George Rucker's Outsanding Newsletter for June 26, 2018

Another week is here,                                                    26 June 2018

Here we are, in summer again, however the days once again are getting shorter.  I like the warmth of the days now but do not look forward to another winter.  Last winter seemed to hang on forever, this spring was cooler than normal, I do hope this summer is great.  It does seem like once again the weather is going to be very hot in the middle of the country and everything along the gulf and South East portion of the country will be wet.  

Hawaiian residents have been dealing with the fallout of an angry volcano ever since Kilauea began erupting on May 3. Sometimes the mount spews hot fire, endangering citizens. 

At one time some old friends of mine lived in Hawaii and received my letter.  We were in the Navy while I was in my late teens and early twenties.  Sadly they both have passed on.  Currently my letter does not make it to Hawaii, even with about 200 readers.  I do have a Hawaiian friend on a closer island as he gets my letter while on Marthas Vineyard, which is just around the corner.   

In Hawaii next to the area impacted by the most recent lava flows, in the midst of the destruction nearby & stress of the unknown, they have noticed tiny pieces of olivine all  over the ground. It is literally raining gems. Nature is truly amazing.

The picture above does in fact make it look like there is a lot of Olivine on the ground from the Kilauea eruption.  Geologists from the University of Hawaii and USGS say the olivine crystals in the photos are likely not from this eruption, which they say is olivine poor. Trace amounts of olivine could be embedded within some of the volcanic rocks that spew out of the volcano, but these mineral specimens are tiny and would not rain down in the manner suggested. 

These stones,  known as olivine crystals are common minerals found the world over, and seeing them in Hawaii is nothing out of the ordinary. Finding them because of a volcanic eruption, however, is something that doesn't happen every day.

According to geologists at the University of Hawaii, the crystals are carried along with lava out of the volcano and into the sky. Some of that lava instantly cools in the air. When that happens, it turns into a rock known as pumice. The transformation is so sudden that gasses are trapped within the pumice and force their way out, leaving the rock lighter and full of holes. From these holes, olivine rains over the island.


Here is another story about a dust storm larger than North America.

NASA's Opportunity Rover Is Heroically Riding Out an Enormous Martian Storm

Against all odds, NASA's Opportunity rover has continued to transmit information back to Earth through a powerful dust storm.

The rover has been on Mars for over a decade, collecting data on the planet since 2004. While mostly calm, the Red Planet has seen a few severe dust storms in that time. In 2007, when a dust storm covered most of the planet, the rover had to be drawn back to minimal operations for two weeks.

That was the general plan for this go-round as well. The current dust storm is larger than the size of the North American continent and had the potential to seriously damage Opportunity. Opportunity's engineers must balance low levels of charge in the rover's battery with sub-freezing temperatures.

A plan was in place to deal with the storm. But then, something unexpected happened: Opportunity continued to send transmissions.

NASA Mars Exploration Rover Status Report

Updated at 6:30 p.m. PDT on June 12, 2018

NASA engineers attempted to contact the Opportunity rover today but did not hear back from the nearly 15-year-old rover. The team is now operating under the assumption that the charge in Opportunity's batteries has dipped below 24 volts and the rover has entered low power fault mode, a condition where all subsystems, except a mission clock, are turned off. The rover's mission clock is programmed to wake the computer so it can check power levels.

If the rover's computer determines that its batteries don't have enough charge, it will again put itself back to sleep. Due to an extreme amount of dust over Perseverance Valley, mission engineers believe it is unlikely the rover has enough sunlight to charge back up for at least the next several days. 


How to Treat a Jellyfish Sting 

Have you ever been stung by a jellyfish? It's more common than you might think: USA Today recently reported that more than 600 people were treated for jellyfish stings in Central Florida on a single weekend.

The good news is that while they can be painful, jellyfish stings are very rarely life-threatening, and they're easily treatable. Depending on the kind that stings you, most pain typically peaks five minutes after the sting occurs and dies down within a few hours. Generally, it won't last longer than 24 hours.

