The Widdershins

Lazy Weekend: Tired of Winning

Posted on: March 27, 2021

Happy Weekend Widdershins!

This past week, after screaming at Biden for not holding a press conference since becoming President (even though he speaks to the press every day and held a town hall), Biden finally held a press conference. And it was a disaster. For the press. They asked multiple questions if he intends to run for President in 2024. They asked if Kamala Harris would be on the ticket with him again. (It’s 2 months into his Presidency, btw…) But they did not ask a single question about Covid. Nothing about gun violence. Nothing about anti-Asian violence. Washington Post media critic Margaret Sullivan (who used to be NY Times’ public editor, a position NYT eliminated) wrote before the press conference that it was going to be a big test for the White House press corps. After the press conference Sullivan tweeted: “Welp.” And that, I think, summarizes our press these days.

What’s on your minds this weekend?? This is an open thread!

For our musical entertainment this is Madonna and Massive Attack’s cover of Marvin Gaye’s “I Want You.”

76 Responses to "Lazy Weekend: Tired of Winning"

WP just ate my post, #%&&%@#!

Shadow, just looked in Spammy, nothing there!

Thanks DYB, I will try to repeat what I said in short snips and see if they pass.
I thanked you for the post, agreed the media has it’s own agenda…repeating what they want, at least every hour.

(Continuing post)
I have only checked the news a few times a day instead of having it on most days. Less drama.

What am I doing instead of listening to the same issues, over and over?
I am enjoying the beginning of Spring. I’ve worked on my little part of the planet, hands in the dirt and loving the sounds of all the birds. The weather is beautiful…so I play outside on all the warmish days.

That is why I picked the song, ‘Here comes the sun’.

I also asked if you are feeling better DYB?

And, I am watching the Islandic volcano blow it’s top in the middle of a day full of snow and a blizzard.
It’s starting to get dark there, but most of the volcano and area below it are burning and throwing fireballs as bright as the sun.

Wow, this is a better link to the volcano’s livestream, with sound and a chat. Folks are saying the Islandic people are calling the volcano, “Bob”.

The sound of the volcano, which is far away from the mike, is so eerie, sends shivers down my spine.

The butterfly just keeps lighting on him! Ear, paw, nose.

Volcano Bob? My Starbucks name is Bob! You’d be surprised how often they get it wrong.

Also, Shadowfax, I’m feeling quite well. The “discomfort” went away within 24 hrs. And it was fairly mild in the first place, so I guess I’m one of the lucky ones! I know a lot of people get hit hard.

@6 OMG

And volcanoes are scary. Are people not scared of this thing erupting???

(Just to be Debbie Downer Biologist here, nothing wrong with enjoying the way the butterfly and the puppy look to human eyes, but it is basically a Beatrix Potter story. Fun to imagine. Not what’s going on.

I wish people could post these things without the (only to me?) silly anthropomorphic frames. grumble grumble grumble.)

@9, mid-ocean ridge volcanoes, which is what this is, aren’t massively explosive like for instance Mt. St Helens. Or some of the Indonesian volcanoes we’ve been hearing about recently. Mid-ocean volcanoes are plenty explosive enough to kill a person standing too close, but they’re not going to blanket a town 50 miles away in ash. Although Eytlafjokull (sp all wrong) did blanket the stratoshpere in ash, so there is that.

quixote, I kept expecting the puppy to eat the butterfly.

Bob, I’m glad to hear you are feeling better. 😉

Iceland has a population under 400K, so it’s either that they don’t multiply like rabbits, like some other parts of the world, or maybe a lot of these folks leave because it isn’t called Iceland for no reason, or maybe some are really afraid of it’s volcanos.

There are volcanos in Hawaii, I have seen them several times while I lived there, and just like in Iceland, people flock to see them when they are at a safe distance.

My ex-husband and I hiked partly up Mt. St. Hellen’s between eruptions, (NOT MY IDEA, long story), until a police car came and picked us up along with our black lab and drove us down the mountain. No ticket, no trouble, just a strong warning.

D, great post. Madonna looks gorgeous in that video!

Shadow, I’m also spending more time outdoors, doing lots of planting & enjoying it. One of my step-bros married a woman from Iceland. It sounds like an interesting place.

