Posted by: Mark | November 30, 2015

Last Monday

Today is the last regular Monday class of the year. I will have an exam session for next Monday but, since we don’t have exams in this course, I pretty much just sit at a desk for two hours.

I’m not scheduled for another Monday class until January 11. If that class is cancelled or if a full-time faculty member takes it from me, this might be my last Monday class of my life.

I should say that I regret nothing but, in reality, this has been a terrible semester.


Posted by: Mark | November 27, 2015

Asimov’s Law Revoked

So somebody thought it would be a good idea to program robots to disobey humans.

It makes sense for the reasons they give but still comes across as the non-time travel origin of Skynet. These Noa robots are the same kind as I work with.  It wouldn’t be tough to attach a gun to one of their limbs, and, with facial recognition software, this could be the start of big trouble.

I for one welcome our robot overlords.

Posted by: Mark | November 27, 2015


2015-11-27 12.07.59

I’m not often thankful that I have a detached garage but when I find bugs like silverfish in it, I’m glad it’s away from the house.

I was able to squish this one but I’m sure many of its relatives remain.

Posted by: Mark | November 26, 2015

Resolution Update XLVII

Thanksgiving day and still two lizards were out on the wall. Cold-blooded reptiles still active in Ohio in December? I wouldn’t have believed it but we’re 80 hours from it happening.

1. Blogging. Goal:  300 posts for the year. What I have: I used to struggle to get 150 posts. This is #333.

2. Writing. Goal:  100,000 words for the year. What I have: Up to 95,070, only a few pages to make it.

3.  Running. Goal: 2,200 miles for the year.  What I have: I actually ran 2.1 miles, up to 1,389.5 miles.

4. Publishing. Goal : 105 manuscripts sent out: 105 manuscripts.

5. Video. Goal: five video projects.  What I did: five video projects.  What I did: Ten.

6. Weight. Goal : lose 35 pounds. What I did: Given up.

7. Art. Goal: Photograph 100 species. What I did : 91:

Mammal (8)  Gerbil, Robo hamster, Campbell’s hamster, Syrian hamster, Domestic rabbit, Gray Squirrel, Eastern cottontail, White-tailed deer

Bird (26): Budgerigar parakeet, Rock doves (pigeons), Northern cardinal, House sparrow, Mallard duck, Canada goose, House finch, American robin, Red-tailed hawk, Common crow, European starling, Tufted Titmouse, Ring-billed gull, Swan Goose, American tree sparrow, Herring gull, Downy woodpecker,  Red-bellied woodpecker, Northern mockingbird, Mourning dove, Red-winged blackbird, Killdeer, Great blue heron, Black-capped chickadee, Blue jay

Reptile (3): Red-eared slider, Leopard gecko, European wall lizard.

Amphibian (2): Dwarf aquatic frog, Fire-Bellied Toad

Insect (35): Madagascar Hissing Cockroach, Stink bug, Wax worm, Mealworms, Cricket, Hister or Oil beetle, White grub, Termite, Formica ant, Bumblebee, Varied carpet beetle, Field cricket, Common red soldier beetle, Leaf hopper, Superworm, Box elder bug, Lightning bug, Japanese beetle, Ladybug, Zale moth, Ailanthus webworm moth, Dark spotted Palthis moth, Honeybee, White cabbage butterfly, Mosquito, Dusky cutworm moth, Green Cloverworm Moth, Katydid, Ensign wasp, Grasshopper, Praying mantis, Thrip, Green lacewing, Sod waxworm moth, Spotted cucumber beetle

Arachnid: (10) Common house spider, Dark fishing spider, Tan jumping spider, Orb spider, Crab spider, Grass spider, Bold jumper spider, Putnam jumping spider, False black widow, Daddy longlegs

Crustacean: Pillbug

Myriapod (3): Millipedes, Garden centipede, House centipede

Annelid (2): Canadian nightcrawler, Red worms

Planaria (1): Planaria

8. Kids. Goal : 300 events.  What I did: 278 (Karate, Anderson Library,Campbell County Library, and the Covington Library).

9. Exercise. Goal : 8,000 leg lifts and 5,000 push ups.

Leg lifts: 6,106 (need to do 53.94 a day to make it)

Push ups 4,216 (23.06 a day to make it)

10. Weekly resolutions: Gave up.

Posted by: Mark | November 25, 2015

White-tailed Deer

2015-11-24 23.07.30

I’ve been missing pictures of deer all year and I finally got a few last night. None of them were any good but at least I have documentation.

And, yes, a couple of lizards were still out today–I almost caught one. That makes a full month after than their latest sighting last year.

Posted by: Mark | November 24, 2015

They’re Not Kidding

I was late taking Devilgirl to a doctor’s appointment because I had to defrost the car. So what greets me when I get home?

2015-11-24 12.40.02

I’ve made this into the freak out about lizards blog but there’s no way it can go on much longer. It’s been a full 30 days since the date of the last lizard of 2014. It’s an El Nino winter by the looks of it.

Posted by: Mark | November 23, 2015

Are You Kidding?

Today was the first time since March that I had to turn on the furnace. It was well below freezing for much of the day. So what do I see by the parking lot?

2015-11-23 14.31.20

Out and running 29 days later than their last sighting of 2014. It’s never going to end.

Posted by: Mark | November 22, 2015

Gerbil Rash

2015-11-22 18.47.23

All three members of the latest litter are uneaten which is surprisingly good. However, one lost the hair on his back. Premature baldness? But his eyes haven’t even opened. A rash? Mange? Mites?

2015-11-22 18.49.52

His parents don’t seem concerned but I hope I can do something.

Posted by: Mark | November 21, 2015

6,001 Leg Lifts

I was shooting for 8,000 leg lifts for the year but I am far behind my goal. I managed to reach 6,001 today.  To make 8K,  I’ll need 49.975 a day for the rest of the year. Like push ups, I can do it but it won’t be easy.

Posted by: Mark | November 20, 2015

Lizards Won’t Leave

2015-11-20 14.22.17

I swore I wouldn’t post about these things anymore but it’s November 20 and there were dozens of lizards scurrying about. The Ides of November are behind us and still the reptiles frolic.

The last day I saw lizards in 2014 was October 25. They’ve almost got that beat by a month.

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