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Pledged support to WFMU's Silent Fundaiser 2014!

Personal statement:

DRAGNET 1967 first show in colour: Joe Fridays learns about LSD

47742, John Paul Durazzo, Woodbridge, 06:05:56.

47752, John Tofanelli, West Caldwell, 06:06:04.

47761, Jennifer Circkirillo, Bayonnne, 06:06:10.

47770, Sanjay Bery, Basking Ridge, 06:06:16.

47772, Lisa Cann, Stanhope, 06:06:17.

47803, Nadine Carroll, Bayonne, 06:07:17.

47804, Paula Belem, Edison, 06:07:18.

47814, Goncalo Leonard, Jersey City, 06:07:27.

47815, Juliette Joseph, Fort Lee, 06:07:27.

47819, Hideo Shionoiri, Edgewater, 06:07:31.

47828, Saud Masud, Jersey City, 06:07:40.

47831, Audy Bautista, Fair Lawn, 06:07:41.

4. Cooter or bust!
Help me move to Vermont and acquire a vagina. (This is not a joke.) Insurance and relocation-related questions within.

Two facts have recently come to my attention:

If I do not get gender reassignment surgery pretty soon I am going to lose my goddamn mind.
The state of Vermont requires Obamacare plans to cover GRS.

I am a few days away from finishing grad school, and I'd been planning to move to somewhere in the northeast soon anyway. Originally I'd had my eye on Boston, where my wife and I have various friends and family. But it looks like the quickest route to surgery and sanity might be to shift my sights to Vermont, at least for a year or so.

Here are some things I'd like to know:

I have no actual idea how this insurance exchange business works. The Vermont exchange website says open enrollment lasts until February 15. What do I need to do by then to become eligible to enroll in a plan there? (Have an address in VT? Have lived there for a certain length of time? Have a job there?)
What is Vermont like as a place to live? What should I know about it if I'm considering moving there? What do you wish you'd known before you moved there?
More specifically: where in the state might it be most pleasant to be an overeducated 30something queer? Where might I find like-minded roommates or some sort of community?
What are the major industries or employers there? Where (besides Craigslist or Indeed) should I be looking for jobs?
Alternately: any ideas for jobs there that might make an interesting temporary adventure for someone taking a yearlong post-grad-school detour and trying to figure out what comes next?
Is this whole thing completely moronic? What haven't I thought of that I should be?

Friday, December 5, 2014 2:58 AM

So, it's the total eclipse of the sun ( reference Carly Simon and You're So Vain), and my roofing pals and I are heading home, riding in the back of a half-ton equipped with boom boxes powerful enough to be heard on the top of the church roofs we were working on that summer. The driver had the radio tuned to my hometown station, a 50,000 watt, clear channel block-programmed. dinosaur. It was Wednesday afternoon and the music ought to have been classic country. As the sun disappeared, moving toward totality, birds settled into the trees, the music changed, and we heard (I knew later) Zoot Horn Rollo ".. hit that long lunar note, and let it float." Never forgot the juxtaposition of the ride, the eclipse and that song, the unnameable feeling.
OKAVANGO DELTA, BOTSWANA — For the tallest animals on earth, giraffes can be awfully easy to overlook. Their ochered flagstone fur and arboreal proportions blend in seamlessly with the acacia trees on which they tirelessly forage, and they’re as quiet as trees, too: no whinnies, growls, trumpets or howls. “Giraffes are basically mute,” said Kerryn Carter, a zoologist at the University of Queensland in Australia. “A snort is the only sound I’ve heard.”

Yet watch giraffes make their stately cortege across the open landscape and their grandeur is operatic, every dip and weave and pendulum swing an aria embodied.

To giraffe researchers, the paradox of this keystone African herbivore goes beyond questions of its camouflaging coat. Giraffes may be popular, they said — a staple of zoos, corporate logos and the plush toy industry — but until recently almost nobody studied giraffes in the field.

