Treasure Hunting

In light of PSteve’s sermon on self-righteousness two weeks ago, I really recommend this sermon by Charles Spurgeon to anyone whom God has convicted of the deep sin of pride and self-reliance.

A difficult blessing to me, and I hope the same to anyone who reads as well.

I officially declare Peace Corps service year 2 as the year of “not taking any sh*t”. Last year I was more inclined to just smile and go along with whatever was happening no matter if I was offended, confused or annoyed. This year, no more Ms. Nice Girl! I will chase you down in the bus station…

This was a really big encouragement and challenge to me. Thanks Nicolette I hope your time in Ethiopia has been a blessing and that you remember that our God is faithful to work all things for good. Have hope! (Romans 8:18-30)

jtotheizzoe:

Every Birdy Must Get Stoned
Gizmodo has a fascinating and mildly creepy story about Tanzania’s Lake Natron titled “Any Animal That Touches This Lethal Lake Turns to Stone.” It features the haunting black and white photos of Nick Brandt, who placed the calcified carcasses of dead fauna in “living” poses above the alkaline salt lake that was the likely cause of their demise. The whole gallery’s got a very “Weeping Angels" vibe to it, eh?

There’s just one catch. Lake Natron shouldn’t really be called a “lethal lake”, because not every living thing that touches it turns to stone. But it is one of the most interesting bodies of water on this here planet, and a very important one, if you happen a flamingo.
Lake Natron is fed from underground hot springs, which keep its temperature near 50-60˚C. The shallow lake also has an extremely high pH, approaching that of an ammonia solution (pH 10-11). This is because of the high levels of sodium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate that are dissolved in its sweltering waters, along with a host of other mineral salts. 

It’s those mineral salts that give the lake its name (“natron" is another name for a mix of soda ash and other minerals) and its rather lethal reputation. Most animals know that it’s a good idea to avoid Natron’s caustic waters, on account of how bathing in ammonia is discouraged by 10 out of 10 dermatologists. Fail to heed that warning? Brandt’s photos show the consequence.
But as we have seen so many times, no matter how inhospitable a place on Earth may seem, Mother Nature operates strictly under what I call the Ian Malcolm Principle:

Numerous salt-loving algae call Lake Natron home, their pink and red hues staining the serene saline slough a shade of reddish orange:

This color (let’s call it “roseblood”) is common in salt lakes around the world, perhaps most famously in Australia’s Hutt Lagoon, which glows Pepto-Bismol pink thanks to a microbe named Dunaliella salina:

But little pink microbial aliens aren’t the only biology that Lake Natron is host to. They attract a much larger form of life, one that shares the pink hue of its smallest residents: The lesser flamingo (Phoenicopterus minor):

Lesser flamingos feed on salt-loving pink algae, spirulina and other halophiles, filtering food as small as two hundredths of an inch in diameter using its unique filter-like beak. And like Goose (from Top Gun, not the bird), they do it while inverted. The skin on the flamingos’ legs has adapted specially to resist burns from this high pH water. It’s one of the more basic tales of evolution (puns!), if you think about it.
Lake Natron’s waters are so inhospitable to other animals (as Brandt’s photos demonstrate), that lesser flamingos have sort of cornered the real estate market. It’s their primary breeding ground. That means the future of their species literally depends on this place. Good thing they’ve got it all to themselves!

Except that they might not. Not for much longer, anyway. A few members of our own species see money in Lake Natron’s mineral deposits and want to set up industrial plants to extract them from the water. Tanzania’s government is pushing hard to build factories there. And that doesn’t even begin to include the effects that a changing climate could have on Lake Natron, flooding its delicate balance with excess rain, or drying it up completely.
It’s painfully ironic that the very chemistry that makes Lake Natron such a perfect home for the lesser flamingo, those same alkaline salts that have directed their evolution and the history of their whole species, could be the cause of the bird’s demise. If we aren’t careful, Brandt’s photos might foretell the future of one of the one animal that breathes life into this deadly lake.  

(painting by C.G. Finch-Davies)

incredible. this is too surreal, something out of a movie or fantasy

jtotheizzoe:

Every Birdy Must Get Stoned

Gizmodo has a fascinating and mildly creepy story about Tanzania’s Lake Natron titled “Any Animal That Touches This Lethal Lake Turns to Stone.” It features the haunting black and white photos of Nick Brandt, who placed the calcified carcasses of dead fauna in “living” poses above the alkaline salt lake that was the likely cause of their demise. The whole gallery’s got a very “Weeping Angels" vibe to it, eh?

There’s just one catch. Lake Natron shouldn’t really be called a “lethal lake”, because not every living thing that touches it turns to stone. But it is one of the most interesting bodies of water on this here planet, and a very important one, if you happen a flamingo.

Lake Natron is fed from underground hot springs, which keep its temperature near 50-60˚C. The shallow lake also has an extremely high pH, approaching that of an ammonia solution (pH 10-11). This is because of the high levels of sodium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate that are dissolved in its sweltering waters, along with a host of other mineral salts. 

It’s those mineral salts that give the lake its name (“natron" is another name for a mix of soda ash and other minerals) and its rather lethal reputation. Most animals know that it’s a good idea to avoid Natron’s caustic waters, on account of how bathing in ammonia is discouraged by 10 out of 10 dermatologists. Fail to heed that warning? Brandt’s photos show the consequence.

