dimland radio 8-1-20 show notes

Planes Crash A Lot

I start the show making a couple clarifications to some of what I talked about last week. First I wanted to make sure that I explained the gotcha the YouTuber thought she had when she discovered the all 900 of the three-digit numbers come up in a Google search of new cases of COVID.

The impression I got was that her gotcha had something to do with the “media” lying to us about the pandemic. The media is perhaps exaggerating the seriousness of the virus or just making the whole thing up. It’s just a cold or flu. So, Google is helping fool the sheep by making certain there are hits no matter what number is searched on their site.

I also needed to qualify plane crash when it came to my talk about the Law of Large Numbers. A friend pointed out the I needed to say major plane crash not just plane crash. Major plane crashes, such as commercial airliners with many passengers, are relatively rare. But! Small plane crashes happen quite frequently.

I did a Google news search for plane crash and found five crashes had taken place in America in the past week. Alabama, Texas, Montana, Nevada, and Alaska all had plane crashes since July 28th. Maybe Google is conspiring to make plane crashes seem to be happening more often than they really do. Hmmm.

Herman Cain 12/13/1945 – 7/30/2020

Herman Cain, African-American businessman, conservative, ran for the Republican nomination for President in 2012. He was a Trump supporter and not a fan of masks and social distancing during this pandemic.

In June of this year, he attended the Trump COVID Infect-A-Thon 2020 in Tulsa, OK. He did not wear a mask. He did not social distance himself. In early July, he was hospitalized with COVID-19. On July 30th, he died from the deadly disease. The pandemic claimed another victim.

His death is sad and was likely avoidable. He was 74 and had more life to live.

Wear a mask!

Chris Brown Weighs In On Masks

A voice from the past returned to Dimland Radio. Some years ago, my friend and fellow skeptic Chris Brown would join the show for a brief chat on some skeptical topic. I think we called it the Ten Minute Topic with Chris Brown, but it’s been so long I can’t quite remember.

Well, recently Chris had taken to Facebook to ask anti-maskers why being requested or required (depending where they live in America) to wear a mask to limit the spread of COVID-19 is some great attack on their rights. I thought his points were well made and asked if he would record an audio file so I could play it on the show. And wouldn’t you know it? He did.

Thank you, Chris. It’s good to hear your voice again.

Speaking Of Masks

Since the topic of masks came up I thought I’d talk about a smelly, dead animal again. Not the same smelly, dead animal. This time it was a dead raccoon (see image – WARNING!).

The smell of the dead raccoon got me thinking about the 2001 HBO WWII mini-series Band Of Brothers. When you listen to the show you’ll get the connection. And I promise it does have something to do with masks.

A Dimland Radio Pedantic Moment: Private Webster Knows German, Doesn’t He?

Having watched Band Of Brothers as often as I have, I have begun to notice little subtleties and inconsistencies. My pedantry focused on Private Webster. In one episode, we learn he is fluent in German, the next episode it seems he had forgotten it.

What gives?

Be patient. Wash your hands. Stay home. WEAR A MASK! Stay safe.

Dimland Radio opening theme song: Ram by The Yoleus

First ad break bumpers: No Reply At All by Genesis and Eight Miles High by Husker Du

Second ad break bumpers: Ashes To Ashes by David Bowie and Reel Around The Fountain by The Smiths

Closing song: Angler’s Treble Hook by $5 Fiddle


That’s it! See you next Saturday night for Dimland Radio 11 Central, midnight Eastern on www.ztalkradio.com you can also download my show from the z talk show archives page. You can email your questions and comments to drdim@dimland.com

Please subscribe on iTunes! Just search for Dimland Radio in the podcast section. And if you could leave a good rating and a positive review it would be awesome.

Subscribe to Dimland Radio on PodBean!

You can also go to my CafePress store and buy stuff with my artwork on it and have me do a portrait for you if you’d like.

Images used under Fair Use.

dimland radio 7-25-20 show notes

A Few Cool Things (One Is Pretty Gross)

First was my excitement in seeing the building I clean on Tuesdays and Fridays had all the light fixtures replaced and converted to using LEDs. I was thrilled because I’m the one who changes the light bulbs and with LEDs I may not have to change another bulb for a long, long time. So cool!

The tired old fella.

Next was my trying my hand at plumbing. My wife and I had noticed the old faucet for the kitchen sink was getting harder to use and would leak occasionally. We agreed it was time to replace it and we also agreed on the style of the new faucet.

