Washing dishes in the wild

Finally, an academic study on the best way to wash dishes while camping:
Methods — Different washing-up systems were tested with a simulated dish washing of 5 contaminated mess tins followed by 5 uncontaminated mess tins. Porridge was used to simulate food residue and was mixed with Escherichia coli to produce bacterial contamination. Reduction of bacterial load on the mess tins was measured, as were subjective observations regarding the various systems.

Results — Bacterial load on contaminated tins is reduced when the 3-bowl system is used. Uncontaminated tins become contaminated in bowl 1, but this is then reduced in subsequent bowls. Disinfectant use, especially bleach, produced a marked reduction in bacterial load on contaminated and uncontaminated tins when used in bowl 2. Detergent is needed to remove grease, and a final rinse removes the smell of disinfectant.

Conclusions — Overall, the most effective washing-up system in the laboratory was removal of most food residue with detergent in bowl 1, finish washing with bleach until visibly clean in bowl 2, and a final rinse in drinkable water in bowl 3. This system has advantages over the established 3-bowl system by getting mess tins clean more easily, killing potentially harmful bacteria, and removing the smell and taste of disinfectant.

The full paper (the above is from the abstract) requires an ID to read, but this article has some more details:
Of course, Mother Nature doesn't always provide campers with clean water, so dishes and utensils might become recontaminated during the final rinse in Hargreaves' system.

"If the water used for washing the dishes is of dubious quality," McLaughlin says, "then the first two bowls of the proposed system should be used alone."

Pearl Harbor Memo

This blog post shows a document revealing that the US military suspected a Japanese attack shortly before Pearl Harbor. The most interesting thing to me is the spacing in the memo. It's not single-spaced, not double-spaced, but every-other-spaced. That still leaves space for corrections above or below every line, but saves space by eliminating half of the blank lines. I only know of one person who uses that kind of spacing, Mommy Turtle.


Here's a Popular Science article from 1933 on tools that gamblers used to cheat. They did some pretty cool tricks with very limited technology.

The best way to cheat, though, is to simply refuse to pay the money. After winning $102,000, it turns out that it was all a big misunderstanding! Once an investigation was begun, the casino decided that they would give the guy the money anyway, even though it was all just a mistake. Poor casinos! Can't they catch a break?

Although, honestly, anyone who enjoys video gambling really isn't owed much. "You put in money, and the computer will tell you if you get some money in return. Of course it's fair! How could you even ask that? Come on, buddy, aren't we friends?"

Status Report

Not much new to report.

Mrs. Turtle got assigned to a new project in SF. It'll be sad not having her around all day, but at least she'll be home every night.

We spent a couple of evenings at the SF childrens' hospital, helping Cleetus and Mrs. C with Baby C. We weren't the primary caregivers, we were just there for when the others needed a break. The hospital room had a couple of tiny beds, a TV and VCR, some chairs, and a bathroom, but it really wasn't somewhere you'd choose to spend a week if you had the choice, so we were happy to drive up and help out. It also gave us a chance to play with Baby C, who was in excellent shape the day we got to babysit, and so was a lot of fun to play with. Luckily, she's recovered and is back at home.

Tickle Me Elmo busted for smuggling meth

I can not top Bob Harris's comments:
This is absolutely real.

Caught with four pounds of methamphetamine in his body.

My favorite part is how his face actually has that "busted" look.

Monkey Helpers

For those of my readers with monkey helpers, here are some useful guidelines for air travel.
  • Since monkeys may likely draw attention, the handler will be escorted to the physical inspection area where a table is available for the monkey to sit on. Only the handler will touch or interact with the monkey.
  • TSOs have been trained to not touch the monkey during the screening process.
  • The inspection process may require that the handler take off the monkey’s diaper as part of the visual inspection.
  • There are a few more at the link.

    I'm back!

    I forgot to mention, I'm back from Turtle X-mas at Turtle Ranch down south with our family burro.

    Googly Fun

    Google provides a nice reference page for Google searching. Interesting bits:

  • You can use the word "or" to perform an or operation in queries.
  • A tilde (~) will also search for synonyms of the following word, so "~auto" will also search for "car", "truck", etc.
  • "red * blue" will search for "red" and "blue" separated by one or more words.

    Look at the page for more Googly fun.