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Ernie's House of Whoopass! July 2, 2012
July 2, 2012

Wouldn't It Be Fun To Use Fireworks And Shoot Down a Drone On Independence Day?

"Be Here Now" -- The Andy Whitfield Documentary Trailer, by Lilibet Foster

One of the things I've come to grips with after living here in Florida for the past six (wow has it been that long already?) years, is spiders. Well, some of them anyway. Spiny Orb weavers I keep around, as I do jumping spiders. Huntsman and wolf spiders, I do not. In fact, I've stopped smashing up mud dauber nests, since I know the adults like to chow down on spiders and as Khan Noonien Singhtaught us, the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Anyway, here are some close up macro-photography shots of a jumping spider chewing on a hairy moth. Enjoy, my fellow arachnophobes!

You don't see the classic Beetle around much nowadays, with the exception of those ancient collector cars carefully maintained by people who literally have rebuilt them with a mixture of gum, tinfoil and marijuana residue. Or, you could have just bought one from the factory as recently as 2003. That's the last year that Volkswagen produced the classic Beetle -- and I'm not talking about the redesigned vagina-mobiles: I mean the trunk-under-the-hood, 1960s-style Herbie version that we all know and love. From the 1930s to 1978, Volkswagen spit out car after car from its factory before deciding, decades before America made it popular, to move the Beetle factories to Mexico. But production didn't stop -- from 1978 until 2003, the Mexican plants continued flooding the market with the bubble-shaped cars that sold for around $6,000. On July 30, 2003, the last ever Beetle to be made rolled off the factory line. Primarily used as taxis in Mexico, regulations requiring four-door cabs finally did them in. Not bad for a car originally thought to be dreamed up by Hitler, but as it turns out it was the brainchild of Josef Ganz, a Jew.

A railroad tie is a rectangular support for the rails in railroad tracks. Generally laid perpendicular to the rails, ties transfer loads to the track ballast and subgrade, hold the rails upright, and keep them spaced to the correct gauge. Railroad ties were traditionally made of wood, but pre-stressed concrete is now widely used especially in Europe and Asia. Up to 3000 ties are used per mile of railroad track in the USA. In recent years, wooden railroad ties have also become popular for gardening and landscaping, both in creating retaining walls and raised-bed gardens, and sometimes for building steps as well. Traditionally, the ties sold for this purpose are decommissioned ties taken from rail lines when replaced with new ties, and their lifespan is often limited due to rot.

Ernie, Snapped this pic a few weeks ago. I was on my way to work downtown and saw what looked to be a brand new unit so I snapped a picture on the way, sorry for the quality. Somewhere in my memory (which is failing as I age) I remember you having a way to pull up details on locomotives (specs, age, etc) and I can't find it in the archives. Am I wrong or did you post a database at some point that provided such details? All I can find on this unit are pictures and this is either a different unit or they've recently updated the paint. Can you shed some light? Rob

Brand new unit? No. The last time a EMD GP-40 rolled off the assembly line, since Nixon was in office. But a brand new paint scheme on a very old unit? Ahhh, now we're on to something. . WATMX = Watco Transportation Services, L.L.C. = we're like the Hertz of locomotives. They own a bunch of locomotives and and lease them all out to their smaller railroads who either can't afford to purchase one on their own, or need short term relief due to equipment failure and/or increase in workload. SLWC = Stillwater Central Railroad, which is one of those shortline railroads based out of Oklahoma. In addition to link you references (WAMX's complete list) you can also go to and search for "WAMX" you'll get some 250+ pics of their power.

While we may all understand the nightmares of having so much food we can't even decide on what to eat, not everyone in the third world does. Many kids on the other side of the world simply don't understand why people stand in lines for hours and hours for an Apple that isn't food. Browse through this slideshow for the 40 funniest memes of skeptical third world kid.

Today I learned: The first official identified by name in the Fast and Furious gunwalking investigation has been tied to a similar Minnestoa operation in 1996 -- yes, that's the President Clinton era -- where more than 150 guns flowed into the Twin Cities underworld.

And for tight-asses, too... Larry

Some interesting facts: Apollo Facts and Figures. Jon

Cue the '80s music, prepare the cheap flower bouquets and sew the stuffed animals. We're just about ready for the historic podium celebration we've come to expect at the annual Tour de France. But we're less concerned with the arbitrary gifts (or performance enhanging drugs, cough... cough... Lance Armstrong... cough... cough) given to the cyclists then we are with the beautiful women who continue to grace the winner's circle...or rather, steps. As we jump for joy in preparation of another beautiful display, let's take a look at the hottest girls to ever grace the podium.

Long-exposure photography or time-exposure photography involves using a long-duration shutter speed to sharply capture the stationary elements of images while blurring, smearing, or obscuring the moving elements. When a scene includes both stationary and moving subjects, a slow shutter speed can cause interesting effects, such as allowing the paths of moving light sources become clearly visible.

Old and busted: Neil deGrasse Tyson's "Nobody is dreaming about tomorrow anymore" rant at the University of Buffalo. The new hotness: Bill Nye the Science Guy's "The US risks losing its edge" rant from his Planetary Society speech.

stunning map reveals world's earthquakes since 1898

funnyjunk lawyer aims to halt distribution of "bearlove" money

time lapse of a wild fireat the waldo canyon, beautiful if it weren't so devastating

Insert Your Favorite Weekend Joke Here....

Insert Your Favorite Weekend Joke Here....

Insert Your Favorite Weekend Joke Here....

Insert Your Favorite Weekend Joke Here....

Insert Your Favorite Weekend Joke Here....

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