the show: 08-11-06

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(burps) Mmm, mmm.

Good morning, Sports Racers! It's Friday, August 11th. It was going to be "In Case You Missed It Day," but apparently another show uses that. They pre-emptively ripped me off!

(uncertain) So, it's stuff that you. . .maybe didn't. . .have. . .day? Who's things. . .are these day.

(grinning) No, it's Ride the Fire Eagle Danger Day!

Riding the fire eagle number one: Bombing plot thwarted, country freaks out anyway.

Today, the New Scientist took pity on me and tried to lend credibility to the crap that came out my mouth yesterday. According to the article, alarm and distress over flying may be the main casualties of Thursday's alleged terror plot. Quote: "Terrorism accounts for a tiny number of deaths compared with other causes such as road accidents, death from drug abuse or heart attacks and strokes," but psychologist Lesley Perman-Kerr says that in terms of fear generated, it doesn't matter whether the threat is real or imaginary. Psychologist Elie Godsi says, quote, "One of the worst things you can do to people is impose uncertainty, and uncertainty with an intangible threat is worse still.

Uncertainty with an intangible threat? What does that look like?

(in a gruff voice) "It's red dangerous today!"
(normal voice)"Oh, shit, what does that mean?"
(in a gruff voice)"You moron, that's one worse than orange dangerous!"

Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff, seen here exercising muscles that he does not normally use, said yesterday the code red alert for Britain-to-US flights doesn't mean, quote, "that we know for a fact that there are people out there who are still active."

Ah, thank you, that clears it up. Uh, so what does it mean?

Oh, and by the way, I'm pretty sure that there are still people out there that are active. But I guess that applies to all the warning levels, not just red. For the real scoop on the warning systems, check out the red alert link in the sidebar.

The Washington Post reports that Emilty [sic] Hesaltine, a sophomore at the University of Virginia, spent her summer analyzing is the Department of Homeland Security website, that in contrast to the moronic warning symbols, actually has advice for what to do in case of a natural disaster or chemical, biological, or nuclear attack. For the last three years, the site has been the target of ridicule for providing questionable or hard-to-follow advice. The ridiculous downloadable PDFs for the workplace shown above, for example, spawned many an internet funny.

Personally, I'm most fond of the disaster preparedness coloring book. Kids can ease their fears about disasters and have fun while they're doing it! "What color should Daddy's shirt be today?"

Anyway, rather than just make jokes about it, honorary Sports Racer Emily created her own website,, a site that the Federation of American Scientists calls a significant improvement over the one created by many government employees.

Ride the fire eagle number three: important science questions.

According to the New Scientist, a debate rages over animal-human chimeras. The Scottish Council on Human Bioethics is outraged by Ian Wilmut's plans to combine human cells with cow or rabbit oocytes.

I'm outraged, too. Why wouldn't you do it with cooler animals?

"We've decided to combine the remarkable advantages of the human brain with the cow's. . .things."

"Oh, sorry. I didn't hear you say latte. Here you go. (blows raspberry and squeezes invisible udder)

At least do it with something cool. Like a duck. Or a fire eagle!

Monday is "Something from the Comments" Day. Choose your words wisely.

Have a great weekend. This is Ze Frank, thinking so you don't have to.


Air terror remains travellers' worst nightmare from New Scientist
red alert movie
Debate rages over animal-human chimeras from New Scientist

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