Maserati lovers must be in tears

A fire in the Italian port of Savona has destroyed hundreds of Maseratis awaiting export.  The Local’s Italian edition reports: After sea waters rose and flooded the port last night, including the two parking areas, local media reports that the salt water caused car batteries to explode and catch fire in the early hours of this morning. Most of the vehicles destroyed in the blaze were brand new Maserati. Several hundred were reportedly stored at the terminal ready for export to the Middle East. . . . The car terminal fire is still ongoing, with the port reportedly enveloped in smoke and ‘continuous’

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Hot! Hot! HOT!

In this part of northern Texas, and for several hundred miles around, the heat is worse than it’s ever been since Miss D. and I moved here, two and a half years ago.  The thermometer hit 114° (Fahrenheit – for readers who use Celsius, that translates to 45.5°) this afternoon, and as of a few moments ago it had cooled to a mere 111°.  Inside our home, despite the best efforts of our air conditioning system, it’s currently 82° – which sounds bad, until you go outside and realize it’s still almost 30° cooler than the ambient temperature!  The contrast as you

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Storms, and a bleg

Pitsnipes Gripes (warning:  site content is sometimes NSFW) has a fascinating postcontaining GIF (i.e. animated) photographic sequences of storms.  Here’s one to whet your appetite. There are many more at the link.  Recommended viewing.  Click on each image for a larger view. Also, I need to ask a favor of my readers.  My “Cochrane’s Company” trilogy is now fully published, with the first book coming out in May, the second in June, and the final volume earlier this month. As I write these words, the review count is as follows: Volume 1, “The Stones of Silence” – 64 reader reviews Volume 2,

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It’s time for the annual Hotter ‘n Hell Hundred

Wichita Falls is about to host the annual Hotter ‘n Hell Hundred cycle race.  It covers a hundred miles around the region in temperatures that, at this time of year, are usually at or over (sometimes well over) a hundred degrees Fahrenheit.  Thousands of riders are pouring into the city, and nervous eyes are scanning the weather forecast (which is presently 103° F – about 39½° C – for Saturday, race day, allowing the event to live up to its name).  For weeks, cyclists have been seen zooming around roads in the region, getting the feel of the course and testing their

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Yes, it really is that hot in Texas

Following yesterday’s article about this weekend’s Hotter ‘n Hell Hundred cycle race, a couple of readers asked whether it was really that hot all through summer in northern Texas.  I told them that while there were mild periods, generally we expected our temperatures to hover between 95°F and 105°F all summer long.  This year, June/July was exceptionally hot, with the mercury hitting 114°F one day – a real scorcher. We’re not alone in that.  Southern Texas gets just as hot, and sometimes more so. ROMA, Texas — This week marks the end of the dog days of summer, the 40 hottest days of

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