31 January 2008

2008 Thus Far

Well, January 2008 has come and gone, my friends.

2008 in Highlights! (and lowlights)

1. Heath Ledger. Need I say more?
2. Johan Santana. Dur. See previous post.
3. Iowa Caucus. GoooooooooooObama!
4. The Golden Globes. Hahahaha. That was funny. But the winners weren't altogether disappointing.
5. Something that happened to my friend Celeste that I am not at liberty to divulge. Suffice it to say, it is both heartbreaking and too funny to handle all at once.
6. Juno. (Sort of 2007, but mostly 2008.) Amazing film. Seen it? Good. See it again. It's even better the second time. I haven't been to a movie twice in the theaters since 7th grade...Josh Hartnett in Pearl Harbor. Gag. Haven't seen Juno? You should.
7. UCLA gymnastics beating Stanford. I went to this meet last Sunday. It was awesome. UCLA beat Stanford 195.05 to 195.025. WHAT?!
8. Falling down the stairs at the UCLA gymnastics meet. I just ATE IT in front of all these people. Now I have a really gnarly bruise on my back.
9. The chocolate creme pie my friend Liz and I bought last night to ring in February. It was delicious. We also watched It Takes Two, that phenomenal old movie with Mary-Kate and Ashley. It was a great night.
10. The New England Patriots. They're undefeated and they've broken a number of records in '08 alone. The Superbowl on Sunday should be a very good game. The Giants will cry like the little girls they are if they lose. The Pats will then run amok in Arizona, led by Randy Moss and Laurence Maroney. Of course, Tom Brady will probably go back to his hotel room to drink a pineapple daiquiri and watch Steel Magnolias by himself.

A Vicious Cycle (or) I'm Just as Good as Al Gore

Did you know that Earth is warming?? Did you know that this is due to a phenomenon known as "global warming"? You may be familiar with the concept if you saw Al Gore's film, An Inconvenient Truth. I'm about to share with you a disturbing little factoid that could make you think about your carbon emissions. Or it may possibly make you feel incredibly helpless and depressed for days. Let's hope it's the former.

Earth is a relatively dark place. That is to say, it absorbs much of the energy it gets from the sun. Just like your leather jacket starts to boil in the mid-day sun and your friend in his white sweater is peachy keen. The "whiteness" of Earth is called the albedo and it's measured from 0 to 1, one being 100% white. Earth's albedo is currently about 30%. That number, however, is falling. Earth is getting darker and absorbs more of the sun's energy.

Due to a number of factors, glacial ice is melting at an unprecedented rate, causing Earth's albedo to lower. This fall, the Arctic Sea ice loss was greater than ever before. Just one stop in the vicious cycle that is global warming:

1. Ice melts due to a warming atmosphere and surface.

2. Albedo decreases- more energy absorbed the sun- surface temperature rises

3. Atmosphere temp rises because of surface temp rise.

4. More ice melts.

Then we go back to number one. Each time the cycle starts over, more ice is gone thus Earth's albedo continues to dip lower and lower until there is no ice left. BAD news.

One thing we can do: reduce carbon emissions which will *eventually* slow the Greenhouse effect, thus ice melt, thus falling albedo, thus more warming and ice melt.

30 January 2008

Just Another Loss in Twins Territory

Yesterday the Minnesota Twins dealt their ace pitcher Johan Santana to the New York Mets for four prospects.

The deal hasn't been finalized yet, as the Mets and Santana are still negotiating a contract extension that will probably amount to 6 or 7 years and 150 million big ones. Santana also has a no-trade clause in his contract with Minnesota, so he'll have to officially waive that once they reach a deal.

So it goes.

Minnesota fans are no strangers to tearful goodbyes. Earlier this off-season we lost star center fielder and one of my personal favorite baseball players Torii Hunter to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. (That name bugs me.) Luckily for me, I'll be able to see Torii play here in California whenever I want to drive to Anaheim. Last year the Timberwolves star and arguably the best player in the NBA Kevin Garnett was traded to the Boston Celtics in a deal that made history.

New England. Pshh. We've seen many of Minnesota's greatest sports stars planted in New England in recent years, most notably David "Big Papi" Ortiz who went to the Red Sox after the 2002 season. Chuck Knoblauch, the 1991 MLB Rookie of the Year, went (thankfully, really) to the Yankees in 1997. Most relevant right now, of course, is the NFL. The New England Patriots will play in the Superbowl this Sunday, showcasing ex-Viking Randy Moss and ex-Gopher Laurence Maroney.

Johan Santana: Just another notch on the Metrodome.

Later this week, I'll examine the Twins' four new prospects. Meanwhile, I will be wishin', hopin', prayin' that Francisco Liriano is ready to win the Cy Young this season!

29 January 2008

An Introduction to My Blog

Hello Friends!

Welcome to my blog. It's new. I'm not exactly sure how I'm going to do it, and suggestions are gladly accepted. Here are my plans as of right now:

  • Post 3-4 days per week
  • Posts may include, but are not limited to, the following topics:
    • Baseball
    • School/History (my major)
    • Politics
    • Summer/Spring and Summer/Spring vacations
    • The future/careers
    • The craziness of the Interweb
    • My friends
    • People I see walking down the street
    • Fashion
    • Baking
    • Gymnastics
    • the Olympics
    • Minnesota
    • California/Los Angeles
    • Water
    • Planet Earth, the subject and the BBC series
    • Law
    • Occidental College
  • Read and respond to comments
  • Try to change my "Quote of the Day" every day, but at least when I post something new.
  • Figure out how to embed YouTube videos and do so.
  • Change my picture
So, that's my plan so far. Suggestions?

I encourage you to explore the links on the right side of the page. I will add more as time goes by.

That's all for now. My future posts will (hopefully) be much more interesting. The ideas fester in my mind. Can't wait to get them out.

Have a fantastic day!