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Uncommonly Sensible

Keeping the "anal" in analytical... (While trying to remain civilized)

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Location: United States

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Madam, I'm Adam.

I've always been fascinated by words, and especially the many different and clever uses for them.

I recently got to thinking about the palindrome.
(The post title is one)

What set this particular train of thought into motion was seeing a new one in a magazine article I was reading.

Along with the one in the title, some common ones are:

"A man, a plan, a canal; Panama."


"Able was I, ere I saw Elba."

They all have to read the same backwards as forwards.
(In case you didn't click on the palindrome link)

I remember when I was growing up in Philly, someone once told me that a nearby street (Camac) was the only one in the city that was the same both ways. Being something of a skeptic even in my youth, I looked into the matter and found a couple more.
(Radar and Reger)

While surfing "Da 'Net" to do this post, I found an interesting website that lists plenty of them here...so apparently I am not alone in my fascination with them.

Anyway, the one that I saw in the magazine was:

"Go hang a salami; I'm a lasagna hog."

Big deal, right? I know, I'm weird...

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Views from around the world...

It's been awhile since I posted anything about people viewing my blog from around the world. Most of the visits here are by people right here in the good ol' U.S. of A., but in the last week my "li'l corner o' the blogosphere" has also been seen by people in Australia, Canada, China, Germany, India, Ireland, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Thailand, The United Arab Emirates and The United Kingdom

So, here's my big chance to evangelize.
(Some may say proselytize. Oh, well)

Read on:

In a province occupied by the Roman Empire, about two thousand years ago, a man was put to death for crimes against the State.

This was a fairly commonplace occurrence in those days, even in cases like that one, where the accused was actually innocent.

What was not common is what happened afterward; eleven of this man's original twelve followers (less one traitor), having fled in fear for their lives when he was captured, began to spread the news that the man had risen from the dead.

Even though they were told that they could be put to death themselves if they persisted, and all but one of them (the sole exception was sent into exile) was in fact executed, every single one of them refused to recant their incredible story:

Jesus is risen!

"I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: ‘I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.’ That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to."
-C.S. Lewis

Works for me...

Friday, March 07, 2008

Making waves?

Solo sailor will now navigate wave-powered boat to Japan
-by Sudhin Thanawala

AP: Honolulu, HI - "Kenichi Horie, who has sailed nonstop around the world and crossed the Pacific in a solar-powered boat made of recycled aluminum beer cans, is getting ready for his next solo adventure.

In less than two weeks, Horie is expected to begin what he says is the world's longest voyage in a wave-powered boat. He plans to travel more than 4,000 miles from Honolulu to Japan aboard a 3-ton catamaran called the Suntory Mermaid II at a speed of up to 5 knots.

The boat, made of recycled aluminum, relies on the energy of waves to move two fins at its bow and propel it forward..."

From Wikipedia, About Kenichi Horie:

In 1962 he crossed the Pacific Ocean in 94 days aboard a 19 foot sailboat (called the Mermaid) from Nishinomiya, Japan to San Francisco. He arrived at San Francisco with no passport or money and was promptly arrested. After learning of his voyage the mayor freed him and gave him a 30 day visa and was awarded the key to the city. He wrote a book about his voyage, titled "Kodoku" ("Alone on the Pacific"), which was made into a movie (also titled "My Enemy, The Sea") in 1963 by Kon Ichikawa, which was nominated for a Golden Globe.

In 1985 he sailed a solar boat from Hawaii to Chichijima.

In 1992 to 1993 he sailed from Hawaii to Okinawa in a pedal powered boat.

In 1996 he sailed from Salinas, Ecuador to Tokyo in a solar boat made of recycled aluminum. This crossing covered 10,000 miles in 148 days which earned the Guinness World Record for the fastest ever crossing of the Pacific in a solar-powered boat.

In 1999 he sailed from San Francisco to Japan aboard a boat made primarily from recycled materials. The boat, Malt's Mermaid II, designed by Kennosuke Hayashi, was a 32.8 foot long, 17.4 foot wide, catamaran constructed from 528 beer kegs welded end-to-end in 5 rows (Horie joked that 500 of them were empty) The rigging consisted of two side-by-side masts with junk rig sails made from recycled plastic bottles. This boat is on display Okura Beach, Akashi.

In 2002 he sailed from Nishinomiya to San Francisco aboard the Mermaid III, which was a replica of the original Mermaid constructed from a variety of recycled materials, including whiskey barrels for the hull, aluminum cans for the mast and plastic soda bottles for the sails.

With a maximum speed of five knots, the Suntory will take two to three months to complete a voyage that diesel-powered craft accomplish in just one. But speed is not the point. The voyage aims to prove that wave propulsion can work under real-world conditions, opening up the technology for commercial applications such as cargo shipping. "Oil is a limited power source," Horie says, "but there is no limit to waves."

I don't know about no limit, but it's a fascinating concept...

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