April 23, 2019

51

It was a day much like any other Chicago day in 1968.  A pale gray haze hung over the city, courtesy of the smog caused by millions of cars.  The ivy on the Wrigley Field walls had yet to bloom and instead remained a dull brown.  Kids were in school, grown-ups were at work, and the day continued much as any other day would continue.


Except that, in a hospital on Lake Shore Drive not far from the aforementioned home of the Cubs, a Wonderduck was presented to a confused and tentative world.
birthday candle!
My age 50 year... mmm... not so good.  Here's hoping for a better 51.

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April 22, 2019

When "Forward" Looks A Lot Like Taking A Nap

This evening, I headed into the loo here at Pond Central.  There was nothing special about this, it was simply to pick up a pair of reading glasses I had left there... 2x mag, look a lot like protective eyewear (because they are... they were on sale!)... when suddenly, I vurped.


Yes, that sneaky combination of burp and vomit that comes out of nowhere and heralds... well, I don't rightly know what it heralds.  Surely nothing good.  Indeed, I spent the next half-hour or so feeling right miserable as my body did... things I don't want to discuss in any detail here.  Because damn, ain't nobody need to know that.

So it was with some slight concern that I decided that I should just take a rest.  After all, what if it all came back for round two?  The results would have been catastrophic, considering the difficulty I have in getting out of my memory-foam mattress-topped bed.  Remember the bit in... um... (looks it up to confirm) yes, Life, The Universe, And Everything?  About how mattresses are actually friendly (if dim-witted) sentient creatures that are hunted, killed, dried out, and the bodies sent around the galaxy for people to sleep on?  Yes, well, I can't help but wonder about that at times, because my memory-foam mattress does try very hard to keep me in it.  I assume for digestive purposes.

But my choices were limited at this point: bed, or comfy chair which has its own problems.  Bed it was, just for a few hours.
...
SIX HOURS LATER, I woke up.  The hell...?  Well, damn.  And I feel right as rain, no illness bits going on at all.  The human body is a wonderful thing, lemme tell ya... I just wish I understood what the hell is going on with mine sometimes.  Well, anyway... I'm going to move the writeup to Tuesday night... nothing else going on, really... and THEN you'll know what's gotten me so het up recently.  Stay tuned!

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April 21, 2019

Wow... Just... Wow.

I had intended to actually, y'know, write.  About anime.  Here.  On my blog.  I know, what a concept, right?  It was going to be on Saturday, after I completed a great short series that charmed the socks off me.


Saturday afternoon, I laid down for a nap, around 5pm or so.  Except for two hour-long stints around 2am and 9am, I slept until nearly 4pm Sunday.  I don't know why, but my body decided "no activity for you, Mr Duck."

So you've got that to look forward to on Monday, I hope... a review of a lovely little anime that, while it may not appeal to everybody, should appeal to most of my readers.

Look forward to it, won't you?

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April 15, 2019

A World Tragedy

The famous Cathredral at Notre Dame in Paris caught fire today.  Within a relatively short time, the fire destroyed the roof, brought down the spire, and has gone on to consume everything within the stone walls. 

Its very location, on a small island in the Seine river, made the blaze hard to fight.  Getting equipment to it proved difficult, and fireboats in the river could not get close enough to reach all the burning area.  The flames spread very quickly as well, limiting what the fire brigade could do.

There have been no deaths, and it's only been in the past few minutes that I've seen a report of a single serious injury to a firefighter.  Nobody who was in the Cathedral was hurt, including the many many tourists.  If there's anything good to take from this, it'd be that.  But otherwise?  It's all pretty rotten.

