Holger Danske

Holger Danske

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    Think of it as Evolution in Action

    The Darwin Awards
    Evolution in Action

    by Wendy Northcutt
    327 pages; $4.95

    By now a cultural icon, the Darwin Awards were created by Wendy Northcutt in 1993. This is the first book of an ongoing series, because there is really no end to human stupidity. This is the only one of the books I have ever read, and I found myself mostly annoyed at the color commentary. I can understand the impulse to fill empty space with pithy remarks, but really we are all just here for the gory details. All else is superfluous.

    Accordingly, I skipped almost all the chapter introductions, and I liked the book much better. I did feel a little bit guilty reading this. I suppose by definition this book is taking delight in others misfortune. Perhaps it is simply that God works in mysterious ways.



    Mechanics of Materials

    Madhukar Vable, a professor at Michigan Technological University, has made his Mechanics of Materials textbook available for free online. I'm nerdy enough to find this really interesting, and I will probably look through it. Most of what I know about the subject is learned on the job, so I'm curious to see what holes in my understanding can be filled in.

    h/t PhysOrg


    The Puritan Avenger

    Soloman Kane is a creation of Robert E. Howard, who is better known for creating Conan the Cimmerian. I especially liked the Kane stories, Howard was able to weave Old Testament imagery into the struggles of the Elizabethan age. There isn't that much actualy history here, but I like the stories all the same, you can really get the feel for the persecution the Puritans suffered that led them to America.

    h/t John C. Wright


    26 Scientific Mysteries

    The New Scientist calls these things that do not make sense, but that seems too strong to me. Rather they are just parts of nature we do not understand yet. I have seen most of these before, but they are still interesting.

    13 things that don't make sense

    13 more things that don't make sense


    Forgotten Doctrines

    I will be giving a lecture at the Catholic Community Retreat Center tomorrow, September 17, 2009 at 6:30 PM, on the subject of Forgotten Catholic doctrines.

    The lecture outline can be found here.


    History of Beer

    The history of beer, an important subject.

    h/t Gates of Vienna


    Scrimshaw Pilsner

    Scrimshaw Pilsner

    Scrimshaw Pilsner at Diablo BurgerEuropean Style Pilsner
    4.4% ABV

    Pilsners are noted for their lightness, but what I found surprising about this beer is its sweetness. Not sugary like a frambois, but rather crisp and light. The hops were present, but their bitterness was understated. Served out of a bottle, this beer is thin with a small head. Pronounced golden color.


    I had this beer with The Cheech from Diablo Burger. The spicyness of the burger and the lightness of the pilsner went well together. I found the beer satisfying and tasty, I would readily recommend it to anyone, especially those who don't like a "beery" or "hoppy" taste.



    Memento Mori

    World Trade Center 2001-09-11

    I attended the funeral of a coworker today who died young, so today is a day to remember the fallen.


    Fun Fact

    Mike Judge, creator of Beavis and Butthead, Office Space, King of the Hill, Idiocracy, and a new movie Extract, has a physics degree from UC San Diego.

    Damn physicists are everywhere!


    New Project: Altoids Tin Survival Kit

    From the Art of Manliness, here is a photo gallery of a survival kit crammed into an Altoids tin. There are a few caustic comments on Field and Stream about the usefulness of such a limited kit, but the point is that you could have this to hand literally all the time, which ensures that it is there when you need it, and it is an interesting exercise to compile such a kit for anyone who ever goes hiking, camping, or on long car trips across the desert.

    Altoids Survival Kit

    So I decided to make just such a kit, and report on the items and cost of doing so. Here is the first batch of items:

    • Altoids, $1.69
    • Potable Aqua, $7.49
    • Princeton Tec Pulsar White LED flashlight, $6.99