other day, and last night I had some unexpected free time. So I put together a DK Marine Life Series essay on how these pelagic animals cross the ocean. It's called Expat Sargassum Community, and includes this movie of the fish swimming using jet propulsion by shooting bursts of water through its gills. My Nikon doesn't take the best quality footage, but it gives you an idea of how this thing moves.
This is why I love offshore hurricanes and tropical storms so much. Look at this gorgeous guy I caught yesterday. It's a sargassumfish that was blown into Rhode Island on a raft of weeds from the Sargasso Sea out near Bermuda. He's about three inches long and you can learn more about them from this essay I wrote for Daily Kos. Click to biggit.
James Fallows has an excellent deconstruction of Betsy McCaughey’s appearance on The Daily Show that shows the insanity of the “death panel” nonsense in the health care debate. I honestly don’t understand the objection of anyone who isn’t an HMO executive to universal health care.
The Rude Pundit has a message on Ted Kennedy for conservatives who hated him. Nicely done.
Five myths about health care from around the world.
This chart of health care claims shows that Republicans are lying and Democrats are telling the truth, and explains why once again Fox News viewers have absolutely no idea what the hell they’re talking about.
If you’re interested in the politics of health care over the past twenty years, read Ezra Klein.
“Insurers make money by denying claims. Money they spend on health care is money they lose (they even have a name for it: the "medical-loss ratio"). Private insurance is a bit like a fire department that turns a profit by letting buildings burn down.”
Krakatoa erupted 126 years ago, and these photos show it possibly reawakening again.
Motivated Grammar is a niche blog devoted to grammatical sticklers. It really is a good read by a linguist that points out ways that language is and not how it should be. Not everything you learned in school is necessarily correct.
Buy stuff at the Creationist Fossil Shop. For six bucks you can get a TV that was created on Day 8, 4000 B.C. (false estimate: 1950 A.D.)
Today’s slide show is fabulous nature’s collection of beach images.
Movie Rating: The Pink Panther (2006) I have this thing about returning Netflix movies unwatched, but they accidentally sent me the Steve Martin version of this flick and now I’m rethinking that policy. 1.0 starfish out of 5.
Hump Day Musical Interlude: I've never heard of the Red Stick Ramblers before, but they're coming to The Towers in Narragansett tomorrow night and I'm going to head out and give them a listen. Based on the videos they have posted, they seem like my kind of band. This one's called Made in the Shade. From what I understand, if you show up early the band members give dance lessons before the show.
I've long been aware of the threat horseshoe crabs face from over-harvesting, and the regulations that have been put in place to try to protect them, but I always picture the harvesting as being done by guys walking along the shore and picking up the animals by hand and tossing them into a boat or pickup truck. That's how it's done around here. Until someone sent me this image in an email I didn't realize they were trawled up in such huge numbers at one time.
Tuesday Coonhound Blogging: Scroll down on this coonhound page a bit until you get to the part about "common misspellings" and then tell me this absurd paragraph isn't just a ploy to increase the site's google ranking.
Animal of the Week: It wasn’t a sea monster that washed up on a beach in Wales. It’s a mass of what the article calls “goose barnacles”, but they’re actually called gooseneck barnacles. They are strictly pelagic, but can wash ashore stuck to logs or debris that have been floating out at sea for a few years.
In some parts of India snake charmers begin their training as young as two-years-old.
Bill Y got yesterday's trivia. It's Bobby Kennedy's assassin Sirhan Sirhan.
Trivia (10 Biomes points): This mug shot is of a well-known criminal 35 years after his arrest. Who is it? As a reminder for newbies, I'm keeping track of all the points. When someone reaches 100 I'll donate $25 to the non-religious charity or Democratic candidate of their choice. Winners start at zero but everyone else keeps their points. So far we've donated to two senate candidates, St. Jude's Hospital and some other charity I can't think of offhand.
The mustache ring clips onto your soda bottle so you’ll look more distinguished while drinking.