Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 302

The Cincinnati Reds are not only a horrible baseball team … and the ownership and the front office is an embarrassment to the city and its long-time fans. I have one suggestion – please consider another line of work.

Here’s a feel-good story. A local teen’s friend died two years ago, but the friend’s organs helped more than 70 people. He honored his friend by asking a girl to prom from several states away because she received the friend’s lungs to combat her cystic fibrosis. She accepted and all the parents involved support the date. … The original story  … and the story about the outcome

Wow – the Today (Sunday version with Willie Geist) did an outstanding story about The Onion. See it here.

We recently went to the movie theater for two movies. Each movie is different, but worth your time. Money Monsters is a thriller starring George Clooney and Julia Roberts. Thumbs up. A few days later we saw The Man Who Knew Infinity starring Jeremy Irons and Dev Patel. It’s a wonderful story that is well done. Extra Thumbs Up.

Earlier this week, I saw a farewell post from a blogger – Carrie Rubin. Carrie and I stumbled across each other years ago on Starla’s blog. Since then, we’ve been regular visitors on the other’s blog. Carrie is not only a physician, author, mother, spouse, and self-proclaimed introvert – I have no doubt she is a classy lady in person. Being in opposite corners of the same state, I’m confident that some day we will meet in person. For that day, she has taught me well … that is, I must be prepared with questions to keep the conversation going.😉 Carrie – thanks for being a faithful reader here – and thanks for sharing the inner extrovert side of yourself – which is a hoot! Good luck with your future novels! … and I encourage readers to visit her last post.  Tell her I sent you.

Colors: The Musical returns next week with Act 7 featuring Brown. For those who don’t know the rules, stick to brown being in the song title. The theater curtain rises on Tuesday, May 24th at 9:30 pm (Eastern US)

No Explore post this weekend.

I’m still amazed that Donald Trump (R-NY) has gotten this far. Besides numerous insults, his constituents allow him to avoid answering questions and willingly change positions.

This week’s aFa Power Ranking for Donald Trump’s running mate: 5) Sarah Palin, 4) Chris Christie, 3) Jeff Sessions, 2) John Kasich, 1) Newt Gingrich

Hillary Clinton (D-NY) can’t seem to put-away Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT). To me, it’s further evidence that the Democratic Party is following the Republican Party in a movement away from the center … which is not a good thing for those in the center.

To lead you into your weekly dose of satire, The Onion explains how hackers steal data.

Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)
Woman Had No Idea Participating In 5K Walk Could Be So Unrewarding
NCAA investigating God for giving gifts to athletes
Americans lead the world in compressing big sandwiches so they are bitable
Woman Recreating Famous Marilyn Monroe Photo Has Rat Blown Up Skirt
Report: Unreleased Harry Potter Book More Secure Than U.S. Trains
Porn Star XXX-hausted

Interesting Reads
Advice about the Middle East
The creativity of genes
A cherished Irish Bible for the 6th-to-8th century
Pad 14 and Mercury astronauts
Faking one’s own kidnapping
(Pictures) Nomads in Nepal

To send you into the weekend, I dedicated this song to Carrie. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

On Phi

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science. (Albert Einstein)

Nature hides her secrets because of her essential loftiness, but not by means of ruse. (Albert Einstein)

All life is biology – All biology is physiology – All physiology is chemistry – All chemistry is physics – All physics is math. (Dr. Stephen Marquardt)

Measure what is measurable, and make measurable what is not so. (Galileo Galilei)

Geometry has two great treasures: one is the Theorem of Pythagoras; the other, the division of a line into extreme and mean ratio. The first we may compare to a measure of gold; the second we may name a precious jewel. (Johannes Kepler)

This post is about Phi (Φ) – 21st letter of the Greek alphabet

Phi – but not fi fo and fum

Phi, in traditional Greek numerals a value of 500 (φʹ) or 500 000 (φ)

Phi – the ratio of each successive pair of numbers in the Fibonacci Sequence

Phi – the symbol for the golden ratio and on other occasions in math and science

Phi – applicable in mathematics, art, architecture, biology, astronomy, music, physics, navigation, geology, engineering, economics, philosophy, and more

Phi – squared is a number exactly 1 greater than itself: 2.618

Phi – the ratio in the length of a DNA molecule

Phi – the ratio of the diameter of Saturn to the diameter of its rings

Phi – the sound of this song if the numbers were assigned to piano keys. Enjoy.