The new energetic fella!

I went out to The Home Depot (I wore my mask) and picked out a good one that was moderately priced. I first sent a photo of it to Amy for her approval. Very important to do that. I sent her photos of two similar faucets and we agreed on which was the best choice.

Installation was helped along by my father loaning me his faucet wrench, which extended my reach making it easier to get the old faucet removed and the new one in place. Without that tool I would have had to wake up Amy to have her help. She was sleeping like an angel, I couldn’t disturb her sleep. And the boy was out with friends, so it was up to the faucet wrench and me to get the job done.

Ouchie!

The new faucet was successfully installed, but then the drain pipes began to leak. Oh, for the love of Mike! I got the leak stopped and only skinned one knuckle. Welcome to the world of plumbing. Still cool when everything was done.

This next thing was cool in a sick and gross sort of way. Our trash bin had been really stinking very, very badly in the days leading up to pick-up day. Each time I would open the lid my nose would be punched with the most horrific smell. “Did something die in there?!”

Well, turns out something very likely did die in there (or maybe in the house, because that trash under the sink had been awfully bad smelling before I took it out). On the morning of trash pick-up day I had another small bag to put in the bin. I opened it and the interior was covered in… maggots.

Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!

Gross! But it’s the circle of life and still kinda cool.

Mask Up, Minnesota

If there had been a 5% infection rate threshold for kicking in the mask mandate in Minnesota, and I could have been wrong about that, the governor decided not to wait until it was reached. The current rate of infection in the North Star state is at 4.6%, however the statewide mask mandate went into affect yesterday. And it’s about time.

People need to wear masks if we are going to get a handle on this pandemic. The “my rights are more important than your rights” crowd needs to realize that. I even used a constitutional argument for the mandating of mask wearing.

Facebook Follies

And still Facebook is being used to spread misinformation about the pandemic. It’s being used to sow doubts about science and the intentions of government in its response to this major public health crisis. It’s also being used to discredit social movements such as Black Lives Matter. I have people I know personally either posting for public consumption or coming directly to me with bullshit about the pandemic, masks, and ActBlue’s donation distribution practices.

The above image was posted on Facebook. It’s intent was to show the hypocrisy of Minnesota’s governor (fourth from left). “Look! They’re all standing next to each other and none of them is wearing a mask!”

OK. What is that in the governor’s hands? Isn’t that a mask? Isn’t it just possible the people in the photo took off their masks for the picture and put them back on and separated as soon as it was taken?

Also, the image gave me all the information I needed to find this report, which confirmed that the masks were removed for the photo op.

Another friend privately shared a Facebook video of a fellow thinking he had a gotcha on ActBlue, the donations platform that caters to Democrat, liberal, and, even progressive causes. I explained this on a previous show. ActBlue makes it easier for their clients to deal with donations by taking them off their clients’ shoulders. Yes, ActBlue charges a fee, but the campaigns and causes that work with them must think it is more cost effective and less time consuming to let ActBlue handle it.

It’s no mystery. There’s nothing shady going on. If BLM engages ActBlue’s services to collect donations, they get those donations minus ActBlue’s fee. Same thing as with the conservative donations service WinRed.

My friend was adamant that there was something underhanded going on and I couldn’t convince her there wasn’t. This was the same result I got when another friend sent me a private message linking to a Facebook video of another supposed gotcha moment.

This time it was about the media making up numbers of new cases of COVID-19. You see, a person discovered that if you put any three digit number followed by “new cases” in a Google search, you will get results for all of the 900 three digit numbers! Shocking! The media must be lying.

Except my friend and the gotcha video maker are apparently unaware of the Law of Large Numbers. I tried to explain to my friend the out of all the countries, states, counties, and cities reporting new cases around the world, and with the current number of approximately 15 million total reported cases of COVID-19, the likelihood of 900 numbers each being represented in the new case counts at some point in this pandemic are pretty good.

My friend didn’t see it that way.

Be patient. Wash your hands. Stay home. WEAR A MASK! Stay safe.

Dimland Radio opening theme song: Ram by The Yoleus

First ad break bumpers: Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) by Eurythmics and America Is Waiting by Brian Eno & David Byrne

Second ad break bumpers: Respectable Street by XTC and Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic by The Police

Closing song: Angler’s Treble Hook by $5 Fiddle


That’s it! See you next Saturday night for Dimland Radio 11 Central, midnight Eastern on www.ztalkradio.com you can also download my show from the z talk show archives page. You can email your questions and comments to drdim@dimland.com

Please subscribe on iTunes! Just search for Dimland Radio in the podcast section. And if you could leave a good rating and a positive review it would be awesome.

