Friday, February 15, 2013

Meteorite Lands Near Chelyabinsk

Here is the account of today's extraordinary meteorite strike in Chelyabinsk, Russia.

The meteorite was the size of a bus, and it landed in ice near the city.  It nearly missed landing in Lake Cherbakul.  This happened in broad daylight, and the meteorite left a contrail as it broke apart, leaving debris and at the end of its journey, a crater.

The velocity of the rock (estimated at 20,000 mph) created a sonic boom that blasted out windows.  This is what caused most of the injuries, now estimated over 1,200.

Russia Today also has reports here, here, here, and here.

I have friends and colleagues in Chelyabinsk.  I sent a facebook to Father Vladislav Ivanov, the pastor of Holy Spirit Lutheran Church, as well as to Bishop Vsevolod Lytkin (the Siberian Evangelical Lutheran Church's bishop) and Deacon Victor Shtraube.  I heard back from Father Vlad:
"Father Larry, all is well. No one is hurt. Many broken windows. We saw everything. Drinking coffee in the kitchen, flash, and big explosions. Mobile communication was bad. How will the news, I'll write. Thank you for your prayers."
Bishop Vsevolod also replied:
"Dear father, everything is OK with our Church people... as with most of people in Cheliabinsk. There about thousand persons are injured but not hard. Mostly people are hurt by pieces of glass windows. By the big grace the meteorite fallen down near the chemical plant, but not into. If it fallen into... then it could be big ecological catastrophe. But the meteorite just broke the fences and walls of this chemical plant. And fallen down into a lake." 
'via Blog this'

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Another Primal Success!

Read here for an epic primal success story.

Heath is a 35 year old self-described former "doughnut eating cop" who, in six months, went from 299 pounds, wearing size 42 pants, carrying 40% body fat, to 206 pounds, size 32 pants, and 17% body fat.

Heath explains how two of his friends lost a combined 70 pounds in two months - which mirrors my own timeframe and weight loss.  Anyone can do this.  And it is worth it!

With Lent starting tomorrow, a person could be looking at a virtually new body in the mirror, with more energy and greater overall health by Easter.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Secession, Freedom, and the "Impossible"

[The heroic dissident Vladimir Bukovsky wrote about the changing attitudes by 1970 in the USSR, approximately 20 years before the collapse of the Union, from page 353 of  To Build a Castle: My Life as a Dissenter, Viking Press, New York, 1979. - Ed.]

"There had been quite an upsurge in national movements during my absence [incarceration].  They were extremely varied and even had different external aims.  The Meskhetians and Crimean Tartars, for instance, who in Stalin's time had been forcibly deported from their homelands to Central Asia, were trying to obtain the right to return home.  The Jews wanted the right to go to Israel, the Volga and Baltic Germans to Germany.  The Ukrainians, the Caucasians, and the Baltic peoples wanted secession, national independence, and the right to a national culture.  Five years before, the mere mention of national independence or the right to secession would have been sufficient to guarantee you fifteen years for 'high treason.'  And leaving for abroad was still regarded as treason.  But citizens who had resolved to submit to their conscience instead of their Party card were beginning to force their own reality upon the state.

"This wasn't a political struggle, there were no heroics.  It was like a 'club of the sane' in a lunatic asylum.  All that was left to us was to be normal people....

"Here there was no right, left, and middle of the road.  Everyone had been made equal by the Soviet concentration camps.  Just as before, there were no leaders and led, no pushers and pushed, no rules and regulations - only it was easier, much easier.  There were more people, there was more publicity, and the people came from higher up the social scale: professors, academicians, writers - not to be compared with us striplings of the early 1960s.  Rights were now claimed on the spur of the moment, and yesterday's 'impossible' was a commonplace today."

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Bye Bye Babylon

The perfect rock anthem for 8-year old Legomaniacs (and Russian priests...).