Sunday, October 20, 2019

Two Wheeled Sidewalk Zombies Are Coming

Companies hope they’ll keep the sidewalks clear, but there’s plenty of reason for skepticism. 

Laura Bliss
Oct 19, 2019

Lewis Joly / AP

Like some sort of catchy techno-pop mash-up, self-driving scooters are now trending in the dance halls of micro-mobility. Uber has said that it’s developing robotic versions of its dockless scooters and bikes currently operating in cities around the world. The manufacturer Segway has a three-wheeled trike that can be driven remotely. And a start-up called Shared is pursuing a self-driving prototype of a mopedlike electric conveyance.

Add another tune to the medley: A technology start-up called Tortoise launched today, focused on “low-speed autonomy” for shared scooters and e-bikes.

Tortoise isn’t an e-scooter company. Rather, it builds technology that combines self-driving and remote-controlled features that can be integrated into any type of shared dockless vehicle. The pitch is that this will allow the rentable scooters and bikes that are currently scattered around cities to self-deploy where needed to more readily match supply to demand, simplifying retrieval, charging, and replacement. Moving the vehicles around without direct human intervention would ease a major logistical pain for companies, and cut down on street and sidewalk clutter for cities.

“The days of going on a wild-goose chase to find an electric scooter or bike are over,” writes Tortoise’s co-founder and CEO, Dmitry Shevelenko, in a blog post, “because they’ll now come right to you.”

Unfortunately, the Electric Scooters Are Fantastic Robinson Meyer 

Fly On, My Sleek Electric Bird Conor Friedersdorf

How Lyft’s Ride-Sharing Business Works (And Doesn’t) Alexis C. Madrigal 

The Millennial Urban Lifestyle Is About to Get More Expensive Derek Thompson

Well, not “now” exactly. Tortoise-equipped devices are not steering themselves around major cities yet. But the start-up has partnered with the city of Peachtree Corners, Georgia, to test how such vehicles can ease lunchtime congestion near a local tech incubator and employment center, and it plans to roll out its devices there and in two European cities in November, according to a PR representative. In the video below, an unmanned Tortoise scooter performs unhurried, self-driving laps on a patio in Berlin. This in itself appears to be something of a feat, since the tall, two-wheeled vehicles tip over so easily; Tortoise has added a set of “robotic training wheels” for balance.

They will offer the service for a fixed price per month to save on operations cost and prevent urban clutter.#MME — Edward Miller (@TweetEdMiller) October 1, 2019

Should the scooter get knocked over, thanks to either human-on-robot aggression or some other road hazard, the Tortoise is no more able to right itself than its reptilian namesake, a PR representative confirms: “The system would automatically ping the operator letting them know human intervention is required. Because we’ll be optimizing for smooth routes with not a lot of foot traffic (when possible) the hope is that this isn’t as huge of an issue as it currently is with scooters.”

The scooter’s stately pace (hence the name Tortoise) is a big part of the package. In his post, Shevelenko explains that the company works with cities to determine where scooters can safely and slowly maneuver from wherever they’ve been left to where they ought to be—think the middle of the street to a public-transit hub, via a route of empty sidewalks or alleys. Right now, Tortoise employees and contracted tele-operators in Mexico City are responsible for monitoring the pathways via a camera attached to the device.

Of the many challenges associated with the future of robotic scooters, skepticism from city officials—and acceptance by the public—might be up there with technological hurdles. With some major cities having banned electric scooters, and others where sidewalk delivery robots are verboten, it’s not clear that city councils will embrace this opportunity to welcome two-wheeled sidewalk zombies. Meanwhile, the appeal of scooter vandalism and theft would seem even more enticing when the device is laden with valuable autonomous gadgetry. (For reference, Segway’s prototype robo-scooter will cost about $1,000 more than its human-piloted offerings.) As with the autonomous garbage can that was recently the target of much internet mockery, it remains to be seen whether scooting and self-driving are two technologies that truly belong together.

