Monthly Archives: July 2002


It isn't that I don't recommend finding love wherever you possibly can. But trust me, local is better.

I just said goodbye to Bill for the third time. We're sucking his savings dry to be together, but to us it is infinitely worth it. You would think the goodbyes get easier with time. This is not so. The original plan was to spend 18 months going back and forth from Portland to Brisbane. I have no idea how we thought we could survive that, as we're barely making it to Christmas.

The next trip is Las Vegas, where we get hitched. Then, goodbye. The next trip I get to meet his parents. Then, goodbye. The next trip he's over here for the holidays. Then, no more goodbyes.

I know it will fly by. I know that in retrospect, it won't seem like such a hard thing. Right now it seems impossible.


...and came back for more.

Last year after the Blogathon concluded, I shut down my site for a month. It was a good thing, but very, very hard. I wasn't sure I ever wanted to see a computer again.

This year: totally different experience. Thanks to the fantastic people who helped me, I was able to avoid burnout and have a good time. I don't think my blog has ever been more fun than it was last night.

Zowie. Thank you all.

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Discovered near Baghdad in 1938, a small, unassuming jar turned out to be an ancient battery. About 2,200 years old, the mechanism consists of a copper sheet held in place by an asphalt plug, with a narrow iron rod hanging down the center. Fill the jar halfway with vinegar or another acidic liquid and you get 1.5 volts. It is speculated that the battery may have been used for electroplating or served some sort of medical purpose.

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Found in caves in the BayanKara-Ula mountains between China and Tibet, the Dropa Stones present a pretty unbelievable story. First, they were discovered in caves where unusual bodies were found buried. They had small bodies and large, over-developed heads. The stones (disks, really) were found near the bodies, and are allegedly 12,000 years old. In 1962, Dr. Tsum Um Nui claimed to have interpreted the heiroglyphics. They described the crash-landing of a spaceship, and the stranding of its crew. They go on to tell the tale of a clash and eventual peace with a local tribe called the Hams. The area is now occupied by two tribes of people: the Ham and the Dropa. Diminuitive, they have an average height of 4'2", and unusually large heads.

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Say you found a limonite (an iron ore) ball, very neatly round, with three grooves around the center. It looks like it would be used in some sort of sporting match. It's about 2.8 billion years old. Such are the grooved spheres that have been turning up in Africa. Apparently made by an intelligence, but before any intelligence existed on the planet.

The spheres are of two types--"one of solid bluish metal with white flecks, and another which is a hollow ball filled with a white spongy center" (Jimison 1982). Roelf Marx, curator of the museum of Klerksdorp, South Africa, where some of the spheres are housed, said: "The spheres are a complete mystery. They look man-made, yet at the time in Earth's history when they came to rest in this rock no intelligent life existed. They're nothing like I have ever seen before" (Jimison 1982).