1. ‘The Vault Is on Fire’ The fire that swept across the backlot of Universal Studios Hollywood on Sunday, June 1, 2008, began early that morning, in New England. At 4:43 a.m., a security guard at the movie studio and theme park saw flames rising from a rooftop on the set known as New England Street, a stretch of quaint Colonial-style buildings where small-town scenes were filmed for motion pictures and television shows. That night, maintenance workers had repaired the roof of a building on the set, using blowtorches to heat asphalt shingles. They finished the job at 3 a.m. and, following protocol, kept watch over the site for another hour to ensure that the shingles had cooled. But the roof remained hot, and some 40 minutes after the workers left, one of the hot spots flared up. The fire moved quickly. It engulfed the backlot’s famous New York City streetscape. It burned two sides of Courthouse Square, a set featured in “Back to the Future.” It spread … [Read more...] about The Day the Music Burned
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Just two years ago, amid global fanfare, the Paris climate accords were signed — initiating what seemed, for a brief moment, like the beginning of a planet-saving movement. But almost immediately, the international goal it established of limiting global warming to two degrees Celsius began to seem, to many of the world’s most vulnerable, dramatically inadequate; the Marshall Islands’ representative gave it a blunter name, calling two degrees of warming “genocide.” The alarming new report you may have read about this week from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change — which examines just how much better 1.5 degrees of warming would be than 2 — echoes the charge. “Amplifies” may be the better term. Hundreds of millions of lives are at stake, the report declares, should the world warm more than 1.5 degrees Celsius, which it will do as soon as 2040, if current trends continue. Nearly all coral reefs would die … [Read more...] about UN Says Climate Genocide Is Coming. It’s Actually Worse Than That.
If you grew up in the 1950s and '60s you were bombarded with epics of the wild west, both on the big screen and TV. Every Saturday matinee had at least one serial western with the good guys wearing white hats and the bad hombres wearing black. They were very special hats. They were hats that never fell off during fist fights or high-speed horseticuffs. They also had magic guns that never ran out of bullets. More like sixty-shooters than six-shooters. But hey, we were kids and tended not to over think things. Television was another source of the Shoot 'Em Up culture. According to Wikipedia, there were approximately 203 westerns during the 1950s and '60s. In March of 1959 seven of the top 10 shows on TV were westerns. Many of them still air as reruns on various channels. Westerns taught us about right from wrong, fairness, honesty, and a host of other virtues that would shape our lives. They were a model for children's outfits. I had one complete with hat, chaps, boots, and holsters. No … [Read more...] about Outdoors: Cowboy action shooting a link to wild Tallahassee