Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain – Hout Bay Fires moving towards Llandudno Engulf Sandy Bay

Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain – Hout Bay Fires moving towards Llandudno Engulf Sandy Bay: It is not everyday that you find yourself living next to a mountain that is on fire. This happened to me yesterday in Cape Town and this report explains what happened using high definition photography to capture some stunning views as the events unfolded. Links to my other similar photographic blogs are also included.

0 Hout Bay Burns See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3753 (2)

Hout Bay Inferno on its way to the Sandy Bay Beach area

While you read why not listen to my album ‘Electro Baroque‘ (all tracks are also available on iTunes using the link here)? Classical music using modern instruments:

or if you prefer to listen to my electronic music album ‘Studio Valiumm‘ here are the videos (also on iTunes using the link here):

More info about my music is at the dedicated website www.TRANSFORMATES.com

I had hoped my earlier report about the heroic exploits of the Cape Town fire-fighting crews battling against flames around Hout Bay would be my last on that subject (see my detailed report with pics here).  Sadly I was proven wrong when explosions in the informal settlement at Imizamo Yethu in Hout Bay (known as Mandela Park) started fires that destroyed an estimated 1000 homes. Figures vary but this disaster is believed to have made around 4000 people homeless.

Between Hout Bay and my roof-top apartment in Llandudno is a rather large mountain – the Karbonkelberg. Very dry vegetation caused by the current drought conditions helped the Hout Bay fires in my previous report to reach my side (the Llandundo side) of the mountain. Fortunately when this happened over a week ago helicopter-borne fire-fighting crews quickly brought the bush fires under control. They were helped by very calm weather conditions followed by some much needed rain a couple of days later.

These fortunate climatic conditions were not in evidence at the time of the explosions this Saturday (11th March 2017). The wind helped the flames to spread rapidly and it was difficult to use helicopters because of both the wind and the risk of injuring people – including firefighters on the ground. The wind was predicted to get even stronger during the day and although the fires were brought under control the bush ignited again towards the evening.

5 Red African Full Moon See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3673 (5)

My suspicions arose just before dawn on Sunday 12th March as I tried to take Moon-set photos of the full moon over Sunset Rocks (Llandudno). The moon was a deep red colour and this is often an indication of pollution – particularly that caused by large bush fires. As the moon set and the sun rose I could see smoke billowing over the Karbonkelberg mountain from the direction of Hout Bay. The wind was predicted to reach 100 km an hour (which you really feel on the Cape coast) and the large, well known, Cape Town Cycle Tour (formerly known as Cape Argus) had to be called off.

6 Hout Bay Inferno at Sandy Bay See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3751 (2)

The winds made it impossible for the chopper crews to perform their dousing magic on the mountain bush fires and it was only a matter of time before flames started to engulf the Sandy Bay/Llandudno side of the Karbonkelberg. They continued to spread round the mountain towards the Sandy Bay beach area as the day progressed (see pictures – click on them for high definition views).

7 Hout Bay Major Fire Approaches Llandudno See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3746 (2)

By nightfall the whole of this side of the mountain was engulfed in flames. Ours is one of the first Llandudno properties bordering the Table Mountain National Park where Karbonkelberg is situated. We needed to start preparing ourselves for a potential evacuation. If you have never seen a mountain on fire at night time the pictures here will illustrate how it can be both awe-inspiring and at the same time very frightening – especially if you live next door to it.

8 Night Time Hout Bay Fire See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3791 (3)

In the evening the authorities had placed road blocks at Fishermans Hook – the only road leading to our part of Llandudno (the ‘Sunset Rocks’ area). This was to prevent ‘sightseers’ from blocking the roads in case they were needed for emergency services or residents evacuating in a hurry. Fortunately we didn’t need to evacuate.

9 Night View as Bush Fire Comes to Llandudno See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3802 (2)

The pictures presented above were taken at 9:30 pm. I continued to monitor the flames throughout the night (my regular ‘comfort’ trips during the night provided me with useful ‘mountain viewing’ opportunities). As the night progressed the flames subsided and the spreading appeared to be limited by a fortuitous ‘natural firebreak‘. This was due to a long stretch of sand dunes that reaches from Sandy Bay beach all the way to the town of Hout Bay.

In the past bush fires with larger flames have managed to cross-over this gap but the vegetation has changed in recent years making this less likely. Earlier fires had cleared the area of much larger ‘Alien’ plants and replaced them with the smaller indigenous Fynbos shrubs that are endemic to this part of the Cape.

9a Fynbos Vegetation Endemic to Cape Town See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom

Fynbos Shrubs – Endemic to the region around Cape Town

10 African Full Moon Sets after Huge Fires See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3924 (2)

By the time the sun was just about to rise on Monday 13th March (today) I was up again trying to catch the full moon setting over the rocks in front of my apartment.

11 African Full Moon 13 March 2017 See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3930 (4)

Today there was not the red colouration I had witnessed the previous morning – as the sun rose I could see the mountain had stopped burning apart from an occasional ‘pre-breakfast’ smoke. The pictures here illustrate how the fire has caused most of the green vegetation to be replaced by grey, charred remains. I understand however that these shrubs are very hardy and their evolution has been closely intertwined with bush fires – the indigenous vegetation of the area should regenerate before too long.

18 Green Karbunkelberg Before Massive Fire See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF0013 (2)

I took this photo before the recent bush fires – Note the strong green vegetation

Fortunately on this side of the mountain no homes were destroyed – sadly this was not the case for about 1000 shacks on Hout Bay side. However I understand the authorities, acknowledging that this is a disaster area, will provide funding to ensure more secure accommodation can replace the shacks. The challenge is on for the authorities to help regenerate the homes long before nature regenerates the vegetation.

Thanks for visiting ChrisDuggleby.com.

Chris Duggleby

z Full Moon sets over Sunset Rocks Llandudno See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3928 (4)

Taken at about 06:30 on Monday 13th March 2017

Here are some other reports I have prepared on similar themes:

27th Feb 2017: Mountain Bush Fires in Cape Town as Firefighting Choppers Cool Karbonkelberg’s Flames

5th Mar 2017: Cape Town Whale Spotting Tips – Secret Bait – Sandy Bay Beach Excitement as Big Willy Comes

28th Jan 2017: Release of Chris Duggleby’s new Album ‘Studio Valiumm’ and Scenic Prostitution of Cape Town

14th Jan 2016: Exploring Coastal Caves on the Western Cape of South Africa

27th Nov 2015: Whales Jumping to Bach, Moon Porn Exhibition and Obsessive Camera Disorder (OCD)

19th Mar 2015: Photos of Girls Diving From Sandy Bay Rocks – Cape Towns Nudist Beach – Local Boys Caught Playing Allegris Miserere

8th Mar 2015: Full Moon Pictures from Sunset Rocks near Cape Town – English and German Urine Developments – Hallelujah!

29th Mar 2013: Ship wrecks (and other old wrecks) on the rocks near Sandy Bay, Cape Town

17th Mar 2013: Sunset from the top of Table Mountain following an exciting canine adventure by Cable Car

17th Dec 2012: Looking for wild (and almost ferocious) animals near Chapmans Peak

14th Apr 2012: Searching for Cannibals in Woking, Surrey, England

12 Panoramic Full Moon View of Fire Zone See Photo Blog Article Sensational Images of Blazing Cape Town Mountain at ChrisDugglebydotcom DSCF3885 (2)

Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck – i.Con the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta Testing

Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck – i.Con the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta Testing: This week I would like to share with you how my over-enthusiasm for developing new applications for plastics additives almost caused a condom disaster in ‘Accident and Emergency‘. I also provide a quick update on the beta testing for the new nano-packed, downloadable smart condom i.Con and discuss how it could warn you about syphilis and chlamydia.