Subscribe to Dimland Radio on PodBean!

You can also go to my CafePress store and buy stuff with my artwork on it and have me do a portrait for you if you’d like.

Images used under Fair Use.

dimland radio 7-18-20 show notes

Just Wear A Mask

It’s become my mantra on social media lately. I keep seeing anti-mask nonsense being shared and my respond has been to simply write “just wear a mask” in the comments. There may be subtler, kinder, and more nuanced ways of influencing the anti-maskers, but I’m not sure those methods would work either. So, just wear a mask.

Although, as of this writing, the Minnesota governor Tim Walz has not mandated mask wearing for the entire state, he does hold that as an option. He has set a threshold of a 5% infection rate as the trigger for the mandate. The latest rate was 4.7%, so we are close.

However, several retailers across the country are seeing the wisdom of wearing masks and are mandating they be worn by their customers. The retailers include Target, Walgreens, CVS, Home Depot, and Walmart. (Oh, the anti-masker tantrum videos we will soon be seeing.) This is a good thing.

Such a simple thing to do to help protect our neighbors and to keep the economy open. Is it really so much to ask?

Just wear a mask!

A Dimland Radio Science Hero: Dr. Zubin Damania (ZDoggMD)

Prescription: Break off a hunk of that doctor!

Dr. Zubin Damania (a real medical doctor) explains why wearing masks is a good idea. It helps keep down the spread of the COVID. Masks may also decrese the severity of the illness should you get infected, by limiting the amount of virus you are exposed to.

You go, ZDoggMD! (The kids still say that, right?) You are a Dimland Radio Science Hero!

Dead Mouse In The Middle Of The Store

Dead mouse in the middle of the store.

Dead mouse in the middle of the store.

Dead mouse in the middle of the store.

Stinking up to high, high heaven.

A Dimland Radio Pedantic Moment: Real Reason To Remove Vader’s Mask

To be more accurate as to why we wear masks and seeing as how Luke isn’t wearing one, this meme…

…should read like this…

Excuse Me, Fellows. But What Your Jesus Statue Was More Accurate?

There’s been a sea change in America or at least the beginning of one. People are waking up to the systemic racism and are demanding changes. Aunt Jemima is gone, the Washington professional football team is ready to change their name, statues honoring Confederate heroes are coming down. I think this is a good thing.

I saw this photo of five well-armed white dudes ready to protect a statue of Jesus from the marauding mobs of statue destroyers. These men are resolutely standing on guard outside their church to protect their Jesus.

And that’s great. I hope they don’t actually have to deal with those mobs. I wouldn’t want anyone to get hurt over a statue.

However, that statue seems to be depicting a northern European man. Surely by this time, with all we know about history and culture and anthropology and biology and DNA and genes and heredity and all that, we know that Jesus, if he existed, wouldn’t look like that. Right? After all, Jesus was from Judea, not Sweden.

In 2002, Popular Mechanics used all we know about history, biology, anthropology, and culture and created what should be a good approximation of what a 33 year old man, born in the Middle East in the first century would look like. It ain’t Max von Sydow!

So, if all the current depictions of Christ were changed to reflect reality, would those statue protectors be just as gung ho?

A Cool Thing: Grackles Murmurating In Texas

It’s called murmuration. That’s when birds such as starlings, warblers, and grackles flock together and fly around without knocking into each other. Often they make awesome shapes and patterns as they fly through the sky. I’m told this happens in Texas every year in certain store parking lots.

The video at this link (in horrible, horrible portrait format – what are ya gonna do?) shows one such gathering of grackles, not crows as the video title states. It’s really cool.

Be patient. Wash your hands. Stay home. WEAR A MASK! Stay safe.

Dimland Radio opening theme song: Ram by The Yoleus

First ad break bumpers: You Know Better Than I Know by Pete Shelley and One At A Time by The Who

Second ad break bumpers: New Dreams by Naked Raygun and Every Word Means No by Let’s Active

Closing song: Angler’s Treble Hook by $5 Fiddle


That’s it! See you next Saturday night for Dimland Radio 11 Central, midnight Eastern on www.ztalkradio.com you can also download my show from the z talk show archives page. You can email your questions and comments to drdim@dimland.com

Please subscribe on iTunes! Just search for Dimland Radio in the podcast section. And if you could leave a good rating and a positive review it would be awesome.