“When I first became interested in giraffes in 2008 and started looking through the scientific literature, I was really surprised to see how little had been done,” said Megan Strauss, who studies evolution and behavior at the University of Minnesota. “It was amazing that something as well known as the giraffe could be so little studied.”
The Amazing, Mysterious Giraffe 10:35

Giraffes exhibit some surprisingly complex behavior. They are silent in the wild; female giraffes form girlfriend cliques; giraffes have circulatory systems like fighter pilot suits; and they have neck fights. David Corcoran and Jeffery DelViscio

Giraffes are the “forgotten megafauna,” said Julian Fennessy, a giraffe researcher and the executive director of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation. “You hear all about elephants, Jane Goodall and her chimpanzees, Dian Fossey and her mountain gorillas, but there’s been a massive paucity of information about giraffes.”

Now all that is changing fast, as a growing cadre of researchers seek to understand the spectacular biology and surprisingly complex behavior of what Dr. Fennessy calls a “gentle giant and the world’s most graceful animal.” Scientists have lately discovered that giraffes are not the social dullards or indifferent parents they were reputed to be, but instead have much in common with another charismatic mega-herbivore, the famously gregarious elephant.

Female giraffes, for example, have been found to form close friendships with one another that can last for years, while mother giraffes have displayed signs of persistent grief after losing their calves to lions.

“Giraffes have been underestimated, even thought of as a bit stupid,” said Zoe Muller, a wildlife biologist at the University of Warwick in England. But through advances in satellite and aerial tracking technology, improved hormonal tests and DNA fingerprinting methods to extract maximum data from giraffe scat, saliva and hair, and a more statistically rigorous approach to analyzing giraffe interactions, she said, “we’ve been able to map out their social structure and relationships in a much more sophisticated way; there’s a lot more going on than we appreciated.”

For their part, male giraffes ever in search of the next mating opportunity have been found to be astute appraisers of the local competition and will adjust their sexual strategy accordingly. Males generally gain in rank and access to fertile females with age, and the alpha bulls flaunt that seniority physically and behaviorally: The twin ossicones that sprout like a snail’s tentacles on top of a giraffe’s head thicken and lose their charming tuftiness; a bony mass bulges up in the middle of the forehead; the neck musculature grows visible; and the male’s posture becomes ever prouder and more unflinchingly vertical.

Andre Ganswindt of the University of Pretoria in South Africa and his colleagues have found that young bulls recently launched on their rutting career will, when they’re on their own, mimic the basic demeanor of their elders: head held high, neck puffed out, females pursued and prodded and their urine sniffed for signs of estrus. But should a dominant bull saunter into view, the younger males instantly drop their sexual antics and seek to make themselves look small and innocent.

“It’s a case of ‘When I’m alone I’m the big giraffe,’ ” Dr. Ganswindt said. “But as soon as there are bigger bulls present, ‘No, no, no, I’m just a child.’ ”

The younger bulls have reason to fear their elders’ wrath. Dominance clashes between male giraffes can be terrifying spectacles, as each bull repeatedly “necks” the other, using his massive neck as a sling to slam his head against his rival, sometimes to devastating, even lethal effect.

Dr. Ganswindt saw one bull that had somehow survived with a broken neck. “The neck grew together again,” he said, “but at a funny angle.”
Continue reading the main story
Range of the Giraffe

Giraffes are scattered across a wide arc of central and southern Africa.













Source: Giraffe Conservation Foundation

By The New York Times

Taking the Long View

Giraffes are found throughout sub-Saharan Africa, currently classified as a single species with up to nine subspecies that differ by features like head shape and whether the fur on their legs is plain or patterned. The species is not listed as endangered, but researchers point with alarm to evidence that in the past 15 years, the giraffe population has plummeted some 40 percent, to less than 80,000 from 140,000.

Partly to highlight the crisis, conservationists this year declared June 21 the first World Giraffe Day — the longest day for the tallest animal, they said.

