Monthly Archives: March 2011

Aging Annoyances

Over the last couple of weeks I’ve gone from being able to read fine text most of the time with my glasses, to where I now have to take them off fairly regularly. This morning my tired eyes have forced me to have my glasses off while I caught up on email and social networking via my phone – including when entering this post.

Of knew this was just about inevitable, my mom started needing bi-focals around my age, and my dad started wearing glasses about the same time. I guess now it is my turn.

Tidal Ponderings

Last Saturday, was the full moon – which occurred at perigee.   Yesterday was the Vernal Equinox.   According to my office calendar (which carries an overabundance of information), the highest high tide for the month, and the lowest low tide in Southern California occur today (23:13 and 05:57 PDT respectively).

If I recall my college astronomy correctly, tidal forces have to do differential gravitational pull between two different bodies (or equally between two ends of the same body).  I also recall that it increases and decreases on the cube of the distance – as opposed to the square of the distance for single body gravitation.  Alas, I don’t recall the details; and my Astronomy text book was one of the books lost when the water heater in Oceanside decided to assume the roll of waterfall.  So, I don’t have the math readily at hand (or at least more readily than pouring through a number of web pages to make sure I’m getting the info I’m looking for).

But, I still have a very strong suspicion that there is more than coincidence involving at least the tides and the lunar phase.  But I would not by surprised that the equinox also plays a part – either by making the tides a bit more extreme, or by moving the date away from the actual full moon and lunar perigee.

Alas, since my real work calls (at least a bit) I must leave this – undoubtedly well studied and understood – pondering to wait.


Oakes Potluck Open House And First Annual Get-Together and Potluck

When: May 21, 2011. Show up anytime after 1:00, and let us get to bed by 9:00.

Where: Casa Oakes

11155 Calenda Rd
San Diego, CA 92127

Who: Any and all friends and family in San Diego and nearby environs.

Join us on May 21 to help us celebrate having been in our home for a bit over a year. We will be providing grill-able foods (hamburgers, hot dogs, brats, etc. exact mix to be determined), and non-alcoholic drinks.

Please bring a dish to share. That and your presence are the only presents we desire.

Note: We have a cat and a dog.  People with allergies should take appropriate precautions.

We plan on lighting the grill and cooking the meat around 4:00pm, but welcome people before and afterwards.

Please RSVP and sign up for dishes either on the Facebook event, or by leaving a comment at

Japan Earthquake

As many have heard, there was a magnitude 8.9 earthquake in Japan. Prayers go out to the people in Japan, and elsewhere impacted.

The expected tsunami has, or will shortly, hit Hawaii – starting with The Big Island. I’ll have to wait for my mom to know how my extended family there (cousins of hers) in Hawaii have fared.

We’re under a tsunami advisory, but if it hits San Diego it will be at low tide, so the surge won’t be much or any higher than high tide. Both our house, and my office are well above any threat, so we should be OK.

One fun side report, one of our friends reports that the tilt sensors for the tevetron at Firmilab detected the quake, and it probably would have caused a quench had it been in operation. Clearly we are part of one world, and are impacted by events around the world.

I Think I’m Back (a.k.a. Test Post)

After loosing the easy ability to run WordPress publicly on my  own site, I’ve migrated to a site hosted by, who also host the CONjecture and other SanSFiS sites.

If I’ve got stuff set up correctly, this should go back to being my main forum for posting – at least longer messages.