1 CDed Why I moved into Research see blog Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck- Icon the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta testing at ChrisDugglebydotcom

In my early career I worked tirelessly with my technical team to perfect the perfect condom

While you read why not listen to my album ‘Electro Baroque‘ (all tracks are also available on iTunes using the link here)? Classical music using modern instruments:

or if you prefer to listen to my electro/techno album ‘Studio Valiumm‘ here are the videos (also on iTunes using the link here):

More info about my music is at the dedicated website www.TRANSFORMATES.com

As I am getting on a bit I think now is the time to come clean about some of the secrets from my early career in developing new chemical products. Last week I described my job in making mutants and their role in the UK’s erection of the year (more on that in the link here). Well, following my attempts to make mutants of the bacterium ‘Psodomy‘ I decided it was time for a career change and moved into additives for plastics and rubber.

3 Making Mutants see blog Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck- Icon the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta testing at ChrisDugglebydotcom

Following my attempts at solving world hunger by making mutants I decided it was time to move on to new challenges

In my new role, working for the UK’s largest Oil company, I was responsible for sales and development of these products in the South of England. One of the products was a very viscous (= ‘like treacle’) product that was also quite tacky (= ‘sticky’) called Polybutene. These properties made it useful in things like sealants and adhesives (because of the stickiness) and high performance motor oils (as a viscosity index improver). It was also used in cling film (plastic- or cling-wrap) as the ingredient that made it ‘cling’.

2 Mutants to Lubes see blog Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck- Icon the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta testing at ChrisDugglebydotcom

Although I had already earned some street cred with the blokes at the pub with my stories about helping to develop Formula 1 motor oils – clearly for the girls I needed something a bit more sensual. My sales region included the well known ‘London Rubber Company‘ whose major product ‘Durex‘ was famous among all my friends. I decided to see if I could use my Polybutenes’ skills to develop the perfect condom for this potential client.

Anyone who has had the good fortune to use a condom will appreciate that something you do not want it to do is fall off in the middle of use. I realised that my tacky additive could be just the product to help this rubber wearable item ‘stay on’. Clearly we had the technology – I already sold to one of the UK’s largest producers of cling film. One potential problem with our polybutene was that its viscosity (thickness) reduced when it was exposed to increased ‘shear‘ (e.g. rubbing against it). This was actually a desirable property in some products – like adhesives – it would help you to adjust the surfaces you were trying to stick before the joint was fixed.

4 Battle for Safe Sex Continues see blog Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck- Icon the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta testing at ChrisDugglebydotcom

I decided to dedicate myself to safer sex

In a condom we didn’t want the stickiness to reduce as you increase the shear rate because this would make it easier for the sleeve to ‘come off’ during action. However we had a special ‘2000’ grade that was super thick and I was certain that if you put this into the condom material it would not slip off. Yes I was on the brink off producing the ‘condom that never falls off‘. Chris’s solution to the problem of global over population.

6 Old diseases make a comeback see blog Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck- Icon the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta testing at ChrisDugglebydotcom

Field trials were a natural next stage. However we did run into a snag – as well as being very thick our 2000 grade was also the most tacky product in the range. Great if you are making glue or rodent traps! A condom containing this additive would certainly not come off during action – however, it had a slight drawback. After you have finished your period of ‘passion’ it was impossible to remove the condom from your appendage. My manager pointed out to me the potential brand damage to Durex of having lines of people at the hospital ‘Accident and Emergency‘ departments – all with condoms stuck on their Willies.

Shortly after this the oil company sent me to become their Sales Manager in Japan – a country where we did not have any existing customers. It was felt that my enthusiasm for innovative product development would be less damaging there (…remind me, one day, to explain how I nearly developed the chop-stick that will stick to rice – sadly it also stuck to diners’ lips).

i.Con the Smart Condom (Ring)7 Safe Sex is not new see blog Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck- Icon the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta testing at ChrisDugglebydotcom

Recently, I was reminded of my early days in condom research, when I heard about another new UK sex innovation. The company ‘British Condoms’ has developed a smart wearable penis ring that you place over a condom. This nanochip based smart device measures loads of useful data to help you analyse your sexual performance. As part of a holistic exercise regime it could help to keep you fit and even lose weight (it measures calories expended in sex).

The product is currently undergoing beta testing to develop its systems for analysing and counting the type and number of positions you use. It should also be able to measure STIs (Sexually Transmitted Infections) like Chlamydia and Syphilis although I am not sure quite how it will tell you about this (I suspect it will be too small for a loudspeaker…just imagine the scene – passions arise and a little voice shouts out: ‘Don’t touch her she’s got pox!‘).

Perhaps your STI information, like the other stats, can be downloaded straight to your smart phone to share on Facebook? Rather than duplicate my in-depth evaluation of this new smart product here why don’t you take a look at my detailed review of this exciting new product on the page using the link here).

8 Latest Developments in Safe Sex see blog Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck- Icon the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta testing at ChrisDugglebydotcom

I wonder if they have ever considered developing a cock ring that is a bit more sticky and doesn’t slide off? Better polish off my C.V.!!! Sadly some gentlemen are so worried about rings slipping off that they actually use more than one on their penis (for my article about how the German fire brigade carries out training to practice removing such devices – in one case 13 on one Willy – use the link here).

So that is enough for today’s action packed ‘health-special’ edition of the blog. If you are interested in such exciting reports like this one you might like to subscribe to my blog – yes it is free!).

Chris Duggleby

9 CDed Equal Opps in Science see blog Cling Film Condom Gets Stuck- Icon the Smart Wearable Sex Ring in Beta testing at ChrisDugglebydotcom

Is that an alarm going off in your trouser pocket?

If you found this article interesting please consider taking a look at some of my other recent reports on similar subjects.

Just click on the titles below:

…starting with some fun related articles:

8th Mar 2017: Nano Chip Cock Ring Detects STIs – Size, Thrust, and Speed – From Penis via Smartphone to Facebook

28th Feb 2017: Vaccinations Cause Children to Masturbate – Public Frustration At Austrian Article:

16th Oct 2016: How to Prevent Smelly Trumps – Scientific Breakthrough in Australia – Good Carbs Mean Good Farts 

9th March 2016: Penis Ring Emergency – German Fire Fighters Rescue Man From Painful 13 Cock Ring Torture: Vorsprung durch Technik and erectile dysfunction

21st June 2015: Bio-undies: Guilt free Passion with ‘Easy Emma’ and ‘Loose Harry’and Getting Rid of Garden Snails with Rent-a-Duck

4th March 2015: Hamburg Reeperbahn (St. Pauli): Germans install walls that urinate on passers-by

17th April 2014: Niche On-line Dating Services (Specialities: Herpes, Thrush and Genital Warts)

18th August 2012: How Bavarians and Austrians use their middle fingerFingerhakeln: a men-only sport (did Arnold Schwarzenegger start training this way?).