But as we have seen so many times, no matter how inhospitable a place on Earth may seem, Mother Nature operates strictly under what I call the Ian Malcolm Principle:

Numerous salt-loving algae call Lake Natron home, their pink and red hues staining the serene saline slough a shade of reddish orange:

This color (let’s call it “roseblood”) is common in salt lakes around the world, perhaps most famously in Australia’s Hutt Lagoon, which glows Pepto-Bismol pink thanks to a microbe named Dunaliella salina:

But little pink microbial aliens aren’t the only biology that Lake Natron is host to. They attract a much larger form of life, one that shares the pink hue of its smallest residents: The lesser flamingo (Phoenicopterus minor):

Lesser flamingos feed on salt-loving pink algae, spirulina and other halophiles, filtering food as small as two hundredths of an inch in diameter using its unique filter-like beak. And like Goose (from Top Gun, not the bird), they do it while inverted. The skin on the flamingos’ legs has adapted specially to resist burns from this high pH water. It’s one of the more basic tales of evolution (puns!), if you think about it.

Lake Natron’s waters are so inhospitable to other animals (as Brandt’s photos demonstrate), that lesser flamingos have sort of cornered the real estate market. It’s their primary breeding ground. That means the future of their species literally depends on this place. Good thing they’ve got it all to themselves!

Except that they might not. Not for much longer, anyway. A few members of our own species see money in Lake Natron’s mineral deposits and want to set up industrial plants to extract them from the water. Tanzania’s government is pushing hard to build factories there. And that doesn’t even begin to include the effects that a changing climate could have on Lake Natron, flooding its delicate balance with excess rain, or drying it up completely.

It’s painfully ironic that the very chemistry that makes Lake Natron such a perfect home for the lesser flamingo, those same alkaline salts that have directed their evolution and the history of their whole species, could be the cause of the bird’s demise. If we aren’t careful, Brandt’s photos might foretell the future of one of the one animal that breathes life into this deadly lake.  

(painting by C.G. Finch-Davies)

incredible. this is too surreal, something out of a movie or fantasy

behindbobsburgers:

Grab some napkins. This one’s pretty methy. (via hulu)
A reminder: you can watch full episodes of Bob’s Burgers on Hulu!

YESS Breaking Bad + Bob’s Burgers
BB+BB=BBBB

behindbobsburgers:

Grab some napkins. This one’s pretty methy. (via hulu)

A reminder: you can watch full episodes of Bob’s Burgers on Hulu!

YESS Breaking Bad + Bob’s Burgers

BB+BB=BBBB

A godly man must be faithful to his wife even though he does not have one yet.
Dominic Russo (via alifelivedwell)

jtotheizzoe:

Getting the Chemistry Right on Breaking Bad

BytesizeScience, a project of the American Chemical Society, put together this great feature on how they get the chemistry right (or just right enough, more on that in a sec) on AMC’s Breaking Bad

Vince Gilligan and crew really wanted to get the details in the show right. As someone born in Albuquerque, I can tell you that they do a pretty great job of capturing the essence of “The Q”. But none of the writers are scientists, how could they capture the knowledge of Walter White, the chemistry teacher, so that he could evolve into the evil genius Heisenberg?

Enter Donna Nelson, a chemist and scientific consultant for the series. Nelson and Gilligan (and the DEA) are careful to leave just enough detail out of the meth chemistry so that you can’t write your own recipe for El Azul. But from Gale’s notebooks to the chemical structures on the board in Walt’s classroom to the aluminum/mercury metal amalgam used as a reducing agent (that actually works!), the chemistry is on point. You’re probably wondering about the blue color? You’ll have to watch the video for that.

If you’re interested, r/AskScience has an interesting thread about the accuracy of Breaking Bad's chemistry.

YESSS just makes the show so much better :D

If Christ were only a cistern, we might soon exhaust his fullness, but who can drain a fountain?

Spurgeon (via jiyooon)

+ Jeremiah 2:12-13

+ Psalm 16

yehinoh:

“…words from the early church father John Chrysostom, who was threatened with banishment if he did not renounce his faith:

If the empress wishes to banish me, let her do so; “the earth is the Lord’s.” If she wants to have me sawn asunder, I will have Isaiah for an example. If she wants to be…

jtotheizzoe:

zenpencils:

BILL WATTERSON ‘A cartoonist’s advice’

This. 

YOO BKANGG thought you’d like this haha

Wedding Dress - Derek Webb

I guess on the same note as my Eternal cover, this song really struck me while at work a few days ago. I’m really liking this guy as a more unconventional Christian songwriter, but take a few minutes to listen to this song. A huge blow to our pride, yet a sanctifying reminder of our God who is full of steadfast love.

If You could love me as a wife
And for my wedding gift, Your life
Should that be all I’ll ever need
Or is there more I’m looking for?

And should I read between the lines
And look for blessings in disguise
To make me handsome, rich, and wise
Is that really what You want?

Because I am a whore, I do confess
I put You on just like a wedding dress
And I run down the aisle, run down the aisle
And I’m a prodigal with no way home
I put You on just like a ring of gold
And I run down the aisle, run down the aisle to You

So could You love this bastard child
Though I don’t trust You to provide
With one hand in a pot of gold
And with the other in Your side

Cause I am so easily satisfied
By the call of lovers so less wild
That I would take a little cash
Over Your very flesh and blood

Because money cannot buy
A husband’s jealous eyes
When you have knowingly deceived His wife