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This is the first time I've heard an actual Important Guy speak about climate change. Yesterday Dr. David Titley spoke at Central Michigan University in Mt. Pleasant, an hour's drive away.

As he's a military guy, his presentation had me looking at things that I usually don't read much about. I mean, I come from a military family and Mike is a 20-year man, so it's not all new, but I got a few slides that I don't usually see. And he talked about the senate hearing with Ted Cruz, and that was fun.

Mostly, like these things usually are, it was "Hey, this is a real and serious problem. We've got to get together on this." -- so it was all head-noddy stuff.

At the end he took questions, and my question was the last one: "My husband and I are in our mid-50's, I'm a nurse and he's a truck driver. We're just average people with a bucket of kids and three buckets at grandkids. About ten years ago, we started talking about climate change and how it was going to effect us. My question is: do you have kids, grandkids? What do you think of when you think of them?" Surprising to me, my voice broke at the end. "What do you think when you're staring at the ceiling in the middle of the night?"

His answer was that no, he doesn't have any kids. And his advice was that we educate our kids and make sure that they vote. Which is a fair enough answer, but not what I was looking for. I wanted to know his gut.

Then folks started picking up their coats and moving into the isles. Mike and I sat for a bit, and he patted my knee.

And they started coming, from this direction and that, a stream of older women -- pressing my hand and patting me on the shoulder and even giving me little hugs.

"Yes," they said, and "Are you okay?" and "Well, honey" and little murmurs and of this and that. It was wonderful and a little overwhelming. A woman of about my age, but in much nicer clothes *g*, slipped her card into my hand, Elizabeth Dell, Great Lakes Regional Coordinator of the Citizen's Climate Lobby.

You'd think that I'd already be involved with the Citizen's Climate Lobby, but no. I just ... I didn't think I'd have the resolve to keep pecking away at something that I don't think will change. Perhaps hearing Titley, knowing that there are some very big players in the government who are concerned about this, makes me more willing to spend time and energy in adding my small voice.
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As expected, this year Global C02 measurements failed to drop below 400 ppm for the first time in the history of the homo sapiens.

It will not pass below this level again in our lifetimes.

Trends in Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide
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Thank you so much for submitting. I would love to take "Written in the Book of the Woods" for Reckoning, if it's still available and you're still interested. I have to confess it made me cry a little. It is very much the kind of thing I want to publish, weird and deep and affecting.

If this sounds okay to you, can you please send me your mailing address (and/or an email address for me to send PayPal money to), and also a short bio if you have one? Then I can get a story contract written up.


Michael J. DeLuca

Reckoning Editor

And, oh noes! it's the dreaded Bio! Blerg! (help!)
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Michael Mann: (...) it’s unfortunate that some in the weather community are not providing that critical context for understanding this trend towards increasingly devastating tropical storms and hurricanes. Matthew is a very good example of a storm that was unique, unprecedented, in certain respects. It intensified far more quickly than any other storm that we’ve seen in modern history, basically going from not even a tropical depression to a near-hurricane-strength storm over the course of, you know, less than half a day, and then, the next day, of course, strengthening into a major hurricane, a Category 5 hurricane. It’s weakened a little bit, but now it’s restrengthening.

And where that intensification, where that rapid intensification occurred was in the region of the Caribbean that has the greatest heat content, not just that the ocean surface temperatures are warm, but there’s a very deep layer of warm water. And that’s important, because that helps sustain these storms as they churn up the ocean. The churning doesn’t bring cold water to the surface to weaken the storm, if there’s a deep layer of warmth. And that all has a climate change signature with it, not just the fact that the ocean surface temperatures in the Caribbean are at near-record levels, but the—just the sheer depth of that warm water is unprecedented. And as the surface warming penetrates into the ocean, we are seeing increases in ocean heat content. Last year was the warmest our oceans have ever been on record. And that’s critical context. It’s that warmth that provides the energy that intensifies these storms. And it isn’t a coincidence that we’ve seen the strongest hurricane in both hemispheres within the last year.


