Squash the Squash Bugs!

Well, I didn't squash any on purpose. I did, however, spray them heavily with insecticidal soap. I'm hoping they'll just decide to go hang out somewhere else. The zucchini plants are putting out more blossoms now. I'm hoping that the squash bugs will go away long enough that there will be another explosion of zucchini in a few weeks. Yummy!

The cucumbers, on the other hand, are just about finished. I may rip them up this weekend. I also need to mow down the lettuce and harvest more basil. I just had an idea to make basil-parmesan crackers. I have no recipe for this, but I'm sure I can find one that would work.

The back of my head is sore today. It took me a while to figure out why. It's because I sat on my deck for two and a half hours last night resting my head on the top of the chair. Final score: a couple dozen meteors (including a big green one at the end), four planes and three satellites (might have been the same satellite two of those times). I think the street light out front probably obliterated at least some of the meteorites, but it was a whole lot more meteorite action that I've seen in the past several years.

The propping up of the head might also have contributed to my headache this morning. The half-caffeinated pot of coffee helped it go away.

Hotel Preston
I'm headed to a meeting at the Hotel Preston at the end of the month. At check-in, you can request one of the following: milk and cookies, an art kit, a lava lamp, a rubber duckie or a pet fish. I think I'll like this place. And I think I'll ask for a fish. Except for the lava lamp, I already have everything else.

More Tile Damage
Once again ice or debris has fallen off the shuttle during launch and damaged the tiles on the bottom of the orbiter. The crew was headed out for a look today. They may or may not have to fix the damage. This ongoing problem has me quite curious. Why is it that only in the past five years or so has there been a problem with ice falling off the external tank? Surely the tank was cold before that, being filled with liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen. Presumably it's no more humid in Florida, so the degree of condensation freezing on the tank should be the same. Why is it that only recently things have started falling off? What has changed? Why is ice/debris damage an issue on every launch now?

Of course, I'm also curious about possible alternatives for the heat shield other than ceramics. I understand the thermal qualities of ceramics make them wonderful for this application, but it's becoming apparent that the inherent fragility of at least the ceramic being used in the tiles is a problem. Perhaps the nice people from Corelle could be talked into paving the bottom of the orbiter with dinner plates. Or some sort of shield could be put on the orbiter's belly during launch and then removed/jettisoned in space, like NASA bubble wrap. The ISS residents could then pass the time by popping the bubbles.

One of Life's Mysteries....
What is the physiology behind the Brain Freeze from eating too much ice cream or other frozen goodies? I don't know. I'm sure I could look it up.

Three Bags Full Update
Remember the mystery I was reading? The one where the shepherd gets killed and the flock is going to solve the mystery? The sheep are putting the fear of God/Devil into "God" (the local priest) and the butcher. The sheep are a bit confused about a few things, but they're pretty on target for most things. Miss Maple is named Miss Maple because she would sneak up to the shepherd's trailer and lick the maple syrup off his toast, leaving just enough that he wouldn't notice he was missing some and being careful to not leave tongue marks. Of course there was one day when the coffee maker worked faster than expected and she got caught. He laughed and named her Miss Maple. Then there's Mopple the Whale. He's a very large ram. He's also the memory sheep. He remembers things. But he is not to be confused with Pudge who is a fish. He controls the weather.

The next book I'm going to read is A Book Addict's Treasury.

Shoo Fly, Quit Bothering Me
There is a fly buzzing my head in the living room. He's flying laps around the room and swerving to whiff my hair and face. I'm sure he's intentionally being annoying. Unlike the bat what whooshed past my face last night in the dark. Then again the fly doesn't carry rabies.


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