You can also find some of my more humorous reports in the Alpine Press section of this site using the link here.

some here is some more serious stuff:

12th June 2016 Hospital Serial Killer – Super Bugs Created With Jumping Genes During Bacterial Sex

21st May 2016 Skin Cancer and Cataracts From Your Car – Poor UV Side Protection – Windows Tested From 15 Vehicle Makers

19th April 2016 Torture In The Shower – Face and Body Soap Allergies – Main Suspect: Pears Transparent Soap

3rd March 2016 Using Gene Drives To Change Mosquito Sex In Fight Against Zika, Dengue and Malaria

3rd Feb 2016 Zika Infection Spread By Sex In Dallas – Earlier Sexual Transmission In Colorado – Detailed Symptoms 

31st Jan 2016  Bed Bugs – Insecticide Resistance – Arbovirus Transmission – Zika and Microcephy

13th Jan 2016 Kill Head Lice In A Day With The Newly Developed Plasma Nitcomb From The German Fraunhofer Institute

26th July 2015 Poison in your Washing Machine: Allergic Contact Dermatitis from Laundry Detergents, Softeners, Conditioners and Whiteners

29th December 2012: Spreading diarrhea and vomit through the washing machine– The Norovirus propagator in our kitchen

…please visit chrisduggleby.com again.

 

UK Chemical Giant Used Psodomy to Make Mutants and Produced Erection of the Year

UK Chemical Giant Used Psodomy to Make Mutants and Produced Erection of the Year: As a young bacterial geneticist I was privileged in my early career to be invited to work on a secret project in the North of England. Here I was expected to use Psodomy to produce mutants – one of our local creations even got the erection of the year award. I share these early adventures below.

While you read why not listen to my album ‘Electro Baroque‘ (all tracks are also available on iTunes using the link here)? Classical music using modern instruments:

or if you prefer to listen to my electro/techno album ‘Studio Valiumm‘ here are the videos (also on iTunes using the link here):

More info about my music is at the dedicated website www.TRANSFORMATES.com

These days the media is full of news about how genetic engineering is being harnessed to create new ‘designer’ medicines and how we will soon be able to conquer certain genetic diseases. Do you really understand what this involves? Do you know precisely what a mutant is or how it is made? What is DNA and what is it about DNA that causes mutations and genetic diseases? In this article I hope to provide answers to some of these questions.

First of all let me explain my credentials. My first job in industry as a research scientist required me to create mutant bacteria for the UK’s largest chemical company. My degree was in Bacteriology and Virology so I was quite at home growing bugs. The bacteria I used in industry lived off methanol – a simple alcohol made from natural gas. My bugs used this methanol as their source of energy and food.

 

Methanol The Alcohol Used to Provide Energy for Psodomy

Methanol The Alcohol Used to Provide Energy for Psodomy

The bug had a rather long name (Pseudomonas methylotrophus) which, for ease of communication, I shortened to ‘Psodomy‘. I tried to make mutants that manufactured essentialamino acids. We need amino acids to make protein and humans can make lots of amino acids themselves. However we can’t make a few amino acids and therefore we need them in our diet – these are the essential amino acids. The strategy was to use Psodomy to turn natural gas into essential amino acids – my chance to help solve World hunger.

We grew Psodomy in a large fermentation vessel – this meant we could put methanol in one end and drain off our protein (called ‘single cell protein‘) using a tap at the other end. Actually our fermentation vessel (see photo below) was so large it received the ‘Erection of the Year‘ award when it was installed near our labs in Billingham (North of England). This was in 1979 – not surprisingly erections have got bigger since then (here’s the link to the mega erection story in New Scientist magazine – its on page 840 at the bottom).

1979 'Erection of the Year': ICI Billingham's Single Cell Protein (Pruteen) Fermentation Reator

1979 ‘Erection of the Year‘: ICI Billingham’s Single Cell Protein (Pruteen) Fermentation Reactor

Let me now explain some basic facts that will help you to understand what mutants are and how we can make them. Put very simply a mutant is a living thing that has a mutation. A mutation is a change in the DNA of the organism. DNA is what our genes are made of – it is passed down from generation to generation. Things that can change this DNA can cause mutations (and therefore make mutants). These things are called mutagens. So what is this DNA?

DNA is simply a very, very, very long molecule. If you didn’t do chemistry at school all you need to know is that everything in the world is made up of atoms (think of these as incredibly small bits of ‘stuff’). These atoms can join together to make molecules – for example plastics are very long molecules or chains of the same repeating group of atoms. Although we think we are clever because we can make plastics evolution beat us to it – all living things contain lots of very long chains of atoms joined into molecules.

Repeating units in a typical plastic Polyethylene

Repeating units in a typical (rather boring) man-made plastic Polyethylene

Whereas plastics have identical repeating units of atoms along their chains living things build much more variety into their molecular chains. If you think of plastics as chains of identical glass beads – then the molecules in living things would be made up of beads of many different colours, sizes and shapes. A typical living molecular chain is a protein and by combining its ‘beads’ (called amino-acids) in different ways each protein has a unique shape which helps it do some very useful jobs. This is why proteins make up the machinery used by every cell in our body. For example they help us break down foods (enzymes), carry oxygen in the blood (haemoglobin), cause muscle cells to contract, transmit electrical signals down nerves and identifying harmful microbes (antibodies).

The protein haemoglobin - here changing its shape as it captures oxygen in the body

The (much more exciting) natural protein haemoglobin – In this GIF it is changing its shape as it captures oxygen in the body

DNA is also a living long chain molecule but its shape is more fixed than most proteins. If we could see a DNA molecule (we can’t – it is too small) we would see what looks like a twisted ladder – each leg of the ladder is a long molecular chain of DNA. This structure is referred to as a double helix (‘double’ because it involves two very long chains of DNA). This structure is very important because each rung on this ladder contains the ‘letters‘ of DNA’s simple 4 letter alphabet.

DNA's Twisting ladder (Double helix) Structure

Moving GIF showing DNA’s twisted ladder (double helix) structure. The letters/words of the genetic instruction manual are written along each leg of the ladder (one letter on each side of every rung).

Why does DNA need an alphabet? This is because DNA is the instruction manual for everything that goes on in a living organism. It doesn’t matter whether you are a bacteria, a plant or an animal – the instructions for making everything you need to live is stored in this DNA instruction manual. The instructions are written using DNA’s simple 4 letter alphabet – and every word in the manual is precisely 3 letters long (the DNA letters are called ‘bases‘).

Guanine one of the bases or letters used by DNA when it writes your body's instruction manual

Guanine one of the bases or ‘letters’ used by DNA to write your body’s instruction manual

Evolution was much more organised than humans when it designed its language – humans have loads of languages, loads of alphabets and our words can be almost any number of letters long. In nature all instructions are written on DNA using the same alphabet of only 4 letters and the same vocabulary of 3 letter words. No need for Google Translate here! This means we can put DNA words from humans into bacteria and they can be read by the bacteria to make human proteins (…and viruses can insert their words into human cells and these cells read them and make the ‘virus’ proteins – by using the same language the viruses ‘hack‘ into the cell’s software and hardware systems).

So what do these 3 letter DNA words mean? Well I mentioned above that proteins are made from amino acids (the ‘beads‘). There are over 20 amino acids – and this same pool of amino acid beads is used in all living things. Each of DNA’s 3 letter words signifies one amino acid. Going back to the description of a protein being a chain of many different kinds of beads (amino acids) – the precise names and order of these amino acids is written in the DNA instruction manual (along the ladder) using the 3 letter words. For example:

DNA word TAC instructs a cell to add amino-acid Tyrosine when it makes a protein (in TAC the T, A, and C are abbreviations for the DNA letters, or bases, Thymine, Adenine and Cytosine).

