Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Happy Petrov Day!

I sort of knew this story, but never had the details before. It's a kick in the gut to think how close we came.
On September 26th, 1983, Lieutenant Colonel Stanislav Yevgrafovich Petrov was the officer on duty when the warning system reported a US missile launch.  Petrov kept calm, suspecting a computer error.

Then the system reported another US missile launch.

And another, and another, and another.

What had actually happened, investigators later determined, was sunlight on high-altitude clouds aligning with the satellite view on a US missile base...


Go read the whole thing. And hoist a glass to Lt. Col. Petrov tonight in gratitude for not vaporizing us all.

Akubra tip to Mark Shea.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

The statement the president should have made

"On behalf of my administration and the United States, I would like to reiterate how sorry I am that a group of Americans used their rights to free speech and freedom of religion to say mean things about Islam. Please be assured that my administration and I are laboring tirelessly to ensure that those rights are eliminated as quickly and completely as possible."

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Ho. Ly. Cow.

They killed our ambassador in Libya. They stormed our embassy in Cairo and replaced our flag with Al Qaeda's. On September 11.

Naturally, our fearless leader apologizes to them for not being sufficiently humble in our dhimmitude. This was an act of war, and our president is shouldering the blame (or rather, dumping it on us).

Meanwhile, our guardians of free speech are calling for Christians here in America (who actually had nothing to do with it anyway) to be prosecuted for the whole disgusting spectacle.

Friday, September 07, 2012

Chele

Chele is my second cousin, although genetically I suppose she's more my first cousin. Or one-and-a-halfth, maybe? Her grandfather and mine were brothers, and our grandmothers were sisters. Someday I'll sit down and puzzle it out.

Anyway, I met Chele and her brother when they visited my grandparents in Goldendale around 1980 or so. She was two years older than I was and he was right in between, so we hit it off pretty well. Chele's family had been in Germany at the same time my grandparents were, so they'd grown pretty close. In fact, to hear my grandpa talk, Chele and her brother were the best grandchildren they'd ever had. (I mentioned them here.) She was a nice girl, if somewhat reserved. Being the hyperactive boy I was, I didn't really notice.

I saw Chele off and on at family functions over our teenage years. She shows up in this video a couple of times: a pretty, dark-haired 19- or 20-year-old. The last time I actually saw her was in 1994, when my dad was in the hospital for the last time. She looked nothing like the girl I remembered. She was wearing heavy makeup and tight clothing, and she generally had the look of an angry woman who had grown up too quickly and with too little self-worth. I was kind of sad for her. I didn't know why.

Now I know why.

I read her blog from beginning to end this morning with my jaw dropped. I had no idea.

Chele has been through hell and come out singed but standing tall. I'm proud that she's my kin.

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Comment issues

Okay, I have the old Haloscan comments imported into Disqus. They show up on my admin site, but not on the actual blog. Still trying to figure out why.