Here's Wise County, Texas:
And here's the latest (sigh) chupacabra sighting from Texas, and thus, the latest Internet sensation, found on a golf course:
The explanation, according to this report, is of a denuded young raccoon. Interestingly enough, a similar case appeared of an otherwise normal hairless raccoon reported by Kentucky Fish and Game officials (see pg. 7 of this PDF!). The beast, shown below, was found around Somerset, Kentucky:
Coincidence? Or part of a growing conspiracy to discredit evolution? After all, the living 'raccoon' was found in the same state as Dayton and the Answers in Genesis 'Creation Museum':
In case you don't know, Dayton, Kentucky is where the original 'monkey trial' showdown of Darrow and Bryan took place, with a chilling effect on science education. To cap it off, the most famous 'creation scientist' of Kentucky origins is none other than former Bryan College (Dayton) professor (and Answers in Genesis consultant) Kurt Wise:
Kurt Wise, the 'creation scientist'?
Wise County Texas chupacoons?
I think not! Texas, after all, has some State Board of Education members who would love to find a few chupacoons to put in the textbooks. Why not the incredible insights of giant raccoon flatulence theory, which in turn is the fault of none other than Carl Zimmer. (Shame on you, Carl!) And there is this remark by J.B.S. Haldane about rabbits. Hey, raccoons and rabbits are both mammals! And they both begin with the letter 'r'!
Those are simply too many coincidences. Clearly, there is a great revelation coming. This supposed 'hairless raccoon' is no doubt been planted as a 'missing link' by Kentucky-based creationists which, after being put out there in Texas, will be revealed as a 'fake', thus putting egg on the face of every evolutionist in the Lone Star State. Hey, I know it's true, I read about it on the Internet.
It's pretty sad, but Sunday's loss in Minnesota (I'm a Cowboys fan) found me in need of a little cheering up, especially with the weather gloomy and my wife under the weather with a cold. So I indulged in a little madcap surfing.
For some strange reason, the following excess of popular culture does, in fact, perk me up a little. Presented for your viewing pleasure, some shots of the Harry Potter attraction currently under construction at Universal Studios theme park in Orlando, Florida:
The castle is of course not really life-size. If you look carefully, you can see that individuals looking up are going to get a greatly exaggerated view of a model that looks to be about 1/2 scale. Still, the scope of this is truly impressive to callow fan-boys such as myself.
You can see much more of this stuff at brianordoff.com. I am appreciative, perhaps you will be, too. But, so help me, Brian, if any of this is Photoshopped, I will hex you.
Apparently the rumors spread by me of Brett Favre's impending demise as a football player were ill-founded. Please disregard. I can't say I was shocked to see the Vikings win (this is the NFL), but I really thought Favre would revert to form and force balls into coverage. I was wrong. They were better, and they deserved to win. Sigh.
I especially have to extend my congratulations to the defensive line of the Minnesota Vikings, who made big plays over and over again to completely frustrate Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys offense, which quickly became one-dimensional. Scouts say that there plenty of mismatches to be had with the Minnesota secondary and Dallas skill players, but none of that happened because Jared Allen and the Williams boy applied so much pressure up front. While I'm sure there probably was one, I don't recall a single pass play of more than 15 yards. Minnesota's front four simply did not allow enough time for anything to develop, and their secondary denied the Cowboys much yardage after the catch.
It's a bittersweet ending for me as far as the NFL was concerned. The Cowboys' overall play since the Thanksgiving weekend was their best stretch since 1994. Their defense was particularly sensational during that time, and I wanted their hot streak to continue.
But the defense, this game? Not terrible, but definitely not at the same caliber as the previous month. Gerald Sensabaugh gave up a long score with Favre on his back even though he kept toe-to-toe with Sidney Rice. Seems Sensabaugh couldn't bring himself to look for the ball and one gets the impression he was shocked to actually see it arrive in Rice's hands. Rice later got inside on Mike Jenkins, who at least fought for the ball but lost out to Rice, who has a half-foot on him.
The front four of the Cowboys got to Favre plenty of times in the first half, with two sacks and multiple hits, but they were unable to deliver a turnover or affect Favre's concentration. He played great, and the 40-year-old will now take his act to New Orleans, the penultimate step in completing a fantasy that seems him, in effect, sticking it to everyone who doubted him.
Including me. Good luck with that, Mr. Favre. Meanwhile, I and the rest of the Cowboys fans who were so buoyed by the rise of this club and the elevated play of Tony Romo will begin the long post-mortem. I think we will get better, but then, so will everyone else in that NFC East.