Researchers also emphasize the ecological importance of giraffes. “As large browsers, they’re habitat changers,” Dr. Fennessy said. “They spend a hell of a lot of time feeding, pruning, distributing seeds across the landscape, keeping the habitat open for other wildlife to use.” By going from tree to tree and blossom to blossom, he added, they even serve as pollinators.

A giraffe’s extraordinary mouth is like a set of human hands, its thick, prehensile lips and 18-inch-long, prehensile tongue can together grasp a leafy branch and then deftly pluck away the leaves while avoiding intervening thorns and barbs. Each day, and often well into the night, a giraffe consumes about 75 pounds of leaves, shoots, vines and occasional bits of dried meat licked from bones, all digested in its four-chambered ruminant stomach.

Giraffes also have excellent vision. Their eyes are among the largest of terrestrial mammals’, they can see in color and over great distances frontally, and their peripheral vision is so wide-angled they can essentially see behind themselves as well. Their keen eyesight lets them scan for predators, especially lions, which are their biggest threat apart from humans, and to keep track of each other.

Dr. Carter, of Queensland, and her colleagues followed more than 400 giraffes for six years, identifying their home ranges and who associated with whom. As the researchers reported in the journal Animal Behaviour, the females displayed clear and persistent social preferences. Some giraffes with overlapping home territories would never be found together, while others were sighted associating a good 80 percent of the time.

Female giraffes can live 20 years or more, Dr. Carter said, and it makes sense they might rely on each other for clues to the best feeding grounds, help with calf caretaking “or to reduce stress, just by having somebody nearby.”

Thriving Under Pressure
The species is not listed as endangered, but in the past 15 years, the population has plummeted some 40 percent, to less than 80,000 from 140,000. Credit Julian Fennessy

Or perhaps to console each other. Giraffe calves are extremely vulnerable to predators, and though mothers will fight valiantly to keep their young alive — kicking their powerful legs forward and backward, sometimes delivering blows that can break a lion’s jaw — half or more of all calves are killed in their first year of life.

Echoing similar sightings by others, Dr. Strauss, the Minnesota researcher, described one case in which a mother spent four days lingering at the place where a lion had seized her calf, forgoing food and often in the company of two other adult females. “We’re just at the beginnings of trying to understand this kind of behavior,” she said.

Also of interest is the giraffe’s exceptional cardiovascular system. A large giraffe can stand 20 feet tall — the height of a second-story window — with its neck accounting for roughly a third its span and its long legs the same. The multitiered challenge, then, is how to both pump blood very high and retrieve it from far below while avoiding burst capillaries in the brain or blood pooling around the hooves.

As part of the Danish Cardiovascular Giraffe Research Program, scores of scientists have traveled to South Africa to study giraffe physiology. They have measured blood pressure at different sites and found readings that range from high to ridiculous — up to five times human blood pressure — yet with none of the organ damage commonly seen in hypertensive patients.

Instead, the giraffe has extremely thick blood vessel walls to prevent blood from leaking into surrounding tissue, while rugged, inflexible collagen fibers in its neck and legs help keep the blood traffic moving, rather as the tight antigravity suits worn by astronauts and fighter pilots will maintain blood flow under the most extreme gravitational shifts. A complex mesh of capillaries and valves store and release blood in the neck, allowing the giraffe to bend over for a drink of water and then raise its head again quickly without fainting; when the giraffe is standing still, sphincters at the top of the legs limit circulation to the lower extremities, to minimize the risk of fluid buildup around the hooves.

Researchers were also surprised to find that contrary to old textbook wisdom, giraffes do not have unusually large hearts for animals their size. “It’s half a percent of body mass, and that’s the same as we see in a cow, dog or mouse,” said Christian Aalkjaer of the department of biomedicine at Aarhus University in Denmark.

