Touch a Moon Rock

Air and Space Magazine claims that only three moonrocks are available for touching, all pieces of Sample 70215. Daughter sample 84 is in the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.

Touchable Moon Rock

Daughter sample 238 is available to touch at Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.

Touching the Moon

And Daughter sample 286 is touchable at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México.

However, at least three other Daughter samples of 70215 are available to be touched: Kennedy Space Center in Orlando, Florida has Daughter sample 287 for public access:

Moon Rock

And Daughter sample 263 can be found in Vancouver, BC at the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre.

Finally, Daughter sample 11 (known as the Constellation exhibit) is also a touchstone, often seen in traveling exhibitions - most recently in Indiana.

A non-touchable Daughter sample 93 of 70215 can be seen in the Space Center Museum in Alamogordo, NM.

Alamogordo Museum of Space History, moon rock

Non-touchable Daughter sample 41 is also part of a traveling exhibit.

Most articles about the traveling exhibit list eight samples that can be handled by the public, though I was unable to locate reference to more than six.

More than you ever wanted to know about Sample 70215.

There are at least several museums in Colorado where one can view a lunar regolith sample, plus a sample at CU and at the School of Mines. Samples gathered during the Apollo 11 landing are in storage. There's also quite a few missing rocks, but you may want to wash them off first.


What's Jack Vaughan Up To?

Long-time readers of The Mother Earth News magazine will remember Jack Vaughan's comic "The Weird Humor of Jack Vaughan" starting as a single page in the 70s and then his cartoons spreading to many sections of the magazine during the 80s. He was a contributor to the magazine from its Nov/Dec 1977 issue through the Jul/Aug 1986 issue.


Jack Vaughan continued to draw his cartoon page for BackHome Magazine and only stopped a few years ago. He still illustrates Geoff Taylor articles for GreenPrints (a gardening magazine based in Fairview, N.C.). John Shuttleworth is the one that came up with the name "The Weird Humor of Jack Vaughan" and it drove Jack crazy. His cartoons in BackHome all had different names. He does not remember how many he drew for either magazine.
It appears that his most recent contribution to Back Home Magazine was its Jul/Aug 2006 issue.

 Here's an undated example of his work in GreenPrints:

I used to flip through my youth's ever-present boxes of The Mother Earth News Magazine looking for Jack Vaughan (and L. Bruce Holman's Down on the Farm).


Man traveling across country with horse, buggy

By Renee DePriest
Howell County News Contributing writer

Charlie Modjeski, left, of Montier visited with Will Frost, who is traveling across country using a horse and buggy. The Modjeski family volunteered to help Frost mend his buggy. (Photo by Renee DePriest)

Will Frost traveled through Mountain View this week as he heads across country with his dog, Rusty, horse and buggy.

The decision to travel began while Frost was working in Oklahoma.

“I started this quest when I was working there as a carriage (horse) trainer and found out I had cancer,” said Frost.

Frost determined he wanted to do something different and decided to travel across country on horseback. “I started out with one horse and it didn’t do too good,” said Frost. “I went about a hundred some odd miles and it lost its worthiness.”

“I traded my horse and some cash for this horse,” continued Frost. “I rode this horse 100 miles from Oklahoma to the Fort Scott area.”

The horse was injured accidentally when the wrong harness was put on him.

“I went to the Rich Hill community, where I bought this (pointing to the buggy),” said Frost. “I do this on my own funding.”

He gives rides and does odds and end jobs to make ends meet.

“It’s a shoestring operation and all the darn shoestrings are breaking,” said Frost, who explained that he had to stop in Montier for repairs on his buggy.

Despite his troubles, he enjoys meeting and visiting people.

“I enjoy talking to the people,” said Frost.

He also enjoys sharing his survival skills, including making moccasins, Native American clothing, tools and much more.

“I just gave one of these young gentlemen a lesson on how to make a slingshot,” said Frost. “I also told him about how to make a homemade turkey call, using a slate and a stick.”

As he travels, Frost encourages the use of proper English with whomever he meets.

“I speak in proper English and the people I hang out with speak in proper English,” said Frost. “We don’t use enough English to be English. I am as 1800s as you can get.”

Frost continues east toward Pennsylvania.

To keep up with Frost’s journey, visit www.webefrost.com



Originally uploaded by nekosoft
One of the guides mentioned that Costa Rica had no army. So I proposed a coup of the Costa Rica government. I would select a large stick or branch and approach the capital, demanding control of the country. My rule would be just but short, as I predicted I would be ousted by someone with a bigger stick within about 15 minutes. Mainly, the whole adventure would be so I could put “President of Costa Rica” on my resume. Then I learned that a guy from Nashville had tried a similar plan in 1856.