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April 13, 2019

F1 Quals: China 2019

Formula 1 believes this weekend to be the 1000th official Grand Prix.  And it is, if you take into account the 11 Indianapolis 500 that were considered as part of the calendar.  If you don't, stop being a Eurosnob and realize the FIA disagrees with you.  So China becomes the 1000th race, and I'm sure that wasn't intentional in the least.  Here's the provisional grid for the 2019 Grand Prix of China:

Pos
Driver
Car Q1 Q2 Q3
1
Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 
1:32.658          
1:31.728         
1:31.547
2
Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:33.115 1:31.637 1:31.570
3
Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:33.557 1:32.232 1:31.848
4
Charles AMX-30      Ferrari 1:32.712 1:32.324 1:31.865
5
DH Verstappen Red Bull Racing 1:33.274 1:32.369 1:32.089
6
Pierre Ghastly Red Bull Racing
1:33.863 1:32.948 1:32.930
7
Smiley Ricciardo Renault 1:33.709 1:33.214 1:32.958
8
Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1:33.644 1:32.968 1:32.962
9
DP Magnussen
Haas Ferrari 1:34.036 1:33.150 DNF
10
Lettuce Grosjean Haas Ferrari 1:33.752 1:33.156 DNF
11
Torpedo Kvyat Toro Rosso
1:33.783 1:33.236

12
Sergio Perez Racing Point
1:34.026 1:33.299

13
Kimi Räikkönen Alfa Romeo Racing       
1:34.125 1:33.419

14
Carlos Sainz McLaren Renault 1:33.686 1:33.523

15
Lando Calrissian  McLaren Renault 1:34.148 1:33.967

16
Pleasant Stroll Racing Point
1:34.292


17
George Russell Williams Mercedes 1:35.253


18
Dumbass Kubica Williams Mercedes 1:35.281


NC
Tony Snazzy Alfa Romeo Racing
DNF



Sharp-eyed readers will notice that there's only 19 names listed.  Good call!  Mitch Albon managed to comprehensively destroy his Toro Rosso with only a couple minutes of Practice 3 remaining, and the team wasn't able to build up a new one for him in the couple of hours between then and Quals.  While he didn't destroy his car, Alfa Romeo's Tony Snazzy had a serious power unit problem that the team couldn't repair in time to send him forth.  What this means is that Williams avoided being on the last row for the first time this season!

You've also probably noticed that both Haas drivers DNF'd in Q3.  That's because they got caught in a kerfluffle between Vettel and Verstappen right at the end of the session.  The two "V" drivers were doing a "After you Alphonse, after you Gaston" routine, behaving in accordance to the the "unwritten rules" that state that drivers don't pass each other on track at in quals.  After essentially blocking the track, Vettel decided that the Dutchman was going too slowly, charged past the Red Bull driver and raced around to the line in time to be able to take one more flying lap.  Verstappen, for his part, has said that he had backed off to give himself room to the car ahead and Vettel prevented him from taking a final shot at pole.  Meanwhile, both Haas drivers were blaming the "V" drivers for not being able to do their runs.  The "good" news is that at most they'd likely be only able to move up a single spot on the grid.  So probably no harm done.  Verstappen would disagree, bitching that he could have improved on 5th.

So the race is tonight, at midnight here at The Pond... I'm unsure as to what the quality will be, there's been a lot of Mercedes running away so far.  It's been a dusty track so far... apparently a huge cement plant is upwind of the complex... and that's made it a little hard on the tires so far.  We shall see!

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April 08, 2019

Ducks In Anime: Quite Possibly A Record

-Nande Koko ni Sensei ga!, Ep01
I don't know a darn thing about the show, except that the uncensored version is airing on the 11th.  That right there may in fact tell me all I need to know about the series.  It's only obvious that I'll be watching it, of course, if for no other reason that to see if there are more ducks.

I'm sure many people will read that and say, "Uh huh, more ducks, right."  Longtime readers of The Pond, however, are nodding their heads, "more ducks.  That's Wonderduck all right."

Anyway, the reason for the title?  These two ducks (the other one is offscreen bottom... it's a pan shot) appear in the OP, maybe a little over a minute into the episode.  I can't remember if there's been any other OPs with a duck appearing, so this might be the earliest a duck has appeared in an episode of anime ever.  Or not.  Either way, duckies!

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April 07, 2019

Humboldt



#LeaveYourSticksOut

I love baseball, and always will.  But hockey gets it in a way no other sport seems to.

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April 06, 2019

Go Cubs Go! #001

Because they clearly need all the help they can get this season:


I want to feel like I did on November 3rd, 2016.  Please?

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April 01, 2019

Builder's Trials

USS South Dakota, the US Navy's newest member of the Virginia-class, undergoes builder's trials.



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