Sunday, May 2, 2010

Squash(ed) Plants & Space Pens

Okay, so.

I'm fairly technologically inept...well, I don't suppose that's super true after all. I'm not terrible. But it's true I don't have a laptop or internet on my phone, and I once tried to turn in a college paper on a floppy disk. So this whole uploading pictures thing is still kind of new to me.

All that as a preface to explain why I haven't blogged until now. I'm trying to make it an at-least-twice-a-week thing but so far we're seeing only weekly blogs, and mostly because I don't really LIKE blogging that much unless I have some fun pictures to share. Pictures really attract an audience, you know. Anyway, I borrowed my mom's camera to go to the Cosmosphere in Hutch with Bro-ay and Scooter on Saturday and took a bunch of great pictures that I think would be fun to post. So we'll see what happens. OH! I also wanted to blog big time about my new SPACE PEN that I got. Scooter gave me the idea. So, we're standing around in the Cosmosphere gift shop (which, by the way, on a Saturday in May is full of kids having the best time ever and tons of space toys and gadgets that nobody c'mon, why do I need a plastic stick full of glitter and plastic rocket ships? And did you know that gummy worms magically turn into "space worms" inside the Cosmosphere?) and Scooter, Bro-ay, and I were all admiring the space pen I picked out and wondering if all the things it claimed to be able to do on the packaging were true. Supposedly, it writes between -25 and 400 degrees Farenheit, upside-down, over grease, and under WATER. We really couldn't believe the last one, so Scooter's like "You should write a blog about this and test it to see if it's true. Oh yeah I read your blog by the way." Ha. So I decided, naturally, that it was an ingenious idea and put it to work straightaway.

Exhibit A, The Pen:

(Everything sounds fancier when you add -A-MUNDO to the end of it)

Writing upside down:

That's like way hard to read but what it says is "This is mildly impressive and potentially useful."


This picture was extremely difficult to take, by the way. I think I ended up holding the notebook with the hand that was also holding the pen AND my knee.

I couldn't find a way to test the whole -25 degrees or 400 degrees thing without burning or freezing my hand off, and the grease thing seems implausible to me. Like, why would I even need to be writing on grease? And would it even show up? I thought grease was BLACK, just like the ink from my pen. But, whatever. It's probably important for astronauts.

Writing under WATER:

IT WORKS!!!!!!!

Can you believe it???

So as I'm doing this, I'm freaking out about the fact that MY NEW PEN WRITES UNDER WATER and my dad walks into the kitchen and I explain how cool the pen is and he checks it out, and then he's all, "Yeah, the grease thing would be hard to test. But you should take that paper off and then see if it will write on just the waxed plate. Writing on a WAXED PLATE under water would be even MORE impressive." Of course he was right, so I had to try it.

Writing under WATER with NO PAPER on a WAXED PLATE:

My new pen might just be my new best friend.

Look how it barely even smears after you've dumped the water out of the plate and rubbed your hand across it:

Thanks for the blog idea, Scooter! That was really fun.

In other news:

Well, I promised I would blog about strawberry plants, Yoder, and Delta Zulu Foxtrot. The strawberries will kind of have to wait, because I was going to write about them and then post pictures, but for some reason Facebook's not accepting my mobile uploads right now. So suffice it to say that I went shopping with a certain Institute teacher's wife a few weeks ago and we bought little baby strawberry plants. My dad and I planted them two weekends ago and they ALREADY HAVE STRAWBERRIES GROWING. I am super excited about this (as if the bold caps lock didn't give it away) because according to my dad's friend Kurt, who's like this master gardener, strawberries often don't even produce fruit their first year. GO MY STRAWBERRY PLANTS! Get that. Heh heh heh. I'll figure out how to post pictures and then get them up here somehow. In addition to the strawberries, my dad and I planted two tomater plants and a squash plant this weekend, the latter of which got effectively squashed by the storm that blew in tonight (oh, sweet irony, thy bitter cold is so cruel). Hence the name of today's blog. Let's hope the tomatoes fare a little better.

Delta Zulu Foxtrox, a.k.a. Fatty the Wonderfish, is my wonderful aquatic friend. I've had him for about two years now and he is very precious to me. Let me tell you why. Once upon a time, when I had no idea what I was doing with fish and aquariums and all that, I bought two tiny goldfish, and because I'm obsessed with avionics I decided I was going to name every fish I ever bought in accordance with the aviation alphabet. So I named one Charlie Delta Gamma and one Delta Zulu Foxtrot (I had this idea that each successive fish I obtained would be named for the previous one's middle name). Fast forward to a continuation of my ineptitude with fish environments to two sick fish who've come down with fin rot from all the excess ammonia in their filterless bowl. Sadly, Charlie didn't make it through the epidemic, but Delta in his unexplainable wonderfish way, somehow made it long enough for me to transplant him to a new, big tank complete with filter and proper biofilter and pH, after which he approximately EXPLODED into the present fattyness he now enjoys today. I don't know what it is, because I seriously feed him the right amount. Fishes' stomachs are only about as big as their eye, so I only put a few flakes in once a day (which he snarfs down as if I haven't fed him for weeks, every single time) but he's still ginormous. But I don't care how fat he gets, I don't care how many strange habits he has like bubbling at the top of the water, which makes a "pop-pop-pop" sound, or cleaning the gravel for 11 hundred hours after I feed him, I will never, never get rid of him, as long as he lives. I will buy new, bigger tanks to accommodate him as he proceeds to loftier new realms of fattyness, but I will never get rid of him because he is the (once)little fish that could.

Les deux poissons, pre-fin rot and in the old, too-small bowl. The orange one with the white accents was Charlie. The white one with the orange accents is Delta, 78% of himself ago. Seriously, picture that, but like 4 thousand times bigger. That might be a SLIGHT exaggeration.

So yeah. That's Delta/Fatty.

Okay, Yoder. So, anyone who knows me fairly well probably knows that I have a very strange affinity for the Amish. I am fascinated by them and really admire their hard work and the austere, pure life they lead. So even though Yoder, KS, has become something of a tourist town, I still love visiting there to see all the Amishy and Mennonitey sites. And eating at Carriage Crossing. Let's not forget that. I will never, ever forget the time KooBear and I lunched at Carriage Crossing and toured around Yoder and we passed by a farm where an Amish farmer and his two sons WAVED at me. Best day ever. So, I was extremely excited for the Cosmosphere/Yoder trip with Bro-ay and Scooter Saturday, and it did not disappoint. It was fairly heavy on the Cosmosphere end and not so much on the Yoder side, but that is just fine. I will find time this summer to go back and document my experience with photographic evidence.

In terms of the Cosmosphere, that was pretty darn great. I'm hardly surprised, because it had all the ingredients for a great time: two of my goodest, hilarious, friends, beautiful spring weather, interesting facts about space, explosions (although I didn't catch that one on camera), and insightful, often witty commentary about historic events in mankind's relationship with the cosmos. I could tell you the whole story myself, but I'll let some of my photographic evidence do that job. After all, what's that they say about a thousand words?

I hope these two genteel sirs don't mind my posting of aforeposted pictures, by the by....:)

Isn't life great? More next time!!! :)