Subscribe to Dimland Radio on PodBean!

You can also go to my CafePress store and buy stuff with my artwork on it and have me do a portrait for you if you’d like.

Images used under Fair Use.

dimland radio 7-4-20 show notes

It’s The Fourth

America is having a birthday in interesting times. The pandemic is still in its first wave and rising fast, BLM is in its second wave and seems to be gaining more and more support, and we have an orange man-child at the helm who is far more concerned about himself to even have the slightest clue how to be a leader.

So, yeah. Interesting times.

And the neighbors are going nuts with the fireworks. As I write this on the morning of July 5th, I can tell you last night was a big night for fireworks. It didn’t quiet down until after midnight. In fact, there were a few outbursts going into the wee hours. I was woken up at 3:20am by some yahoos still celebrating ‘Mericuh!

I know the pandemic has gotten us a bit keyed up for any excitement, but yeesh!

Also, our relatively new July 4th tradition still holds. My wife Amy painted my toenails. This year the color is dark purple.

That’s right. Those are my feet.

Two New Toys

It was time. Our 19 year old lawn mower had become more and more difficult to get started and to keep running. Not being mechanical at all, my fixing the old boy was out of the question, so it was time for a new lawn mower.

We still have money left from the pandemic stimulus check, so I made a trip to the Home Depot and got us a new lawn mower and a new trimmer/edger. Like Bob Dylan in 1965, I went electric.

So sporty!

I had my first chance to use the new toys yesterday. Very fun! They worked like a charm. And the lawn mower looks like a race car! How cool is that?

A Dimland Radio ARGH!

Stupid, stupid riddles! The Facebook has had riddles making the rounds. Although it is refreshing to see something other than how much we all hate each other on social media, these riddles are so stupid. They are badly worded and impossible to solve because they leave out information. Information needed to be able to solve them.

I went over the two stupid riddles I’ve seen on Facebook and gave examples of two good riddles (and one silly one). One of them came for television’s favorite detective Columbo (the link gives you the set up, I give the solution on the show). The other is one I’ve known since I was a child.

A Dimland Radio Pedantic Moment: Back In Time?

The MLB Network has a series that started airing in 2009 (I don’t know if it is still running) called MLB Prime 9. Each show they review nine top things related to the game. Nine greatest catchers, nine best plays at the plate, nine best fastballs, and so on. I’ve watched a few and they are pretty fun and help fill the no baseball gap.

I reviewed the episode listing the nine greatest teams (of course four of them just had to be the Hated Yankees) and brought up a pedantic moment.

Just as they were beginning to discuss the 7th greatest team on the list, the 1909 Pittsburgh Pirates, the narrator said we would be going “back in time.” Well, yeah. The entire list has us going back in time. Duh!

Are People Really That Stupid?

I blogged about this a few days ago, so I’ll be brief this time.

There is something odd about that map.

Jimmy Kimmel Live did one of their “dumb people on the street” videos in which we see dumb Republican people being too dumb to identify any country on a map of the world. Of course the map was not labeled. But, come on! Shouldn’t they at least be able to pick out the United States?

Well, no. None of the people shown in the video segment could do the task. And that is important to remember: None of those who were shown. What about the people who could name a country? Surely there must have been some who could.

There are two ways this segment is deceptive. One is through editing. How many people were asked to name a country before Kimmel could find six who couldn’t? How many people were sent to the cutting room floor?

The other deception is that map. Look at the photo above. Notice anything odd about the map?

Wear A God Damn Mask!

You say you want America to get back to normal? You say you want to get back to work? You say you’re tired of the pandemic? Well, wear a god damn mask!

It’s so aggravating going into stores and other places the public frequents and see so many people not wearing masks. I talked about a particularly annoying incident from last weekend.

There is a shift going on at the conservative end of the spectrum. Prominent Republicans (here and here) are now saying people should wear masks. Even Fearless Leader seems to be coming around.

Let’s make America healthy again. WEAR A GOD DAMN MASK!

Be patient. Wash your hands. Stay home. WEAR A MASK! Stay safe.