Moreover, Dr. Aalkjaer and his colleagues have determined that the giraffe’s cardiac output — the amount of blood pumped into circulation each minute — is modest, proportionally lower than it is in humans. That finding could help explain why giraffes rarely run for very long: Their hearts can’t deliver oxygen to their muscles fast enough to power extended aerobic exertion.

Or maybe the giraffes are worried about tripping over their own feet. Heather More and Shawn O’Connor of Simon Fraser University in British Columbia and their colleagues measured so-called sensorimotor responsiveness in the giraffe: how long it takes a nerve signal to travel from a muscle in the ankle up to the brain and back again. Reporting in The Journal of Experimental Biology, the researchers found that the nerve conduction rate in the giraffe is pretty much the same as it is in a shrew, rat or any other mammal.

Given the comparatively greater distance a nerve signal has to travel in the giraffe, Dr. More said, it’s possible the giraffe faces real challenges in reacting quickly to events down under — a rock beneath its hoof, or a bite to its ankle.

Evolution is always a trade-off, but for the giraffe the feeding advantages that came with elongation clearly outweighed any diminution in reflex speed. No need to run when you can be a quiet poem masked by a tree.

I know I sorcerers who invoke jets
In the jungles of New Guinea
They scrutinize the zenith coveting guines
That would bring their plunder cargo
On the Coral Sea to the passage of this
Device such non dnues creatures
Because of these Papuan waiting naked
The damage to the Viscount and the Comet
And as their totem could never kill
At their feet neither Boeing nor even four D.C.
They rvent of hijacks and accidents bird
These nafs wreckers armed with blowpipes
Thereby sacrificing the cargo cult
Blowing to the sky and aroplanes.
Melody O are you and your body disloqu
He haunts the islands that populate the sirens
Or accrochs the freighter whose siren
Alarm has been silenced, are you still
Random currents did you touch dj
These bright coral coasts guinennes
O stir in vain these unworthy wizards
Esprent who still had Briss
With nothing to lose or to believe in God
So they make me love my drisoires
I, like them, I pri cargo night
So they make me love my drisoires
I, like them, I pri cargo night
And I keep this expectancy of a dsastre
Arian ramnerait me that Melody
Diverts minor attraction of the stars. Gainsbourg SerGe ...........
Je sais moi des sorciers qui invoquent les jets
Dans la jungle de Nouvelle-Guine
Ils scrutent le znith convoitant les guines
Que leur rapporterait le pillage du fret
Sur la mer de corail au passage de cet
Appareil ces cratures non dnues
De raison ces papous attendent des nues
L'avarie du Viscount et celle du Comet
Et comme leur totem n'a jamais pu abattre
A leurs pieds ni Boeing ni mme D.C. quatre
Ils rvent de hijacks et d'accidents d'oiseaux
Ces naufrageurs nafs arms de sarbacanes
Qui sacrifient ainsi au culte du cargo
En soufflant vers l'azur et les aroplanes.
O es-tu Melody et ton corps disloqu
Hante-t-il l'archipel que peuplent les sirnes
Ou bien accrochs au cargo dont la sirne
D'alarme s'est tue, es-tu reste
Au hasard des courants as-tu dj touch
Ces lumineux coraux des ctes guinennes
O s'agitent en vain ces sorciers indignes
Qui esprent encore des avions briss
N'ayant plus rien perdre ni Dieu en qui croire
Afin qu'ils me rendent mes amours drisoires
Moi, comme eux, j'ai pri les cargos de la nuit
Et je garde cette esprance d'un dsastre
Arien qui me ramnerait Melody
Mineure dtourne de l'attraction des astres. ........... SerGe Gainsbourg