Aww, the puppy and the butterfly are cute. Look at his little stub of a tail waggle away.

Decades ago, we drove through volcano country on the Big Island, but nothing was happening with them. The closest I got to a live volcano was during my Bellingham WA years. I had a friend who had a lovely Beechcraft Bonanza and gave me free flying lessons. One day he told me to fly over Mt. Baker and see the mild steam that was coming out of the top. I circled around it and managed to get a few pix of the steamy crater. Those were fun days, we would always land on one of the San Juan Islands and hike into town for lunch. He wanted to teach me until I got a license, but the place I worked at was bought, shut down, & sold by one of the Reagan era corporate raiders. So I packed up and moved back to SoCal.

@14, LOL!

Does anyone have an opinion about the former CDC guy (Redfield) suggesting that the Covid virus came from a virology lab in Wuhan? Apparently he said it on CNN today. He’s getting toasted on twitter.

Insulting chupacabras! What’s next? 😛

Those finches are surreal.

As for Redfield, the party line for wingnuts is that covid is Chy-nah’s Fault™ and it’s better for the outrage machine if they actually cooked it up. (Simply not dealing with something fast enough isn’t a good way to blame someone else if you’re a Trumper.)

As to how much chance the virus really did escape from a lab: just about nil. They base that theory on the point that some of the early identified cases were not near the famous Wuhan wild food market. All that’s really evidence of is that nobody knows when exactly it started and that by the time it was noticed it was already rather widespread. Genomic sequencing shows none of the markers for an engineered virus. And it shows plenty of markers for originating in bats in the area and for passing through a mammalian host, probably pangolin, before infecting people.

So just spouting the usual propaganda. I wish these idiot news people would stop having proven liars on the air!

Thank you DYB, for the post and video! Totally agree about that press conference. Madonna made the story very real.

Love the cute puppy and gorgeous little birds!

Our latest backyard bird discovery is a Pine Siskin. By our count we have around 15 or 16 different species identified. 💕💕💕

Ah, thanks for explaining Q!

MB, very cool that you can identify so many of your birds. I’m going to get a bird feeder and put it outside my kitchen window.

Annie, @18
Where are these beautiful little birds with the most magnificent feathers?

Red, white and black in designer prints of diamonds and accent red.
They don’t seem real…and the other ones posted in the past months are just as spectacular.

This is amazing. In this Vanity Fair piece they mention that Ronald Kessler did not report on some comments from Kellyanne about Reince Priebus because Kessler thought they were too mean. And I just try to imagine a world where Kessler – or any reporter – withholds mean comments about Hillary Hillary because it may hurt her feelings…

Annie, where you are, put up a hummingbird feeder! The best kind are the saucer-like ones that the birds sit on because then you don’t drip sugar solution everywhere and breed ants. I’m pretty sure you can get them for around $14, but maybe that was years ago … 😦 ? Then it’s just a matter of dissolving 1 part white sugar in 4 parts water, letting it cool, pouring it into the feeder, and storing the rest in the fridge. You’ll get Anna’s and Allens, rufous when they’re migrating (the males are spectacular), and possible rare visitors including black-chinned and Costa’s. Hummingbirds are heaps of fun besides being gorgeous. The males display all the time and think they’re miniature dinosaurs. When the females are taking care of chicks you can tell because suddenly the males gives them a wide berth at the feeder. Then they don’t care how big and flashy the boyz are. It’s outta my way!

@24, one more data point showing how Repubs get away with murder, while Dems are in disgrace if they go home for the weekend. It’s all in what’s played up or down.

I wonder if we’ll ever see the day when the media starts reporting on what matters?

@23 – total agreement with Quixote on the hummingbirds. We have the saucer feeder (called a jewel box) as well as a hanging feeder. We sometimes get four or more at once!

We also have a finch feeder (a long yellow tube with perches) that contains Nyger seeds. The finches perch and then flip upside down to stick their beaks into the feeding slots n the sides. It’s insanely cute. We get lesser goldfinches, Hutton’s Vireos, Pine Siskins, and one other bird we can’t identify, but think it might be an immature purple finch.