There are a lot of myths on what to do in the aftermath of a sting, but Prevention spoke with experts about the best course of action to take. Here's what to do—and what definitely not to do—in case a jellyfish gets you. 

Get out of the water

If you've been stung, return to dry land as soon as possible to avoid getting stung again.
Don't rinse off the affected area with drinking water

It could increase the pain. The nematocysts in the cells that cause the sting will actually release more venom and cause more pain. First, rinse with saltwater and try not to touch the affected area with your bare hands. 

Peeing on the sting does nothing

The origins of the urination-theory are unknown, but it was popularized by a Friends episode where Chandler pees on Monica. Don't believe everything you see on television though, because "it's a total myth," says Ted Szymanski, DO, an assistant professor of emergency medicine with the Mayo Clinic. "There's no truth to it."

Do use vinegar

Szymanski suggests dousing the infected area with vinegar or acetic acid to immediately relieve pain.

Shaving cream might work, too

If you don't have vinegar handy, shaving cream may also relieve pain, Dr. Syzmanski says. "If you put shaving cream on, it keeps nematocysts intact and they don’t rupture. You can wipe it off."

Heat is key

In a set of guidelines provided to Prevention, the Red Cross recommends removing remaining tentacles with a "blunt object." After rinsing the area with sea water, apply hot water or a hot pack "as hot as the patient can tolerate for 20 minutes" or until the pain is relieved.  

Seek help for worsening symptoms

Jellyfish-sting injuries are generally confined to irritation, burning, and stinging sensations on the affected area. However, in rare cases of severe envenomation, one might experience vomiting, trouble walking, nausea, headaches, and seizures. If that's the case, Dr. Szymanski suggests seeking immediate medical attention at a nearby hospital.

From: Prevention US


CNN)Ebola virus disease has taken the lives of 27 people in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the World Health Organization said Wednesday. Based on information gathered this week, WHO also reported a total of 58 cases of the rare and deadly illness in the Congo outbreak.

This data is from Wed May 23, 2018 by the World Health Organization. - this is the best I could do for this week.  


The physical training instructor was drilling a platoon of soldiers.

I want every man to lie on his back, put his legs in the air and move them as though he were riding a bicycle, he explained. Now begin!

After a few minutes, one of the men stopped.

Why did you stop, Smith? demanded the officer.

If you please, sir, said Smith, I'm freewheeling for a while.


(CNN)Ebola virus disease has taken the lives of 27 people in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the World Health Organization said Wednesday. Based on information gathered this week, WHO also reported a total of 58 cases of the rare and deadly illness in the Congo outbreak.

This data is from Wed May 23, 2018 by the World Health Organization. - this is the best I could do for this week.  


The physical training instructor was drilling a platoon of soldiers.

I want every man to lie on his back, put his legs in the air and move them as though he were riding a bicycle, he explained. Now begin!

After a few minutes, one of the men stopped.

Why did you stop, Smith? demanded the officer.

If you please, sir, said Smith, I'm freewheeling for a while.


This is a good one on communications in general. You might actually do this as an exercise in the classroom:

An English professor wrote the words, "a woman without her man is nothing" on the blackboard and directed the students to punctuate it correctly.

The men wrote: "A woman, without her man, is nothing."

The women wrote: "A woman: without her, man is nothing."

Perspective is everything!


 Philosophers of the Century  . . .    

Betsy Salkind . . .   
Men are like linoleum floors. Lay 'em right and you can walk all over them for thirty years.   

Jean Kerr . . .   
The only reason they say 'Women and children first' are to test the strength of the lifeboats.   

Prince Philip . . .   
When a man opens a car door for his wife, it's either a new car or a new wife. 

Harrison Ford . . .   
Wood burns faster when you have to cut and chop it yourself.  

Spike Milligan . . .   
The best cure for Sea Sickness, is to sit under a tree.   

Jean Rostand . . .   
Kill one man and you're a murderer, kill a million and you're a conqueror.   

 Arnold   Schwarzenegger...  Having more money doesn't make you happier. I have 50 million dollars but I'm just as happy as when I had 48 million.