But Tortoise is betting that cities will want a solution to the safety and aesthetic concerns arising from sidewalk clutter, which are the main reasons for those bans anyway. And it expects that mobility start-ups are eager to ease the super-costly operational challenges of recharging, repairing, and rebalancing their fleets, which currently require gigantic support crews or amateur “bounty hunters” chasing financial incentives. In 2018, one of the largest players, Bird, spent close to half its gross revenue per ride paying contractors to charge its e-scooters, and another 14 percent of that revenue for repairs.

Taking paid human workers out of that equation could save a lot of money; already, Tortoise is working with several scooter manufacturers and active fleet operators, including Go X and Shared, to put its product on the streets.

But in the fast-moving world of mobility technology, and with considerable challenges likely awaiting this particular product, it’s reasonable to wonder whether Tortoise isn’t just another well-funded flash in the pan. And it is a sign of the times in another way: Given the questionable business model of the scooter companies (and so many other consumer tech companies that cater to young urbanites), executives are far more focused on actually making money than they have been in the past. “2018 was about scaling,” Travis VanderZanden, the founder and CEO of Bird, said at a conference in January. “2019 is about really focusing on the unit economics of the business.”

'Bad case of bullying’ — British soldier jailed for excessive nipple twisting

By: J.D. Simkins  

A British Army soldier will be spending time behind bars for abusing recruits. (U.S. Army)

Dance-provocateur Chubby Checker might’ve never penned the lyrics to his 1960 hit, “The Twist,” if he knew, nearly 60 years later, a maniacal British soldier would punitively apply the words to the weary nipples 

of chest-clenching subordinates. 

British Army Lance Sergeant Liam Cruise-Taylor has been jailed for a six-month period after admitting to a series of allegations of punching, elbowing, and twisting the nipples of the soldiers under his charge, according to the Shropshire Star.

Abuse by the 32-year-old reportedly occurred during parts of 2016 and 2017, when he was responsible for training new members of the Irish Guards Recruits, whose mission it is to protect the royal family.

Once they arrived for training at Catterick Infantry Centre in North Yorkshire, England, his men found protecting themselves from their superior’s pattern of abusive behavior was difficult enough.

A total of seven victims accused Cruise-Taylor of ill treatment “in the form of physical violence used against them throughout their training,” the judge said at the sentencing.

And nipple-related punishments were just the tip of the maltreatment iceberg.

On one occasion, Cruise-Taylor reportedly delivered multiple punches to the ribs of a recruit. On another, he collapsed a recruit with an elbow strike to the sternum and stood over the distressed man, screaming, “Stand up and take it like a man.”

During roll call, Cruise-Taylor slapped one trainee across the face, the report said.

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No reason was given for the violence, but when you’re Lance Sergeant Liam Cruise-Taylor, you don’t need a reason to be a punk ass.

Another recruit, meanwhile, committed the capital offense of mispronouncing Cruise-Taylor’s unnecessarily hyphenated name. The overcompensating-for-something sergeant responded by punching him squarely “in the belly,” the report says.

“This was a bad case of bullying,” the judge said.

Despite opposition by his lawyers, the abusive soldier was busted down to the rank of lance corporal and subsequently locked up.

The lawyers doth protest too much, methinks.

“No lance sergeant can possibly behave in the way he behaved — taking advantage of his rank and status with regard to raw recruits," the judge said in the report.

"Given the circumstances, reduction in rank was almost inevitable.”

As for recruit retribution, the courts reportedly refused to invoke the Mesopotamian Code of Hammurabi and the ancient rite of nipple-for-a-nipple retaliation.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Qantas tests passenger limits — and pilot brain patterns — on world’s longest nonstop flight

Published Fri, Oct 18 2019
11:41 AM EDT
Updated Fri, Oct 18 2019
1:03 PM EDT

Leslie Josephs@lesliejosephs

The 20-hour New York-Sydney nonstop will be the world’s longest flight.
Qantas pilots will provide urine samples and wear brain-monitoring devices to test fatigue levels.
Boeing and Airbus haven’t yet developed aircraft modifications to perform the 20-hour flight with a full payload.

