Friday Open Thread

Operation Longhorn

One of the largest peacetime military exercises ever implemented in the United States, Operation Longhorn took place in March and April 1952, and cost an estimated $3.3 million, according to the Lampasas County Historical Commission book “Lampasas County: Its History and Its People.” The operation featured the dropping of about 2,500 paratroopers, as well as staged “battles” between the “Aggressor Force” — led by troops from the 82nd Airborne at Fort Bragg, N.C. — and U.S. forces represented by several Army divisions from Fort Hood.

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42 thoughts on “Friday Open Thread

  1. Good Friday morning Hamsters. We have ground fog and 61 on the moors of the Brazos at 7. Given the solemnity of the day, the start is appropriately subdued.

  2. Interesting video here about the US Army Agressor forces of the 1950s. By my time in the Army the program was a great deal less developed. All that really remained was some instruction on how to do remporary modifications to the standard fatigue uniform and helmets. I worked in the S3 of an Aviation Command and wore them once a year during Field Test Exercises as part of the Agressor Force. I’ve got a long story about losing a nuke I’ll tell ya sometime.

  3. That’s only about 40 miles from me. I was only 4 years old at the time, so I don’t remember much about it.

    Meanwhile, United Airlines story continues to fall apart, and they didn’t have much of a story to start with. And if you happen to be a pilot, never let your wife write a public dissertation about your job or your company as it’s likely to be 100% or more wrong.

  4. BTW, has the Easter bunny been outlawed as a religious symbol yet? What about Easter eggs. I’ve fallen a little behind in keeping up with what is allowed and what is disallowed these days. I heard that duck eggs make better Easter eggs than chicken eggs – is this true.

    And lastly, I’ll be having a surprising announcement about the spy ducks soon. My background research into this spy duck thing has been going on virtually non-stop for several days now, and the results are nothing short of stunning. More later as time permits.

  5. Good column by Iraq war veteran David French:

    He doesn’t say he authorized the use of the bomb itself. He says he authorizes the military. This is a key, wise, statement — one that hopefully empowers the military to act from a proper position of legal, moral, and political strength. Obama was notorious for not only implementing strict rules of engagement but for vacuuming an enormous amount of military decision-making authority straight to the White House. It’s hard to think of a more disempowering practice. It’s hard to think of a practice better calculated to lead to timidity in the field. Trump seems to be bringing a change, and it’s a change that’s long overdue.

  6. Morning, everybody. I went to my HOA board meeting last night and stayed out too late. Groggy and a bit short on sleep today.

  7. We got some great news last night, that a service station with fast food WILL NOT be built on a recently sold 3-acre vacant lot that butts up to our subdivision’s swimming pool and playground. Reason: can’t get a liquor license due to proximity of a church and 2 schools.

  8. Actually the meeting ended up being at a local Mexican food restaurant. They have a back room that can be used for meetings like this, as long as they’re not overwhelmed and overcrowded up front. The Lutheran church where the meetings are always held denied use of their library, due to “Maundy Thursday”.

    I was home by 9:30p but still had all my chores to do.

  9. It’s hard to imagine what could prosper there AND be desirable. My subdivision is too small (280 homes) to support anything upscale. There are too many apartments up and down Antoine and we are like an outpost between Oak Forest gentrification and Inwood Forest which is holding on, or trying to.

  10. Shannon says:
    APRIL 14, 2017 AT 12:54 PM
    A couple of Mexican Squealers flew by me the other day.

    I shook my fist at them, for EL Gordo.

    Dang. The last time I saw a Mexican Squealer was just outside the Main Gate at Fort Sill 40 years ago—

  11. I am looking forward to seeing the first true composite picture of a black hole.

    HEADLINE: Astronomers piece together first image of black hole
    The 30-metre IRAM telescope, located in the Spanish Sierra Nevada mountains, is the only European observatory taking part in the international effort.
    Other telescopes contributing to the project include the South Pole Telescope in Antarctica, the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope in Hawaii, and the Atacama Cosmology Telescope in the desert of northern Chile.
    All the data—some 500 terabytes per station—will be collected and flown on jetliners to the MIT Haystack Observatory in Massachusetts, where it will be processed by supercomputers.
    “The images will emerge as we combine all the data,” Bremer explained. “But we’re going to have to wait several months for the result.”

  12. On FM 109 just outside of New Ulm, TX is a serene little park where I often eat my lunch.

    Today it is swarmed with termites and this year’s first love bug. Or three.

  13. OK, I’m taking a break from my outside duties for a moment, and I’ll try to bring you up to date on my latest findings surrounding the spy duck controversy. Quite by accident I was sitting in my lounge chair gazing out the sliding glass doors and enjoying the wildlife that occasionally drops by. It seems that all the neighborhood feral cats and adopted cats all are appreciative of the work I’ve been doing in my back yard for the past couple of years, but they have apparently misinterpreted my efforts and seem to believe that I have opened a cats only litter box back there. Cats I’ve never seen before drop by, drop a load, and leave. At first I thought that maybe I should get a cat that would become territorial and run all the litter bug cats off; but then it struck me. These spy ducks we’ve been so concerned about are not really ducks at all. They are cats who have disguised themselves as ducks. Cats are always staring at stuff; nothing can stare like a cat. Just because they put on a spy duck costume, they still stare like cats. So, these evil cats have been caught at their own game – by me staring at them through the back window. So there you have it. Mystery solved. Next I’ll tell you about the little antennae they have on their heads that stand up looking like ears, but which are really transmitting what they see directly to the spy satellites flying invisibly overhead, and which are being monitored 24/7 by Obama and his minions. But that’s for later.