Governor Rick Scott of Florida has received quite a bit of funding from the Koch brothers over the years. He is a climate change denier. So here you have a state which is on the front lines of dealing with the impacts of climate change, and not just because of the possibility of more extreme weather events, more intense hurricanes, a trend that we see and a trend that we know is related to climate change, but you combine these intensifying storms with the rising sea level, and, forgive the pun, you get a perfect storm of consequences for coastal flooding. And we’re going to see exceptional coastal flooding associated with Matthew, not just because of the intensity of the storm, but because of the fact that sea level rise has added substantially to the impact of storms like Matthew. So there’s this amazing hypocrisy ..."

Amid Media Blackout over Climate Change Links to Hurricane Matthew, Top Scientist Speaks Out
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It's the beginning of the freezing season. Here are three posters on Neven's Arctic Sea Ice blog forum:

Tigertown wrote: The fast freeze seems to have hit a bit of a stall. Any guesses as to why?

I thought the one idea(above) about all the fresh water from prior melting and that puddled near the ice and then refreezing quickly, made some sense. That would explain a pause when the salt water was reached. But how much melt water would stay through storms and rough seas?

What about the slightly warmer peripheral waters and the less than ideal air temps?

magnamentis wrote: just look at seawater temps and wind/wave patterns and you got your answer, i mentioned this will happen a few days ago and the stall (with ups and downs) could continue for quite a while.

water temps are not slightly warmer, they are a lot warmer and a lot above average in peripheral seas. further air temps are way warmer above 80N than any previous year, including 2012. the energy/heat that has been there now for quite some time finally start to show it's effect. if the stormy conditions continue it will be a very late "real" refreeze because current temps do not explain the fast refreeze, must be a lot of freshwater and smaller floes floating around that held freshwater temps close to freezing temps.

jdallen wrote: (...) The further problem we now have is, all that moisture falling now as snow will be piling onto that new ice, and reducing heat flow *out* of the water, all the while replacing/displacing heat flow out of the ice through the top of the atmosphere. I'm pessimistic about the coming refreeze and the condition the ice will be in at max.

Luke's bed

Oct. 3rd, 2016 01:12 pm
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Week One (completion date 12-1-16)

Ok, here's the plan for the bedframe, except it'll have 1/4" plywood instead of slats, and no box spring. Also, it'll only have three sides, with the long side pieces attaching to the headboard. And no legs; it'll sit on cubbies.

For this section, then, I'll need three 8' 1"x6", 1 piece of 4'x8' plywood, two 8' 1"x3" pine. I don't need the long piece running up the middle, because the cubbies will provide enough support. Which means the cubbies will be cut out in a way that the front of the edge meets the support strips, and the rest is higher, to meet the plywood platform.

This will frame will be a lot like a waterbed frame, with cubbies instead of drawers, if you've ever put one of those together.

The headboard will be made of 1"x8", a simple box with shelves. I was thinking of making some kind of fancy-pants hand carving at the top of the headboard, but not too sure. Time will be a factor. The cubbies at the foot of the bed will be 12" deep, and the cubbies on the side will be 8". I think.

The inside pine frame will sit on the cubbies; the 1x3s will be glued and reinforced with wood screws.

I can see it in my head. My problem is setting up the steps. So, here we go: This week I'll

1) buy the side rail boards and inside frame boards (I'm sure those have a name.) Buy wood glue and quality wood screws. Get a new blade for the saw.
2) measure the lengths and cut them.
3) glue and screw down the inside support frame pieces to the outer rails

Next week, I'll buy the wood for the head board and cubbies.

If you have any suggestions, feel free to make 'em!

This is the headboard carving I'd live to do.


Oct. 2nd, 2016 02:15 pm
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I'm just about caught up on old bills and helping kids with old bills. I got Luke a computer that he loves, I helped Sam get caught up from when he was out of work for four months, and Mike and I are all caught up on the household bills. I have October Birthday bash coming up, which I mostly pay for, this year we're scaling back so we can go see Nutcracker in Grand Rapids in December, maybe.

