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The Daily Word in Punching Therapy, Weed Workouts and Robot Hunters

The Daily Word

Twins are weird. These two sisters (who were born 11 minutes apart) gave birth at the exact same date and time (in their respective time zones).

Some scientists from the University of Zurich in Switzerland are developing AI that can track a target in real time, which according to them will help create a generation of automatons that will be able to round up shopping carts at grocery stores, or bring your luggage to you at the airport, or make self-driving cars work better ... or allow autonomous machines to track and destroy prey easily. Hiyo!

"Punching therapy" is not only a real thing, it's also exactly what it sounds like. And a woman in China has gone nearly blind after two years of weekly (and sometimes more) therapeutic beatings about the face. When her eyesight began to get fuzzy, her therapist allegedly suggested more punches. A real doctor told her she was developing cataracts. Go figure.

The first reports of a developing pandemic have arrived. Out-of-breath nerds with sore legs abound after the initial onslaught of Pokémon Go the first large-scale, mainstream augmented reality game. The epidemic will be known as "PokéFever." Prices for Ben Gay, crutches and wheelchairs will undoubtedly skyrocket before next weekend.

In case you didn't know: Smoking pot makes exercising awesome. And a couple of folks in CA plan to open a gym where you can smoke weed while you work out. Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Citizens Against Legalizing Marijuana said, "there’s zero evidence that marijuana helps you focus. There is evidence that it makes you dopey," meaning she's obviously never tried it.

Velvet Ants and Sun Spiders

Neither ants, nor spiders

There are a couple of bugs that don’t get much attention and are not very well understood. First is the velvet ant. Velvet ants are not real ants. They are wingless female wasps that resemble large, hairy ants. There are several species so they come in different colors. One species is red and black. Another is yellow and black and there are others. The male velvet ants do have wings. Velvet ants are also known as cow killers, because they have a very painful sting that is said to be able to kill a cow. That may be a slight exaggeration. They are solitary wasps and do not live in colonies. They spend their time wandering around yards, digging in the soil and occasionally entering a garage or home by accident. They are not at all aggressive, but will sting to defend themselves and the sting is very painful as I said. Apparently they make a squeaking sound when stepped on. I stepped on one in my yard in Rio Rancho many years ago and I didn’t hear the squeak, but the sting was so painful I was screaming pretty loud.

They have an unusual way of making a living. The adult females feed on nectar and drink water. They go into the holes made by cicada killer wasps and lay eggs in the cicada killer’s cocoon. The eggs hatch and the larvae feed on the cicada killer larvae. Then the velvet ant larvae pupate and eventually emerge as an adult. Then the female adults will eventually mate with winged male velvet ants and start the process over.

Velvet ants do no damage at all, and as I said, are not aggressive. Pesticides are not necessary to control them. It would be a good idea not to walk barefoot in your yard.

The other “bug” I will mention is the sun spider. The sun spider is not really a spider, but they are arachnids as are spiders. They are also called camel spiders and wind scorpions but they are not scorpions either. They are not venomous and not at all dangerous. They are tan in color, have eight legs, a pair of long pedipalps and have large, muscular jaws. They can bite if picked up. Sun spiders are very fast and very good at catching prey to eat. They will eat cockroaches or any large insects, spiders, scorpions and occasionally small lizards.

They occasionally enter homes under doors or through any void, but will not infest your home. The females dig burrows outside and deposit about a 100 eggs or so. They will not breed in your house. The best method of control is to sweep them into a jar or can and put them outside, where they can continue to help you control pests outside. Pesticides are not necessary to control sun spiders.

If you have any pest questions, you can contact me at askthebugman2013@gmail.com or by phone at 505-385-2820. I want everyone to enjoy a pesticide free summer.

Dream Blog #364

"Why would you do that?"

It's the zombie apocalypse. I've found a hatchet and strap it to my chest. It feels right. C., G.C. and their friends pick me up outside in a white sedan. They're tripping really hard and dose me. We speed through the streets. I lean out the window and yell "I'm sorry!" to all the zombies we pass. C. thinks it's super funny. We get to a warehouse and clear out the zombies. I realize the short reach of a hatchet makes it kind of a crummy choice. C. is compelled to eat part of one of the corpses, a black and green organ about the size of a mouse. There were kid zombies and we're all upset, mad and sorrowful. Soon C. vomits gallons of liquid until the organ comes out. She's compelled to eat it again. I ask "Why would you do that?"

Literature

Vegas Candy

Local Author at Page 1

Ashley Gallegos, local writer and paralegal, will be at Page One Books at 3pm on Sunday, July 10, to talk about and sign her 2016 romantic mystery novels, Vegas Candy and Last Chance Baby.

Vegas Candy is described as such: "When Cat reluctantly agrees to attend her future sister-in-law's bachelorette weekend in Vegas, adventure is the last thing she expects to find. But when she finds herself in profound danger, it appears that marriage to a mysterious stranger is the only way out. Handsome, enigmatic Thomas is determined to keep the alluring Cat safe but was unaware how much his vow would put his own heart at risk. With the risk of danger closing in, both Cat and Thomas must decide how much they are willing to gamble on love before the odds double down against them."

And in her Last Chance Baby, Hailey sought adventure in Seattle "the second high school was over but what she found was more than she had bargained for. When Hailey suddenly comes back home to New Mexico pregnant and harboring secrets, everyone assumes that it is the father of the baby that she is running from. Hailey is happy to let everyone make those assumptions if it keeps them safe from the truth. But Gram's new farm hand Chuck has his own secrets and is too highly trained to ignore the red flags coming from Hailey's direction. When her dedication to keeping her secrets leads to grave tragedy, Hailey finds that she may have to let Chuck in more than she would like as they find themselves navigating a world of crime, danger and loyalty that neither had anticipated. Can Hailey keep those she loves safe or will her past cost her the ultimate sacrifice?"

