** A rare image of the evil Dr. Zinn streaming Jonny Quest episodes on Tubi TV.
Why are evil Chinese geniuses and their henchmen always portrayed with such accuracy in the media? I’m sure that you’ve seen Dr. No. Odd Job in the feature film Goldfinger wasn’t a genius – more of a sumo wrestler with a cool hat.
** Spring Sale – Save 100% when you don’t buy anything.
** Martian Ice – Planetary scientists believe they found an enormous water ice deposit near the Mars equator. Researchers discovered some peculiar deep deposits underneath the Medusae Fossae Formation (MFF) almost two decades ago. The latest data suggest these deposits are extremely rich in ice. Data from the European Space Agency’s Mars Express suggest that there is so much ice there that if it were to melt, it would cover Mars in a layer of water 1.5 to 2.7 meters ( 4.9 to 8.6 feet) deep. That’s the amount of water found in Earth’s Red Sea. (more here) Would nuking the ice with hydrogen bombs release the stored water and lead to a developing atmosphere? The idea has been tossed around. We clearly have the technology to deliver warheads to Mars.
These are just too easy to be tossed into the Aircraft Identification section of the blog. During wartime, the evolution of aircraft was dramatic. F4F – Wildcat, F6F – Hellcat, F8F – Bearcat
** There are a lot of Internet scams out there. Send me $99.95, and I’ll tell you how to avoid them.
Movie Review – Spectral (2016) – Netflix
DARPA researcher Mark Clyne is sent to a US military airbase on the outskirts of Chișinău to consult his creations, a line of hyperspectral imaging goggles issued to US Army Special Forces led by Army General James Orland, who is covertly supporting the Moldovan government in an ongoing civil war against insurgents of the former regime, and to investigate the death of Delta Force Sergeant Davis, whose hyperspectral goggles, including those from several operators, captured an unknown entity that kills almost instantaneously.
The signal intelligence ops wrote it off as interference, but Clyne believes the sightings to be legitimate; conversely, CIA Case Officer Fran Madison believes the sightings to be members of the local insurgency wearing an advanced form of active camouflage and has orders from her superiors to retrieve any sample of their cloaking technology. There are no spoilers, but four of a possible five stars. It’s a military sci-fi film. If you don’t like that sort of movie, maybe take a pass.
Gripes: As with many modern films, too much is shot in the “dark” to increase tension. I don’t find it compelling or engaging.
Meme of the Day
Michael Castleberry aka Chilli Dawg
A new fictional short
Success has a thousand fathers. Failure is an orphan. It’s not original with me, but I can’t tell you where I first read it or had it quoted at me. It’s quoted a lot. If you miss by an inch, you might as well miss by a mile. That one’s quoted, too, but in my case, it turned out to be more than a cliché. It’s worse if you miss when the order comes from control, “Send it!” A rogue gust of wind might have moved the bullet an inch and a half over seven hundred meters, and it punched through the frontal skull plate of the wrong person, a woman in a crowd. The partitioned bullet kept intact as it transitioned the cranium and blasted out the back, raining bone shards, brain matter, and a fluid blend of blood and whatever goo the brain sits in.
Usually, one would not take a shot into a crowd from what can be considered an acceptable range for the .338 Lapua, but these were not normal times, and the target wouldn’t be available to be killed twenty seconds later.
Control spoke into my ear through the microphone, “I’d call that a miss, Boyd.”
I packed the rifle into a watertight case, attached a line to it, and lowered it into a drain line that started at the gutter in the roof and ended ten stories below.
Fired from an acceptable platform, the cartridge can do much more than I’d asked. The bullet could have penetrated better-than-standard military body armor at ranges of up to 1,000 yards and has a maximum effective range of 2,000 yards or twenty football fields match ammunition at sea level conditions. Depending on the load, you could squeeze more range out of it in dry, high-altitude shots. But as you know, the weapon isn’t the rifle. It’s the marksman operating it.
I washed my hands and face with a solvent jelly to dissolve and dissipate gunshot residue, pulled off one hoodie, stuffed it down the drain pipe, and put on a clean one. In the unlikely case that the police would stop me and swab me, I’d be clean.
The taxi waited for me curbside, arriving just moments before I did. I was in, and we were gone. Chrissy sat in the back next to me. “What happened?”
“What do you mean? The bullet went left. It wasn’t a right-hand flinch. Wind, something, it’s only an exact science when you control all of the variables. My sight picture and the trigger pull were dead on.”
She hummed an annoying tune. Chrissy is old enough to be my mother and has a host of old woman ticks, twitches, and habits. Some say that the aging gene kicked in early for her in the same way that it does with most Asian and Filipino women. Within a year, she’d gone from uber-hot runway material to showing wrinkles and needing dental work. Her choice of clothing went from svelte to frumpy.
“Must you hum?”
“You’re in no position to make demands of me, boy.”
“If you say so.” She kept humming as an ambulance crooned past with its siren blaring and its lights on. Something came in on her hidden earpiece, and she paid attention to it. Turning to me, she said, “You killed the backup plan, Boyd.”
“I told you that I never miss, Chrissy.”
The thin knife that I slid between her ribs had been coated with a resin that released a quick-acting paralytic agent, and she looked at me through fearful eyes. John, who drove the cab, nodded. There had been a change of plans, and they omitted Chrissy.
Identify the Tanks