Additional Information about Phi at this site dedicated to phi

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 301

List week we saw Big Fat Greek Wedding II. Entertaining, but predictable.

I imagine this is a rare occurrence for most, but I’ve been dealing with these issues all at the same time: cell phone, laptop, tablet, wireless router, and server storage.

Our handbell season is over, so here’s the last song we played (Celtic Praise). The musicians in the crowd will enjoy the rhythms in this piece. The link is the composer’s choir, which he (interestingly) didn’t use a flute accompaniment.

I feel very behind on much about blogging … so I’m delaying the next act of Colors: The Musical.

Oh my … the stats are dropping like a rock – but I’m pressing on.

Sorry, no Explore post this weekend.

With Donald Trump (R-NY) being the presumptive Republican nominee, talk about his running mate has begun. His the aFa Power Ranking at this point in time: 5)Snookie 4)Sarah Palin 3)John Kasich 2)Chris Christie 1)Newt Gingrich

Republican partisans are predictably starting to embrace the Trump candidacy. After all, that’s what partisans do.

I seldom read two of the three columnists below, but on this day, I appreciated their columns and (in particular) these lines:

It was actually a rare opportunity for Cruz to shed his image as a reptilian barfly and trade his mom-jeans for Lycra tights and a cape. (Kathleen Parker, Washington Post)

His (Trump’s) metabolic urge to be scabrous guarantees that GOP candidates everywhere will be badgered by questions about what they think about what he says. What they say will determine how many of them lose with him, and how many deserve to. (George Will, Washington Post)

But as Trump himself says of being a conservative – at this point, who cares? As of Tuesday night, certainly not the GOP. (Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post)

To lead you into your weekly dose of satire, The Onion explains how the USA pick Supreme Court justices.

Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)
Lone ant crawling through kitchen trumpets arrival of horde
Biologists discover billions of missing bees living anonymously in Sacramento
Laughing woman clarifies amusement with clapping
Genie presidential candidate promises to grant American public three wishes if elected
Teary-eyed student loan officers proudly watch as $200,000 asset graduates from college
Waitress who took over at table just doesn’t have same spark as Richard
Chinese astronomers inform Beijing residents sky will be visible for rare 2-Minute window tomorrow morning

Interesting Reads
About colors (Thanks, Ray)
Government jobs – where did they go?
Japanese decoys of WW II
Genetically-modified mosquitoes – is that a problem?
The mysteries of ear wax
Militants targeting personalities
(Images plus) Food photographer of the year

To send you into the weekend, enjoy this hit from a collection of stars. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

On the Singers of Cincinnati

When locals think of a title of this blog post, people like Doris Day, Rosemary Clooney, Andy Williams, and Nick Lachey come to mind. So do groups such as the Isley Brothers, The Lemon Pipers, Blessid Union of Souls, Pure Prairie League, Walk the Moon, and 98 Degrees. We old timers can add Roy Rogers, Homer & Jethro, and Grandpa Jones to the list.

But this post isn’t about any of the above. If anyone influenced this post, it’s Resa – the Canadian lady in Toronto who features murals on her blog (Graffiti Lux and Murals).  After all, because of Resa, I notice murals now more than I ever did.

Special thanks to Art Works: “an award-winning non-profit organization that employs and trains local youth and talent to create art and community impact through three strategic programming areas: Public Art, including an extensive mural program; an art therapy division, ArtRx; and an entrepreneurial arm, Creative Enterprise.” (from their website)

FYI: ArtWorks recently announced that local icon Rosemary Clooney (a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award winner) will be honored with her own mural, which is to start this summer.

Mr. Dynamite @ 1437 Main Street
Yep, that’s The King of Soul. No, James Brown wasn’t born in Cincinnati nor did he live here, but many of his early hits were produced at Cincinnati-Based King Records.

Singers Brown

The Singing Mural @ 1223 Central Parkway
This mural is a celebration of the arts and a salute to Cincinnati’s cultural legacy with the arts. Fittingly located near Music Hall, the mural features locals, cultural icons, and classic characters. Do you recognize anyone? (The list of people is below the last image.) What song do you think they are singing?

Singers 1

singers 2

singers 3

Singers 4

Singers Whole

Top row, left to right: Cincinnati arts patron Patricia Corbett, Sesame Street’s Grover, the Phantom from Phantom of the Opera, rock artist Elton John, opera singer Beverly Sills, a euphonium player to represent Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, jazz singer Cab Calloway, the lead role from opera Madame Butterfly, and legendary composer Johann Sebastian Bach.