So -- I've got a little bit of money for some projects. And I've got a little bit of time, too. This makes me happy. I have three projects that I want to work on. I'm that kind of person, who is happiest flitting from one project to another. But I want to try on a level of completing the project, something that I've never been that motivated about in the past.

Project #1: Quilts -- I really admire quilts and want to make a few. I've made a total on one in the past, though I've attempted but never finished two others. I'd like to put a 6mo timeline on this one.

Project #2 - Bed frame -- this one is a time-sensitive project -- by Luke's Dec 16th birthday. I want to make a nice bed frame for Luke. It will be a platform bed, with a book case headboard and cubbies underneath:
wooden bed frame
-- something like this, but instead of sitting on legs, it would sit cubbies: wood cubbie

The idea is that Mike and I will work on it together. We'll see how that works! So far, we have done well compromising on the wood; he wanted pine and I wanted maple. We have chosen poplar! There are pieces at Menard's that have lovely green and purple streaks.

Project #3: tile mosaics -- I need to clear my workspace so that I can start working on this. It will be slow and leisurely.

There is divided evidence on whether it's better to state your goals or not. A lot of evidence points to it being a not so good idea, because stating plans or goals makes your head think you've already accomplished them. Fie on that! I really want to do these things, and plan to start on the bed this week. I will post pics.
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Not being able to share your heart is not an uncommon thing. I wonder if it's more common than not, really. I've spent the first half of my life easily sharing my heart with many people, with friends and lovers and lovers who were, blessedly, also my friends. And even though it hasn't worked out well -- really, really, hasn't -- I miss it.

Like air.

At this point in my life, I don't have a single person with whom I share my heart. I have many friends, many people who like me because, honestly, I'm a likable and trustworthy person. There are many, many people who think well of me. And in the other direction, there are many people I like and admire. There are people whom I love, who love me in return. This is not a problem of economy.

The problem is in me. I'm stuck. Over a year ago, I began to build a wall, or more like, I put a part of me inside of a box. And now I'm thinking of all those stories about the witch who put her heart in a box. Yes, like that. To keep it safe. And now I'm stuck. There's a gatekeeper, a box-minder, who is skeptical. And my conscious mind can discuss the shit out of this over numerous sub-conscious bottles of beer, but the gatekeeper smiles pleasantly, nods, and keeps their own counsel, along with the key.

You would think that I'd be able to share my heart with people whom I love, who love me in return. That's how it's always worked for me. It's not working that way now. This makes me extremely irritated.

I think that this is where my stories are coming from, like steam from a kettle. And though the stories are a good thing, mostly I feel anxious when there's nothing pressing to feel anxious about, and tired because I don't sleep well, with layers of sad, lonely, and irritated in between.

There are many people who are alone, many people who chose not to share themselves and are okay with that. I thought I could do that. It seemed that style would be preferable to how I had been doing things. But perhaps it's a personality or temperament thing, something that you're born with; I've never been able to tame my desire for brain-sharing.

(which I just realized is the main way I conceptualize love)

I need to figure out the actions/words I need to have directed at me to feel loved. And then I need to ask for it. I was going to close comments on this post because I thought that they would just make me frustrated, and I was going to lock it down -- but I've changed my mind.

If you want to comment, please share something of yourself. Tell me something from your heart. Not about me. Tell me something about yourself -- something you dream of, hope for, or desire. I think that's what I need.
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People who are reading my Nanaboozhoo stories -- Are you tired of them? I've got another one banging around my head. This one takes place sometime before Stronger than Swift Runner.

I think I want this story to be about redemption.

"Open up! Hey! Come get the door! Police! Open up!"

Abby McGeezhick's eyes sprang open and she staggered out of bed. It had snowed during the night. When she threw open the second floor window and stuck her head out, the snow on the window ledge fell back and plopped on her bare feet.

The officers at the door looked up at her, frowning. The morning sun off the fresh snow made their faces harsh.

