19 May 2007

McKinley Claims Two More

JUNEAU, Alaska - Two climbers died after a 1,900-foot fall during a descent of Mount McKinley — North America’s highest mountain — Denali National Park and Reserve officials said Friday.

As an ex-climber (hoping to return to climbing this summer) I have a lot of empathy for the individuals and families involved in these sort of accidents.

Though I've never climbed McKinley I've read enough about it to know that it can be a fairly hazardous mountain to climb, particularly due to weather related issues. The fact that it has claimed a fair number of lives over the years demonstrates this.

To give folks an idea of the difficulties which this mountain presents to a climber note that ascents generally take several weeks (or as long as a month) and that well over half of the ascents are unsuccessful. There are no "dog trails" on McKinley.

Condolences and thoughts to the families, etc.

Intelligent Design

As part of its ad campaign adoptionsf has created the poster seen above. I think that it is very clever myself.

17 May 2007

Odd Day At Landis Hearing

Since most of my readers are likely not following Landis' efforts to challenge the allegations made against him here is a timeline of the events as they have unfolded so far.

I'll be the first to admit that the case as it has so far unfolded is a complex one, especially since I lack the technical knowledge that is in part at the heart of this case. However yesterday's proceedings were colored with a bit of drama. You see, Greg Lemond (who was to testify about a phone call he had with Landis shortly after the A Sample came up positive) "revealed that he [had] received a threatening phone call the night before testifying, allegedly from Landis' business manager Will Geoghegan... ." This link also provides an almost blow by blow account of Lemond's testimony.

So what was the alleged threat? Well this is how CBS describes it:

LeMond wound up disclosing he had been sexually abused as a child, and felt compelled to go public with that after receiving a call Wednesday from Landis' manager, Will Geoghegan, who knew that secret and threatened to reveal it if LeMond showed up to testify.
If the allegation is true, how could Landis' manager have known about this secret? Well, one can draw some interesting conclusions from this particular piece of testimony by Lemond:

He [Lemond] further said he had told Mr. Landis this secret in an effort to encourage him to be truthful. "I shared it with him to show him what keeping a secret would do," LeMond said.

Now I have no idea if the allegation is true; indeed, all Lemond apparently has is a record of a cellphone call by Landis' manager to Lemond. Still, at the very least it adds an interesting twist to this story.

Edit: BTW, this write-up was really posted on May 18th, 2007.

16 May 2007

Apples & Rosemary


Apples (pick a variety that you like; I prefer golden delicious)
Fresh Rosemary (I grow my own)

How To Prepare:

Toss a few tablespoons of butter into a pan and melt it on medium heat. As the butter is melting throw in some rosemary and honey to taste. Once melted put in the apples (make sure they are cored and cut into sections first of course) and mix them into the butter, etc. Turn the heat up a bit and soften the apples. Turn off heat and serve as a side or as a dessert. If using as a dessert one might consider throwing them on top of some gourmet vanilla ice cream.

Edit: I suspect that you could do the same thing with asian pears, but I've never tried it.

Today's Word


14 May 2007

The Surge

Why the heck is the increase in troops in Iraq still being called a "surge?" With no immediate end in sight it sends to me that this really isn't a "surge," it is something more like a general increase in troops.

13 May 2007

Extreme Ways

See here to watch a nice series of clips from the Bourne movies that I'm linking to in honor of the upcoming Bourne Ultimatum. One of the things that I appreciate about the films is the fighting. For the most part Bourne's various attackers are dropped in one or two blows. That's generally how that sort of thing works in real life.