Finally, we have a fourth feeder that is bigger and contains a mix of wild bird seed. We get house and purple finches, dark-eyed juncos, white-crowned sparrows and mourning doves on that feeder. The mourning doves look gigantic in proportion and really don’t for on the feeder, but that doesn’t stop them!

Birds not on the feeder but who visit our backyard:

Steller’s Jay
Peregrine Falcon
California Towhee
Barn Owl (we think!)

We love watching the birds fight for the feeders, fly around and peck for leftovers on the deck . We call it “bird TV.”

D – I am astonished. I thought the DC press lived for gossip like that. What else have they not reported on, if something so minor was covered up?

@ 28, speaking of the ship stuck in Suez Canal, the QAnon pages are so obsessed with blaming Hillary that USA Today did a fact-check on it to say Hillary had no connection to the ship stuck in Suez.

Shadowfax, no wonder they didn’t want you on Mt. St. Helens then! The tallest volcanoes in the Cascades — Mt. Baker, Glacier Pk, Rainier, St Helens, Adams, Hood, and on south thru Cali are all stratovolcanoes, the most dangerous type as they have explosive, uh, explosions. The Ring of Fire around the Pacific Ocean. It’s not uncommon for them to have steam escaping from the craters or vents, such as what you saw, annie. Some Rainier climbers who weren’t fast enough to get back down before nightfall have stayed warm (and damp) in the summit steam caves. There are over a mile of winding cave tunnels. Some good pics here:

Otherwise climbers avoid those areas! The route I climbed on Mt Adams had vents releasing sulphurous air — not helpful when you’re feeling a touch of altitude sickness at 12,000-some feet high. Devil’s Kitchen on Mt Hood in Oregon is a side-crater area that releases steam and sulphurous air, though I climbed a route near it in winter and fortunately it had enough snow cover so it only sent up wisps of steam.

Shield volcanoes are the ones which send out thin flows of lava, such as what you see in Iceland and Hawaii. They are the least dangerous as people generally have warnings of the path, though the flows do destroy whatever’s in their path.

Lotta coincidences goin’ on.

Sending the message loud and clear to any doctor working in Russia: “If you happen to get a poisoned patient, the smart thing is to not manage to save them. Capisce?”

But financial sanctions on Putin and his henchthings would expose too many Western billionaires so no can do.

How do these people sleep at night?

@32 Luna, yep, the top two doctors who treated Navalny are dead now…

Putin does it in the open and who can stop him? Except Death.

I really hope Biden can do something about Putin. I know that just not having Drumpf in office is a big step towards ending his reign of terror, but I hope people smarter than I am can figure out a way to hold him accountable for his evil regime.

Speaking of Putin…look who’s in Russia stroking Vlad’s ego? None other than the woman who accused Biden of rape and was forced to shut up after her story was found to be demonstrably false.

Yeah, Putin’s so obviously “more in control” because he murders anyone who disagrees with him.

Does anyone here cook taro root? It’s a better version of potato for diabetics (like me.) Has anyone ever frozen them? When I go back upstate there are no taro roots to be found. I wonder if I can freeze them for long-term storage and bring with me from NYC.

I’ll ask my local expert about taro. Meanwhile, do you already know about Jerusalem artichokes? They’re a root vegetable with a fairly indigestible starch (ie don’t turn into sugar, so useful for diabetics) that taste wonderful. Well, I like artichokes and they really do remind you of that flavor. Not sure how they would freeze. I know potatoes get unpleasantly mushy. It all depends on the structure of the starches and whether freezing breaks it.

One alternative might be desiccation. Cook a mash that suits your taste, spread it thin, and either put in a very slow oven or your handy dandy desiccator. Or slice the raw veg thin to desiccate and cook before using. Cheaper desiccators only cost about $20-30.

@38 quixote> I’ve never even heard of a desiccator!

And I have not heard of Jerusalem artichokes. I’ll have to see if I can find these.

Taro root (also known as yautia in some countries; it has several different names) has resistant starch, so is recommended over potatoes for diabetics. So far of all the things I’ve tried to replace a white potato with, taro root comes the closest in taste and texture. (I do not like yams.) It’s a bit denser than a white potato, so I eat less of it because it’s more filling. Whole Foods has it as taro root. A Latin America vegetable store near me has it as yautia. But I have not seen it upstate anywhere.

