The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

Maureen Dowd

In her column today (sub.req.):

There's no way to teach someone not to shoot an unarmed woman or child. If somebody doesn't already know why they shouldn't murder a baby, it's not clear that a refresher course will help.

Hurricane season begins

After Katrina, all the major news outlets are reporting the start of the Atlantic hurricane season today. None seems to have reported that the East Pacific season began May 15th, which has already seen its first tropical storm. Perhaps Americans really don't care what happens to Mexico?

Again, probably because of increased media interest, this morning's "Tropical Weather Outlook" newsletter had a lot more information than usual:

TODAY MARKS THE FIRST DAY OF THE ATLANTIC HURRICANE SEASON...WHICH 
WILL RUN UNTIL NOVEMBER 30TH.  THE LIST OF NAMES FOR 2006 IS AS
FOLLOWS:

NAME           PRONUNCIATION    NAME            PRONUNCIATION
-------------------------------------------------------------
ALBERTO        AL BAIR- TOE     LESLIE
BERYL          BER- IL          MICHAEL
CHRIS                           NADEEN          NAY DEEN-
DEBBY                           OSCAR
ERNESTO        ER NES- TOE      PATTY
FLORENCE                        RAFAEL          RA FA EL-
GORDON                          SANDY
HELENE         HE LEEN-         TONY
ISAAC          EYE- ZAK         VALERIE
JOYCE                           WILLIAM
KIRK

THE GREEK ALPHABET...ALPHA...BETA...GAMMA...ETC...IS USED SHOULD THE
STANDARD LIST OF NAMES BE EXHAUSTED...AS IT WAS LAST YEAR. IN
2005...A RECORD 28 STORMS FORMED...INCLUDING AN UNNAMED OCTOBER
SUBTROPICAL STORM THAT WAS ADDED TO THE OFFICIAL LIST IN APRIL. THE
LONG-TERM AVERAGES FOR THE NUMBER OF NAMED STORMS...HURRICANES...
AND MAJOR HURRICANES ARE 11...6...AND 2...RESPECTIVELY.  THE NOAA
SEASONAL OUTLOOK FOR 2006 CALLS FOR ABOVE NORMAL LEVELS OF ACTIVITY.

(I think it's cute how the National Hurricane Center, which has some of the most powerful computers on the planet, still puts out 1970s-era block-letter reports. It's their own form of bureaucratese.)

Keep in mind, November 30th is only a guideline. We had a named Atlantic storm in January this year. In fact, let me make a prediction you can tease me about later: by 2010, the NHC will track the Atlantic hurricane season from May 15th to December 31st, and by 2025, they'll abandon the concept altogether and just start the name list on January 1st each year.

Bloggers now protected by journalist shield laws in California

The California Court of Appeal, Sixth District, has reversed a lower-court order that blogger Jason O'Grady had to turn over his sources for a story he wrote about Apple Computer:

Online writers are protected by the state's shield law for reporters as well as by the 1st Amendment, the state Court of Appeal in San Jose ruled, reversing a lower court decision.
Apple subpoenaed the e-mail provider of Jason O'Grady, publisher of O'Grady's PowerPage, an Internet site that posted information in 2004 about an unreleased Apple product.
The ruling establishes that Web reporters have the same right to protect the confidentially of sources as other reporters, according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

Cool.

The case is O'Grady v. Superior Court of Santa Clara County (184 kB, PDF).

Back in Chicago

It's great to be home. So good, in fact, that I did almost nothing of commercial or professional value for four days straight.

I'm back now. I've got a lot to catch up on, not least of which is a two-week pile of stuff in my office. I also have a collection of photos to go through from the last three weeks or so, like this one of the New Hampshire State Capitol:

But first, I have to pay bills and send out invoices.

Leaving Nashua

I'll be away from the blog for a couple of days while I return to Chicago. I've enjoyed Nashua, and I'm sure I'll come back to visit. Everyone here was friendly; for example, my unexpected dinner companion, Max:

Back Monday. Enjoy the weekend.

More Nantucket pictures

These are from my not-small, not-simple camera. (Note: the photos are shown at half-size; you can see more detail if you open them in their own browser windows.)

The plane that brung me:

Nantucket Memorial Airport, just as it looked in Wings:

House on Washington St., with the harbor behind it:

Nantucket Town. Yes, it is that charming. I suspect things were different when Ishmael bunked with Queequeg:

Another view of Main St.:

The Whaling Museum:

Nantucket flight photos

I have two cameras. One is very small and very simple, the other is neither. Here are some photos from yesterday that I took with the small, simple camera.

Altitude, 7,500 feet (2,300 m):

VFR on top, meaning I was flying in visual conditions on top of this cloud layer:

Nantucket Island:

Also, a bonus shot. As I reported earlier, a tornado touched down about 60 km (40 mi.) east of me on Sunday. As I was getting the Nantucket photos off my camera, I discovered I had a photo of the wall cloud that spawned the tornados: