Archive for July, 2007

Storm Sewers are Dangerous Places

Two construction workers repairing storm sewers beneath Saint Paul are reported missing this evening, following around three-quarters of an inch of rain. Firefighters are conducting the unenviable job of searching for the missing men; by this point, though, odds aren’t terribly great.

After all, one-twentieth of an inch of rain can be dangerous underground; what fifteen times that amount is like I can’t even imagine.

Published in: General, Urban Exploration | on July 26th, 2007 | Comments Off on Storm Sewers are Dangerous Places

The Doty Brothers

The link (49KB PDF) says it all, really. Law-abiding rural kids, or the next Ted Kaczynski? Only time will tell…

Published in: 'D' for 'Dumb', General, Security | on July 26th, 2007 | Comments Off on The Doty Brothers

Arms Race, Old-Skool Style

Headed to a meeting today, I saw a sidewalk merchant hawking knives, swords, and similar sorts of devices from a card table. What’s Saint Paul coming to, where sleazy shysters are hawking cheap made-in-China katanas to pedestrians in the middle of the day? Two hours later, I passed the same corner again on my way back from the meeting, and he was in somewhat animated discussion with two St. Paul police officers, who were probably explaining to him the necessity of having a vendor’s permit, and not in any way, I’m sure, questioning the legality (in St. Paul) of any of his merchandise…

In Saint Paul, folding knives over five inches overall length are a no-no, as are any fixed-blade knives. Could be good to know, if you’re, say, planning on coming armed to the RNC convention next year…

Published in: 'D' for 'Dumb', General | on July 25th, 2007 | Comments Off on Arms Race, Old-Skool Style

Taking the Good With the Bad

A Harvard study out today suggests that nearly one-third of people in hurricane-prone coastal areas in this country would refuse to evacuate if ordered to do so. Top reason? The likely unfounded belief that their home is well-enough built to be safe. Too, over half feel that evacuation routes would be too crowded, and fully one-third feel that evacuation itself would be dangerous.

The price of living in hurricane-prone areas, I’d think, would be that you’d have to accept the overwhelming might of nature, as well as the necessary measures designed by experts to ensure your safety. Evidently, that’s not the case…

Published in: Geekiness, General | on July 24th, 2007 | Comments Off on Taking the Good With the Bad

99 Rot Balloons

The American military have been using balloons, dirigibles, and similar lighter-than-air airships for well over a hundred years, though they’ve, perhaps, fallen out of favor in recent decades. Fleets of balloons hunted German and Japanese submarines off the coast during WWII, and the Navy alone operated dirigibles, blimps, or balloons from 1917 to 1962.
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Published in: General, History, Security | on July 23rd, 2007 | Comments Off on 99 Rot Balloons