Darts fan banned from match for looking like Jesus — Again!

Nathan Grindal
Lawrence Lustig/PDC

For the second year in a row, a British man with long hair and a beard was banned from attending a darts match in Minehead, Somerset, because he looks too much like Jesus.

Last year, Nathan Grindal was ejected from the Cash Converter Players Championship between Phil Taylor and Kim Huybrechts after “Jesus” chants started sweeping through the crowd and security personnel became fearful that the disturbance would interrupt the players.

This year, Grindal’s looks prevented him from even getting in the door.

He was going to collect his ticket to the event when “two big beef-head security guards, including the head of security, dragged me into the office where they told me they wouldn’t let me watch the darts this year,” he said.

“I felt quite intimidated. The head of security told me they would not be letting me into the tournament, because they did not want a repeat of last year. It’s not my fault I look like Jesus. I’m not trying to look like Jesus, I’m not even religious — I’m just an average Joe. I haven’t done anything wrong.”

Grindal is a laborer from Abingdon, Oxfordshire, and he keeps his beard long to hide scars on his face…

Frankly, I would sue their butts from here to Aberdeen. Grindal is a nicer guy than that. However, he’s hoping to be compensated for missing work and buying fuel for the 280-mile round trip.

Alexander Kaptarenko sets new age record of 101 for Olympic torch relay

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A Siberian centenarian became the oldest person to ever carry the Olympic torch Saturday when he breezed through his leg of the relay across Russia.

Alexander Kaptarenko, 101, had no trouble carrying the flame 200 meters closer to Sochi where the Winter Olympics begin Feb. 7.

Kaptarenko had practiced for the relay in the streets of Novosibirsk in recent weeks by holding a frozen fish aloft as a stand-in for the torch…

RIA Novosti said Kaptarenko was a world-class table tennis player back in the day. He participated in several international tournaments, including the 2012 European veterans’ championships in Sweden.

Read a few articles about Mr. Kaptarenko. I’m always impressed by age group athletes who are ten times more functional than I am. 🙂 Here’s a man who survived a couple of World Wars, the Siege of Leningrad, still competing in age group table tennis last year at 100 – and he didn’t care for the puny dumbbells suggested for training for the Olympic Torch relay. He hauled out a big old frozen salmon from his fridge and held it aloft by the tail while he jogged for training purposes.

Good for you, Alexander.

Successful experiment to simulate warming of Arctic permafrost

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Although vegetation growth in the Arctic is boosted by global warming, it’s not enough to offset the carbon released by the thawing of the permafrost beneath the surface, University of Florida researchers have found in the first experiment in the Arctic environment to simulate thawing of permafrost in a warming world.

Twice as much carbon is frozen in Arctic permafrost as exists in the atmosphere today, and what happens to it as it thaws – releasing greenhouse gases that fuel climate change – is a key question, said professor Ted Schuur…

“The plants like it when they’re warmer, so their growth is increasing, and if you just watch the tundra in the summertime and you look at the balance between what the plants are doing and what the soil is doing, the plants actually offset everything that happens in the soil. They’re growing faster, getting bigger and taking carbon out of the air,” Schuur said. “From the perspective of climate change, that’s a good thing, tundra vegetation is making up for any carbon you’re losing from the soil.”

The hitch? The Arctic’s short summers do not make up for the long winters.

Researchers are interested in the permafrost of the polar regions because these soils – permanently frozen at great depths and for tens of thousands of years – are vulnerable to global warming…

As the experiment continues into the next three-year cycle, Schuur said he is looking for a point at which the plants hit a growth limit and stop absorbing more carbon, while the thawing permafrost continues to release carbon…

One of the successes of the experiment, Schuur said, was finding a way to model carbon release from permafrost in the environment on a year-round basis. Previous studies had used miniature greenhouses in summer months, but creating a warming situation in the winter was more challenging.

“We wanted to warm the tundra and cause the permafrost to recede. This is the first experiment to isolate that effect in the field, so the first thing we show is that we’re able to simulate what will happen in a future world when the permafrost degrades,” Schuur said…

The studies confirm that a significant amount of carbon is released from thawing permafrost and highlight that there are factors beyond simply temperature that affect carbon release, Schuur said.

New variables identified by Professor Schuur and postdoc researcher Susan Natali range from water content to the ratio of nitrogen to carbon in the permafrost soil.

There’s the added existential fillip that these researchers are staff at a university in Florida – therefore they’re overseen by politicians and ideologues who refuse to accept any scientific acknowledgement of climate change.

In fact, there is at least one city in another neo-Confederate state where local politicians made it illegal for public funds to be used to publish any document describing sea levels as rising – even though that happens to be a problem in that city. 🙂