; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Monday, October 21, 2013

Daily 2 Cents: Another Oarfish Washes Ashore in California -- Haunted Lawnmower - New Asteroid Concerns

Another Oarfish Washes Ashore in San Diego

For the second time in a week, a rare serpent-like oarfish has surfaced in Southern California, this one on Friday at Oceanside Harbor.

Beachgoers who saw the carcass wash up on the north side of the south Oceanside jetty, off the 1200 block of North Pacific Street, called police about 5 p.m., Oceanside police Officer Mark Bussey said. A caller told police he thought it was a whale.

Bussey and other officers responded as curious onlookers gathered around the silvery creature. At one point, about 50 to 75 people were there, Bussey said.

Police contacted SeaWorld San Diego, The Scripps Research Institute and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. A NOAA representative responded to retrieve the fish, which she measured at 13 1/2 feet long. The carcass was cut into sections and removed in coolers for later study.

On Sunday an 18-foot-long oarfish was found near Catalina.

An instructor from the Catalina Island Marine Institute who was snorkeling found the carcass and recruited more than a dozen others to help her drag it to shore.

Institute employees called it the discovery of a lifetime, noting sightings are rare because oarfish dive more than 3,000 feet deep. The fish was believed to have died of natural causes, but tissue samples were taken to be studied.

Oarfish can grow to more than 50 feet long, and are believed likely responsible for sea serpent tales throughout history, institute officials said.

Bussey said it was fascinating to see the creature, and something out of the realm of regular police officer duties. “It was pretty neat,” he said. - UT San Diego

NOTE: The appearence of oarfish, according to the Japanese, is a harbinger of seismic activity - Have We Received Another Warning?


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PSA: Thrift Stores Cannot Resell Your Giant Bags of Weed

Donating to thrift shops is a terrific way to give a second life to your well-loved velcro sneakers, keyboards or flannel zebra jammies. However, thrift stores cannot accept the following items:

Soiled mattresses
Large bags of marijuana

We thought this reminder might be helpful given that thrift store employee called police Thursday afternoon after finding a large bag of marijuana in a donation bin in North Seattle.

The employee was removing items from the bin near N. 100th Street and Aurora Ave N. at about 1 pm yesterday, when he found a garbage bag containing 2.5 pounds of marijuana.

An officer took the marijuana and placed it into evidence for destruction. - SPD Blotter


NASA: Newly Discovered Asteroid TV135 Not Likely To Hit Earth In 2032

The possibility that newly discovered asteroid 2013 TV135 could hit Earth is almost nil, NASA said on Friday, allaying earlier reports that the massive asteroid might collide with Earth in 2032.

In a post titled “Asteroid 2013 TV135 – A Reality Check,” NASA said that according to initial estimates from its Near-Earth Object Program Office, the probability that the asteroid could impact earth in 2032 -- when it is expected to be back in Earth’s neighborhood -- is only one in 63,000.

NASA expects that additional observations of the asteroid -- first discovered by Ukrainian astronomers on Oct. 8, 2013 -- in the coming weeks will most likely result in a “dramatic reduction, or complete elimination, of any risk of Earth impact.”

"To put it another way, that puts the current probability of no impact in 2032 at about 99.998 percent," Don Yeomans, manager of NASA's Near-Earth Object Program Office, said in the Web post.

"This is a relatively new discovery," he added. "With more observations, I fully expect we will be able to significantly reduce, or rule out entirely, any impact probability for the foreseeable future."

TV135, estimated to be about 1,300 feet (400 meters) in size, was discovered after it came close to Earth on Sept. 16. The asteroid, in its orbit, comes as close to the sun as Earth's orbit, and in its outer reach, it goes as far out as about three quarters of the distance to Jupiter's orbit, NASA said.

NASA noted that the asteroid has an orbital period that spans almost four years, and with only a week of observations of its orbital period, the agency cannot offer accurate results predicting its future course. However, the asteroid could come back near to Earth in 2032.

“The object should be easily observable in the coming months, and once additional observations are provided to the Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Mass., the initial orbit calculations will be improved …” NASA said.

On the Torino Impact Hazard Scale, TV135 is listed as a 1 out of possible 10, or “no unusual level of danger," Yahoo News reported.

The attempts to track objects that fly dangerously close to Earth have intensified in the recent years. NASA and several federal and private space agencies are also working toward developing methods to avoid a possible collision.

Since Earth cannot deviate from its trajectory or protect itself, space scientists are mulling over various methods to deviate the asteroids that are destined to collide with Earth. The options include using nuclear bombs to deflect the asteroid’s course to destroying them with atomic explosions. Some scientists have suggested spray-painting some asteroids to nudge them off the trajectory due to how they would reflect light differently once "painted." - IBTimes

Deep Impact [Blu-ray]

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