If you could change your heart to wanting to give, wanting to give whatever it is that she wants, ok, no eye contact/ then what is going on? I ask myself why I want eye contact so much I asked that when I was young--14 to 20's-- but everyone thought I was crazy. So I got used to men always and forever wanting to make eye contact whenever i was in public. I drank a lot , n the weekends it made me so nervous. SO now thats the reason I figured out after asking myself why I needed eye contact so much from men. I wasnt used to it at first, then I got used to it because it wouldnt stop and now that I am used to it, it is totally different and you can probably imagine why...When a woman is young, it is a constant. You will need to actually know her. There is a lot of stranger" lack of trust. ANyways, thats my take on it...or one of my takes on it all, the sexes thang, since I am in this great category of women where we are sort of old but sort of young, too, so we can actually discus such things and thereby hopefully promoting greater understanding between the sexes (genders?)
One of the most studied tribal religions in India, Santhal religion worships Marang buru or Bonga as supreme deity. The weight of belief, however, falls on a court of spirits (bonga), who handle different aspects of the world and who must be placated with prayers and offerings in order to ward off evil influences. These spirits operate at the village, household, ancestor, and sub-clan level, along with evil spirits that cause disease, and can inhabit village boundaries, mountains, water, tigers, and the forest. A characteristic feature of the Santhal village is a sacred grove on the edge of the settlement where many spirits live and where a series of annual festivals take place.[5]

The most important spirit is Maran Buru (Great Mountain), who is invoked whenever offerings are made and who instructed the first Santhals in the brewing of rice beer. Maran Buru's consort is the benevolent Jaher Era (Lady of the Grove).

Sergeant Don Ross, 50 years, passed away after a lengthy illness in Candian Forces Base Winnipeg, on July 18, 2014. Born in Springhill, he was a son of Carl and Beverly (Hodges) Ross of Springhill. Don served 30 years as an Aeromedical Tech/Instructor. He was one of a few in the world to reach 12.3 G in the human centrifuge testing suits worn by our Jet Fighter Pilots today. Don completed 25 freefall jumps in a week, a feat respected by our CF Special Ops personnel. He was also a qualified ship diver and medic. Don was an avid golfer, hockey and softball player. He loved being with his dogs, Emrick and Iska.

A yearly round of rituals connected with the agricultural cycle, along with life-cycle rituals for birth, marriage and burial at death, involves petitions to the spirits and offerings that include the sacrifice of animals, usually birds. Religious leaders are male specialists in medical cures who practice divination and witchcraft. Similar beliefs are common among other tribes of northeast and central India such as the Kharia, Munda, and Oraon.[5]

Smaller and more isolated tribes often demonstrate less articulated classification systems of the spiritual hierarchy, described as animism or a generalized worship of spiritual energies connected with locations, activities, and social groups. Religious concepts are intricately entwined with ideas about nature and interaction with local ecological systems. As in Santhal religion, religious specialists are drawn from the village or family and serve a wide range of spiritual functions that focus on placating potentially dangerous spirits and coordinating rituals.[5]

The Santhals are an agricultural tribe, from time immemorial they have cleared forests, toiled the land, and produced food for subsistence. Santhal laborers were considered very efficient and they easily found employment in coal mines. Beside agriculture they also domesticate animals like cows, buffaloes and pigs. Apart from these the Santhals also are well versed in the art of hunting, where their exceptional skills with bow and arrows is noticeable. After the ban on hunting by the Government of India, the Santhals do not get chance to practice their archery skill but recently a new venture of organizing village level archery competitions during festive seasons has given a chance to culture this unique legacy. Those adopted and educated by the Christian missionaries were in a better position. There were a few Santhals in Government jobs holding high posts. The Santhal Deputy Commissioner, the village Heads, the Darogas, musicians and the teachers.

Santhals have taken up profession in every field. There are good number of Santhal doctors, engineers, governments servants, the opening up of new avenues after the arrival of the Christian missionaries, and the English education have changed their lifestyle and made it typically urban.