Bottom row, left to right: Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker to represent Cincinnati Ballet, opera singer Leontyne Price as lead role in opera Aida, beloved Cincinnati Pops conductor Maestro Erich Kunzel, Cincinnati Police Officer Al Staples, PBS icon Mr. Rogers; the lead role from opera Pagliacci, Cincinnati broadcasting legend Ruth Lyons, a local youth, and the Cincinnati Reds’ own Mr. Redlegs.

On 88

cooltext_88momMy mother passed away in August 1987 at an age that is younger than I am now. Characterized by calm, kindness, and hard-working, my admiration for her has grown over time. With Mother’s Day 2016 upon us, I salute her with a number tribute – 88 – which would be her age on her 2016 birthday later this year.

I don’t have many digital images of her – and the ones that I have are old. I hope to digitize some of the old family pictures and some of my own, but for now, these from 1964 will do. Happy Mother’s Day Mom. We love you, miss you, and we’re doing fine.

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In Language
Tetëdhjetë e tetë (Albanian), Åtti åtte (Norwegian), Achtentachtig (Dutch), Ottantotto (Italian), Osamdeset osem (Slovenian), LXXXVIII (Roman numerals) … Feel free to add others!

In Mathematics
88 – a refactorable number, a primitive semiperfect number, an untouchable number, a hexadecagonal number, an Erdős–Woods number, a palindromic number in bases 5 (3235), 10 (8810), 21 (4421), and 43 (2243), and a repdigit in base 10, 21 and 43

88 – Divisible by 1, 2, 4, 8, 11, 22, 44, 88

88 – with a square of 7744 but a square root of 9.38083151965

In Chemistry
88 – the atomic number of the element Radium whose neutrally charged atom has 88 protons and 88 electrons

In Biology
Eighty-eights – two genera of butterflies (Diaethria and Callicore) because the markings on their wings look like the number 88

88 – the total number of chromosomes for the woodland hedgehog, a species of banana and coffee, and a species of shrimp

In Astronomy
88 – the number of constellations in the sky as defined by the International Astronomical Union

Messier object M88, is a spiral galaxy in the constellation Coma Berenices

The New General Catalogue object NGC 88, a spiral galaxy in the constellation Phoenix, and a member of Robert’s Quartet

Space Shuttle Mission 88 (STS-88) launched and completed in December, 1998, began the construction of the International Space Station.

88 – the Saros number series of the solar eclipse series which began on 246 October 6 (BC) and ended on 1233 March – a span of 1478.4 years, and containing 83 solar eclipses.

88 – the approximately the number of days it takes Mercury to complete its orbit

In Culture
88 symbolizes fortune and good luck in Chinese culture

88 – shorthand for “love and kisses” in amateur radio

88 – in Japanese, often used to mean “a great many” or “countless” or infinite numbers.

88 – short for “byebye” in short Chinese chat

In Sports
88 – the number of LPGA tournaments won by golfer Kathy Whitworth

Retired numbers

  • MLB, NBA, NHL – None
  • NFL: Alan Page (Vikings) and JV Cain (Cardinals)

Red Slot Right Halfback Stay 88 – the play the Cleveland Brown ran that ended a game-winning attempt interception thrown by QB Brian Sipe (4 January 1981 in Cleveland vs. Oakland Raiders)

NASCAR car 88 – In over 1500 races, 74 wins, top 5 (385), top 10 (658) … most commonly driven by Dale Jarrett, Dale Earnhardt, Darrell Waltrip, Buddy Baker, and Ricky Rudd.

88 – the number of a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car owned by Hendrick Motorsports that is currently driven by Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

In Entertainment
88.0 MHz (FM radio) – stations in Australia (10), Turkey (1), and Bangladesh (1)

88 – the speed (in miles per hour) that the DeLorean automobile must attain in order to travel in time (Back to the Future)

88 Minutes, a 2008 film starring Al Pacino

88 Keys, character in Dick Tracy (1990 film)

88 – the name of a gang in the American film Gridiron Gang (2008)

In Books
Psalm 88

Sonnett 88

88 Poems – a book of poems by Ernest Hemingway

The House on East 88th Street by Bernard Waber

In Music
88 – the number of keys on a typical piano (36 black and 52 white)