Tennessee's William Walker, despite being well educated, was unable to succeed in the world. He became a respected physician in Europe, but left medicine after the death of his mother. He practiced law in Louisiana, though the corrupt political structures drove him to become editor of the New Orleans Crescent. His idealistic writing attacked the city’s government and rival newspapers. His stance on the eventual abolishment of slavery was challenged by pistol duels. In the wake of these duels, and the cholera death of his deaf-mute fiancee, New Orleans socialite Ellen Martin, Walker fled for the gold fields of California.

Penniless, he decided to embark on a new career and took the national sentiment of Manifest Destiny as a personal challenge. He led 45 mercenary soldiers into Baja California and declared himself president. He annexed the Mexican state of Sonora and renamed it the Republic of Sonora. Fearing Walker was the spearhead for a larger invasion force, the Mexican government signed the Gadsen Purchase, selling Tucson, Arizona and a potential transcontinental railroad route to the United States, ending the Spanish-American War. Since the two countries were now at peace, American troops forced Walker to surrender his holdings and put him on trial. He stirred the jury by casting his actions as patriotic American expansionism and was acquitted of violating the Neutrality Acts.

Hailed as a hero, he tried a similar maneuver in Nicaragua. With 57 men, he sailed into Granada and captured the city. He established a weak provisional government and set himself as commander of the military. Before the opening of the Panama Canal the riverboats of Nicaragua were a key transportation link between the coasts of the United States. Walker began to Americanize the country, declaring English the official language. To encourage his supporters in the American southern states, he lifted Nicaragua's prohibition on slavery. Walker then announced his intention to consolidate the remaining four Central American provinces into a private slaveholding empire.

In 1856, Walker ordered troops into northern Costa Rica to capture first the shipping routes in Guanacaste, then the capital of San Jose. Costa Rican President Juan Rafael Mora raised an army of peasant farmers to counterattack Walker’s mercenaries. After a 14 minute battle, Walker’s forces fled to Rivas, Nicaragua and rejoined the remainder of the Nicaraguan army, which had been chased from Grenada by an alliance from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala. This force was funded by shipping magnate Cornelius Vanderbilt, whose profitable Nicaraguan riverboat charter (the foundation of the Vanderbilt family fortune) Walker had transferred to Vanderbilt’s business rivals. Costa Rican drummer boy Juan Santamaria rushed the army’s headquarters and though mortally wounded was able to set the building on fire, ensuring the defeat of Walker’s troops.

Walker surrendered to an American naval officer and was returned to the United States to the cheers of thousands who met him at the dock. He was initially encouraged by President Buchanan to return to Nicaragua and launched six more wildly unsuccessful expeditions to retake the country. Seeking an easier target, Walker invaded Honduras instead and overthrew the city of Truxillo. Honduran forces quickly forced Walker to surrender to the British Navy. The British sent his troops back to the United States, but returned Walker to the Honduran authorities, who executed him September 12, 1860.


Harper's Magazine - November 2009

In a cave in the Bukk Mountains of Hungary, great tits were eating hibernating pipistrelle bats; scientists previously suspected tits of eating bats, but the only evidence had been of dead bats with wounds that implicated the beaks of tits. When offered sunflower seeds and bacon, the great tits left the bats alone.


@felinagnome and @nekosoft's twitter adventures

Road trip blog:
11:54 PM Sep 17th from txt

Occasionally I'll be a little quirky but not in albuquerque cause thats redundant
11:54 PM Sep 17th from txt

The owls don't care that you're naked.
11:55 PM Sep 17th from txt

Strip sneezing
11:56 PM Sep 17th from txt

Why is there no fry bread tacos in colorado?
11:56 PM Sep 17th from txt

There's a cock in there somewhere...
12:05 AM Sep 18th from txt

What disney animals can be made into sushi?
12:05 AM Sep 18th from txt

The answer: aquatic ones and villains. Ursula ftw.
12:07 AM Sep 18th from txt

I left my heart in budaghers...
12:43 AM Sep 18th from txt

Did you know there is a $300 fine for Elaine-dancing while driving in new mexico?
1:04 AM Sep 18th from txt

Casa bonita is a metaphor for colorado...
1:13 AM Sep 18th from txt

"gusty winds may exist" is so poetic and deep at 3 am.
1:49 AM Sep 18th from txt

Maybe on the way back eagles will dance on our hood but not tonight.
1:56 AM Sep 18th from txt