Protein Building Block: Amino Acid Tyrosine which is coded for by the DNA word TAC

Protein Building Block: Amino Acid Tyrosine which is coded for by the DNA ‘word’ TAC

We think we are clever because we have made computers with software (instruction manuals) using a binary (2 letter) code which can produce useful programmes for word processing, spread sheets, graphics etc. Well evolution has gone much further – it goes straight from the software (written on the DNA) to making 3 dimensional machinery parts (proteins). DNA also stores the instructions for putting these machinery parts together and controls when to turn the machines on and off and how quickly they need to run.

You will appreciate from this that the precise instructions contained along the DNA molecule are very important. Any mistakes in how these instructions are written could really mess up our ‘living’ machinery and all the processes that control it. These mistakes are what we call ‘mutations’ and a typical result of a mistake in the DNA’s instruction manual can totally screw-up a cell’s control system and lead to uncontrolled cell growth or cancer (and a huge number of other diseases).

As I explained above the first word in the DNA word TAC is the base Thymine:

DAN Base Thymine (the 'T' in the code TAC which signals for amino acid Tyrosine to be put into a protein)

DNA Base Thymine (the ‘T‘ in the DNA word TAC which signals for amino acid Tyrosine to be put into a protein)

Using the example above if we change the word TAC into GAC the wrong amino acid is added to the protein. This happens when the letter T (DNA base Thymine) is replaced by the letter G (DNA base Guanine).

TAC = amino acid Tyrosine

GAC = Aspartic Acid – A very different kind of Amino Acid

As a result of this single letter ‘spelling mistake’ the protein will have a different shape and different chemical properties. The machine may not work well, it may not work at all or it may do something completely different. Think of a cog in a piece of clockwork  if one of its teeth is bent it will probably not perform properly. In our day to day life we see many results of mutations in DNA (and therefore in the operation of proteins) – one common example is colourblindness:

Can you see the number? This is a common test for colourblindness which can by due to a mutation on the X chromosome.

Can you see the number? This is a common test for colourblindness which can by due to a mutation on the X chromosome.

To make a mutant you change the words on the DNA molecule. This can be done as above by just changing single letters or by changing several words. The changes can be replacements with different letters or words or they can be deletions – a bit like when you cut and paste or delete in your word processing programme. The body has its own very sophisticated repair systems which it uses to fix mistakes when they occur in DNA. These mistakes may happen at random, or be caused by chemicals (mutagens/carcinogens), radiation (like when we lie out in the sun) or viruses. Viruses take over the cell’s systems when they infect it and sometimes they can ‘insert’ their own DNA into our DNA. This happens, for example, in some cancers.

When we try to make mutants of bugs in the lab we use the same kind of approaches. We can, for example, use mutation causing chemicals, radiation or even viruses (there are special viruses called bacteriophages that attack bacteria). When I worked with Psodomy I used UV radiation – effectively forcing the bugs to lie under a very powerful sun lamp. The idea was to create so many mutations that the bugs’ own DNA repair systems couldn’t fix the damage.

The rather crude strategy was to take a load of mutants and then grow them in a food bath that didn’t contain a specific essential amino acid. If the bug could grow in this bath it meant it could make the amino acid itself and then we tried to find the ones that produced even larger quantities of the essential amino acid. Once we had a bug that made lots of the amino acid we could grow it in our fermentor (our famous ‘erection of the year’ vessel) and hey-presto you turn on the tap and out comes a broth containing the essential amino acid (clearly I have simplified things a bit!).

Bacteriophage used by molecular biologists to inject genes into Bacteria

Bacteriophage – A virus used by molecular biologists to inject genes into bacteria

Today’s scientists are much more sophisticated. They use (for example) viruses into which new genes (=DNA words) have been cut and pasted (instructions to make new proteins). These viruses inject the new genes into the bacteria’s DNA and with lots of technical wizardry the bacteria can be made to produce the new products (including things like drugs/antibiotics and chemicals that are essential to health like insulin and other hormones).

You will hear lots in the press about the CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing system. This is a very powerful genome cut and paste system that was discovered recently in bugs and has been harnessed as the go-to DNA editing system for genetic engineers (more info about that and how it is used in Gene Drives in my article here).

So that, in a nutshell, is a summary of how mutants can be made. If you wish you can make some mutants of your own – just lie out in the strong sunlight and the radiation will create mutants from your own body’s cells. Some of these mutants may overcome the systems the body uses to control the cells. For example a mutation may damage a control protein that stops your cells from growing and multiplying uncontrollably.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Such a cell will then divide many times and could develop into a carcinoma/melanoma and – with help from the sun – you have made mutants and given yourself skin cancer. It could take many years to get this result. Alternatively you might try to be careful about over exposing yourself to the sun – just get enough sunlight to produce the vitamin D you need (or take a supplement). Interestingly vitamin D helps to protect us from cancer so as always with health advice – it is best to avoid extremes in either direction (not too much and not too little sun exposure). I have a simple rule of thumb – I ask myself: “Would my ancestors in the caves have done this?” If the answer is ‘yes’ – it is probably OK (I suggest you don’t ask me about using man made detergents – just read my article here).

Keep healthy!

Chris Duggleby 

Oh and it you fancy a slightly less ‘academic’ video about making mutants click on the box below (and by downloading it from iTunes you could be supporting my mutant research! The iTunes link is here) :

If you found this article interesting please consider taking a look at some of my other recent reports on similar subjects.

Just click on the titles below:

…starting with some fun related articles:

8th Mar 2017: Nano Chip Cock Ring Detects STIs – Size, Thrust, and Speed – From Penis via Smartphone to Facebook

28th Feb 2017: Vaccinations Cause Children to Masturbate – Public Frustration At Austrian Article:

16th Oct 2016: How to Prevent Smelly Trumps – Scientific Breakthrough in Australia – Good Carbs Mean Good Farts 

9th March 2016: Penis Ring Emergency – German Fire Fighters Rescue Man From Painful 13 Cock Ring Torture: Vorsprung durch Technik and erectile dysfunction

21st June 2015: Bio-undies: Guilt free Passion with ‘Easy Emma’ and ‘Loose Harry’and Getting Rid of Garden Snails with Rent-a-Duck

4th March 2015: Hamburg Reeperbahn (St. Pauli): Germans install walls that urinate on passers-by

17th April 2014: Niche On-line Dating Services (Specialities: Herpes, Thrush and Genital Warts)

18th August 2012: How Bavarians and Austrians use their middle fingerFingerhakeln: a men-only sport (did Arnold Schwarzenegger start training this way?).

You can also find some of my more humorous reports in the Alpine Press section of this site using the link here.

some here is some more serious stuff:

12th June 2016 Hospital Serial Killer – Super Bugs Created With Jumping Genes During Bacterial Sex

21st May 2016 Skin Cancer and Cataracts From Your Car – Poor UV Side Protection – Windows Tested From 15 Vehicle Makers

19th April 2016 Torture In The Shower – Face and Body Soap Allergies – Main Suspect: Pears Transparent Soap

3rd March 2016 Using Gene Drives To Change Mosquito Sex In Fight Against Zika, Dengue and Malaria

3rd Feb 2016 Zika Infection Spread By Sex In Dallas – Earlier Sexual Transmission In Colorado – Detailed Symptoms 

31st Jan 2016  Bed Bugs – Insecticide Resistance – Arbovirus Transmission – Zika and Microcephy

13th Jan 2016 Kill Head Lice In A Day With The Newly Developed Plasma Nitcomb From The German Fraunhofer Institute

26th July 2015 Poison in your Washing Machine: Allergic Contact Dermatitis from Laundry Detergents, Softeners, Conditioners and Whiteners

29th December 2012: Spreading diarrhea and vomit through the washing machine– The Norovirus propagator in our kitchen

…please visit chrisduggleby.com again.