WH Auden . . .   
We are here on earth to do good unto others. What the others are here for, I have no idea.   

Jonathan Katz . . .   
In hotel rooms, I worry. I can't be the only guy who sits on the furniture naked.   

Johnny Carson . . .   
If life were fair, Elvis would still be alive today and all the impersonators would be dead.   
Warren Tantum . . .  (School photo album).  
I don't believe in astrology. I am a Sagittarius and we're very skeptical.   

Steve Martin . . .   
Hollywood   must be the only place on earth where you can be fired by a man wearing a Hawaiian shirt and a baseball cap.   

Jimmy Durante . . .   
Home cooking. Where many a man thinks his wife is.   

George Roberts . . .   
The first piece of luggage on the carousel never belongs to anyone.   

Jonathan Winters . . .   
If God had intended us to fly, he would have made it easier to get to the airport.      

Robert Benchley . . .   
I have kleptomania, but when it gets bad, I take something for it.   

John Glenn . . .   
As I hurtled through space, one thought kept crossing my mind - every part of this rocket was supplied by the lowest bidder.   

David Letterman . . .   
America   is the only country where a significant proportion of the population believes that professional wrestling is real but the moon landing wasn’t. 

Howard Hughes . . .   
I'm not a paranoid, deranged millionaire. Dammit, I'm a billionaire.   

Old Italian proverb . . .   
After the game, the King and the pawn go into the same box.


Beer Battered Onion Rings

Beer Battered Onion Rings is the perfect combination of crispy, light and fluffy with a hint of sweetness from the beer. A great side for your summer bbq!


    1 yellow onion, peeled and sliced into 1/4 thick slices
    1 cup buttermilk
    canola oil for frying, 3 inches deep
    1 cup flour, divided
    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    1/8 teaspoon black pepper
    1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
    3/4 cup beer (I used Heineken)


    In a large bowl add the onion slices and buttermilk together and let soak for ten minutes while you make the batter.
    In a second large bowl add a half a cup of the flour, salt, black pepper and garlic powder and whisk them together.
    Add the beer and whisk until just combined.
    In a third bowl add the remaining flour.
    Add canola oil to a Dutch oven (about 3″ deep) and heat on medium high heat to 350 degrees.
    Using tongs remove the onions from the buttermilk and let drip dry.
    Dredge in the flour then through the beer batter one at a time.
    Add to the oil and cook for 2-3 minutes or until golden brown.
    Cool on a cookie sheet or cooling rack, do not place onto paper towels.


Written by      Avery Thompson  June 6, 2018

A new study shows how bacteria still pop up even in the cleanest of places, like NASA facilities and hospital rooms

One of the biggest concerns NASA has when launching spacecraft to Mars—aside from, you know, losing the spacecraft—is inadvertently contaminating the planet with Earth bacteria. One of the biggest open questions in astronomy right now is whether life exists on other planets, and there’s no way to answer that question if we bring our own life along on every expedition.

To prevent that from happening, NASA manufactures its spacecraft in the most rigorous of clean rooms. All workers must wear full-body clean room suits, the air is filtered to prevent any bacteria from sneaking in, and the spacecraft and all other equipment are regularly sprayed with an industrial solvent.

But even all this isn’t enough to completely eliminate all bacteria, and now scientists know why. A new study shows that some types of bacteria can actually feed on these solvents. The research was conducted by a team of scientists from California State Polytechnic University and published in the journal Astrobiology.

At the center of the research is the bacteria Acinetobacter, a particularly hardy species often found in sterilized areas like hospitals and clean rooms. Acinetobacter has been found on multiple NASA spacecraft, including the ISS, and is ranked as one of the world’s deadliest bacteria according to the WHO.

The researchers tested a batch of Acinetobacter found on NASA spacecraft by starving them of ordinary nutrients and then subjecting them to pure ethanol, isopropyl alcohol, and Kleenol 30, a floor detergent. The bacteria could survive entirely on the ethanol, and could also survive on mixtures of ethanol and the other solvents.