I just checked with a local pharmacy to see about vaccines. Told me to check tomorrow and they may be getting some of the J&J. Obviously I’ll take whichever I can get but I sure like the idea of that one shot deal.

Just checked my mail box and my paper stimulus check was there. Yay!

Fredster, fingers crossed on the vaccine!! And fantastic about the check arriving!! Don’t spend it all in one place!

NY is opening vaccine eligibility to 30+ tomorrow. 16+ on April 6th.

“Laboratory desiccators store moisture-sensitive samples, reagents, and items to protect against humidity and dust. They remove and keep out moisture to provide a dry atmosphere for materials such as powders, crystals, and electronic components. A typical lab desiccator has a compartment for holding silica gel beads or other moisture-absorbing desiccants. Vacuum desiccators have a port for attaching a vacuum pump to dry materials more quickly than nonvacuum units.”

Uh … wouldn’t a food dehydrator/oven at 120 degree-ish be better?

Jerusalem artichoke plants (Helianthus tuberosus) look like sunflowers, which are close relatives. They have tuberous roots as you’d guess from the species name. The plants are easy to grow because they’re thugs, so be careful where you plant them.

What’s your point, Luna? Do you figure I’m talking about a lab grade desiccator because I used “desiccator” instead of “dehydrator”? ??

Oven at 120-ish works well. I mentioned that.

And as for Jerusalem artichokes being thugs, well, they’re giant dandelions. It’s their heritage!

I just noticed on good old wikipedia that it says “Tubers stored for any length of time convert their inulin into its component fructose.” I don’t know if the same would be true after desiccation or cooking and storing, but if any kind of storing ups the fructose content, it may not be so good for a diabetic. 😦

Amazing news about your check, Fredster! Congratulations!!

Looks like we are all starting to get vaccinated. Woot woot##

Cute bear break!

@46, a whole bunch of references to lab desiccators showed up when I searched for desiccator, so I assumed (ya, I know) that labs are where they are most often used. Also, it seems desiccators use a different processes than dehydration. With a desiccator, there’s an absorbent substance which pulls water into it. Dehydration induces requires no desiccant substance as it uses thermal energy to move the water into the air. Or … are both processes considered dehydration? I think I need to review the physics of sublimation (from solid to gaseous) and evaporation (liquid to gaseous) as applied to water transport from food.

As far as the oven, I meant to merely reiterate your suggestion; I hadn’t missed it when reading your earlier comment. Sometimes tone across the intertubes (or whatever malapropism that Bush used) is glitchy. Or else it’s user error, lol.

@48 the bear video is adorable. Not to mention Steely Dan.

Those sweet but naughty baby bears are so darn cute.

Fredster, so happy you got your Fed $$.

Q, did you get your $ yet?

I have to scratch my head when we are told everyone can get a vaccine in weeks. Do they say that because the deplorables won’t get a shot and they will therefore have enough for everyone else that isn’t a crackpot?

MB, you have Peregrine Falcons in your yard??? That’s amazing, especially since you have a smorgasbord of birds they can hunt, especially Morning Doves which is one of their favorite meals. (I know, they are raptors….)

I watch the falcon family on the clock tower of UC Berkeley, they have three different live stream cameras and 4 eggs right now.

DYB, taro root

Here’s how the Hawaiians make Poi.

I’m not fond of the texture, but lots of people like it in the islands.

Here’s the simple recipe…you can always dress it up.

@51 – you are spot on, Shadow! Apparently peregrine falcons are not unusual visitors to back yards in more rural areas, especially those with bird feeders and mourning doves.

We’ve seen it a couple of times. It doesn’t live in the yard, as there aren’t enough mature trees for it to make a nest. But it has perched on our deck railing, and on our plant stand where the feeders are! It’s magnificent.

I asked my taro expert and he says his preferred way to make them is just baked. And they don’t freeze well at all in any form. And he doesn’t recommend dehydrating.

I bet the corms (“roots”) would keep for several weeks, so maybe just take a box of them with you and use it as a periodic excuse to visit the Big Smoke? 😀

My personal feeling about poi is EWWWWWW….

Different topic: I’m super-jealous of all mb’s birds!