Cape Town Whale Spotting Tips – Secret Bait – Sandy Bay Beach Excitement as Big Willy Comes

Cape Town Whale Spotting Tips – Secret Bait – Sandy Bay Beach Excitement as Big Willy Comes: Some people spend a fortune on whale spotting expeditions but struggle to capture a glimpse of one of these glorious mammals. Others sit at home sipping coffee and the whales simply ‘pop-by’ from time to time. I have been lucky enough to be in the latter category. In this article I share some of my experiences and tips about whale watching near Cape Town

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Big Willy the Whale passes Sunset Rocks (Llandudno, S.A.) on his way to Sandy Bay

Big Willy the Whale passes Sunset Rocks (Llandudno, S.A.) on his way to Sandy Bay

While you read why not listen to my album ‘Electro Baroque‘ (all tracks are also available on iTunes using the link here)? Classical music using modern instruments:

or if you prefer to listen to my electro/techno album ‘Studio Valiumm‘ here are the videos (also on iTunes using the link here):

More info about my music is at the dedicated website www.TRANSFORMATES.com

As I was enjoying my chocolate and coffee on the balcony yesterday I noticed a familiar movement around the rocks below me and a rather loud squirting sound. Yes Big Willy had decided to come. Needless to say I quickly reached for my camera and took the following pics to capture the occasion (just double-click on the photos to see High Definition versions that you can then enlarge):

Sunset Rocks - Here Comes Big Willy

Sunset Rocks – Here Comes Big Willy

How about a dive?

How about a dive?

A little wave to your friends on the shore...

A little wave to your friends on the shore…

Just to size things up - compare Big Willy with the ship on the background

Just to size things up – compare Big Willy with the ship on the background

I want to use this article to share with you some tips that I have found useful when trying to spot whales around the coast of Cape Town. I have been a regular visitor here for 10 years and since I got a camera with a long bit on the front 5 years ago I have managed to catch pictures of whales on a regular basis (see some evidence below).

Tip number 1: Location, location, location.

I always come to the same place (Sunset Rocks in Llandudno, not far from Camps Bay and Cape Town). I think the whales like coming close to the shore here because we are next to the Table Mountain National Park. This means there are not lots of tall buildings to worry them – in fact Llandudno doesn’t even allow any shops or restaurants to open in the village. The following pic illustrates the remoteness of the location:

Cape Town Whale Spotting Tips - Chose a remote location like Sunset Rocks

Cape Town Whale Spotting Tips – Chose a remote location like Sunset Rocks

Tip Number 2: Whales like to be entertained

Whales are highly intelligent creatures. Just imagine what is it like to spend all your time swimming about in the sea looking for your next meal – and occasionally your next mate (more on this below). Fortunately Sandy Bay, next door to my pad, is Cape Town’s ‘almost official’ gay, nudist, beach. You can probably imagine that lots of interesting things happen on the secluded rocks facing the ocean.

Whales are very curious animals and I am sure they consider Sandy Bay to be a kind of human zoo where they can watch the chappies frolicking around on the rocks. This certainly draws them in closer to see what these strange land based mammals are up to. As the whales get closer I start to click with my rather large zoom lens.

Avoid Built up areas and provide the whales with entertainment like the Sandy Bay gay nudist beach

Avoid built-up areas and provide the whales with entertainment like the Sandy Bay gay nudist beach

Tip Number 3: The secret whale bait.

Until about 5 years ago I did not have much luck trying to photograph whales. Then in 2012 I started eating 85% cocoa dark chocolate on the balcony during my mid-morning coffee break. From that time onward the whales started to appear and most importantly they came closer to the rocks where I live. OK this is hardly irrefutable scientific evidence that whales like the smell of chocolate but I have had sightings every year since 2012 (I was a scientist – but chocolate and whales were not my speciality – I made mutants).

Obviously the bait doesn’t always attract a whale but on the days when you are not successful you can eat the chocolate yourself. A rather pleasant consolation!

Chris's Secret 85% Strength Whale Bait

Chris’s Secret 85% Strength Whale Bait

Tip Number 4: Be discrete!

You will notice that in front of my balcony (behind the chocolate above) there are bushes. If you want to take pictures of someone going about their normal daily activities it is best not to advertise the fact. Otherwise they will either start to pose or run away. So I surreptitiously position myself behind the bushes holding the ‘magic’ in my hands and if I am lucky – Billy Willy comes (or perhaps one of his pals like Wilf).

I guess anyone can simply claim to have tips on whale spotting (just ask one of the folk offering boat tours from the Cape Town Waterfront). So let me share with you the pics I have taken since 2012 by simply staying on my balcony with a piece of chocolate (and a camera with a long bit on the front).

2012 Pics:

2012 Whale Picture 1 Taken at Llandudno Cape Town

2012 Whale Picture 1 Taken at Llandudno Cape Town

2012 Whale Picture 2 Taken at Llandudno Cape Town

2012 Whale Picture 2 Taken at Llandudno Cape Town

2014 Pics and Tip Number 5:

Try and include a frame of reference in your photos. Sea can get pretty boring (just ask a whale) and it is rather hard for viewers to understand the size of your subject if there is no reference apart from ocean. Therefore many of my photos include either the rocks or perhaps a passing ship. This helps to reinforce the magnitude of the beast you are dealing with.  

2014 Pic of Wilf the whale taken from Sunset Rocks

2014 Pic of Wilf the whale taken from Sunset Rocks

2012 pic of Wilf showing the chaps on Sandy Bay rocks what his left flipper is for

2014 pic of Wilf showing the chaps on Sandy Bay rocks what his left flipper is for

2012 Pic of Wilf - one last wave before he heads off in the direction of Sandy Bay

2014 Pic of Wilf – one last wave before he heads off in the direction of Sandy Bay

2015 Pics:

Feb 28th 2015 Whale Pic 1

Feb 28th 2015 Whale Pic 1

Feb 28th 2015 Whale Pic 2

Feb 28th 2015 Whale Pic – Sometimes the visitors come as a couple!

As well as whales we also get large numbers of dolphins – but because they are smaller and a lot more nimble they can be rather to difficult to capture at a distance. They often accompany the whales – no doubt attracted by the same food sources (not sure about the chocolate though). Here are a couple of examples:

Pic 1 of Dolphins around the rocks at Sunset Rocks, Llandudno

Pic 1 of Dolphins around the rocks at Sunset Rocks, Llandudno

Pic 2 (enlarged) of Dolphins around the rocks at Sunset Rocks, Llandudno

Pic 2 (enlarged) of Dolphins around the rocks at Sunset Rocks, Llandudno

Pic 2 of Dolphins around the rocks at Sunset Rocks, Llandudno

Pic 2 of Dolphins around the rocks at Sunset Rocks, Llandudno

It is not only whales and dolphins that like to play around the rocks in front of my South African apartment. From time to time some of the local Lycra clad girls like to go onto the rocks for a quick jump (more jumping pics here). In this case I think another picture will help to explain what I mean…

When the local girls go onto Sunset Rocks for a quick jump they need to be careful not to land on Big Willy

When the local girls go onto Sunset Rocks for a quick jump they need to be careful not to land on Big Willy

Big Willy here I come....

Big Willy here I come….