Bring back the drive in!
2:19 AM Sep 18th from txt

Spoiler alert: some gummy worms are bad.
2:27 AM Sep 18th from txt

I'm a nerdcore player...
5:24 AM Sep 18th from txt

Zombie corn makes you double dead
7:09 AM Sep 18th from txt

First rule of snow fight club is you don't talk about snow fight club.
8:42 AM Sep 18th from txt

"I'm glad they put the B-side bible verses on as well as the better known ones."
12:56 PM Sep 21st from Twitterrific

So "kol con vi or bust" has been changed to "kol con vi and bust"
6:11 PM Sep 21st from TwitterGadget

#mechanic "It's as ready as it's going to be."
11:11 AM Sep 22nd from Twitterrific

I bet I could kill a prospector with my bare hands. I DO play a lot of video games.
11:26 AM Sep 22nd from Twitterrific

This rental is awesome. It comes pre scienced!
12:07 PM Sep 22nd from txt

I am often confused with dustin hoffman
12:09 PM Sep 22nd from txt

If you've been having too many veggies in your enchiladas, ours are meteor.
12:47 PM Sep 22nd from txt

Sitting in a corner booth in winslow arizona. Its such a sight to see.
1:12 PM Sep 22nd from txt

We're bringing sexy back to winslow az.
1:41 PM Sep 22nd from txt

Coin operated dinosaurs
2:17 PM Sep 22nd from txt

You can't spell patriot without riot.
3:43 PM Sep 22nd from txt

He wrote it in beer?
4:18 PM Sep 22nd from txt

Tuesday is the new monday
4:23 PM Sep 22nd from txt

"what were you going to say that was so dirty that we would be kicked out of a truck stop?"
5:41 PM Sep 22nd from Twitterrific

"I don't even have hair and there's corn in it!"
about 19 hours ago from txt

Road blog is officially over. I am home safe and warm in my own bed. I had an absolutely wonderful time and can't wait to tell storiesabout
17 hours ago from TwitterGadget


New Windows!

In addition to becoming a car owner, I also replaced the five windows in my living room. Mom and dad were here for 10 days, helping me out.

That's Shannon, me and dad taking out the old windows.

It's so much cooler and quieter in my living room. I love it! Now I only have 4 windows left to replace in the house.


Kirigami Menagerie

Photographer Hiroshi Hayakawa has a new book out on Kirigami (a variation on origami involving cutting the paper). The book will be available September First from Lark and local writer Erik Johnson provides a limerick for each of the 38 animals featured in the book. I receive a small amount from Amazon from each book purchased through this link.


Hummingbird Emergency

Hummingbird Emergency
Originally uploaded by nekosoft
The other night when I came home, this Magnificent Hummingbird (Eugenes fulgens) was trapped in my house. He had come in though an open window at ground level and was buzzing around the higher windows tapping his tiny beak against them.

I coaxed him into a room with windows with removable screens, but he still wasn't figuring things out, preferring to sit on my light fixtures.

I persuaded him to land on a broom and then maneuvered the broom outside, where he flitted away.


What I've Been Doing Instead of Blogging...

I'm still a little traumatized.


Broomfield Outdoor Cinema

Broomfield Outdoor Cinema
Originally uploaded by nekosoft
Saturday was the last evening for the outdoor cinema in Broomfield. They had a HUGE inflatable screen set up on the soccer pitch and families set up chairs and blankets to watch Back to the Future.

Julia and I had forgotten bug spray but we were able to rely on herd immunity: everyone around us was repellent enough that the mosquitoes couldn't find us.

Perhaps notable: we were laughing *hysterically* throughout the entire movie. It's hilarious! But those around us would only emit an occasional chuckle. Do those in Boulder County laugh more uproariously than those in Broomfield County?


Bachelor's Buttons?

I am particularly fond of the seed pods, but the whole flower is great.

Maybe this one is called Love in the Mist?

These might actually be the Bachelor's Buttons...

They kinda look more like buttons.

These two flowers are stuck in the Pink Floyd/Led Zepplin part of my brain.



According to the American Heritage Dictionary:

[Middle English gladiol, from Latin gladiolus, wild iris, diminutive of gladius, sword; see gladiator.]



This is, so far, my favorite flower of the year. And I cannot remember the name of it, even though Shannon has told me a million times.

Did you see those wild green seed-pod looking thingies? This flower is gets better the more you look at it.

I think it looks like fireworks.

Also, the bees really like it.

Ben took really great pictures of the bees in my poppies last year.