Word of the Day – first-foot: the first person to cross the threshold of a house on New Year’s Day.
Categorized by genus/species, placed chronologically by common name
American Tree Sparrow
American White Pelican
Cape May Warbler*
Eastern Goldfinch - See American Goldfinch
Eastern Wood Pewee
Eurasian Collared Dove
Eurasian Tree Sparrow*
Great Black-backed Gull*
Great Blue Heron
Great Grey Shrike
Great Spotted Woodpecker*
Greater White-Fronted Goose*
Lesser Black-backed Gull*
Northern Rough-Winged Swallow
Northern Shrike - See Great Grey Shrike
Eastern Fox Squirrel
Eastern Gray Squirrel
Groundhog - See Woodchuck
Ground Squirrel - See Eastern Chipmunk
On December 10, 2015, we saw last year’s Serbian SuperLiga champion, FK Partizan Belgrade (ФК Партизан Београд), take on FC Augsburg of the German Bundesliga. It was the final game of the Group Stage of the UEFA Europa League, with the winner advancing to the knockout round and the loser being eliminated. Partizan jumped out to an early 1 – 0 lead, but ultimately lost 3 – 1.
A great article by Bill Wundram, my grandparents’ neighbor for many, many years:
So much about Christmas is tradition, and so many stories have been hanging around our family for a generation or two:
A week before Christmas, my dad would haul into the parlor (never the living room) the biggest Christmas tree in town. On Christmas Eve, heavy footsteps would stomp on the front porch, and my dad would shout “Goodbye, Santa.” We always knew the clomping was my dad’s feet, and the sliding parlor door would open to a magnificent Christmas tree surrounded by electric trains, dolls and BB guns. My mother, in her thin voice, would sing “God rest ye merry, gentlemen.”
Becky was about 10, also is the big house, the Christmas Eve night she was staring out her bedroom window and saw Santa Claus. She excitedly watched him lug a red sack into the house of our neighbors, the big Motto family. She ran downstairs, shouting, “I saw him. I saw Santa. He’s for real.” She is now an adult, a school teacher, who is still convinced that she actually saw Santa and tells her kindergartners that he is as real as the Easter Bunny.
I often see pro-gun advocates argue that we need to oppose gun control because the population cannot resist a tyrannical government if the population has been disarmed. Libertarians like Austin Petersen post anti-gun control memes like the following:
While it is, of course, true that a population cannot resist a tyrannical government if the population has been disarmed (setting aside the discussion of whether an armed population could effectively resist a government armed with tanks, jets, etc.), I do not find this argument to be very persuasive in opposing proponents of gun control. Since most gun control advocates do not consider the government a threat to the population (rather, they see the government as a protector and a provider of services), this argument ends up preaching to the choir – it is unpersuasive to gun control advocates and persuasive to those who are already firmly in the anti-gun control camp. (This is also why I do not bother arguing “the 2nd Amendment says…”, because opponents simply disagree with what the 2nd Amendment means.)
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Traveling for us is as much about trying the different foods and drinks as it is about meeting the people and seeing the sites. We had read about eating bugs prior to heading over, and the “Bug Guy” was right on time.
First up: grasshopper.
On our trip to Thailand, we did find our way to a late-night Muay Thai Kickboxing event in Chaweng (which is on the island of Koh Samui, in the Gulf of Thailand). We watched the fights at Phetch Buncha Stadium, a 650-seat stadium that seemed a lot older than it supposedly was (the website says it was built in 1998).
From the QC Times:
Just before a Scott County judge on Thursday sentenced Melvin T. Lucier to life in prison for sexually abusing one girl under the age of 12, the victim told the court she’s no longer “scared.”
Lucier, dressed in an orange jail uniform, declined to make a statement before District Judge Joel Barrows handed down the sentence — the four-time convicted sex offender’s second sentencing to three life terms in the past two months — during an almost 25-minute sentencing hearing…
Defense attorney Michael Motto asked for concurrent sentences.
“I would argue that it’s one common scheme,” he said.