This new research doesn’t provide any solutions to the bacterial contamination problem, but it does show why the problem exists in the first place. Follow-up research could find ways to sterilize spacecraft parts that don’t inadvertently feed the bacteria they’re trying to kill. Any potential solutions NASA ends up finding could also be applied to other sterilized areas like hospital equipment, so future NASA research on this topic could end up saving lives along with keeping the rest of our solar system bacteria-free.


Among all the service branches is a friendly rivalry that will always create jokes among the various branches.  The Coast Guard often gets its share of jokes starting with the fact that the Coast Guard was formerly part of the Department of Transportation (now Homeland Security) and not the Department of Defense.  Here is a long list of "You Might Be a Coastie if . . . "

You Might Be a Coastie if . . . 

1. You know instantly that "work smarter, not harder" means billet cuts

2. People ask you what you're doing beyond the three-mile limit

3. You get married to move out of the barracks

4. You precede every public speech with, "I was going to tell a sea story, but seeing the lack of Cutterman's pins out there, you all just wouldn't understand"

5. An Alaskan cruise is not an option for your honeymoon.

6. You are still trying to figure out what TQM was all about.

7. You've ever laughed when watching the CG commercial at 3:00 am, and wondered why all they show is helo's and small boats

8. You've successfully avoided at least one inspection, Change of Command, or urinalysis

9. After boot camp, you've never fired a gun

10. You hear a HH-65 and DON'T look up

11. Your port calls have more bars in them than people

12. You consider the door falling off your aircraft natural air conditioning

13. While underway, a life raft comes loose, hits you on the head and you're counseled for "loss of situational awareness"

14. Members of other branches of the service visit your work space and they shout, "Wow, I haven't seen one of these in 20 years!"

15. Your idea of aromatherapy is Simple Green and JP5.

16. ...Any time you set out on a trip you expect to hear "make preparations for getting underway".

17. When you come home with groceries you shout, "All hands lay to the garage/driveway/curb for stores".

18. You catch yourself speaking to your children in the same tone of voice you use with your non-rates ... or is it the other way around?

19. You are not sure if there really is life out there, i.e. in the real world.

20. It seems every time you watch a movie it says on the bottom of the screen "Property of the US Navy"

21. If you've had people say to you, "The Coast Guard is military?"

22. You might be a TC Coastie if everyone on the ship asked you what you do in the radio room and then got mad because you said, "I could tell you but then I'd have to kill you!"

23. If getting to sleep after mid-watch was ever difficult due to the ever-present sun up above throwing your system off.

24. If your ship is handed a list of businesses your crew is not welcome at during their port call...

25. You've left a port with more than one sign from the naval base...

26. You've woken up in the "red zone" in Panama.

27. WMEC means 'We Must Eat Chicken' to you.

28. If your 40-year-old boat is getting underway on Monday for a 6-week patrol and your still making plans for the weekend because you know the boat will break down within 2-3 days.

29. You might be a Coastie if your ship sends an emergency CASREP for the broken coffee maker.

30. You might be a Coastie if the Marines get upset when they see you get to use real bullets in your weapon.

31. If your child refers to the boat or station as "where Daddy lives"

32. You claim to have a woman in every port, yet you are at an ashore unit.

33. You run from the kitchen, trip over the dog, fall and hit your head on the coffee table just to see a 15 second blip on TV when you hear the words "Coast Guard"!

34. You PANIC when you have to wear nice civilian clothes out because you can't color coordinate because you know no other color than blue.

35. Your wife looks at you strange and spouts out, "You're not my Chief, and I sure as hell ain't one of your damn Seaman!"

36. If you abbreviate words so much that you forget how to spell them out.

37. You tell your children that Fridays are 'field days'

38. If you believe USCG really stands for "Uncle Sams Confused Group"

39. You can get an alcohol incident and advance in the same week


I ran over this week . . .    Smile


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But whatever you do, avoid because you might watch some bad things about the dictator to be, Donald F. Trump who is tearing down our country following the orders from Russia's dictator, Vlad HeadOnaStake Putin.