Qantas is testing a Boeing 787-9 to fly between New York and Sydney nonstop for the first time.
Source: Qantas

Can a 20-hour flight ever be bearable? Australian airline Qantas wants to figure that out with its first ever nonstop flight from New York to Sydney, a venture it calls Project Sunrise.

The 10,000-mile trip, which takes off Friday night from New York and lands Sunday morning local time, would be the world’s longest nonstop flight, and Qantas wants travelers to get on Sydney time as soon as possible.

“We’ll be encouraging customers to drink coffee on the flight,” said Phil Capps, Qantas’ head of customer experience.

It will be the first time Qantas is collecting data for a route before operating it. Qantas is teaming up with researchers from the University of Sydney and setting up the Boeing 787-9 as a laboratory, testing recipes, lighting schemes, temperatures and stretching exercises specially designed to combat jet lag on six volunteer passengers. They’ll be seated in business class.

It’s still a ‘two-horse race’ for Project Sunrise planes: Qantas

Qantas estimates it would start the flights in 2022 or 2023.

Aircraft performance has improved in recent years, and carriers are pushing the limits of ultra-long-haul travel. Singapore Airlines last year resumed nonstop service from the New York area to Singapore with an 18½-hour nonstop from Newark. Qantas in 2018 debuted a more than 17-hour flight from Perth in Western Australia to London. Qatar Airways operates a nearly 17-hour trip from Doha to Auckland.

Just 50 people, including pilots and cabin crew, will be on board Qantas’ marathon nonstop to Sydney, because the aircraft can only handle that range with a reduced payload. The route isn’t official yet — Qantas is pushing both Boeing and its European rival Airbus to develop aircraft that could perform that mission with a full load of passengers.

Pilots will wear brain monitors during the nearly 20-hour flight.
Source: Qantas
Urine samples, spicy food

Qantas is teaming up with researchers to study sleep patterns and alertness of travelers and crew members, in an effort to limit the impact of jet lag.

Pilots will wear brain monitoring equipment during the flight and provide urine samples before, during and after the flight to gauge melatonin levels.

Researchers from the University of Sydney’s Charles Perkins Center polled some 500 passengers on Qantas’ routes longer than nine hours about their sleep strategies and found that 54% used ear plugs or noise-canceling headphones, 38% drank alcohol, which scientists say makes jet lag worse because of dehydration, and 10% took sleeping pills.

The flight departs around 9 p.m. from New York, but Qantas plans to keep travelers awake for around six hours longer, by delaying meal service.

The meal before passengers go to sleep includes soothing desserts such as a nutmeg panna cotta, and travelers are encouraged to drink hot chocolate. Meals during Sydney’s daytime hours are spicier and more vibrantly flavored.

The volunteers will have kept a daily journal two weeks before the flight about their sleeping and eating patterns and will provide more feedback during the study. Their attention levels as they go through time zones will be gauged by their ability to play “Whack a Mole” on an iPad.

Researchers will track passengers’ alertness and their moods throughout the flight.

Lights and temperatures will adjust throughout the flight. Cooler, bluer lighting tones help alertness while the cabin will be bathed in warmer tones before travelers are encouraged to go to sleep, Capps said.

The airline is also providing guided meditation and stretching exercises, and passengers are given areas around the aircraft to stand, but nothing is mandatory.

“The scientific protocol is whatever they are most comfortable doing they will do,” Capps said. “If someone is sound asleep when it’s time to do stretches we’ll leave them sleeping.”

Friday, October 18, 2019

TheList 5124

The List 5124 TGB

To All,

I hope that you all have a great weekend



Today in Naval History

October 18

1812 The sloop-of-war Wasp, commanded by Master Commandant Jacob Jones, captures HMS Frolic. After a severe engagement of 43 minutes, both vessels are dismasted. HMS Poictiers appears shortly thereafter and Wasp has to surrender as it can neither run nor hope to fight such an overwhelming opponent as the 74-gun ship-of-the-line. Wasp serves the British as HMS Peacock until it is lost off the Virginia Capes in 1813.

