Evening Open Thread

I got nothing. Or rather, too much to easily put in a post at this time of night.

Here’s a Montezuma sunflower from my yard. They grow to a meter and a half, with multiple blooms on a stem. They’re also perennials, a big plus for me.


There’s a series of articles out in Foreign Policy on the South Atlantic flash of September 22, 1979. Enough material has now been declassified that people are concluding that yes, it was a nuclear test by Israel with the help of South Africa. I may write something on it later, but here’s a Twitter thread I did earlier this evening.



63 replies
  1. 1
    Jerzy Russian says:

    The Vela satellites discovered what are now known as gamma ray bursts. It was quickly realized that the sources of these bursts must be celestial, as opposed to nuclear explosions near Earth. It is now believed that most gamma ray bursts are the result of an explosion of a very massive star at the end of its “life”.

  2. 2
    Geoduck says:

    The UK continues its seeming death-spiral: the Thomas Cook travel company collapsed overnight, stranding thousands of tourists and forcing the government to mount a rescue operation. Good thing they’ve got cool heads in charge over there right now.

  3. 3
    trollhattan says:

    Last evening I heard a bird ruckus and on investigating spotted this bad-ass atop the neighborhood’s tallest tree.

    Took a chance on going in the house to fetch my camera and luckily, he/she stayed put and posed for a long while. Neighbor and I speculated on the species and while I was convinced it was a Cooper’s or sharp shinned hawk, am now leaning towards peregrine falcon. Either way, these passing birds must have yelled “holy shit!” in bird when they spotted him.

  4. 4
    trollhattan says:

    Brexit is the Bestxit!

  5. 5
    Yutsano says:

    So…Israel’s worst kept secret was pretty much confirmed and covered up by the US from its inception? GOOD TO KNOW!!!

  6. 6

    @Yutsano: And still being covered up. Americans who hold security clearances cannot say that Israel has nuclear weapons.

  7. 7
    Yutsano says:

    @trollhattan: I’m not sure it’s a peregrine as that bad girl looks much too big. It almost looks like a lesser eagle although I’m not sure what kind.

  8. 8
    Duane says:

    @trollhattan: Those are great pictures. Falcons like to perch on the light poles at athletic fields. Sometimes I’ve found ploofs of pigeon feathers on the field. Hell yeah holy shit!

  9. 9
    trollhattan says:

    Cooper’s? I’m out of my league with bird I.D.

    Location is southern Sacramento Valley, so within the migration corridor and we see all sorts of interesting birds when we bother to look up.

  10. 10
    Yutsano says:

    @trollhattan: Eh. The Cooper’s hawk doesn’t quite fit either. That’s a big bubba for sure!

  11. 11
    trollhattan says:

    Gary Larson was never more on point than with this. :-)

  12. 12

    I’ve not had a chance to watch the GLAAD LGBTQ presidential forum, but here’s three round-ups:




    FWIW, I’ve heard criticism on queer circles that the questioning of Harris was unfairly antagonistic, given that Harris has a long history of LGBTQ allyship.

    That said, her 2015 role as California attorney general in 2015 in arguing on behalf of the state to withhold gender reassignment surgery from two transgender inmates who were prescribed the procedure while serving out their sentences is problematic — and it’s disappointing that she wasn’t better prepared to address it. (Warren has a similar problematic episode in her past, but made amends earlier this year.)

    As all three reports noted, disappointedly there were not questions about “FOSTA-SESTA, the bill intended to stop sex trafficking but, instead, has sent sex traffickers underground and made consensual sex work much more dangerous, a reality that disproportionately affects queer and especially trans people, who make up a statistically significant portion of the sex working community.”

  13. 13
    Leto says:

    @trollhattan: We have a couple of hawks in our area. There’s a park behind us and the Schkuylkill river in front of us which provide a plethora of hunting opportunities. Like @Duane: said, I’ve seen them sitting on the telephone poles out here surveying the land. They’re medium sized but still plenty big.

  14. 14
    CapnMubbers says:

    @trollhattan: Peregrine falcon, and the passing birds are Cedar Waxwings.

  15. 15
    Mj_Oregon says:

    That’s a peregrine falcon. I see them occasionally here in the Willamette Valley.

  16. 16
    Yutsano says:

    @CapnMubbers: @Mj_Oregon: That’s…the biggest peregrine falcon I have ever seen. Maybe my perspectives are off.

  17. 17
    AnotherBruce says:

    @Yutsano: it’s a Peregrine. The fastest raptor in the world. It’s also a world wide raptor. They dive at 170 MPH.

  18. 18
    West of the Rockies says:

    When I click on the link (bad ass) I get only an error code, no birdie.

  19. 19
    Fair Economist says:

    @trollhattan: I see hawks reasonably often here in urban Southern California, which I consider a great sign for tolerable air. Just last week one flew by within 20 feet of me, and made quite an impression. Normally they prefer to keep their distance. He had been perched, took off, and flew fast and straight by me so I assume he had somewhere he wanted to get to, badly enough to ignore me.

  20. 20
    sukabi says:

    @West of the Rockies: same here…no pics just error code.

  21. 21
  22. 22
    West of the Rockies says:

    So, late night folks, will this be a genuinely, importantly big week in Trump’s decay of support? Will we hear something meaningful about Ukraine? Or is this him again shooting someone on 5th Avenue to the collective disinterest of all witnesses?

  23. 23
    Leto says:

    @HumboldtBlue: I see your DDBB, and raise you one The Roots featuring Bilal on the Tiny Desk. Lizzo’s performance, two weeks ago now?, was spectacular.

