Saturday, July 25, 2009

Global war...climate ch...Whatever!

I'm a self described weather geek. My happiest moments are when the weather is at it's worst. Having studied weather and, to a lesser extent, climate since I was 8 years old gives me more knowledge than the average person. Based on some of the terminology used, I believe I know a bit more about certain aspects of the weather than the TV meteorologists do. Do I have a degree? No. Am I taking any advanced classes? No. The only training I have is that I am a trained weather spotter.

Still, I do know that I have enough knowledge to say with confidence that the global warming/climate change argument is total crap. Leaving aside the scientific evidence, the arrogance and conceit that we could have any significant effects on something as large and complex as the climate is insane. The fact that we could make significant, lasting changes to the earth's climate in the short time we've been here is ludicrous. If you compress the age of the earth into a single 24 hour period, with the earth being born at midnight, we, as modern humans, first showed up at 11:59:56.9 PM [1]. So, compared to the overall age of the earth, we are nothing more than the blink of an eye. The fact that we are enough of a threat to the planet that we could possible "destroy the planet" is baseless.

As for the scientific evidence, back in January 1998, the deepest cores were taken of Antarctic ice. Ice cores give scientists a great look into past climate conditions which includes temperature, precipitation rate, Moisture source conditions, wind strength and changes in trace gas composition of the atmosphere [2]. Over the last 420 kyr, there have been 4 glacial periods, each preceded by a drastic change in CO2 and CH4. So, either we have little to no impact on the climate, or the dinosaurs were engaging in heavy industry.

Realistically, we do not have any way of knowing if this is a natural cycle or something else. Even if it is a natural cycle, we won't know for a few thousand years at the least. Either way, the planet will far outlive us. To think that we can control or affect any aspect of the climate is conceited on a level way above the worst stuck-up celebrity or gasbag politician.

[1] - Earth's history in 24 hours;
[2] - Climate and atmospheric history of the past 420,000 years from the Vostok ice core, Antarctica. Nature Magazine, vol. 399, 3 June 1999;

Friday, July 3, 2009

Pointless rant #1122

After spending a significant time at Summerfest this year, there are a few things I have noticed. While 90% of the people attending these festivals you would consider mainstream, it's the other 10% that just doesn't seem to get it. A few thoughts I had after last night's show:

Unless you are under 25 in good shape or over 25 in great shape, you should not wear Spandex! 50 year old fat guys should not wear spandex bicycle outfits!

Has anyone ever seen a young biker guy? Those guys who's entire attire is either leather or Harley-Davidson gear. I swear the average age of these guys (and gals) is 55.

It never fails that anytime you have a summer festival, you get the leather trench coat guy. Last night was no exception. The trench coat guy rounded out the ensemble with a pair of jeans and sandals.

Unfortunately, the weather has been cool and cloudy for a good chunk of the 'Fest so tattoo watching was kept to a minimum. However, the goofiest tattoo award goes to the guy with the Leonardo Da Vinci Vitruvian Man tattooed on his calf.

I'm convinced that white guys are probably the lamest group on the planet. it is made 1,000 times worse when they try to emulate other cultures. The chunky white guy in the Rastafarian hat and dreadlocks down to his rear wins the "lame and I don't care" award.

A lot of people put a lot of thought into what they wear and how they look before heading out to public events. There are a few folks who appear to have put just a bit too much thought into it. It would never occur to me to have my purple shoes match my purple hair...

I'll admit that I made my job a bit easier when I was researching this post by hanging out around the Harley-Davidson Roadhouse stage. However, all examples used were observed by me.

Yes, we all have our little flaws and lapses in judgement. That's what makes us all unique. It's the more obvious ones that are a source of fascination for me. What makes one person want to appear so far outside of the mainstream? What makes an adult stop at the kids face painting booth and gets their entire face painted like a tiger?

I know what some of you are thinking. What gives me the right to pick on these people? They did. You have the right (under most circumstances) to appear however you like. However, if you choose to go out way outside the norm, you are opening yourself up for criticism. If you can't handle or ignore criticism, do not make poor decisions on your appearance.