mullet over

On November 30, 2018, a magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck near Anchorage, Alaska. Sections of highways fell and/or rose 10 feet. Scores of homes and office buildings were destroyed or badly damaged. Many people were injured, but no fatalities were recorded. When gauged by applying the Richter scale, numbers used for measure are exponents of 10. In other words, a magnitude 8.0 earthquake releases 10 times as much energy as a 7.0 quake. Perhaps this brief explanation aids the reader: Total forces released during the 1964 Anchorage quake (magnitude 9.2) were 158 times the forces released in the 2018 event.

Want to be a farmer? The level of competition in the “field” is increasing. Construction crews have broken ground in Dubai on what will be a 130,000 square foot vertical indoor farm. Plant beds are to be stacked, watered, fertilized, illuminated with LED’s, and continuously monitored. Harvest yields are expected to be about 400 times that of the same amount of land tended using traditional methods. My agrarian dad would be amazed (different from “a-maized”).

Fighting wildfires is a dangerous occupation. However, firemen (& firewomen) are soon to have new weaponry in their arsenals. An improved CAD (Computer Aided Dispatch) System can direct drones delivering firefighting materials (e.g., protective suits, retardants, medical supplies). The drones can also be used for surveillance to determine the safest, fastest routes for delivery trucks and ambulances, etc. to follow while supporting on-site combatants.

Many years ago, a spirited man named Callistus was accused of fighting inside a church on the Sabbath. Belligerent “Callie” was tried and found guilty. He was consequently assessed a 12 month sentence of hard labor toiling in the salt mines of Sardinia. The convict did “serve his time.” His fortunes later improved drastically as he became Pope Callistus and reigned as Pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church for five years.

Do you possess a branding iron? Even if you own such an item, there is likely a larger one in Vega, Texas (population about 900). A 22 foot long, 3000 pound branding iron displaying an XIT Ranch logo is a big-time attraction in Vega

We have all missed witnessing a near-spectacular train robbery that almost occurred in 1877 near Big Springs, Iowa. Sam Bass and some fellow bandits stopped a train carrying 535 bars of pure silver. The robbers were aware of the bullion, but took none of it. The bars weighed about 140 pounds each and none of the would-be thieves could concoct any method to effectively transport that loot on their “get-away” mounts. I hope that your day is pure silver.

James White is a retired mathematics teacher who enjoys sharing fascinating trivia. He can be reached at jkwhite46@gmail.com.