Yeah Q, I am not a fan of Poi, the texture and the purple color…

I didn’t want to turn DYB off to taro since Poi is just made from the root and water, cooked.

MB, yes peregrine falcons are beautiful. They like to live way up high above other birds, so they can dive bomb their prey in the air if possible.
The little family I watch have been living in Berkeley, on campus for more than five years.

They hunt the entire area and the father, Grinnell is banded and so are all the chicks that survive, so they can be tracked by the National bird society of some sort. (Sorry, I don’t remember their name) The mother is Annie, not banded, and all the chicks are named by the people that watch the cams and vote, anyone that wants to on campus.

There are professional birdwatchers that take amazing photos of them from the ground and through the windows of nearby tall buildings.

I’ve never had Poi… And I think the color depends on the species? I’ve only seen white Taro roots in NYC. Some will have small purple speckles in the flesh, but some won’t. So far I’ve used Taro as a substitute for a white potato; boil and make a mash. It’s a bummer it can’t be kept for “long term” storage. All the googling I did either says to use them up quickly or a couple of places suggested a) soaking in warm water and freezing or b) par-cooking and then freezing. But that did not appear to be the consensus. Which I guess must be for a reason! So eat quickly it is. I definitely don’t want it to develop more fructose!

I wish I wasn’t a meat-and-potatoes kind of Eastern European!

Damn. Just typed a paragraph listing all the bird species I’ve seen in the yard and local area and it vanished after I hit “post comment.” Some days WP doesn’t like me.

Shadow, re my check: no! Not there yet. Grummble. And the web site is still telling me to take several seats.

I read earlier today that Matt Gaetz was considering leaving office to take a job at Newsmax. I’m suuure it’s just a coincidence that now they are reporting that Gaetz is under an investigation by DOJ concerning a sexual relationship with a 17 year old girl. There’s also a question if he paid for her travel – across state lines – another big no no.

2nd try:

Song sparrows, chickadees, Oregon juncos, spotted towhees, house finches, ruby-crowned and golden-crowned kinglets, bushtits, Anna’s hummingbirds, Western flickers, Steller’s jays, Bewick’s wrens, Pacific wrens, scrub jays, crows, and a few smallish streaky bird species I’ve forgotten. Not in yard but in local area: Bald eagles, great horned owls, screech owls, Cooper’s and sharp-shinned hawks.

@60 – Was just coming in to say that!! I think every Republican must be a pedophile at this point.

@61 – Luna that is almost exactly what we have! Have not seen the flickers, wrens or kinglets.

Waiting to hear the Rs yell: “Resign!!!” about Gaetz.

MB — Our feeder is a tube-style with short perches and a clear dome rain shield/squirrel deterrent at the top. Once in a while the flicker tries to get bird seed out of it and looks so silly trying to hang on!

I had not heard that about Gaetz! Poor Nestor!

Luna, I always copy the post I’m about to hit “Post” on in case in vanishes. That way if it does I can just paste it again and try a second time. It’s become a habit at this point because WP is very buggy.


LOL Just flipped to FOX and Gaetz is telling Fucker Carlson about a $25 million extortion attempt against him by a former DOJ official. The plot thickens.

Fucker Carlson…made me laugh out loud.

GAgal, he’s blaming the Deep State? Of course! I’m sure Hillary did it!

The investigation started under Bill Barr, incidentally.

We have so many bird watchers and lovers here. Fun to hear the stories and which ones come to visit your backyard and even get watched online.
I have been debating on another attempt at a bird feeder, but want to try again to grow tomatoes and keep the birds away.

A month ago I put a glass bowl on top of my little fence, full of water. The tiniest birds come by to drink and start chirping for me when the bowl is empty. They are so cute.
I have a feeling squirrels and others use it as their watering hole too because the bowl can end up empty in one day.

@66 – OMG. It’s all coming out. You watch, he’ll be linked to Epstein at some point.

Gaetz, I call him Pretend Elvis, I HATE that ahole so much.

Gaetz casually mentions to Fucker Carlson that he too has been accused of sexual impropriety. And then points out he, Fucker Carlson, has met the young woman in question… What do you think is going through Fucker Carlson’s mind?

The tactfulness of flinging that at Fucker Carlson on the air… I’m not even going to insult moles by calling him a mole dick.

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