Saturday, December 17, 2005

Siberian Swans Come To Merry England Early

By Elaine Meinel Supkis

Siberian swans from Russia suddenly show up in England in one big flock. This means a very cold winter is coming as if we don't already notice this here in America without any swans telling us this! Also, British scientists claim they know why we bicker during holidays. They blame the food. Heh. Yeah, right.

From the Guardian:
The sudden early arrival of a large flock of Bewick's swans at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust nature reserve at Slimbridge, Gloucestershire, could signal a white Christmas.
Most winters some 250 Bewick's swans arrive in dribs and drabs at the reserve from Siberia, but this week 188 have arrived en masse.

The trust manager, Neil Woodward, said: "The birds try and stay one step ahead of the weather. I would say, because of their early arrival, we are going to have a very cold Christmas and hopefully a white one. If I were a betting man, I would put money on it."
The migratory patterns this year have been rather odd here in America, too. The wild geese usually ride the cold north wind south but much of our winds have been blowing from the south which makes migration a drag, quite literally, so the geese have waited until the wind picks up and then, last week, it did, with a vengence and I saw lines and lines of geese noisily honking as they sailed south at a fast clip.

Because of the unusually warm fall, the Siberian swans probably felt the same way, why beat your wings frantically to fight a head wind? So when the very cold temps suddenly surged down from the polar icecaps, off they took, en mass, moving as fast as possible. We shall see if this is a harbinger for a very cold winter in England itself!

Also in the British news is a story about scientists wanting to explain why humans at holidays, when with close relatives, bicker bitterly and do all those annoying things relatives can't help doing at home when there, en mass. Seems the veneer of civilization collapses as the physical distance between people who know each other too well as well as not at all, refusing to see or understand family members seems to be a requirement for survival, I assume. Well, the scientists think this can be fixed!

From the Guardian:
The traditional Christmas lunch: a touching scene of familial togetherness ruined only by the inevitable outbreak of hostilities between relatives, even before the Queen has uttered a word.
Now scientists believe they can explain why so many families descend into bickering and belligerence over the festive dinner table. The answer, they claim, is all in the food.

The traditional Christmas overload of turkey, sprouts, spuds and pudding can lead to repeated changes in blood sugar levels, according to Paul Clayton, a pharmacologist and president of the forum on food and health at the Royal Society of Medicine. Such yo-yoing of blood sugar, coupled with the effects of salty foods and excessive alcohol, are ideal ingredients for making us irritable and tense, he says.
Heh. Don't feed the bastards. That will fix them. No drinks, either. Yeah.

Boy, that would produce an interesting holiday fun time! No service=no complaints!

Indeed, all holidays will be most peaceful since irritating relations will all camp out somewhere else like at a local saloon. No clean ups, no headaches. I suppose all holidays should happen far from home, the further the better! At least, that is the scientific solution!

From the Guardian"
Nortours, which organises "Santa Claus tours" to Scandinavia and the Baltics, called in the administrators today and cancelled trips in the run-up to the festive period.
Around 500 families are thought to be affected, though they should be able to receive full refunds.

Amid stiff competition in the travel sector and a consumer spending dip, the administrators said high-end operators such as Nortours, which employs 12 staff and has an average annual turnover of £9m, were struggling to attract business.
And now for the energy news. Soaring energy costs is cutting down on Santa tours? Next, his reindeer won't fly? And little children everywhere will have to blame Shell Oil or Exxon? Heh.

When our rulers happily report there is no inflation it is only because few businesses can raise prices. So more and more will cease just like the Santa Tours and we will all end up hungry, cold and miserable, but no inflation!

Well, this fits in with having no food or drink for irritable relatives.

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