Jim Kirk is a dick

Last night I was watching an episode of Star Trek: TOS (The Original Series) called ‘The Lights of Zetar’.   In it, the crew of Enterprise is facing down another potential disaster (when do they ever not?) in the form of an alien community that is intent on kidnapping and occupying a human female who just happens to have a trait that makes them all compatible.  As it happens, our intrepid Chief Engineer ‘Scotty’ is also smitten with the woman.

Late in the episode, for some reason, Kirk has come up with a plan to kill or vacate the community of aliens from the young woman, without killing the woman in the process.  Of course, what he’s come up with (without consulting any known ‘expert’ in any field despite having a ship full of them) just happens to be dangerous to the crewperson, if reality ever played a part.  His hackneyed plan is to put the woman in a pressure chamber and increase the pressure to the point where the aliens either remove themselves from her body, or are destroyed in the process.

During the course of this ‘treatment’ his CMO (Chief Medical Officer) tells him he needs to be ‘careful’, because the pressure might very well damage the woman in the chamber.  Certainly a valid point, since increasing atmospheric pressure quickly can damage a human.  Kirk, who at this point apparently could care less, is more intent on ‘saving his ship’ and orders his First Officer (Spock) to keep going.  By the time the procedure works it’s magic, the reading on the pressure chamber says 30 atmospheres.  Just for the hell of it, I looked it up online and discovered that while the human body -can- withstand the force of up to 10 atmospheres if they’re breathing just oxygen, once the pressure increases by much more, the oxygen they’re breathing quickly becomes toxic and the person in question will die.

So essentially, Kirk just ordered his crewperson to die in order to save her.  Sort of like an inept safe cracker ‘killing the money’ by blowing up the safe.

I realize this is all science fiction and the writers of the series didn’t put much stock into doing much research into what they were writing about.  Certainly a lot more things about Star Trek don’t make sense when you start delving into the science of space travel or just plain living in a space environment.  This just rubbed me the wrong way.  And yes, there are a lot more other things that Jim Kirk is a dick about.  This is just one.

Donuts are not just for eating

As I get older, I’ve been finding myself encountering physical maladies that I’ve never had to deal with before.  Certainly one recently has given me pause about things like driving long distances, something I never really gave much thought about.

It started as a slight twinge in my right posterior (or gluteus maximus if you will) while I was at work.  A slight pull in that area, when I bent over to pick something up off the floor.  It didn’t hurt sharply, it just twinged.  I didn’t think anything about it until a few days later when it happened again.  Still didn’t pay it much mind.  A week or so later my wife and I were driving about 90 minutes north on an errand and I discovered I was having trouble sitting still for a long period of time in the car.  My butt hurt, so I had to continually readjust how I was sitting in the seat, trying to make the pain go away.  I was never very successful, but discovered that after driving about 20 minutes, I needed to readjust.  Repeatedly.

I already have lower back pain and have had it for as long as I can remember.  I’ve been going to a chiropractor for the last five years, after having tried several others in the area, all of which said that they weren’t able to do anything to help me.  The one that I’ve been going to wasn’t negative at all, and insisted that he could be of help.  And honestly he has.  I definitely don’t hurt in the same places where I used to, but chiropractic isn’t something that’s a cure, it’s an ongoing thing.  Has to be done about once a month or once every 5 weeks, just to put things back in place, or be ‘readjusted’.  I mentioned to him about this pain that I’d been having, and (naturally) after only having consulted ‘Dr. Google’ did I suggest that perhaps sciatica was the cause of the pain, because (duh) it fit the symptoms.  Of course, he neither confirmed nor denied my self-diagnosis, he checked me out as he always does before doing the adjustment and said that he would pay particular attention to that area, and see if he could alleviate the pain that I was feeling.  I’ve been through two adjustments since first noticing the pain, and I can’t say that there’s been marked improvement.

Over the last several weeks I’ve been using a cushion on my chair here that I use for sitting in front of my computer.  It’s helped somewhat, but it’s not really designed for more than cushioning the whole bottom of me and the chair as well.  Last week I purchased a ‘donut’ from Amazon, a cushion, well…in the shape of a donut.  It says that it’s supposed to help with sciatica pain as well as a host of other similar maladies, the design of it is supposed to change the way you sit, so you’re a bit more upright, and it takes the pain away from your tailbone, sciatic nerve, whatever.  I had a Dr appointment this past Friday and my GP seems to believe what I’m experiencing in the bottom is sciatica, at least from what the symptoms I related to him.  Hence, the donut.

I’m hoping that the pain goes away in time.

The unblinking eye

camera-eyeLike many people these days in the US, I’m a bit concerned about security when it comes to my home, my domicile.  Granted I don’t live in an area that is especially rife with crime, but from reading the local newspapers I am aware that it does indeed exist here as well as places in this vicinity.  Wherever there are places that are semi-affluent, there are going to be places on the other side of the coin, that don’t have sufficient funds, and there are going to be people wanting to take what they don’t, or can’t have on their own.  Consequently, I’ve been considering upgrading our surveillance here at the house.

Rather than going the ‘whole hog’ and purchasing a subscription to an entity that does the work for me; ie: installs the cameras, sets up window and door triggers and monitors the house and grounds 24/7 (it can get expensive, no matter what the TV ads tell you) I opted for something a little less pricey.  Amazon recently purchased a company that made/makes security cameras and my wife about 6 months ago was able to score a 3 camera deal with hub (that controls the cameras) for a good price.  Within the last month, Amazon dropped the price on extra cameras (to add to the system) to where it wasn’t going to break my budget to buy a few more.

So now, I have somewhere between 5 and 10 cameras to put up and around the property.  Obviously I’m not going to say exactly how many, suffice it to say there’s enough to have a pretty good view on every angle that needs to be looked at.  Naturally, like the US nuclear triad theory, simply hanging cameras on all corners of the property and house isn’t going to deter thieves, but if their activities are going to be recorded for posterity, they might think twice about breaking and entering.  Too, cameras aren’t the only thing I’ve been thinking about, working on and planning for, but it’s a necessary step for home security.  Certainly not something that my parents would ever have considered necessary 40-50 years ago, but where I lived then, we didn’t lock our doors at night for probably the first 10 or so years we lived in that development.

Someone suggested a moat with mutated sea bass, with laser beams on their head.  Sounds a bit too Austin Powers to me.