Friday, March 19, 2004

Why I became an Engineer

Not me but my native informant.

Some years ago, when I was building nukes (the power plant; not the bomb) I worked with an older engineer who told me the story of how he came to practice his profession.

After The Big One -- WW2 he was working road construction in Oklahoma. In that less advanced era there was still a lot of manual work involved and one day he found himself spreading asphalt in temperatures that rose above 100 degrees F. Long about noon, a big car pulled up to the worksite. It attracted the crew's attention because its windows were closed which said only one thing -- this was one of the very rare cars in that era equipped (at vast expense) with auto air conditioning. Out of the vehicle stepped some civil engineers who spent a few minutes looking at the progress of the job. Then one of the group remarked, "That's enough, let's go to lunch." They got back into the car and drove away.

At the end of the day, my friend told the foreman that he was quitting to go to engineering school.

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Mel's Milllion Stories

The Washington Post reports today that Gibson could make hundreds of millions off 'The Passion.' The story has also been promoted as a feature of Thursday's 'Entertainment Tonight.'

PS: The Post adds Gibson told ABC Radio that there were several 'R-rated' Old Testament stories that 'fired his imagination,' most notably the tale of the Maccabees, who overthrew an idol-worshiping Syrian king in 164 B.C. 'They stood up for their beliefs and made war and came out winning,' Gibson said. 'It's like a western, you know.' "

Of course this wasn't said to "ABC Radio" but to talk radio host Sean Hannity in this long interview posted on Sean's website. Start at about 27:00 minutes if you want to find the money quotes.

On Hearing that Spain Has Capitulated to the Terrorists

Classical verse on World War IV.

First read Frederick Turner's original here at Tech Central Station.

Then if you're interested in the author's many references to Spain's millennium of war with Islam, read my annotated version of the poem here.

All annotations are my responsibility.