All mothers owe this woman a debt of gratitude

The woman who invented the disposable diaper (known as a ‘nappy’ in England) has died.  The Telegraph reports: Valerie Hunter Gordon, who has died aged 94, helped to deliver mothers from the daily drudgery of mangle, washing line and ironing board by inventing the first disposable nappy system. In 1947 Valerie, the wife of an Army officer, was living in Camberley, Surrey, and expecting her third child. She was not looking forward to the prospect of washing, ironing and drying the traditional towelling nappies which were all that were available at the time. “I just didn’t want to wash them,”

Continue reading

The latest Clinton scandal (YAWWWWWNNN…)

The ‘revelation’ that the FBI will reopen its investigation into the Clinton e-mail scandal, on the basis of ‘new evidence’ found on Anthony Weiner’s laptop computer in a different investigation, has got the news media and the blogosphere buzzing.  There’s all sorts of frantic speculation about what it means, what it might uncover, and what it might imply for US politics. My reaction is a big fat yawn. What does it mean?  It means that we have yet more evidence (as if we didn’t have enough already) of corruption and incompetence in the Hillary Clinton campaign. If Huma Abedin could

Continue reading

Immigration – the numbers, by gumballs

I found this over at LL’s place.  It seemed like an excellent way to illustrate the problem of immigration, refugees and displaced persons, so here it is.  Watch it in full-screen mode for best results. Someone should show this to Frau Merkel and the other Eurocrats agitating to let unlimited ‘refugees’ (AKA economic migrants) into the European Union.  They might learn something, if they were prepared to listen (which they probably aren’t). Peter

Continue reading

Typewriter heaven

I’ve long had a passing interest in typewriters – how they developed, the stages through which they went, and how they grew to be the indispensable office automation tool during most of the 20th century. I was therefore both interested and amused to read how the lead designer and typographer for Medium.com found an unheralded treasure trove of typewriters in a museum in Spain.  Popular Mechanics reports: While poking around for a Salvador Dali museum in Figueres, Spain [Marcin Wichary] stumbled upon something else—the Emporda Technical Museum. According to travel guides, you’ll find it described as “[a collection that] shows

Continue reading

Any lower and he’d qualify for a lawnmower attachment

This video shows an Embraer E190 regional jet landing at St. Maarten, an island in the Caribbean.  The airfield is notorious for the very low approach path over the beach, with thousands gathering every year to watch and film the planes coming in and departing.  There are many videos about it on YouTube.  (We’ve seen several of them in these pages before.) This plane got a lot lower than most . . . so low, in fact, that it seems almost as if spectators could reach up and touched it with their fingers.  If a vehicle had been passing below

Continue reading

Yet another reason why gun control won’t work

I’ve long argued (as regular readers will know) that so-called ‘gun control’ focuses on the wrong target.  It’s trying to control a thing (the gun), rather than the person wielding that thing (the shooter).  That’s nonsensical.  When we encounter drunk driving, we don’t charge the car – we charge the driver.  It’s always the user that commits the crime or perpetrates the error, not the thing. That said, there’s been a lot of propaganda about how, if we control guns per se, we’ll automatically control so-called ‘gun violence’.  Figures of 250- to 300-odd million guns in circulation in the USA

Continue reading

More Clinton e-mail damage?

I note that the FBI, having disgraced itself in its handling of the Clinton e-mail scandal, is now ‘looking into’ newly discovered e-mails on a device or devices shared by Huma Abedin and her husband, himself-disgraced Anthony Weiner. Inevitably, Hillary Clinton is ‘confident‘ that the FBI will not recommend any charges.  Nevertheless, I have three questions. If there’s enough evidence to charge someone with criminal wrongdoing, will Huma Abedin take the fall for Hillary, in the confident expectation that a presidential pardon will rapidly be forthcoming?  And, if such a pardon is not rapidly forthcoming, will she ‘do a Samson‘

Continue reading

A quirky, eclectic musician leaves a lasting legacy

I’m sure many of my readers will never have heard of the Scottish Celtic fusion and ‘acid folk’ group Shooglenifty.  Their sound is a blend of Celtic and Scottish folk, international folk influences, and jazz and rock elements as well.  It’s an interesting mixture.  I don’t like all their pieces, but some are intriguing. Sadly, their violinist, Angus Grant, died earlier this month.  (Despite sharing his surname, I doubt we’re related, except perhaps distantly through our mutual membership of the Grant clan in Scotland.)  The Telegraph reports: Angus Grant, who has died of cancer aged 49, was the dreadlocked fiddler and

Continue reading