1867 The sloop-of-war Ossipee and the third-class screw steamer Resaca participate in formal transfer of Alaska from Russia to U.S. authority at Sitka and remain to enforce law and order in the new territory.

1944 USS Bluegill (SS 242) and USS Raton (SS 270) attack a Japanese convoy in the South China Sea. Bluegill sinks the army cargo ships Arabia Maru and Chinsei Maru and freighter Hakushika Maru. Raton sinks the army cargo ships Taikai Maru and Shiranesan Maru.

1977 USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) is commissioned at Norfolk, Va. The Ike, named after the nations 34th president, is the third nuclear-powered and second Nimitz-class aircraft carrier.

2003 USS Chafee (DDG 90) is commissioned at Newport, R.I. The first U.S. Navy ship named to honor John Hubbard Chafee, the late Senator from Rhode Island, who also served as Secretary of the Navy under President Nixon.

October 19

1843 While commanding the first screw propelled U.S. naval steamer Princeton, Capt. Robert F. Stockton challenges the British merchant ship Great Western to a speed race off New York. Princeton easily wins the race.

1864 The steamer Mobile captures schooner Emily off San Luis Pass, Texas with a cargo of 150 bales of cotton.

1915 The Naval Submarine Base at New London, Conn. is established.

1944 President Franklin D. Roosevelt approves Secretary of Navy James V. Forrestal's order for African American women to be accepted into the Naval Reserve.

1987 U.S. Navy destroyers destroy two Iranian oil-drilling platforms during Operation Nimble Archer. This action was in response to the Iranian Silkworm Missile that hit MV Sea Isle City, which was under the protection of Operation Earnest Will.

2000 USNS Mary Sears (T-AGS 65) is launched at Halter Marine in Pascagoula, Miss. She is the sixth Military Sealift Command Pathfinder class oceanographic survey ship.

Thanks to CHINFO

Executive Summary:

• The New York Times reports that Vice President Pence agreed to a deal with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that accepted a Turkish military presence in northern Syria in exchange for a five-day cease-fire.

• Addressing the 12th Regional Seapower Symposium in Venice, CNO Adm. Mike Gilday stressed the importance of Navy-to-Navy relationships, reports USNI News.

• Stars and Stripes reports on inclusion of U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Stratton in exercise MTA Sama Sama with the U.S. Navy, Philippine Navy and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force.

• Associated Press reports deep sea explorers have found the wreck of Japanese ship Kaga, sunk during the WWII Battle of Midway.

Today in History October 18


The "shoemakers of Boston"--the first labor organization in what would become the United States--was authorized by the Massachusetts Bay Colony.


Edict of Nantes lifted by Louis XIV. The edict, signed at Nantes, France, by King Henry IV in 1598, gave the Huguenots religious liberty, civil rights and security. By revoking the Edict of Nantes, Louis XIV abrogated their religious liberties.


The Allies defeat Napoleon Bonaparte at Leipzig.


The Alaska territory is formally transferred to the U.S. from Russian control.


The rules for American football are formulated at meeting in New York among delegates from Columbia, Rutgers, Princeton and Yale universities.


The weather station at the top of Ben Nevis, Scotland, the highest mountain in Britain, is declared open. Weather stations were set up on the tops of mountains all over Europe and the Eastern United States in order to gather information for the new weather forecasts.


M. Baudry is the first to fly a dirigible across the English Channel--from La Motte-Breil to Wormwood Scrubbs.


The First Balkan War breaks out between the members of the Balkan League--Serbia, Bulgaria, Greece and Montenegro--and the Ottoman Empire.


Czechs seize Prague and renounce Hapsburg's rule.


Madrid opens a subway system.


Russian Soviets grant Crimean independence.


President Franklin D. Roosevelt bans war submarines from U.S. ports and waters.


Lt. General Joseph Stilwell is recalled from China by president Franklin Roosevelt.


The First Turkish Brigade arrives in Korea to assist the U.N. forces fighting there.


A Russian unmanned spacecraft makes the first landing on the surface of Venus.


