Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Evanston: gold rush in the sky; Ophelia; making Buffalo Trace; voiceless

        The NY TIMES has a remarkable article about the collision between two neutron stars 130 million light years away.  Such collisions are thought to be the manner in which heavy metals are formed.  This one may have dispersed gold equal to 40 to 100 times the mass of the Earth.  Were such gold collected, it would no longer be a precious metal.  The cosmic chirp the collision caused had never before been observed.
        The article is amazing in that some of us are so clever as to be able to imagine, invent, build and assemble the equipment necessary and to be able to interpret such a brief and obscure event.   The article is also amazingly well written, clearly explaining some difficult science.
        There is a video with the article, which is worth viewing, too.


        SPORTS ILLUSTRATED has a weekly Sign of the Apocalypse.   There have been a good many recently outside the world of sport as well.  Presumably most of you have heard of Hurricane Ophelia and those of you in Ireland and the U.K. have felt it first hand.  A chart at Ars Technica shows how aberrational Ophelia was.  

        I drove Carol’s car today.  Hardly earth shattering—at least I hope not—but the first time in a long time, perhaps this year.   I wanted some things from Home Depot.  Carol took the train to work.  The car was in the garage, so I drove it.  For those of you who are new here, this is a big deal because I am blind in my right eye.  I drove like a half-blind old man, keeping to the speed limit and pivoting my head at stop signs and traffic lights like a demented turtle.
        After Home Depot I continued on to Binny’s, a liquor store, where I found Laphroaig 10 year on sale for $40 and also bought a bottle of Buffalo Trace bourbon, which has become my favorite whiskey after Laphroaig and at $25 a bottle a bargain.
        Attached to the bottle was a scan code to a YouTube video about the making of Buffalo Trace.  I scanned, watched, and enjoyed, as I will the finished product this evening.


        Carol and I have been sharing a virus.  We are both better now.  One of her symptoms was laryngitis which for two days rendered her unable to make a sound.  So, in a sign of the times, if not the Apocalypse, we sat side by side on the sofa, within arms reach, and texted one another.