Gallegos is addicted to school, and is currently pursuing her MBA in Legal Management. She also is a contract Paralegal. She loves to travel and is torn between Vegas and Haiti as her favorite destinations. She lives in Albuquerque with her husband and their crazy dogs.

Pixabay

Event Horizon

Guffaw, Chuckle, Giggle

Saturday, Jul 9: Laughs for Literacy

Comedian Marty Smith and friends present comedy with a bookish theme. All proceeds benefit Reading Works, a nonprofit adult literacy program.
Pixabay

Event Horizon

Water Under the Bridge

Saturday, Jul 9: Centennial Nights: A River Thirsting for Itself

Learn about the history of water, agriculture, environment and politics surrounding the Rio Grande.

Story of Albuquerque's First Aeronaut at Balloon Museum

On July 4, 1882 Albuquerque saloon-keeper Park Van Tassel rose in the Albuquerque sky to the amazement of the audience below. He reached an altitude of two miles and achieved his place in Albuquerque history.

On Saturday, July 9 from 2:30-4pm at the Anderson-Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum you can learn more about his flight and his life as a ballooning pioneer who traveled the world flying gas and hot air (smoke) balloons. His life story is a series of successful flights, with an almost equal number of mishaps. Colorful and courageous, Van Tassel made a career out of entertaining crowds in the U.S., its territories and two dozen countries.

The program will be presented by Dick Brown, AIBF Heritage Committee member, co-author of two AIBF books, and a longtime contributor to Albuquerque's Balloon Fiesta program. In 1980 Brown was awarded the Montgolfier Diplome, one of ballooning's most distinguished awards.

Please join us to learn more about how Van Tassel's feat sparked an interest in hot-air ballooning that eventually led to our city developing and hosting the world's premier ballooning event each fall. The program is free of charge.

A majestic greeting
Monica Schmitt

Day Tripper: El Morro National Monument

Stairway to The Moon

For a lot of Americans, Fourth of July weekend means beer and barbecues and fireworks. Not that there's anything wrong with these traditions, but I prefer using my time off a bit differently. For me, this past holiday weekend meant a spontaneous road trip starting with El Morro National Monument. My boyfriend and I try to use pretty much any free time we can get for exploring New Mexico's hiking trails, and we were excited to go somewhere we hadn't seen before. After a little research I was completely captivated by the talk of water and multiple trails waiting just a couple short hours from Albuquerque. The idea of turning the day into a camping trip quickly surfaced and even more quickly turned into a reality. With our tent, sleeping bags and hastily packed cooler in tow we left early in the morning for what we thought would be a hiking/camping trip but were a little thrown off once we got into the park. We circled the single tiny campground expecting to see some tents or any sign of life, only to find it completely deserted except for one lonely and battered RV with an expressionless man sitting eerily in the back looking out a window. It gave me the creeps. So instead of setting up camp we drove towards the main visitor's center to learn more about the trails.

There's basically just one trail which can be cut down to shorter loops if need be. With a loaner copy of a park map and a couple water bottles we began the journey through sandstone walls. The first half was entirely paved which is great for wheelchair accessibility, if that's a factor. The views at the beginning of the trail were really quite stunning. An enormous cliff face loomed above as we walked in a loop toward a small pool of water. Along the path were inscriptions carved into the soft walls, dating back hundreds of years. Signs reading, “It is unlawful to mark or deface El Morro rock,” were dispersed on parts of the trail near carvings that really looked more like calligraphy. It was interesting to notice that what was once graffiti is now preserved, and to add more graffiti to the already existing inscriptions would be defacing a National Monument. Funny how time gets to decide what is important enough to preserve and study, and what is simply vandalism.

An easy half mile walk brought us to a pool of water surrounded by a dugout of tall grey rock--if you can resist making sounds into the echo-y concave pool I'd be impressed.

The second half of the trail was a bit more strenuous with a short series of steep switchbacks climbing up the mountain. The elevation change was sudden, as was the change in scenery. At the top, white rocks and staircases lead us to wide open areas of what looked like a lunar surface. Giant boulders obstructed the view; save for the looming blue sky, we sometimes appeared to be truly walking on the moon. The fun, ambiguous path encouraged us to choose our own adventure while pools of rainwater and random tiny stairs reminded us where to go.

I should note that this is much more of a day trip than a weekend excursion. El Morro is a fantastic place for a few hours of outdoor adventuring and learning a little history, but I wouldn't recommend camping.

The Daily Word in Hiddleswift, Eternal Debt and Dope

The Daily Word

Jon 'Bones' Jones was pulled from UFC 200 because he was all doped up.

The girlfriend of Philando Castile, a recent victim of a fatal police shooting, speaks about his death.

Germany passed a bill today to help victims of assault file charges against their attacker.

Could there be a mutiny at the RNC? I sure hope so.

Have you heard of Hiddleswift? Of course you have. What if I told you it wasn't real?

Welcome to the park of the future.

Death is no excuse to not pay your student loans, kids. There is no escape.

The next prime minister of Britain will be a woman.

Ralph Greene

Event Horizon

Ancient, Art, History

Friday, Jul 8: Under the Ancient Sea Atlantis Reception

Contemporary artist Ralph Greene presents his newest body of work.

Today's Events

News City
Robert Maestas

Learn about the dangers of human trafficking with Mayor Richard J. Berry, Attorney General Hector Balderas and others. Live music and dance, food trucks, and a performance by Graviel De La Plaga.

Chatter: Late Works at Banque Building Event Center

Josh Turner • country at Isleta Resort & Casino: The Showroom

More Recommended Events ››
 

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    Low Life Vids'n'Vinyl
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