US athletes Tommi Smith and John Carlos suspended by US Olympic Committee for giving "black power" salute while receiving their medals at the Olympic Games in Mexico City.


Bolivian president Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada resigns in the wake of protests centered around Bolivia's natural gas resources.


Suicide attack on a motorcade in Karachi, Pakistan, kills at least 139 and wounds 450; the subject of the attack, Pakistan's former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, is not harmed.


Another Iwo Jima flag-raiser was mis-ID'd, Marine Corps confirms: report

By Dom Calicchio | Fox News

It's one of the most iconic images from World War II: a group of U.S. Marines raising the American flag at the Battle of Iwo Jima.

And now the U.S. Marine Corps admits it has long misidentified one of the service members who took part in the flag-raising – three years after admitting a similar error.


According to NBC News, a team of historians recently determined that one of the Marines in the photo was Cpl. Harold "Pie" Keller, not Pfc. Rene Gagnon, as had long been believed.

The correction comes three years after a previous inquiry found that another of the flag-raisers was Pfc. Harold Schultz, not Navy hospital corpsman John Bradley, NBC reported.

The image of the Marines raising the flag was captured in 1945 by Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal, who won a Pulitzer Prize for the shot. It was later the inspiration for the U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial statue in Arlington County, Va., which was dedicated in 1954.

According to NBC, the latest correction to the list of flag-raising Marines resulted from a review by historians Stephen Foley, Dustin Spence and Brent Westmeyer, whose work was validated by investigators from the Marine Corps and the FBI.

"Without the initiative and contributions of both private historians devoted to preservation of our history and the FBI's Digital Evidence Laboratory, the Marine Corps would not have this opportunity to expand on the historical record of the second flag raising on Mount Suribachi," the Marine Corps said in a statement, according to NBC.

With the recent correction, the list of six Marines in the iconic photo now includes Ira Hayes, Harold Schultz, Michael Strank, Harold "Pie" Keller and Harlen Block, according to NBC.

But the Marine Corps added that, in a sense, it doesn't matter which Marines were in the photo, because the image represents the hard work, determination and sacrifice of all who served.

"Regardless of who was in the photograph, each and every Marine who set foot on Iwo Jima, or supported the effort from the sea and air around the island is, and always will be, a part of our Corps' cherished history," the Marines' statement read. "In the words of General David H. Berger, Commandant of the Marine Corps, 'they are all heroes.'"


Thanks to Carl

(NEVER fowled out!! Did not know he was such a nice guy—watch the last video to hear the great players, experts and others talk about Wilt!)

Wilt Chamberlain's Heart Attack

October 13, 2019

Wilt Chamberlain was possibly the greatest basketball player and the greatest athlete ever. The 63-year-old Chamberlain was reported to have died of a heart attack, but we are supposed to ask how one of the world's greatest and fittest athletes could possibly die of a heart attack.

Success in Every Sport He Tried

Wilton Norman Chamberlain was born in Philadelphia in 1936. He was 6'11" when he entered Philadelphia's Overbrook High School, and led them to three public school championships and two all-city titles. In high school, he:

• ran the quarter mile in less than 48 seconds to set the U.S. high school record, and the half mile in 1:58.3,

• high-jumped 6'6″ and broad jumped 22 feet, and

• was the state of Pennsylvania shot put champion at 53'4″.

He was the most recruited high school player in the country, with more than 200 colleges interested in him. He went to the University of Kansas, where he:

• was the best basketball player in the country,

• won the Big 8 high jump championship his junior year,

• threw the shot put more than 47 feet, and

• was 4th in the 1956 Kansas Relays' hop-step-jump.

In the National Basketball Association, he scored more than 100 points in a single game and averaged more than 30 points per game throughout his professional career. He bench pressed 500 pounds, was timed at 4.6 seconds in the 40-yard dash and had an incredible vertical jump of 48 inches. After his incredible NBA career, he became arguably the best volleyball player in the world. At age 60, he ran in the Honolulu marathon and competed in a 50-mile race in Canada.

