Home > Daynotes Home > Week of 6 September 2010

Photograph of Robert Bruce Thompson
Daynotes Journal

Week of 6 September 2010


Latest Update: Friday, 10 September 2010 08:35 -0400

Paying for this Place
Visit Barbara's Journal Page

Monday, 6 September 2010
[Daynotes Forums]    [Last Week]   [Mon]  [Tue]  [Wed]  [Thu]  [Fri]  [Sat]  [Sun]   [Next Week]    [HardwareGuys Forums]

00:00 - Took the day off.




[top]

Tuesday, 7 September 2010
[Daynotes Forums]    [Last Week]   [Mon]  [Tue]  [Wed]  [Thu]  [Fri]  [Sat]  [Sun]   [Next Week]    [HardwareGuys Forums]

10:04 - Barbara and I drove up to Smith Mountain Lake in Virginia Sunday morning and came back yesterday afternoon. Our friends Steve and Linda Childers have a lake house, and invited us up to set up our scope and look at the night sky. The skies there are excellent, about as good as any easily accessible observing site east of the Mississippi. We stayed out for three or four hours Sunday night/Monday morning, and added a few Herschel 400 objects to our score.

In the late evening, we noticed a very bright star rising in the trees in the southeast. No star belonged there, so at first we thought it was an airliner 20 or 30 miles out. After looking at it for a couple minutes, we didn't notice any apparent motion. Steve finally turned his 17.5" Dob onto it and announced that it had moon. Yes, it was Jupiter rising. Jupiter reaches opposition in a couple of weeks, and it's a very close one this year. The magnitude is -2.9, and its apparent size is nearly a full arcminute (one sixtieth of a degree; the full moon is about 30 arcminutes). Steve thought he could see a disk, which is possible at that size.

We gave Malcolm a tranquilizer for the trip up and back. Otherwise, he'd bark berserkly the whole time. The last time we were up there, in March, we'd left Malcolm at the lake house with Linda, and he'd barked and howled the entire time we were gone. This time, we took him along with us and just left him in the Trooper. I figured he'd just lie on the seat and sleep since he'd be able to hear our voices, and that's just what he did.

Malcolm is showing signs of a UTI, so I started him this morning with a loading dose of 500 mg of amoxicillin. I'll give him 250 mg every eight hours for a couple days and then 250 mg every 12 hours for another week. I was going to do a urine culture, but the UTI doesn't appear to be severe. If the amoxicillin doesn't knock it down quickly, I'll start him on something else and do a culture.


[top]

Wednesday, 8 September 2010
[Daynotes Forums]    [Last Week]   [Mon]  [Tue]  [Wed]  [Thu]  [Fri]  [Sat]  [Sun]   [Next Week]    [HardwareGuys Forums]

08:16 - Malcolm is already feeling better. He's back to normal, with no UTI symptoms. It's amazing what a gram of amoxicillin can do in just a few hours. I'll keep him on 250 mg b.i.d. for the next week or so just to make sure.

I half-seriously considered the one-shot method, 3 grams of amoxicillin in a single dose. That's been tested in humans and found to have nearly as high a success rate as the 7 to 10 day course, and with fewer side effects. The problem is, I couldn't find any papers about using the single-dose method in canines, and I was concerned about hepatotoxicity in an 11-year-old dog. From past experience, I knew that Malcolm tolerates a standard course of amoxicillin well, so I decided that the lower dosage over a week or ten days was the safer method.

So now I need to restock amoxicillin. Back in the mid- to late 70's, I used to get wholesale catalogs from Sherry Pharmaceutical. I ordered stuff like bottles of 1,000 250 mg amoxicillin capsules for $15 or 5,000 4 mg chlorpheniramine maleate tablets for $12. Keeping them in the freezer extended their shelf life by literally an order of magnitude. Alas, a quick web search showed me that Sherry is no more. The son of its founder apparently went on to found Home Depot. So I'll probably just order veterinary pharmaceuticals from Thomas Laboratories.


[top]

Thursday, 9 September 2010
[Daynotes Forums]    [Last Week]   [Mon]  [Tue]  [Wed]  [Thu]  [Fri]  [Sat]  [Sun]   [Next Week]    [HardwareGuys Forums]

09:30 - We've started watching True Blood, HBO's vampire series based on the books by Charlaine Harris. The writing is excellent, as is the cast. In particular, Rutina Wesley as Tara Thornton is superb. I would watch her playing any role.

We're also watching Brothers & Sisters, which Barbara likes and which has won many awards. I think it's one of the worst series I've ever seen. I actually searched the Internet to find out if it has won any awards for badness. The writing is sub-par, hackneyed and preachy. The acting is pedestrian at best, and the plots banal. It stars Sally Field, whom I despise. The one thing it has going for it is that it also stars Emily VanCamp--Amy in Everwood--whom I adore and would watch in anything. Unfortunately, her first appearance isn't until episode 14.

I'm still working heads-down on the microchemistry kit, writing up labs, researching and writing MSDSs, and so on.


[top]

Friday, 10 September 2010
[Daynotes Forums]    [Last Week]   [Mon]  [Tue]  [Wed]  [Thu]  [Fri]  [Sat]  [Sun]   [Next Week]    [HardwareGuys Forums]

08:35 - Happy Anniversary to us. Barbara and I have been married for 27 years today. In one sense, it seems like much longer, but in another it seems like no time at all.



Several people have asked me for my take on the religious nutter in Florida who plans to burn korans tomorrow. Or does he? It was on, then off, but now it appears to be back on.

The responses to his plan range from approval to condemnation. Interestingly, it's impossible to predict what someone's response will be even if you know their general political outlook. We have some conservatives, liberals, and libertarians on the pro side, and others from across the political spectrum on the anti side. PZ Myers has an excellent response: Setting the Koran on fire, vs. setting personal liberties on fire.

I favor the burning, simply because I favor showing disrespect and contempt for all religions and all religious symbols at all times. I have only contempt for that religious nutter in Florida, but I heartily approve of him burning a symbol of islam. Once he gets it burning vigorously, I hope he pisses on it to put it out.

If you'd like to participate in tomorrow's festivities but don't have a koran, you can still do so. Just burn a copy of the bible or the torah. For that matter, burn a copy of Darwin's Origin or Dawkins' Greatest Show on Earth. The point is, nothing is sacred. Nothing is beyond questioning. Nothing gets a free pass. Everything is subject to criticism and rebuttal. Offending someone else's beliefs, no matter how deeply held, is not a crime. But responding violently to something or someone that offends you is a crime.


[top]

Saturday, 11 September 2010
[Daynotes Forums]    [Last Week]   [Mon]  [Tue]  [Wed]  [Thu]  [Fri]  [Sat]  [Sun]   [Next Week]    [HardwareGuys Forums]

00:00 -



[top]

Sunday, 12 September 2010
[Daynotes Forums]    [Last Week]   [Mon]  [Tue]  [Wed]  [Thu]  [Fri]  [Sat]  [Sun]   [Next Week]    [HardwareGuys Forums]

00:00 -



[top]

Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 by Robert Bruce Thompson. All Rights Reserved.