"I'm right here! Hold on, I'm coming down!" She pushed the window shut, shoved her wet feet into jeans, and threw on an old sweatshirt. In the living room, Boots and a couple of his buddies were sleeping on the couches and floor. Bags of Doritos and Cheetos and red Solo cups littered the side tables. Abby stomped her bare feet into boots, stepped outside and closed the door quietly behind her.

"We've got a problem, Ms. McGeezhick." Both of the officers towered over her and Abby took a breath to calm herself. One of them was a young guy, and the other was Phillips, who'd been on the force for a handful of years. The younger guy pointed across the street. "The VFW's door has been forced, and somebody took a keg of beer and some other stuff."

They looked stern. Accusingly, even. Abby shrugged. "I don't know what you're talking about. I don't know anything about it!"

The officers looked at each other. "Well, that's real funny, Ma'am," Phillips drawled. "Seeing how there's tracks going out your front door right to the VFW, and then tracks leaving, going right to your back door."

Abby closed her eyes and saw the boys inside, passed out in her living room. "Shit."


Sep. 23rd, 2016 02:24 pm
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I'm loving being a nurse.

This job, though! We are a small clinic in a small county jail. We're open 12 hours a day, seven days a week. There are two full-time nurses who work 3 days a week, and one part time nurse who works one day here and one day at the downtown jail.

Except that the other full-time nurse got pneumonia so bad that she ended up in the hospital and had to get prednisone, which sent her into irregular heart rhythm, and now she's not coming back. I've been working about 65hrs/wk for the last two weeks, and have another three to four weeks, I think. They need to hire someone, and then train them for at least a week...

So very tired. It's an hour drive. I get up at 5am, leave the house at 5:45, get to work at about 6:45am, leave anywhere between 7pm to 9pm, get home somewhere between 8pm and 10pm and fall into bed. Day is done.

Uffdah. I just need to hang on. In the mean time, there's a story rattling 'round my head.
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Oooh! Four Big Finish Captain Jack stories:

1. The Year After I Died by Guy Adams
Set in the year 200,101, on an Earth ravaged by the Daleks, Jack struggles to save humanity from its oldest enemy.

2. Wednesdays For Beginners by James Goss
Jack and Jackie Tyler must unite to rescue the Powell Estate from a force whose name Jackie can never say.

3. One Enchanted Evening by James Goss
Captain Jack and Alonso Frame have only just met. But why did the Doctor want them to be together?

4. Month 25 by Guy Adams
He’s the young star of the Time Agency, and his whole life is about to fall apart. But that’s not going to stop him winning.

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"Some of the models suggest that there is a 75 percent chance that the entire north polar ice cap during some of the summer months will be completely ice-free within the next five to seven years." Al Gore, U.N. Climate Summit, Copenhagen, 2009

Well, we'll end up at about 4000 km3 for the 2017 minimum, compared to the historic (1950-1990) value of about 7500 km3. So it's going slower than we worried it might.

However, this year, we have an ice-free north pole:

From the Canadian Cost Guard twitter feed, the scientific ship and ice-breaker, Odin, at the geographical North Pole, August 28, 2016.

I am thankful that we aren't yet ice-fee. But I don't think it will be long now.
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The "Wrangel Arm" in the arctic ocean, from Aug 2 to Sept 2, 2016:

"First, since the summer sea ice was also shrinking, this meant that the summer ice cover had lost something like 60 per cent of its volume between the 1970s and the 1990s, a far more drastic and dramatic loss than one would have suspected without taking account of the ice thickness. At this rate the summer ice would disappear fairly early in the coming twenty-first century. The world needed to be warned, and we did our best to warn it. But not only did the politicians and industrialists not want to know, neither did the scientific modelers. They continued to run unrealistic models which forecast that sea ice would remain substantially undiminished right up to the end of the twenty-first century. The UK Meteorological Office still clings to these impossible predictions. Nature would soon prove them wrong."

A Farewell To Ice, p. 69, Wadhams 2016

"A mild winter, early opening up, extreme low snow cover, probably caused the Arctic to soak up enough heat to not care about the June and July sun. And who knows, maybe a pulse of warm water - extremely difficult to measure - from the Atlantic and Pacific continued the long-term process of complete Arctic sea ice loss.