Interestingly on the other side of the rocks is a sunken ship wreck – another feature of this locality. You can see more pictures of wrecks using the link here. Here are a couple of examples…

July 28th 1977 the MV Romelia was being towed from Greece to a scrap yard in Asia when it ran aground on Sunset Rocks during a storm (picture courtesy of Ian Mcpherson)

July 28th 1977 the MV Romelia was being towed from Greece to a scrap yard in Asia when it ran aground on Sunset Rocks during a storm (picture courtesy of Ian Mc Pherson)

Wreck near Sandy Bay beach, Llandudno, MV Bos 400

Wreck near Sandy Bay beach, Llandudno, MV Bos 400

So as you can see there is a lot going on at Sunset Rocks – if you want to read about even more excitement try my article from last weekend about what the firefighters got up to with their choppers on Sandy Bay rocks – the link is here.

Time for a chocolate break!

Chris Duggleby22-see-cape-town-whale-spotting-tips-from-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf2640-4

STOP PRESS: 5th March 10:00 Cape Town time Whale stranded on Sandy Bay beach – pic below…

2017 5th March 0820 Cape Town time Whale stranded on Sandy Bay beach

2017 5th March 10:00 Cape Town time Whale stranded on Sandy Bay beach

Here are some more pics of the excellent emergency services from today’s (5th March 2017) beached whale at Sandy Bay, Llandudno, Cape Town (note – it was not Big Willy):

1-see-article-about-5th-march-2017-stranded-whale-on-sandy-bay-beach-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf3479-2 2-see-article-about-5th-march-2017-stranded-whale-on-sandy-bay-beach-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf3484-23-see-blog-about-5th-march-2017-stranded-whale-on-sandy-bay-beach-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf3486-34-see-blog-about-5th-march-2017-stranded-whale-on-sandy-bay-beach-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf3495-35-see-blog-about-5th-march-2017-stranded-whale-on-sandy-bay-beach-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf3500-3

Sandy Bay Beached Whale Update 6th March 2017 8am:

The badly injured, beached, whale at Sandy Bay was finally ‘put to rest’ at 6:30 pm with a big explosion yesterday evening. I understand it was later towed by sea to Hout Bay for land-fill disposal (there is no road to Sandy Bay). The beach certainly looked clear this morning – Pics below from approx 8:00 am (and one of another undesirable body on the beach!)…

1-sandy-bay-beached-whale-status-6th-march-2017-8am-see-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf3553-2 2-sandy-bay-beached-whale-status-6th-march-2017-8am-see-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf3556-2 3-sandy-bay-gay-nudist-beach-cleared-of-smelly-whale-carcass-see-status-6th-march-2017-8am-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf3558-2 4-sandy-bay-gay-nudist-beach-cleared-of-smelly-carcass-see-status-6th-march-2017-8am-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcom-116-2

If you found this article interesting please consider taking a look at some of my other recent reports on similar subjects.

Just click on the titles below:

…starting with some fun related articles:

8th Mar 2017: Nano Chip Cock Ring Detects STIs – Size, Thrust, and Speed – From Penis via Smartphone to Facebook

28th Feb 2017: Vaccinations Cause Children to Masturbate – Public Frustration At Austrian Article:

16th Oct 2016: How to Prevent Smelly Trumps – Scientific Breakthrough in Australia – Good Carbs Mean Good Farts 

9th March 2016: Penis Ring Emergency – German Fire Fighters Rescue Man From Painful 13 Cock Ring Torture: Vorsprung durch Technik and erectile dysfunction

21st June 2015: Bio-undies: Guilt free Passion with ‘Easy Emma’ and ‘Loose Harry’and Getting Rid of Garden Snails with Rent-a-Duck

4th March 2015: Hamburg Reeperbahn (St. Pauli): Germans install walls that urinate on passers-by

17th April 2014: Niche On-line Dating Services (Specialities: Herpes, Thrush and Genital Warts)

18th August 2012: How Bavarians and Austrians use their middle fingerFingerhakeln: a men-only sport (did Arnold Schwarzenegger start training this way?).

You can also find some of my more humorous reports in the Alpine Press section of this site using the link here.

some here is some more serious stuff:

12th June 2016 Hospital Serial Killer – Super Bugs Created With Jumping Genes During Bacterial Sex

21st May 2016 Skin Cancer and Cataracts From Your Car – Poor UV Side Protection – Windows Tested From 15 Vehicle Makers

19th April 2016 Torture In The Shower – Face and Body Soap Allergies – Main Suspect: Pears Transparent Soap

3rd March 2016 Using Gene Drives To Change Mosquito Sex In Fight Against Zika, Dengue and Malaria

3rd Feb 2016 Zika Infection Spread By Sex In Dallas – Earlier Sexual Transmission In Colorado – Detailed Symptoms 

31st Jan 2016  Bed Bugs – Insecticide Resistance – Arbovirus Transmission – Zika and Microcephy

13th Jan 2016 Kill Head Lice In A Day With The Newly Developed Plasma Nitcomb From The German Fraunhofer Institute

26th July 2015 Poison in your Washing Machine: Allergic Contact Dermatitis from Laundry Detergents, Softeners, Conditioners and Whiteners

29th December 2012: Spreading diarrhea and vomit through the washing machine– The Norovirus propagator in our kitchen

…please visit chrisduggleby.com again.

Mountain Bush Fires in Cape Town as Firefighting Choppers Cool Karbonkelberg’s Flames

Mountain Bush Fires in Cape Town as Firefighting Choppers Cool Karbonkelberg’s Flames. Today I would like to share with you some pics of Cape Town’s brave airborne firefighters as they put their choppers into action on the rocks next to Sandy Bay beach near Llandudno (the South African one). Huge ravaging Hout Bay bush fires quenched within hours – Karbonkelberg mountain now cooling down.

All in a day's work: Cape Town Chopper Squad putting out fires on the rocks near Sandy Bay Beach

All in a day’s work: Cape Town Chopper Squad putting out fires on the rocks near Sandy Bay Beach

While you read why not listen to my album ‘Electro Baroque‘ (all tracks are also available on iTunes using the link here)? Classical music using modern instruments:

or if you prefer to listen to my electro/techno album ‘Studio Valiumm‘ here are the videos (also on iTunes using the link here):

More info about my music is at the dedicated website www.TRANSFORMATES.com

Yesterday evening’s deep red sunset combined with very dark clouds coming over the Karbonkelberg Mountain from Hout Bay ought to have set alarm bells ringing. I therefore shouldn’t have been surprised this morning as I opened the kitchen blinds to see my side of Karbonkelberg in flames. I live in the sunset rocks part of Llandudno (the Cape Town one) which benefits from gorgeous sunsets with views of the Karbonkelberg mountain on one side and the Twelve Apostles mountain range on the other.

Rear View of 12 Apostles Mountain Range as seen from Llandudno near Cape Town

Rear View of 12 Apostles Mountain Range as seen from Llandudno near Cape Town

Just to set the scene here is a view of the Karbonkelberg Mountain (the Sandy Bay beach side) on a normal day. This was taken from my balcony.

cded-2-see-article-mountain-bush-fires-in-cape-as-town-firefighting-choppers-cool-karbonkelbergs-flames-at-chrisdugglebydotcom

Because of the grey smoke clouds I didn’t take a picture of the sun setting yesterday but to illustrate how it looks on a normal day here are a couple of recent pictures.

A 'normal' sunset from Sunset Rocks at Llandudno, near Cape Town - just as the sun hits the ocean

A ‘normal’ sunset from Sunset Rocks at Llandudno, near Cape Town – just as the sun hits the ocean

A 'normal' sunset from Sunset Rocks at Llandudno, near Cape Town - just after the sun ducks behing the clouds on the horizon

A ‘normal’ sunset from Sunset Rocks at Llandudno, near Cape Town – just after the sun ducks behind the clouds on the horizon

Now let’s look at what greeted me when I opened the blinds in my kitchen this morning (all photos are high-definition – just click on them to enlarge and see more detail):

View on 27th Feb 2017 from Chris Duggleby's Llandudno kitchen window.