Dimland Radio opening theme song: Ram by The Yoleus

First ad break bumpers: Homebreakers by The Style Council and Another Nail In My Heart by Squeeze

Second ad break bumpers: Public Highway by Luxuria and Primary by The Cure

Closing song: Angler’s Treble Hook by $5 Fiddle


That’s it! See you next Saturday night for Dimland Radio 11 Central, midnight Eastern on www.ztalkradio.com you can also download my show from the z talk show archives page. You can email your questions and comments to drdim@dimland.com

Please subscribe on iTunes! Just search for Dimland Radio in the podcast section. And if you could leave a good rating and a positive review it would be awesome.

Subscribe to Dimland Radio on PodBean!

You can also go to my CafePress store and buy stuff with my artwork on it and have me do a portrait for you if you’d like.

Images used under Fair Use.

look at how dumb they are

They are a staple of late night talk shows: The person on the street interviews. There are variations, of course, and a particularly popular variation is the dumb person on the street quiz. Featuring people who are too ignorant to correctly answer fairly simple and basic questions. Audiences lap them up.

Jimmy Kimmel has done several of the dumb person on the street segments and I hate them.

They are intended to make the average American look dumb, giving the rest of us a good laugh at their expense. One such segment that was done in February of this year recently caught my eye. It had a more select group of dumb Americans by focusing on dumb Republican Americans. This version was a follow up to an earlier video in which the political affiliations of the people involved were unknown. The Republican version was made in response to Ted Cruz claiming the first video showed a bunch of geographically challenged Bernie Sanders supporters.

The challenge for this dumb Americans video was to point to and identify a country, any country, on a map of the world.

A couple things occurred to me while watching the video that suggested deception on the part of the Jimmy Kimmel Live Show.

First is the main deception of which all of these sorts of people on the streets videos can be guilty: Editing.

The audience has no idea how many people Kimmel had to challenge before six dumb Americans were found who couldn’t name a single country. Both the politically unaffiliated version and the more recent Republican version show just six geographically challenged people. (The first video did have a middle schooler who could name several countries. I suspect a ringer, but that’s just me being cynical.) How funny would it be if we saw Kimmel’s staff ask, say, 60 people to attempt the task and 54 of them could do it? That would be 90%. Not so funny when it’s just 6 dumb people out of 60.

Asking a Republican to name a country, any country.

Having the power to edit means that Kimmel can present the video in such a way that it looks like every person who participated failed the challenge. It’s possible that we are shown all the people who were asked, but I have my doubts that that was the case. How many people who were up to the challenge were left on the cutting room floor? We don’t know.

And then there’s the map. The countries were in white with blue borders and oceans. Of course, none of the countries was labeled. People would just have to recognize them based on the borders. A few people were able to identify Africa, but that’s a continent not a country. In the end, none could identify any country, not even the United States.

Something seems off about this map.

The deception here is in how Kimmel arranged his map. The Western and Eastern Hemispheres were flipped with east on the left and west on the right. This is not how most of us grew up seeing the map of the world. The maps we are familiar with have the Americas on the left with Europe, Asia, Africa, Russia, and Australia on the right. Of the first 50 hits in a Google image search of “map of the world” only two showed the Americas on the right and one had the Americas in the center with the other parts of the world wrapping around the two sides.

This is the map we are more familiar with.

This sets up a sort of mental speed bump when looking at Kimmel’s map. Sure, it’s still accurate, but that’s not what people are used to seeing. It looks weird. And that weirdness might cause confusion and get the challenge takers flustered, because they are unable to figure out why the map looks off. Being flustered might cause a cognitive disruption, which could lead to blanking on any country’s name. However, not being a psychologist, I could be wrong. Still, it feels deceptive.

So, what we get is video taken by a camera crew sent out on the streets to ask passersby basic questions. The questions ought to be easy to answer. Invariably, the passersby do not rise to the challenge and the audience gets a good laugh at the ignorance on display.  “Oh, how funny it is these people are so dumb. Hahaha!”

Some people, however, get upset at the appalling lack of basic knowledge in our country. They believe it is a failing of our educational system. “How sad it is that our country is so full of ignoramuses. Why, I could easily answer all those questions! I’m so above average.”

But everyone thinks they are above average, even if they can’t name a country on a messed up map, with a camera in their face.

And that’s another thing. In order for these segments to be funny, the majority of the audience has to be able to do what the people on the street apparently cannot. I suppose the audience could just be playing along and glad their ignorance isn’t being put on display.

Whatever the reason these bits are so popular may be, I still hate them.

Images used under Fair Use.