Feelings, my feelings are stuck on a old tin can in the infinite blue. Dont worru im not asking you to care! In actuality i am asking you to buy me a beer and listen to a story which whatever path it takes feelings will be involved! So just sit there with a distinguished smug on yor face, while ill be sifting rhru stories, so they can become words. Words of interest....... Whatever happened to me to be here right now, wherever i am......... Gently becoming your own thaught of persona, with the rage of humanity lurking with in my veines, selfish words it may be. I wonder if thoose thoughts have entered my human persona. Poetry reading and writing, fish killing and eating, glacier looking, mountain wandering, marijuana smoking, alchol drinking. Autodidact i have gained with that, whatever manroll the joint and let the enhanced emotion be the final jugdement, of this , whatever
First, about Joyce Carol Oates. Always, it seems , being reviewed in the magazines and newspapers I been reading for decades. Profiles, what have you. Never once, in her fifty year career, have I knowingly read anything by her, But, in doing a little research, it seems "them" might have pre-saged the birth of the new genre, the non-fiction novel, attributed to Capote's IN COLD BLOOD. It was several years ahead in publication, so perhaps it might be worth a look. As for the rest, I cannot form any opinion.

in no particular order:
Thomas MCGUANE, the first 3 novels, but at least 92 IN THE SHADE.
Raymond CARVER, all the short stories
John CHEEVER, The Short Stores of John Cheever, 1979
Hubert SELBY, The Room
Robertson DAVIES, the DEPTFORD TRILOGY. If not all of them, at least FIFTH BUSINESS. cdn
Mordecai RICHLER: Maybe start with SOLOMON GURSKY WAS HERE. cdn
Raymond CHANDLER, all the novels, all the short stories, chronologically
John UPDIKE: as socio-historical commentary on American history, the quartet of HARRY ANGSTROM novels "the RABBIT" novels, though I read his earliest long fiction every five years or so:The Poorhouse Fair,The Centaur,Of the Farm,Couples
Herman MELVILLE: Moby Dick, but only after reading the Old Testament. Another one of the every five year reads for me.
Jonathan FRANZEN: STRONG MOTION. I have also read THE CORRECTIONS and FREEDOM, however S/M from 1993 is a "realer" work, to my taste.
Jorge Luis BORGE; FICTIONS,THE ALEPH. Difficult going, regardless of the translators skill, but foundational in the development of modern fiction, just one man's opinion.
Malcolm LOWRY; UNDER THE VOLCANO but first try earlier work: ULTRAMARINE and LUNAR CAUSTIC. U/T/V owes much to BORGES, though there is no evidence that Lowry ever read him.I lost my heavily annotated copy in a fire, a detail which would have delighted Lowry.
Charles BUKOWSKI; the novels POST OFFICE, FACTOTUM,WOMEN,HAM ON RYE.This is their chronological order.
Bernard MALAMUD;The ASSISTANT,THE FIXER,THE TENANTS,DUBIN'S LIVES. You might start with the last one.
Paul BOWLES; SHELTERING SKY,and his COLLECTED STORIES. His work as a translator of Moroccan stories, and the work of writers from the original French, Spanish and Portuguese texts expands his importance to 20th century literature to mind-boggling proportions. But S/Sky is a good entry point. (His recordings of Moroccan music is a whole other ball of wax)
FAULKNER Church, much different pews.
Carson McCullers:dive in anywhere, but THE BALLAD OF THE SAD CAFE is an omnibus beast. If you like any of this, then there's THE HEART IS A LONELY HUNTER, A MEMBER OF THE WEDDING, REFLECTIONS IN A GOLDEN EYE.
Flannery O'Connor: WISE will know right away whether this is for you or not.THE COLLECTED STORIES would be a nice follow up.
Tennessee Williams: the plays up to NIGHT OF THE IGUANA
Truman Capote: ending with IN COLD BLOOD

James Lee BURKE; all of the Dave Robicheaux, just because of his exquisite handling of the mise-en-scène, and the writing, often verging on sacred despite the profane settings.

I hope there is something here you find to your liking.


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