View on 27th Feb 2017 from Chris Duggleby’s Llandudno kitchen window.

Zoom lens view on 27th Feb 2017 from Chris Duggleby's Llandudno kitchen window.

Zoom lens view on 27th Feb 2017 from Chris Duggleby’s Llandudno kitchen window.

As the sun had not fully risen (it was about 07:00 am) and the wind was still quite strong I also took a couple of pictures from my deck facing the ocean (note to self: next time dress first in case other neighbours are also out with their cameras!).

1. Bush fire on Karbonkelberg near Hout Bay and Llandudno

1. Bush fire on Karbonkelberg near Hout Bay and Llandudno

2. Bush fire 'close-up' on Karbonkelberg near Hout Bay and Llandudno

2. Bush fire ‘close-up’ on Karbonkelberg near Hout Bay and Llandudno

Fortunately the wind died down after a couple of hours allowing the local Fire Fighting chopper crews to demonstrate how to put mountain fires out when there is a convenient bit of water near by.

Cape Towns Land and Airborn fire fighting crews join at Karbonkelberg to start fighting the bush fires

Cape Towns Land and Airborn fire fighting crews join at Karbonkelberg to start fighting the bush fires

The guys helping to quench the excitement on the rocks near Sandy Bay beach prove that two choppers are more effective than one

The guys helping to quench the excitement on the rocks near Sandy Bay beach prove that two choppers are more effective than one

If you haven’t seen this in action before the helicopters have what are in effect giant buckets which open when they drop them into the ocean and fill up with water. They then fly with this ‘quenching’ cargo to the edge of the bush fire and release their load onto the flames to try to stop the fire advancing. The regulars at Cape Town’s famous gay nudist beach (Sandy Bay) will have found it particularly entertaining to see firemen with big choppers dropping their load all over the rocks. I suspect this will be a feature of local gay social media sites for some time to come!

Here are some more detailed pics of the choppers in action:

Cape Town Firefighting chopper gets a load of water from the ocean

Cape Town Firefighting chopper gets a load of water from the ocean

Just to the left of this pic are some caves…here is the view on a ‘normal day’ taken from inside the cave looking out at the ocean. Clearly I won’t be going there today!

View from the caves at the base of Karbonkelberg Mountain (the Sandy Bay side)

View from the caves at the base of Karbonkelberg Mountain (the Sandy Bay side)

Chopper drops load of sea water onto the bush fires on Karbonkelberg

Chopper drops load of sea water onto the bush fires on Karbonkelberg

Another loads gets discharged onto the mountain

Another loads gets discharged onto the mountain

Spot the yellow chopper!

Spot the yellow chopper!

That’s it for today. From the reduction in noise levels I assume the chopper activities have moved to another part of Cape Town (which means ‘siesta time’ for you-know-who).

Don’t forget – please be extra careful whenever you go through dry bush areas. It is very easy to start these fires but as you will see from the report above it is very difficult to put them out. Fortunately in the area featured here there were no properties – you can imagine the terrible tragedy involved when this happens in a populated area.

Chris Duggleby.

The local wildlife tries to join in with the airborne excitement

The local wildlife tries to join in with the airborne excitement

The following pics were taken 2 days after I prepared this report to show how effective the fire crews had been in halting the bush fires. You can see a clear line of demarcation between the grey burned vegetation and the surviving green area (separating the fires from where I live!).

Karbonkelberg Mountain 2 days after bush fires

Karbonkelberg Mountain 2 days after bush fires

Closer view of Karbonkelberg Mountain 2 days after bush fires

Closer view of Karbonkelberg Mountain 2 days after bush fires

Karbonkelberg Mountain as seen from my balcony 2 days after bush fires

Karbonkelberg Mountain as seen from my balcony 2 days after bush fires

Oh and this is how this local scenery looks from the ocean (including the occasional ship wreck). I took this picture standing on the end of the area which was engulfed in flames (obviously a little while earlier!).

Sunset rocks. Llandudno Cape Town as seen from the ocean (well almost)

Sunset rocks. Llandudno Cape Town as seen from the ocean (well almost)

More pics like these can be found on my galleries page on this site using the link here.

If you found this article interesting please consider taking a look at some of my other recent reports on similar subjects.

Just click on the titles below:

…starting with some fun related articles:

8th Mar 2017: Nano Chip Cock Ring Detects STIs – Size, Thrust, and Speed – From Penis via Smartphone to Facebook

28th Feb 2017: Vaccinations Cause Children to Masturbate – Public Frustration At Austrian Article:

16th Oct 2016: How to Prevent Smelly Trumps – Scientific Breakthrough in Australia – Good Carbs Mean Good Farts 

9th March 2016: Penis Ring Emergency – German Fire Fighters Rescue Man From Painful 13 Cock Ring Torture: Vorsprung durch Technik and erectile dysfunction

21st June 2015: Bio-undies: Guilt free Passion with ‘Easy Emma’ and ‘Loose Harry’and Getting Rid of Garden Snails with Rent-a-Duck

4th March 2015: Hamburg Reeperbahn (St. Pauli): Germans install walls that urinate on passers-by

17th April 2014: Niche On-line Dating Services (Specialities: Herpes, Thrush and Genital Warts)

18th August 2012: How Bavarians and Austrians use their middle fingerFingerhakeln: a men-only sport (did Arnold Schwarzenegger start training this way?).

You can also find some of my more humorous reports in the Alpine Press section of this site using the link here.

some here is some more serious stuff:

12th June 2016 Hospital Serial Killer – Super Bugs Created With Jumping Genes During Bacterial Sex

21st May 2016 Skin Cancer and Cataracts From Your Car – Poor UV Side Protection – Windows Tested From 15 Vehicle Makers

19th April 2016 Torture In The Shower – Face and Body Soap Allergies – Main Suspect: Pears Transparent Soap

3rd March 2016 Using Gene Drives To Change Mosquito Sex In Fight Against Zika, Dengue and Malaria

3rd Feb 2016 Zika Infection Spread By Sex In Dallas – Earlier Sexual Transmission In Colorado – Detailed Symptoms 

31st Jan 2016  Bed Bugs – Insecticide Resistance – Arbovirus Transmission – Zika and Microcephy

13th Jan 2016 Kill Head Lice In A Day With The Newly Developed Plasma Nitcomb From The German Fraunhofer Institute

26th July 2015 Poison in your Washing Machine: Allergic Contact Dermatitis from Laundry Detergents, Softeners, Conditioners and Whiteners

29th December 2012: Spreading diarrhea and vomit through the washing machine– The Norovirus propagator in our kitchen

…please visit chrisduggleby.com again.

German Police Detain Rabbits, Bees ‘Whoop’ at each other and Hunt is on for Penguin Murderer

German Police Detain Rabbits, Bees ‘Whoop’ at each other and Hunt is on for Penguin Murderer: While the gutter press concerns itself with second rate articles about the US President, Brexit and North Korean assassins/nuclear rocket tests thank goodness we are getting quality news from Germany’s serious newspapers. This morning I was impressed by the dedication of German police who detained rabbits in Saarland, a scientific revelation about how bees say ‘whoops’ and how a kidnapped penguin was brutally murdered in Mannheim.

p1-rabbit-restrained-by-german-police-see-17-feb-2017-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcom

While you read why not listen to my album ‘Electro Baroque‘ (all tracks are also available on iTunes using the link here)? Classical music using modern instruments:

or if you prefer to listen to my electro/techno album ‘Studio Valiumm‘ here are the videos (also on iTunes using the link here):

More info about my music is at the dedicated website www.TRANSFORMATES.com

Followers of my blog at ChrisDuggleby.com will be well aware of my crusade to convince the international community that humour is alive and thriving in the German press. Many of us ‘non-Germans’ think that our Teutonic neighbours are devoid of the any ‘silly’ genes. I lived and worked in Germany for many years and even donated my sperm to ensure the diversity of the country’s gene pool. I can confirm humour is very much alive there – you just have to know where to look for it (Oh…and being bilingual helps).