The world hasn't experienced the warmest average global temperatures on record for three years in a row for nothing. This heat eventually ends up in the Arctic."

-- Neven Acropolis, Sea Ice Blog, PIOMAS September 2016
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Here's the newest story. I'd like to post a little something about writing, but for now I'll just hand you this.

about 2500 words

Bear Moon

The thing is, Leona always hated her name. It was her grandmother’s name, and granny was a mean drunk, no pussyfooting around it. So Leona went by Sunny, the name Arty Bertucci, her Nonno, called her. Nonno was the only person in her life who’d really loved her, so it was his right to name her. And that’s what started the big fight at the casino out by Chocolay, Sunny not liking her name, and Fred Ingalls calling her Leona one time too many.

That, and being nine months, four days pregnant. She just wasn’t in the mood.

So, she threw the first punch and when Fred pushed her, half the place piled on him - there were fists and boots flying - and the other half picked her up and made her sit down and drink a glass of water to cool the fuck down. Then, both she and Fred were kicked out into the snow of the last night of February. Fred’s buddies dragged him off to the emergency room or God knows where. Not to see his baby born, that’s for sure. Whenever that would be. Not tonight. All that hubbub, and not one little contraction. Read more... )
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Working on balance this week. Or rather, not finding balance because of working too much. That about sums it up. I came in twice for sick calls this week (there are only four of us nurses) which gave me about 54 hours at the jail, and another seven hours with my disabled private-duty client.

I'm really liking being a nurse, though honestly, as an LPN I don't do anything that I haven't been doing for several years. It's just that now I can do them properly. Setting up and handing out meds, dressing changes and taking out stitches, documenting vitals and advising doctors about a patient's signs and symptoms --- that kind of thing. Nothing earth shattering, but more like ... comfortable. I feel like I'm doing what I'm supposed to be doing.

I wrote to the nursing department at the college and let them know I'd like to step back in if there is a seat available in January. I'm trying not to get too excited in case there's no slot for me.

I'm also getting ready to start volunteering at a hospice to be a ... um, I can't remember what it's called, but I'd be someone who simply sits with someone who is dying; sits with the person if they're alone, whether they're conscious or not, or with family, if they want someone to be with them.

And the writing is coming along. I don't know if it's very good; anyone want to beta? It's original fiction and it's almost done. It feels to me, I dunno, kinda cliché-like. But what's more human that a birth story? Fresh eyes would be good.

So, hey, here I am! Alive and mostly working. :)
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There's a chance that this year we'll see our first ice-free north pole in recorded history.
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I'm planning a family camp out. Consider joining us! It falls on a Monday, so we'll probably land at whatever campground on Saturday, and stay through Tuesday.

We're looking the Shawnee National Forest or the Land Between Lakes National Park.
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From A guest article by Florence Fetterer, principal investigator at the National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC) in the US.

"Most fundamentally of all, the new dataset allows us to answer the three questions we posed at the beginning of this article.

First, there is no point in the past 150 years where sea ice extent is as small as it has been in recent years. Second, the rate of sea ice retreat in recent years is also unprecedented in the historical record. And, third, the natural fluctuations in sea ice over multiple decades are generally smaller than the year-to-year variability."

Sea ice cover maps for the annual minimum in September, for the periods 1850-1900, 1901-1950, 1951-2000, and 2001-2013. The maps show the sea ice extent in the lowest minimum during each period, which are in years: 1879, 1943, 1995, and 2012.

Walsh, J. E., Fetterer, F., Stewart, J. S. and Chapman, W. L. (2016) A database for depicting Arctic sea ice variations back to 1850. Geographical Review, doi:10.1111/j.1931-0846.2016.12195.x
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This is me, planning the meals for the Fourth Annual Great Summer Camp Out. There will be 12 adults, 1 teen, 7 grade-school kids, 3 toddlers, 2 babies.

Read more... )


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