Taling Chan is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. Taling Chan Floating Market is located on the canal Khlong Chak Phra and is open only on weekends. The market was full of fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as lots of fresh fish, mostly sold from boats on the canal. Much of the fish was available to be cooked to order, as well.
The Entrance to the Taling Chan Floating Market.
Lucier Gets 3 Life Terms in Sex Abuse Case
From the QC Times:
Three-time convicted sex offender Melvin T. Lucier will spend the rest of his life in prison without the possibility of parole for sexually abusing two girls younger than 12, a Scott County District Court judge ruled Monday morning.
Lucier Found Guilty of Sex Abuse
From the QC Times:
A Scott County Jury deliberated for about six hours over two days before finding Melvin T. Lucier guilty of sexually abusing a young girl in February 2014.
Lucier, 55, a registered sex offender and former resident of the Patriot Mobile Home Park in Davenport, was found guilty on one count of second-degree sex abuse.
A quiet “yes!” could be heard in the courtroom as District Court Judge Joel Barrows read the verdict aloud.
Lucier remained emotionless as he was handcuffed and led out of the courtroom.
Reporting on post-trial filings here.
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Bosnia i Herzegovina
INSECTS, ARACHNIDS, MYRIAPODS & GASTROPODS
Categorized by family, placed chronologically by common name
- Bars & Drinks
- Book Review
- Czech Republic
- Dominican Republic
- Health & Medicine
- In Flight
- Mississippi River
- People and Faces
- Photo Hunt
- Rivers and Waterways
- Street Shots
- The Seven Seas
Assassin Bugs (Reduviidae)
Bee Flies (Bombyliidae)
Blow Flies (Calliphoridae)
Brown Lacewings (Hemerobiidae)
Bumble Bees, etc. (Apidae)
Carrion Beetles (Silphidae)
Cellar Spiders (Pholcidae)
Centipedes, House (Scutigeridae)
Common Sawflies (Tenthredinidae)
Crane Flies (Tipulidae)
Ermine Moths (Yponomeutidae)
Flower Flies - See Syrphid Flies
Funnel-Web Spiders (Agelenidae)
Ground Beetles (Carabidae)
Honey Bees - See Bumble Bees, etc.
Hornets - See Yellowjackets, etc.
Hover Flies - See Syrphid Flies
Ichneumon Wasps (Ichneumonidae)
Jumping Spiders (Salticidae)
Ladybird Beetles (Coccinellidae)
Leaf Beetles (Chrysomelidae)
Leaffooted Bugs (Coreidae)
Lightning Bugs - See Fireflies
Longhorned Beetles (Cerambycidae)
Mantid Flies (Mantispidae)
Minettia Flies (Minettia)
Narrow-Winged Damselflies (Coenagrionidae)
Paper Wasps - See Yellowjackets, etc.
Picture-Winged Flies (Ulidiidae)
Plant Bugs (Miridae)
Primitive Weevils (Brentidae)
Robber Flies (Asilidae)
Scarab Beetles (Scarabaeidae)
Scentless Plant Bugs (Rhopalidae)
Short-horned Grasshoppers (Acrididae)
Signal Flies (Platystomatidae)
Snout and Bark Beetles (Curculionidae)
Soft-Winged Flower Beetles (Melyridae)
Soldier Beetles (Cantharidae)
Soldier Flies (Stratiomyidae)
Sphinx Moths (Sphingidae)
Stink Bugs (Pentatomidae)
Sweat Bees (Halictidae)
Syrphid Flies (Syrphidae)
Tiger Moths (Arctiidae)
Tiphiid Wasps (Tiphiidae)
Yellowjackets, etc. (Vespidae)
Spider Lily - See Spiderwort
REPTILES and AMPHIBIANS
Common Garter Snake
Eastern Box Turtle*
Northern Fence Lizard*
Giant Sea Star*
Landscapes / Mountains
Planes / Trains / Autos / Boats
Rainbows / Clouds / Sky Formations
Rivers and Waterways
Signs, Billboards, etc.
Local Structures / Buildings
Sun and Moon