Monday, March 2, 2015

Head Count

The new king of Saudi Arabia is wasting no time in clearing out the prisons. The KSA beheaded a motley crew of 18 murderers, rapists and druggies last month. Their 2 month total is now 35 heads.

In other news, according to Drudge, the Saudi "courts" now want to try Raif Badawi the blogger they sentenced to 1000 lashes, for apostasy. You know, the crime of rejecting your religion. That carries the death penalty. Be thankful that you blog in a free least until they enforce Net Neutrality.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Mardi Gras AAR

We survived another Mardi Gras. It's been a slow week at the office. Most schools have the week off and families take advantage of it to either go skiing or to visit Orlando. If you want to go to Orlando, don't schedule it for Mardi Gras week as the place will be full of New Orleans escapees.

Trash is a key indicator of a good Mardi Gras. The city used to publish statistics about the amount of trash generated. It's typically about 150 tons total  or 5 -10 tons every day. By contrast, NYC only generates about 30 tons for New Years Eve. The city hired about 150 temporary workers to help pick it all up. And the city did an excellent job. By the next day, you would not know that a parade had passed by except for the hundreds of beads caught in the trees lining the route.

Despite the extra city services required for garbage and police, Mardi Gras this year was estimated to have a direct economic impact of $145 million to the city. Not to bad for the Greatest Free Show on earth.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

The Sewers of Paris

Believe it or not, Paris has a sewer museum. It is an actual part of the sewer system and contains a comprehensive history of water and sewage in Paris from the Roman times. They also have a collection of tools used to clean and maintain the sewer system.

If you enjoy engineering history or just something different, this makes for an educational couple of hours.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Parking in Paris

It takes courage to park on the streets of Paris. Nobody leaves anyone else any space to maneuver and you often see cars parked bumper to bumper. Parisians are some of the most expert at parallel parking but sometimes you need to add a little extra protection from those who try to "feel" their way into a parking spot.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Paris Street Iron

This is a Triumph Herald convertable. They were built from 1967 to 1971. They were powered by a 61 HP, 1300cc, 4 cylinder engine. Their claim to fame is that they were designed by the Italian designer, Giovanni Michelotti, who designed most of the sports cars in that era.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Head Count

Saudi Arabia started the year off with a bang. They executed eight murderers, seven druggies, one rapist and one practitioner of incest for a grand total of 17. Along with this they also got a new king.

In case you are interested, all of the kings of the Kingdom Saudi Arabia have been the sons of the original ibn Saud. He took over 20 wives as part of his plan to unify the tribes. They gave him over 100 children and his sons are still ruling the county.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Identify the Weapon

I was walking by Notre Dame yesterday and saw the usual Police Nationale patrols. They are now wearing body armor. One of them was carrying a familiar looking sub machine gun that I have not been able to identify. According to Wikipedia, they use Ruger Mini 14s but this weapon looked like the familiar M3 "Grease Gun" in that it had a cylindrical body. However the barrel was shorter than the M3. The magazine was a straight clip that probably held 20 or so 9mm rounds. I have not been able to find any modern sub machine guns that look like this one did. Is it possible they are using some modified M3s from WW II? Anybody have any thoughts?

Found it! A Beretta M12.