Wilt Chamberlain's Dipper Dunk -

The Great Lover

Long after his athletic career ended, Chamberlain made news by claiming that he had had sex with 20,000 women. That comes to 500 women per year, or 10 different women per week in his 40-year career of sharing his sperm. This would probably make the world's greatest athlete the most prolific lover of all time.

Diagnosis: Cardiomyopathy

Chamberlain's health first became an issue in the 1960s, when a former coach told the news media that the star player might have had a heart attack before the 1964 season. But Chamberlain denied it.

In 1992, when Chamberlain gathered with former teammates for a halftime ceremony marking the anniversary of their 1971-72 NBA championship, he had to leave early because he was having trouble breathing. He was admitted to a hospital and found to have an irregular heartbeat. He was released from the hospital after three days, wearing a heart monitoring device.

During his last years, he was diagnosed as having cardiomyopathy which means that his heart was too weak to pump blood through his body. He lost 50 pounds in the months prior to his death.

Cardiomyopathy can be caused by:

• arteriosclerosis (Chamberlain did not have high cholesterol and was still able to do amazing athletic feats in his 60s)

• damaged heart valves (he did not have this)

• genetic conditions (nobody in his family was reported to have a similar condition),

• long-term high blood pressure (his doctors never would have missed this)

• metabolic disorders such as obesity, thyroid disease or diabetes (nope)

• nutritional deficiencies of vitamins or minerals (his doctors would have made that diagnosis)

• drinking too much alcohol over many years (he was not an alcoholic)

• recreational drugs such as cocaine, amphetamines or anabolic steroids (no evidence of this)

• chemotherapy or radiation to treat cancer (does not apply to him)

• iron buildup called hemochromatosis (an easy diagnosis that would not have been missed),

• sarcoidosis or amyloidosis (his doctors would not have missed these)

• autoimmune diseases such as lupus (no evidence that he had any of these diseases) OR

• infections

The Ultimate Wilt Chamberlain Highlights -

Infections that Cause Cardiomyopathy

The most likely cause of Chamberlain's cardiomyopathy was an infection in his heart with bacteria such as chlamydia, mycoplasma or ureaplasma (N Am J Med Sci. 2013 Mar; 5(3): 169–181). Regular bacterial and viral cultures will not grow these germs. A doctor would have had to order special cultures and sometimes even these cultures fail to grow them. It was only in 1999, after Chamberlain's death, that researchers proved that chlamydia and mycoplasma cause the inflammation that forms plaques in arteries (arteriosclerosis), damages the heart and causes heart attacks (Science, 1999;283:1335-9). The first dependable test for the sexually transmitted Mycoplasma genitalium was approved by the FDA on February 1, 2019.

The fact that he lost 50 pounds and was unable to go anywhere in the last months of his life points to a diagnosis of heart failure, caused by cardiomyopathy (heart muscle damage), possibly caused by an infection such as chlamydia or mycoplasma. He could easily have acquired these infections from making love even to considerably less than the 20,000 women that he claimed. These infections may be cured by taking antibiotics, such as minocycline, doxycycline or clarithromycin, for several weeks or months. His body was cremated, so we will never know for sure how he died.

Wilt Chamberlain - ESPN Basketball Documentary -

Wilt Chamberlain

August 21, 1936 – October 12, 1999


Thanks to THE Bear for sharing his great visit - and sage words -


Old Abe Lincoln stopped in for a bit of brandy this evening. I was swirling a B&B around a couple of rocks when the Ring went off and I called up a picture of the Great One—no, not Mark Levine—standing on the front porch top hat in hand. We greeted like old friends, which we are. We have been meeting at Gettysburg about once a decade for the last seventy years. Just a couple of loners who enjoy each other's company. This evening we didn't have much to say. Per usual. We just watched the fire in the fireplace and swirled our brandy and melting ice.

