October 17th, 2009

green little review

Poem for Saturday

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My kids had no school on Friday and we had planned to go to some of our favorite places to see the changing leaves -- Gathland and Gambrill State Parks -- with Paul's parents. But it rained from dawn till dusk, so we decided that this really was not the day for it. Instead we went to the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, where we looked at the Hubble deep field photos and watched a Science on a Sphere presentation about how we study the changing Earth. Then we went to the National Cryptologic Museum at Ft. Meade, which was fascinating and larger than we expected -- in addition to exhibits on the NSA and national security code-breaking, there were exhibits on codes and language in general, including the Rosetta Stone, hobo signs, slave quilts, and historical encoding contraptions that Dan Brown would love.

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Speaking of Star Trek, here is my review of Next Gen's "Cause and Effect", about which I don't have a great deal to say except that it's very enjoyable. I forgot to mention that I spent a lot of Thursday riveted to the TV watching Balloon Boy, like a lot of the rest of the world, and now that it looks like the parents designed the entire stunt (at taxpayer expense) and instructed their six-year-old to lie to police and newscasters, thus freaking him out and making him sick, I want the biggest possible fine slapped on him and child services checking up on those kids' "home schooling" at every possible opportunity (I'm not sure it serves anyone's interest to put the parents in prison, though if this really does turn out to be fraud, there should absolutely be charges).

Daniel's high school, Montgomery Blair, is celebrating its anniversary tonight and had a big gala at Strathmore Hall emceed by Ben Stein, who is an alumnus. He only just got home, a bit after midnight, because the choir was singing at the reception. It sounds like he had a good time, but we old people are pretty tired from waiting up for him to call!