  24. 24
    AnotherBruce says:

    @Fair Economist: That’s common with Hawks, They have great eyesight. And they get uncomfortable when they see Hoomans looking at them.

  25. 25
    HumboldtBlue says:


    Hah! That’s next on my feed! I see you!

    Have you seen this? Quite simply one of the most extraordinary performances I have seen.

  26. 26
    AnotherBruce says:

    @West of the Rockies: It won’t be anywhere close to the end of the world.

  27. 27
    Leto says:

    @HumboldtBlue: Lordy, had not! That was… wow… 🔥 🔥 🔥

  28. 28
    Chris T. says:

    Sooo… Israel’s getting tense
    Wants one in self-defense
    The Lord’s our shepherd says the psalm
    But just in case… better get a bomb!

  29. 29
    HumboldtBlue says:


    Here comes Rakim.

    Fuck. I’m old.

  30. 30
    Leto says:

    @HumboldtBlue: Here’s something in the opposite direction: Natalia Lafourcade on Tiny Desk. For the late night Juicers that want something just a bit slower.

  31. 31
    Leto says:

    @HumboldtBlue: Did you see Big Boi And Wu-Tang? Both were pretty good.

  32. 32
    Amir Khalid says:

    Awesome. Breathtaking.

  33. 33
  34. 34
    Steeplejack says:

    @West of the Rockies:

    Looks like it had a timer on it. I could see it earlier, but not now. Tried to edit the (incredibly long) link, but not luck.

  35. 35
    Ladyraxterinok says:

    @trollhattan: In both firefox and chrome on my Samsung tablet both links come up as ‘error’

  36. 36
    Steeplejack says:

    I’m up late. Got into a musical mood after watching episodes 4 and 5 of Country Music at Sighthound Hall with my brother. Took me back to our Saltine-American roots (h/t Betty Cracker). Looked up some country stuff, honkytonk division, on YouTube, then went on to some other stuff. Now listening to Coltrane’s “Equinox,” which prostratedragon posted above. A good nightcap.

    Tomorrow (today, Monday) Bro’ Man and I are driving to Annapolis to drop off some rugs from Sighthound Hall to be professionally cleaned. Don’t ask me why Annapolis. It’s a road trip and we will get a good lunch somewhere, Google and Yahoo willing, so I am okay with it.

  37. 37
    Steeplejack says:

    The Meters, “Stormy.”

    Fred Wesley and the JBs (James Brown’s band), “Dirty Harri.”

  38. 38
    Steeplejack says:

    Now considering whether to stay up for the actual moment of equinox at 3:50 a.m. EDT. 🤔 Alarm set for 7:00. Three hours’ sleep would be okay in my current sleepscape. Bro’ Man driving tomorrow (today). I’m just riding shotgun, navigating and watching out for rug pirates. Also finding lunch.

  39. 39
    Ruckus says:

    Is John Coltrane ever not incredible?

  40. 40
    Steeplejack says:



  41. 41
    Steeplejack says:


    Brasil ’66, “Chove Chuva (Constant Rain).” My favorite song from the album Equinox.

  42. 42
    prostratedragon says:

    @Ruckus: No. (And the rest of the quartet.)

    Bonus track:

    “After the Rain”

  43. 43
    Amir Khalid says:

    On CNN’s frontpage right now there’s a photo of a lion cub playfully pouncing on his dad’s testicles. I think the photo feature will be worth a look.

  44. 44
  45. 45
    NotMax says:

    @Amir Khalid

    Cubs have a pretty dismal record when it comes to batting balls.


    /baseball reference

  46. 46
    RAVEN says:

    Awright dudes, part one of epic retirement week was a success, now to the airport and Louisiana rig fishing!

  47. 47
  48. 48
    NotMax says:


    Let the good times roll!

    (Hoping the captain isn’t a Steve Scalise supporter.)

  49. 49
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @NotMax: Especially the last few days… GO CARDS!

  50. 50
    OzarkHillbilly says:


    eta I guess everyone fell back to sleep

  51. 51
    JPL says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Anne normally has a post up at this time. Maybe she’s taking a well deserved rest.

  52. 52
    debbie says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Nope. Here, there’s a photo of Trump being a dick. Close enough?

  53. 53
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @JPL: She runs late from time to time, but I’m talking about everybody else.

  54. 54
  55. 55
    debbie says:


    Have a great time!

  56. 56
    NotMax says:


    My understanding is that most of her morning posts are scheduled in advance, and sometimes (would ya believe it?) FYWP screws up.

  57. 57

    @debbie: Here’s a pic of the Milky Way at twilight, much more pleasant than any picture of Lord Smallgloves.

  58. 58
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @NotMax: I think he’s talking about us jackals.

    I’ve been reviewing kitten footage. As much noise as they were making yesterday, there should be something worth uploading.

  59. 59
    NotMax says:

    @Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism

    Guess folks are busy stocking up on refreshments for the last of the month Infrastructure Week party.

    Bridge mix and Rocky Road ice cream


  60. 60
    Betty says:

    @HumboldtBlue: I don’t know how a person can do that. Amazing.

  61. 61
    G.E.T. Rules says:

    @West of the Rockies: You didn’t get the memo? The Ukraine story makes two generations of Bidens look pretty scummy so that one needs to go down the ole’ memory hole. The only one who gets to push it is establishment second choice Warren, sort of like how Hillary was the only one allowed to push the picture of Obama wearing a turban.

  62. 62
    Neldob says:

    And remember Vanunu.

  63. 63
    debbie says:


    Oooh, likey! Is that a lifeguard stand at the right?

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