Divergent Thoughts

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Seven Minutes of Terror?

The news feeds are awash with the Insight Lander’s seven minute entry envelope and descent down onto the Martian surface. It worked, so there will not be a lot of work re-engineering on Mars 2020 (the next Mars flight). 
I expect that the drama queens at JPL don’t know much about horror and moral terror, or they wouldn’t have advertised this event the way that they did.
It got me thinking about what is and what is not heroic. I’m sure that the dweebs at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and I would have different definitions. Could the contraption that they build survive seven minutes without burning up or breaking? Somehow transmutes into ‘heroic’. It’s all in the eye of the beholder. 
There was a situation many years ago when I was standing on a beach/shingle and things went horribly wrong beyond the surf line. I jumped in the water, swam out, and saved the situation and supplies that were due on shore. While it was in no way heroic, the medical officer and other ranks ashore thought so. None of them were combat swimmers. They recommended me for a gong/Navy Commendation Medal, and I told my CO what happened, and explained that it didn’t warrant a medal. He agreed. “You just swam out there, fetched the overboard boatswain, boarded the craft and brought it through the surf.” That was it. Not heroic. Just a swim in very cold water. 
I’ve seen things that I felt were heroic and through my lens, they were superhuman and self sacrificing. John 15:13 “Greater love hath no man than this…” sort of heroic. It makes the terror that the dweebs at their consoles feel look sort of anemic. But that’s our modern world. Everybody knows the names of the championship ball team players, but nobody knows the names of service men and women who die every day in service of their nation.
Can you Have Too Many Cinnamon Rolls?
My granddaughter, Olivia Rose (age 2), would tell you, “no”. She was apprehended inflagrante delicto, absconding with her AND sister’s rolls.
It may be a defective gene, passed down.
I have the same reaction every time that I pass a Cinnabon retail outlet. That I don’t act on it the way that Olivia, who I call “Livvie”, did is a function of culture and age.
Should Livvie be punished? Who could? 
Sometimes I Ask Myself

What were Vikings really like? We know that the Nordic people went Viking as raiders before the last mini-ice age. Will the Norwegians take to the seas again and raid the English coast again as the ice sheet connects the to Britain in the coming ice age? Some of you might ask ‘why’. I ask ‘why not’?

During the period 1645–1715, in the middle of the Little Ice Age, there was a period of low solar activity known as the Maunder Minimum. The Spörer Minimum has also been identified with a significant cooling period between 1460 and 1550.


My friend, John D. (posts here as “Valuism”), from Norway, comments: “What matters is the sun and the Milankovitch cycles. The average time span in between the ice ages, small or big is 10k and we are heading towards the next one.” 

John D. has not yet commented on any plans to raid the English, but if he does, I think that I’m in.  John, the English people have disarmed, and it should be easy to take what we want. They have even turned in their pocket knives. I’m sure that they don’t guard their military bases for the same reason that they want an unarmed population – somebody might get hurt. 

34 thoughts on “Divergent Thoughts

  1. Did the JPL people describe themselves as heroic (which would make them jerks) or was it the infotainment people despite whatever the JPL folks said? I missed all the excitement so I genuinely don't know.

    It certainly IS possible to have too many cinnamon rolls. My waistline is evidence. Though it wasn't all delicious cinnamon breakfast foods. I'd like to blame too much work, and too much travel, but honesty compels me to admit it's really laziness. This is what happens when a person with less life ahead of him than behind him stops going to the gym for a couple of months.

  2. With the impending demise of auto manufacturing in Michigan, I might need a new source of income soon.
    Raiding sounds attractive.
    Especially raiding people who are so little inclined to defending or defining what is there's.
    What's the benefit package like?
    And (as you point out) my Hero died for me. Gave His life willingly. And then came back from the dead.

  3. I deployed that verse from John's Gospel on Sunday. Powerful, and then went on to make a beef pie, which was pretty heroic and a useful skill for the new ice age.

    Violent crime is on the up in England. Odd, given everyone's disarmed.

  4. I have a granddaughter who turns two in a week and that's exactly the kind of stunt she would pull. Put me down for that raiding party. Can't let you and Ed have all the fun.

  5. As I understand, we are overdue for an ice age. Thanks to all the global warming, I am sure.
    As Livvie gets older, she will develope more cunning, I am certain; and then perhaps only crumbs will tell the tale.
    JPL is sad now days.

  6. Oh my. Cute as a bug. As they say, you will have to beat them off with a stick. I hope she meets some guy who will swim out there, fetch the overboard boatswain, board the craft and bring it through the surf, just to bring her cinnamon rolls ashore.

    Put me down for the raid as well. I have a model 1917 Enfield that still has red paint on the wood up front, so it served over there once. They had their chance. Oh, and I have a bayonet for it as well.

  7. They describe their machine as heroic, and by extension themselves, for operating it.

    Yes, you can have too many cinnamon rolls, too many waffles and too much pie.

    When there is less sand in the hourglass, we should see more clearly through it and deny ourselves that piece of cherry pie with ice cream on it. But we don't because the reaper is looming. And we say F-it, give me the pie.

  8. We need to raid England. We just do, Ed. They are unarmed, and we can take what we want just like Vikings of old.

  9. LSP, you can join the Viking crew on the raid and translate for us when they use arcane and heavily accented words. Of course, you can also plunder.

  10. This blog can be a great recruiting tool for would be raiders. The English didn't do well against the first Viking raids back a thousand years ago and they've reverted to their soft, disarmed selves again.

  11. Well, first off, there's no such thing as anything that tastes nice which leads me nicely on to hot tea with milk and proper English ale. Both of which are the very backbone of the Great British socialite, blue collar worker and eccentric toff. This fills the imbiber with delusional courage and they will believe that they can take your eye out with a beer mat and likely die trying. There's a lot of us still with pocket knives and evidence might suggest that this is why shanking your neighbour is on the uprise. So, feel free to raid away if you think you're 'ard enough! However, if you do come can you bring some of those cinnamon thingys?

  12. I'm at the stage of my life when I won't jump into a wild surf or entertain the notion of invading England, but I'm with the darling, Olivia Rose, when it comes to cinnamon rolls.

  13. Two good places here for cinnamon rolls, Vern's Place in Laporte, and Johnson's Corner, a few miles south of Loveland on the I-25.

    Vern's is a favorite, and Johnson's Corner is a classic truck stop, with pretty good food.

    I'm sure WSF can clue us in other places where such delicacies can be found.

    Raiding? Not sure if I can do that these days, but I'll be happy to help with comms…..

  14. From what I read in the history books the Vikings and their tradesmanship was the factual cause that made Britain become a nation. They had to do something and agreed the best way was to organize and join forces to make the Vikings change their trade habit, take all pay nothing. I guess the shaping power the Vikings had at that time created a nation that lasted for a long time and made them become the place the industrial revolution started and taught them how to conquer other countries and build a successful navy. But then they become members of EU and came under influence of France. And today, just look at France they are in serious trouble.

    The Jupiter of France, Macron is less popular than ever, more than 70 percent of the population have no faith in him. The French people have started to put together the guillotine to send a message. Still Macron and Angela Merkel (on her way out of politics less popular than ever) want to dismantle the national state, let EU rule and open the borders for uncontrolled immigration. I guess some people in the UK understood what was going on and started a process to become a sovereign state again.

    But the damage has already happened and I guess it is too late for good old England. Islam has conquered the cities already since they know that the Brits have disarmed themselves and they seem to win the ongoing battle since they are insiders and will not be kicked out. So far they have been successful to secure control in their neighborhoods by using knives, sharia and with the help of the police that happily will arrest anyone that insult Islam. Ireland might not be lost yet, but who knows what the future will bring.

    Having a Viking approach to the island today, the ones living there now need to sort out their own mess and they cannot expect to be saved by Vikings since nothing of value is left. But in the future they might be saved by being and island when Europe goes down the drain after welcoming the 700 million ready to migrate from Africa and the Middle East after signing the UN agreement “GLOBAL COMPACT FOR SAFE, ORDERLY AND REGULAR MIGRATION”. Trump will not sign the agreement so maybe the Vikings will take a fresh look at North America again since they visited Newfoundland 1000 years ago.

    Hopefully we will experience a new ice age sooner than later so it gets so cold that the attractiveness of living here will be reduced.

  15. We will hook the Brits on sweet ice tea with lemon and the addiction will take hold. In that way, we will bring a "taste of Texas" to them and enslave them, forcing them to buy boot juju.

  16. I am not jumping into the surf. And by the way, all the surfing on Oahu was canceled because the waves were too radical. No competition today. Maybe tomorrow.

    Cinnamon rolls – yes please.

  17. GLOBAL COMPACT FOR SAFE, ORDERLY AND REGULAR MIGRATION is rubbish. The new doctrine should be STAY HOME – make Africa great for the first time, or something along that line.

  18. Being an unrepentant fenian basted you can expect my participation in any raid on old blighty

  19. I didn't see the hoopla talking about the JPL console jockies as heroes. That's funny.

    When you're a million miles from the action and totally unable to change the outcome, you're not even a participant let alone a hero. You're a spectator.

    When the landing goes perfectly, it doesn't make you a hero, it makes you competent. You did your job well.

  20. I remember a story I heard in the 80's or 90's about a Scandinavian fighter pilot that lost a part or a wing in flight over the water. He didn't ditch and managed to bring the plane back in. The government wanted to pin a medal on him. He refused and said it's his job to fly the plane and bring it back, doing his job didn't make him a hero. I respect that.

  21. There's a lot of motivation to fly the airplane back home rather than ditching it in arctic/near arctic ocean water.

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