Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Be Afraid. Be Very Afraid!

Hi, Guys!
Recently, the Washington Compost had a brief article about the fruit bats shown above.  They live on an island near Madagascar, in the Indian Ocean, weigh up to ten pounds, and have a wing span of four to six feet.  They are sometimes also known as fox bats.

Perhaps most interesting is that, although they sense the fruit they eat by vision and smell, not echoes like most bats, they choose to go out for dinner after dark, when presumably the fruit is harder to see...

In the daytime, when they sleep, they hang upside down in tall trees.  Because locals often like to kill them for food, they have discovered that selecting tall trees in cemeteries works best, since the natives don't like to go there.

Hmmm....  Large bats from the species Pteropus vampyrus who only hunt at night for things more easily seen in daylight and who choose to live in cemeteries... Sound familiar?

Such creatures have recently been having an unusual impact on my daughters, nieces and even the Queen.  They have been seen spending long hours reading hundreds of pages of what appears to be an advertising catalog for cheap beer.

Then, they have been going out at strange hours (12:01 AM) to see the infomercial made about this beer ad catalog, where they were joined by thousands of screaming female teenagers who had apparently been served this beverage before legally allowed.  The Queen went to see the infomercial at 11:00 AM, where she was joined by only nine other women.  The daughters went back for second helpings.

The basis for all this weird behavior is apparently some dude named Edward, a guy with slightly reddish eyes, pasty white skin and a really bad haircut.  One of my daughters told me that he was among the "Ten Sexiest Men of 2008", a title for which I have yet to be nominated, much less selected. 

Not unlike the Pteropus Vampyrus, this guy has some strange habits - and an inexplicable attraction for women who read beer catalogs.  Also like the huge bats off the coast of Africa, Edward seems to have a penchant for tall trees,  places where he takes his date?

Anyhow, I believe that all real men, not those who have been selected as the sexiest man of any given year, should look into this matter more closely.  It would be bad enough to lose your women to some cheap beer, but to then have them taken into tall trees, only to lose their balance and fall, would be a tragedy. 

Maybe that's why one of the follow-on catalogs was titled Breaking Down...

(Note:  this post was written by a polar bear and edited by a Beluga whale. Please do not complain to the normal author of posts on this blog.  Happy Thanksgiving.  Thank you.)

Saturday, November 22, 2008

This and That

Hi, Guys!

That's what a little friend of mine (age 2+) says whenever she sees the Queen and I.  Saw her during a short trip to Ohio last week.

Several items of interest, perhaps.  First, spent two hours on Animal Planet Channel last night, watching back to back episodes of "Polar Bears Uncovered" and "Whale Wars."  Began to think that this channel is designing its schedule just for me and my blog readers...

Learned that polar bears can smell food (alive or dead) 15 miles away.  They are slow in getting there because of their weight, but they keep following their noses until they find the food.  Also learned, to my disgust, that male polar bears often stalk female polar bears and their one or two cubs, waiting for the cubs, who do not yet have the several hundred pounds of blubber insulation, to founder.  The mother polar bear must then move on, protecting the survivor cub, while the male, not normally the father polar bear, then eats the foundered cub.  Only one in six polar bear cubs makes it to their second year...

Also learned that polar bears have occasionally come upon Beluga whale pods that have become boxed into ice pens.  The show reported that up to 40 whales had been slaughtered and eaten by polar bears in one such instance.  It turns out that polar bears can swim the 100 meter Olympic race 10 (ten) seconds FASTER that any human swimmer, including Michael Phelps!

So, how ironic, the Kernal's two favorite critters turn out to be joined at the hip on the food chain...

As to whales, "Whale Wars" was all about "the Sea Shepherds," a group of eco-loonies who attack Japanese whaling ships in the Antarctic, throwing stink and acid bombs onto the decks, and attempting to foul the propellors by throwing heavy rope lines under the ships.  Two of the "Sea Shepherds" leaped aboard the Japanese ship from a rubber Zodiac speed boat, and then wondered why the Japanese crew tied them up and sailed away.  The eco-loonies were looking for the chance to yell "hostages" to the eager international press...

On the cancer front, I recently had another PET scan.  Some unknown activity showed in my neck, so I now must have yet another CT scan with contrast for the docs to examine in early December.  I feel fine and I detected no urgency from the docs, so I suspect all will be fine.  Stay tuned.

Finally, someone threw this over the internet transom the other day and I ordered a case of this obviously needed drug.  I'll let you know how it works, ya think?

PUSHing for Gunnar, Kirk, Jean, Denise and others of you who need our prayers.  See you on the high ground.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Hi Everyone!

Just wanted to close this Halloween weekend with some thoughts on recycling.

If you go back to my January blogs of this year, you'll find the picture of me above.  It was the day I was fitted for my radiation mask, the one that mapped my head so that the IMRT radiation beams could be fired at exactly the right spot and at exactly the right millisecond.

You may recall that I was strapped down with this mask attached to the table and my hands and feet bound so that I could not move during the 35 hours of radiation therapy I had, one hour at a time.

My good friend, Lady Josh of Jean's Green and Pink Ribbons, is now undergoing the same sort of radiation treatment, although I don't think she has a mask.  Jean, I think of you and pray for you every day.  There's no reason why your therapy can't be just as successful as mine has been.

And, Brother Kirk, I think of you and pray for you each day as well.  Your chemotherapy has been, and will be, a lot tougher than the 288 hours of drugs in my body.  But your therapy can be, and will be,  just as successful as mine.

May both of you be blessed with strength and courage.   There are a lot of folks out here who are mentioning your name to the Lord each day.  He will watch over you, even on those days when you feel too tired to be strong.  Be strong anyway!

And, at the end of your treatment and after you recover, there are times when you will look back and wonder how you did it.  It was with His help and His strength when yours was not enough.

Plus, you will get to laugh again!  Like last Saturday when we took the local kids and grandkids to the Udvar Hazy Air and Space Museum for their Halloween Open House.  Guess what I wore as a costume?

Let me assure you that, although there were a lot of witches, the Queen and her sister Linda among them, and although there were plenty of Star Wars characters, there was only one guy wearing a radiation mask among the thousands in the place. 

I was asked by over 25 parents to have my picture taken with their children, who found me to be pretty spooky.  I even told a few parents what the mask was when they asked. 

So, despite my aversion to polar bears and whales, you can see that I'm really ecology friendly by recycling that which most would rather discard.

Jean and Kirk, save a souvenir for when you reach the high ground!