I interrupted our silent communion a few times just to get Abe to leave a few thoughts about the state of America eight generations after he declared a civil war in order to save the union of American states. He apologized that he couldn't offer any hope for salvaging the unity of the republic without a fight. He said the nation is torn beyond repair and he declared the crisis will peak in the next month when the Administration will present the results of the Attorney General's investigation into the skullduggery of the Obama Administration—with indictments of several favorite sons of the Democrats. This will occur concurrent with the orders and vote for the impeachment of President Trump as carefully scripted and timed by the Speaker of the House. He said the one-two opposing and deadly punches would alter the course of our nation forever.

I asked him what he would advise President Trump to do. Without pause he said: "The preservation of the union is paramount. The Constitution of the United States must guide the course of the nation through these extraordinarily troubled times. Those who stand outside the law—the Constitution, as it is written—must be rendered harmless by whatever means is required. Truth must prevail. A firm hand will be required and rebellion should be anticipated. The nation will be sorely tested and blood will flow."

I asked, "Civil war?" Abe paused, then nodded, "The union must be preserved. If war is required, war must be declared and separatists must be defeated."

I asked, "Will Trump survive?" The old gentleman smiled, "Only if he is honest, and that may be a problem."

We returned to our usual silent contemplative mood, watching the darting flames in the fireplace while gently swirling the last to our ice. Then, with just a wave of his boney hand, the Great One rose and made his way to the door. He turned, shook my hand and with a wink, offered a final bit of wisdom from the ages. "God's will, will be done." And then he was gone.

Not your average night on Ogden Mountain. Good night, Dutch...



Thanks to Carl

How Do You Catch a Cold? | Dr. Gabe Mirkin on Health

Being cold or warm, being dressed, or undressed, and having wet hair or dry hair had no effect on their infection rate.

You can get a cold from anything touched by a person who has a cold: a door knob, pencil, phone, desk, spoon, table cloth or anything else.

How Do You Catch a Cold?

Gabe Mirkin, MD - May 31, 2015

Do you believe that you will catch a cold when you go out in the cold without warm clothing or when you have wet hair? If you say no, you are correct.

Colds and pneumonia are caused by infection. You do not pick up infections from cold weather, you get germs from other people who sneeze or cough in your face or transmit germs with their hands to objects that you touch. Research shows that the most common way to get a cold is from someone who has a cold, sneezes on his hands, and then shakes yours. You can also get a cold when a person blows his nose or coughs into a handkerchief and gets some of the germs on his hands, then touches a door knob, and hours later, you touch the door knob and put your fingers in your nose. So the only way that you can get a cold is for someone to give the germ to you directly or by putting the germ onto something else that you touch.

The real question about colds is whether chilling the body hinders your immune system so that you can't kill the germs in your body, so the germs that you can normally control suddenly become pathogens and make you sick, because your immune system is suppressed by you being cold. That question has been answered many times. Chilling does not hinder your immune system as long as you aren't so cold that your body defenses are destroyed. In 1958, H.F. Dowling, and his friends wrote a paper in the American Journal of Hygiene (Vol. 68, pp. 659-65), "Transmission of the Common Cold to Volunteers Under Controlled Conditions". More than 400 volunteers were exposed to viruses that cause colds. Some were exposed to very cold temperatures while wearing heavy coats, some to 60 degree temperatures while wearing underwear, and some to a very warm 80 degrees. All had the same rate of infection. This shows that the crucial factor that determine whether you get a cold is being exposed to the virus that causes the cold.

Then in 1968, R.G. Douglas, Jr., wrote a paper entitled "Exposure to Cold Environment and Rhinovirus and susceptibility to the Common Cold," in the New England Journal of Medicine. Inmates at a Texas prison had the cold virus placed directly into their noses. At varying times after their exposure to the viruses, they were exposed to extreme temperatures, with varying amounts of clothing . Being cold or warm, being dressed, or undressed, and having wet hair or dry hair had no effect on their infection rate.

If you do not want to get a cold, stay away from people. You can get a cold from anything touched by a person who has a cold: a door knob, pencil, phone, desk, spoon, table cloth or anything else. People who are afraid to get colds should never shake hands with anyone.

Checked 10/13/19