Eighty Eight – a live album by the Christian rock band The 77s

Rocket 88 – a song first recorded at Sam Phillips’ studio in 1951;

Rocket 88 – a 1980s band in the UK named after the song above

Symphony No. 88 by Joseph Haydn

88 Basie Street – A Grammy Award winning album by Count Basie

88-Keys – American record producer and rapper born as Charles Misodi Njapa

88 Lines About 44 Women by The Nails

88 – by the Sum 41, Apartment 26, Level 43, The Cool Kids, and LM.C

In History
88 – the number of Australians killed in the 2002 Bali bombings

Pope Gabriel V of Alexandria – the 88th Roman Catholic Pope

Year 88 (LXXXVIII)

  • a leap year starting on Tuesday
  • Egyptians erected two obelisks in front of the Temple of Isis to honour of emperor Domitian.
  • The First Dacian War ends
  • Chinese Emperor Han Zhangdi dies at age 31
  • Pope Clement I succeeds Pope Anacletus I as the fourth pope.

Year 88 BC

  • Berber calendar year 863, Buddhist calendar year 457, Korean calendar year 2246
  • The Social War ends with the Romans defeating the Italian allies
  • First Civil War in Rome, between Marius and Sulla
  • King Mithridates VI of Pontus invades Greece.

In Geography
Interstate 88 in Illinois and New York are not contiguous with each other

Ohio State Route 88 – To the best of my knowledge, I have never travelled this road

88th meridian west crosses land in Canada, USA, Mexico, Belize, Honduras, and El Salvador

88th meridian east crosses land in Russia, Mongolia, China, Nepal, and India

In Miscellaneous
88 – a popular ice cream bar manufactured by GB Glace

88 – a model number of an Oldsmobile

the Crazy 88 the name of O-Ren Ishii’s Army in Kill Bill

88 – the ISBN Group Identifier for books published in Italy and Switzerland

Detachment 88 – an anti-terrorist police squad in Indonesia called “Detachment 88”

The Group of 88 – 88 professors at Duke University who signed a controversial advertisement published after a woman falsely claimed to have been raped by members of Duke’s lacrosse team

The Cambridge Z88 – a portable computer in 1988

88 – slang for “what” in the US Navy

Movement 88 – a political party in Armenia

Happy Mother’s Day to all readers who are mothers and to all your mothers. 

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 300

For me, this is the perfect image to mark the 300th post of Opinions in the Shorts (OITS). After all, I see myself dropping confetti on you as a way to say thanks.

I started blogging on 28th August 2008 as a politics and sports blog. My first OITS appeared on 25th November 2008. A few weeks earlier, President Obama won the election for his first term.That first OITS featured a hilarious Jimmy Kimmel skit showing the secret handshake between President Bush and President-elect Obama. Too bad the video is no longer available.

I started this series as a way to toss out a variety of short thoughts. Over time, thoughts were categorized, Interesting Reads and The Onion headlines appeared, the Garrison Keillor quote served as the conclusion, and a song sent readers into the weekend. I even wrote about the Keillor phrase in this 2009 post.

My golf league started this week. Last year was my first year in this league. I was fortunate to play with the eventual league champion multiple times. What a nice guy! Over time, I learned about his health issues (but from others). Several weeks ago I learned he passed away during the winter.

For anyone looking for a new laptop, I suggest considering the Dell Outlet Center. I recently purchased my third laptop from them because I’ve been very pleased with the others. Even a better deal when they have specials (see Coupons) on the Outlet Center’s webpage.

At the time of this writing, I’m way behind on Act 6: Purple-Indigo-Violet of Colors: The Musical. Timing simply wasn’t good.

There will be a post this weekend, but it will be a Salute, not an Explore.

The success of the Donald Trump (R-NY) campaign continues to floor me. Yep – I missed it – sadly (and in my opinion), it’s a poor commentary on Americans. Although the chance of the Republican convention being the last stand is between slim and none, I will continue to say (1) Trump has a huge mountain of negatives to climb, (2) the majority of the Republican faithful will vote for him because that’s what partisans do, and (3) he has no chance of getting my vote – absolutely none! My tendency is to cast a vote for a candidate, but in this case, I am willing to vote against one.

I’m sorry to see Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) suspend his campaign. Several times I stated that I thought his nomination would be the best for the Republican party, but that hope has dimmed. My reason was simple – I was confident that he would be crushed in a general election, therefore causing the Republican party to retreat from ultra conservatism. Hence, the best for the party.