    BTW, has anyone noticed how bright and hot the sun is out there today? I’ve got to find my tin foil hat to reflect the radiation.

  14. Light rain’s been falling in central Fort Bend County for several hours. Started out with a bunch of dots like beads on a string south to north around 1 this afternoon and just expanded to a blob spreading out and moving north through the county. Nothing hard but just steady.

    We had gone out for lunch at noon and while waiting to be served we checked the weather on a cellphone to find a flood warning box through Richmond for this afternoon. There were clouds in the area and some dark ones off to the west. Could not see anything other than the beads on the radar and wondered what that was all about. Still have no idea what that was about, as the box is gone.

    Ducks have to be involved.

  15. Would someone explain to me why having a high tax paying gas station/convenience store/beer station/deli food place be a community nuisance next to the local pool ?

    We have the same problem up here, but worse. The hysterical blue-haired, pink sweatsuit crowd turns out for all these hearings. Everyone else is working, paying taxes and trying to make the world go round.

  16. I was on my way home this afternoon when I came upon a bunch of cars pulling onto the shoulder and about ten people running. I looked to the right and saw a jeep, upside down, chuffing smoke. It looked bad. I pulled over, looked in my car and grabbed a small blanket and towel, a bottle of water, a small first aid kit I had in my glove box, a shopping bag to put it all in, and joined the stampede towards the young girl. I didn’t know how many people were injured or if I could help. Fortunately, it was only the young lady, she wasn’t badly injured, and the first aid training I took in Miss Owens’ class back in my junior (?) year of high school kicked in.

    That was one lucky lady. She had flipped her car, the air bags didn’t deploy, and yet her only immediate injuries were a big cut near her elbow and smaller one nearer her wrist. The EMTs were told to check a bump on her head. She was coherent and calling her folks on the phone, though she was shook up.

    What was really heartening was the crowd of people there to help. While I was cleaning her up and bandaging her arm, others were gathering her belongings together for her, calling 911, bringing her more water, helping me with bandages, and waiting to be told what to do to help. A nurse eventually showed up and I asked her to look the victim over. She watched as I wrapped the ACE bandage over the gauze and her comment was “I’m a nurse, and what do I have in my car? Nothing!”

    Moral of the story: You never know when you will be put in the place to help someone else. Knowing a little first aid and having a few supplies can mean a big difference. After this, I’m restocking my supply kit and adding a few more things.

    And you should always be ready to thank your guardian angel. Hers was working overtime today.

  17. #30 Texpat

    Would someone explain to me

    I’ll do it.

    The fear is that yutes and vagrants would be hanging out around the nuisance oasis. Their attention would be drawn to the bright-colored playground equipment, the tops of which are visible above the privacy fence. The driveway to this private area runs alongside the backs of fences in our subdivision, adjoining the currently open field which is the 3 acre lot. Years ago, the gate at the end of the driveway was kept locked from 10 pm to 6 am. I was often the one who drove over at 10 pm and locked up. Then the gate was breached and damaged apparently by pushing it off its hinges with a big truck bumper. The gate had to be repaired so it could still be swung open to admit cars driving in. But it was decided not to lock it. If something is ever built on the lot that draws customers from the surrounding couple of miles of apartment dwellers, the HOA will have to come up with the dough for an intrusion proof gate.

    This playground and pool are already attractive to yutes on foot who simply walk in through either the driveway gate or a pedestrian gate that opens to an interior street.

  18. #31 Tedtam
    That is a great thing you did today, ready-willing-and-ABLE to help the injured woman. I salute you!

  19. #33 Mharper

    What was really nice was that it happened between A&M and Houston, and not in Detroit. I know there were at least 2 Aggies there – myself and the man with the one latex glove on that was helping me with bandages. No telling how many others were in the crowd. I had no fear that her belongings would be stolen, and they were strewn all over the place. The top of her Jeep had come off during the flip, and her clothes, purse, everything, had been flung free of the vehicle.

    I know she likes crafts. I picked up bottles of fabric paint along with some socks and underwear just before I left the area. Under better circumstances, I would have liked to sat down and asked her what she was working on.

  20. Way back when, before there was a 290, the drive back from College Station didn’t get any better after Hempstead. The Hempstead Highway was one of the deadliest around.
    Still gives me the willies.

  21. I would have liked to have been there when the folks who built the Mother Of All Bombs got word that one of them had been used.

  22. Kudos to Tedtam for her roadside assistance and then some.

    Our route to and from College Station consists of FM 359 to Hempstead and Highway 6 thereafter, with maybe a mile or two of 290 connecting them. It’s slower going on 359 of course since it’s only two lanes and goes through a couple of small towns, but the traffic is so much lighter than on 6.

  23. Good Holy Saturday morning Hamsters. We have a jackpot opening to the day with 59 and ground fog gathering as forecast. Daylight has arrived but yard lights are still on, and the scene is serene and quiet, not a hint of breeze. Can imagine the Bunny packing his baskets in his secret place and checking on all the parents busily organizing egg hunts to make sure he won’t be embarrassed by their display. 😉

  24. It’s starting to look really grim in the Far East. Best Korea might have ratcheted things up past the point of no return. It’s looking like glorious dear special leader is more willing to commit national suicide than to suffer the humiliation of backing down. I guess he figures if he backs down, someone(s) will whack him, and if he doesn’t and then loses out in the resulting conflict, he’ll either get it then or get whacked in the aftermath.

    Either way he loses, so he prolly figures he should just keep it up because he might get lucky somehow.

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