Here are two articles regarding examinations of President Obama’s time in office: An economic look and a broad view.

To lead you into your weekly dose of satire, The Onion offers tips on training for a marathon.

Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)
Iconic Iwo Jima photo under investigation
Man who did something wrong now hates cops
Kid you used to babysit 5 bar stools over
Man ashamed of himself after cashier reads food order back to him
Abandoned tuba player honks mournfully by side of road
Students watch in sympathy as teacher’s humongous ass erases part of whiteboard

Interesting Reads
History of the universe through ocean sediment
Hiroshima
Restrictions on religious attire for women
Spirituality and Snoopy
A look back at the American eugenics movement
Comparing images of space: 100 years ago and now

Long-time readers know I’m a Moody Blues fan, and remain disgusted with their omission from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Nonetheless, when I started blogging I had no idea where it would go and for how long – so many thanks to my readers for keeping me going. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

Colors: The Musical – Act 6: Purple, Indigo, and Violet

The Story
Color is a large, broad topic, yet color is a human perspective.

We see because cones on the eye’s retina detects a specified range of colors in light, transforms the light messages into nerve impulses to be sent to the brain for interpretation and translation into sight. If it wasn’t for the cones on the retina we wouldn’t see the range of colors that we do … but we could still see without cones.

Colors are a range in the visible light spectrum that correspond to some guy named Roy G Biv. We categorize colors into different levels as primary, secondary, and intermediate. involve tints, shades, and hues with neutrals, pastels, warm/cool, and complementary/contrast … yet designers and artists organize usable colors into a palate.

While a color space organizes colors, a color model serves as a mathematical interpretation … yet 216 colors have been identified as safe for web pages – each with an identify code – each with its own mixture of RGB (red, green, blue), HSL (hue, saturation, lightness) and HSB (hue, saturation, brightness).

Cultures adapt color for various symbolisms. The same color can mean excitement, purity, danger, success, and more … yet colors are associated with personality, psychology, meditation, philosophy, and marketing.

No matter the perception, scheme, physics, theory, psychology, or culture, this experience is Color: The Musical.ColorsPlaybill

PROGRAM
Act 1: Black
Act 2: Red
Act 3: Orange and Yellow
Act 4: Green
Act 5: Blue

Act 6: Purple
The word ‘purple‘ comes from the Old English word purpul, which derives from the Latin purpura, in turn from the Greek porphura

Purple, unlike violet, is not one of the colors of the visible spectrum or a color in the rainbow as defined by Isaac Newton

Violet and purple are both placed between red and blue. Purple occupies the space closer to red, between crimson and violet while violet is closer to blue

In Europe and the U.S., purple is the color most often associated with royalty, magic, mystery, and piety. When combined with pink, it is associated with eroticism, femininity, and seduction

The Purple Heart is awarded to members of the United States Armed Forces who are wounded in action

Purple was one of the colors of the Women’s Suffrage movement

Purple, as Amethyst, grapes, eggplants, grapes, plums, purple sea urchin, purple finch, purple heron, purple queenfish, purple honeycreeper, purple beech, purple frog, and numerous flowers

Living things that are purple contain a natural pigment called anthocyanins

Purple Mountain is a place in China, Ireland, and the USA (Wyoming, Alaska, Oregon, Washington, and Colorado)

The one perfect rhyme with purple is curple (a word used on this blog for the first time)

Guidelines
Songs must have Purple, Indigo, or Violet in the title

Cautions

  • No songs using any of the three as a compound word (purplehead)
  • No songs using a form purple, indigo, or violet (purples, purpleness, etc)
  • No songs using shades or hues of purple, indigo, or violet
  • OK! Hyphenated words with purple (purple-haired armadillo)
  • No duplicates songs regardless of artists

Production Note
To prevent browsers crashing from loading too many videos, please 1) include the song title and artist in your text, and 2) paste the URL as part of your last line (not a new line). The latter will provide a link, thus not embed the actual video … but I don’t mind unembedding, so apologies are not necessary.

Announcement
This act is a challenge. Indigo is closer to blue, but I wanted to use everything Roy G Biv offers. In terms of Roy, as popular as purple may be, purple is not a color in the visible spectrum. With that note, on to the opening act. Although this person is a legend and a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, this may be the first time he has opened an act. Ladies and gentleman we welcome Rod Stewart with Purple Heather.