For example, take this morning’s dip into a highly respected Munich newspaper. I quickly scanned the obligatory ‘filler’ articles written to satisfy the mainstay readership of liberals and lefties. These covered subjects like which branch of medicine will get priority should the US President donate his brain to science and whether the term ‘Brexit’ could be registered in the EU as a laxative. Suddenly I was knocked out of my political apathy by a highly relevant and informative article about German Police taking rabbits into custody.

p2-rabbit-restrained-by-german-police-see-17-feb-2017-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcomIt would appear that a chap in Bexbach (in the German State of Saarland), was under investigation for causing injury and property damage. The suspect expressed concern that his 33 rabbits would not be able to cope without him should he be taken into custody. The lady judge clearly had a soft spot for bunnies and instructed the police to also make arrangements to detain the man’s rabbits. According to police reports the operation to secure the rabbits was a pretty ‘sweaty’ affair (“schweißtreibend” a term used by the force to describe their most challenging arrests). Fortunately the Rabbits have now all been apprehended and are awaiting news about their keeper – presumably their sentences will run in parallel.

Following this journalistic masterpiece I moved to the science and technology part of the paper. Here I came across an update on the latest advances in communicating with bees.

p5-honey-bees-say-excuse-me-see-17-feb-2017-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcom

These days there is a lot of scientific research involving bees to try and understand why their numbers have been diminishing. One exciting approach involves trying to decipher the bee’s language to learn how to communicate with them. Then we can quite simply ask them ‘Hey Bee, whats up?‘. Therefore it was with great enthusiasm that the German newspaper reported a breakthrough published on Feb 8th 2017 by the online journal Plos One (link for techie geeks and non-believers here).

The scientists appear to have deciphered how bees are able to make warning ‘Whoop‘ noises (in bee language of course) to their brethren in the hive. The researchers indicated that this bee ‘Whooping’ is part of an international warning language (honey bees from both the UK and France volunteered for this research). For example if a nasty creature bites a bee’s leg when it gathers nectar it goes back to the hive and warns its pals by whooping at them. (“one study….pinched the leg of a bee at the food source to replicate an insect bite and recorded the ‘whoops’ upon its return. Interestingly, the study showed that a bee who came under attack and won the battle or came back unharmed did not whoop about the danger” source: Plos One).

p3-honey-bees-say-excuse-me-see-17-feb-2017-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcom

I suspect the researchers will now be turning their attention to determining if there are any regional variations to the Bees’ whooping – for example do the English Bees say ‘whoops’ when they there is actually nothing wrong? Or do French bees tend to exaggerate about their experiences and have highly passionate whooping sessions with their neighbours (I am not sure whether Parisian Bees were involved in the study).

The whooping is vibrational in nature and apparently you can induce a whole colony to repeat it en masse if you simulate the warning whoop by gently vibrating a bee hive. It works best at night – imagine the trauma in the hive when thousands of the little darlings all suddenly start saying ‘whoop whoop’ to each other! By signalling danger whooping has evolved as a way of helping fellow bees to get the best nosh (‘Excuse me – but if I were you I wouldn’t go there – you might get your leg bitten‘).

p4-honey-bees-say-excuse-me-see-17-feb-2017-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcomThe third heart-rending story in today’s German press involved a penguin that had recently been reported as ‘kidnapped’. This Penguin was a resident at the Mannheim Zoo. On 11th February during the 3 p.m. feeding session the zoo’s staff noticed that penguin number 53 had gone missing. After a thorough search the staff were able to rule out that the penguin had simply walked off (escaped) or that it had been attacked by another animal. Their conclusion was that it must have been kidnapped!

Well today the zoo staff’s worst fears were confirmed. Not only had the penguin been kidnapped but it had also been murdered. It’s poor little body was found under a bush in a nearby car park. It is too early to say exactly how and when the penguin died but the medical experts will, of course, do a full autopsy and the police have enlisted their best detectives onto the case to help unravel what happened. At the time of going to press an act of terrorism had not been eliminated – the authorities were keeping an open mind.

As a precaution security measures for all remaining penguins in the Mannheim area have been tightened. Local penguins have been discouraged from going out unaccompanied. The murdered penguin was not known to have any political affiliations and as far as the authorities knew it had never visited North Korea.

Clearly this is a rather sad note upon which to end this week’s article but it serves to underline that we are living in difficult times. Fortunately in today’s troubled world you can rely on the German press to present the important facts as they really are – No fake news here!

Chris Duggleby. 

Academic researchers (and second rate publications looking to poach a good story) can review the original articles using these German links – Rabbits (here), Bees (here) and Penguin (here). All news at ChrisDuggleby.com is thoroughly researched.

p7-penguin-kidnapped-and-murdered-in-mannheim-see-17-feb-2017-blog-at-chrisdugglebydotcom

If you found this article interesting please consider taking a look at some of my other recent reports on similar subjects.

Just click on the titles below:

…starting with some fun related articles:

8th Mar 2017: Nano Chip Cock Ring Detects STIs – Size, Thrust, and Speed – From Penis via Smartphone to Facebook

28th Feb 2017: Vaccinations Cause Children to Masturbate – Public Frustration At Austrian Article:

16th Oct 2016: How to Prevent Smelly Trumps – Scientific Breakthrough in Australia – Good Carbs Mean Good Farts 

9th March 2016: Penis Ring Emergency – German Fire Fighters Rescue Man From Painful 13 Cock Ring Torture: Vorsprung durch Technik and erectile dysfunction

21st June 2015: Bio-undies: Guilt free Passion with ‘Easy Emma’ and ‘Loose Harry’and Getting Rid of Garden Snails with Rent-a-Duck

4th March 2015: Hamburg Reeperbahn (St. Pauli): Germans install walls that urinate on passers-by

17th April 2014: Niche On-line Dating Services (Specialities: Herpes, Thrush and Genital Warts)

18th August 2012: How Bavarians and Austrians use their middle fingerFingerhakeln: a men-only sport (did Arnold Schwarzenegger start training this way?).

You can also find some of my more humorous reports in the Alpine Press section of this site using the link here.

some here is some more serious stuff:

12th June 2016 Hospital Serial Killer – Super Bugs Created With Jumping Genes During Bacterial Sex

21st May 2016 Skin Cancer and Cataracts From Your Car – Poor UV Side Protection – Windows Tested From 15 Vehicle Makers

19th April 2016 Torture In The Shower – Face and Body Soap Allergies – Main Suspect: Pears Transparent Soap

3rd March 2016 Using Gene Drives To Change Mosquito Sex In Fight Against Zika, Dengue and Malaria

3rd Feb 2016 Zika Infection Spread By Sex In Dallas – Earlier Sexual Transmission In Colorado – Detailed Symptoms 

31st Jan 2016  Bed Bugs – Insecticide Resistance – Arbovirus Transmission – Zika and Microcephy

13th Jan 2016 Kill Head Lice In A Day With The Newly Developed Plasma Nitcomb From The German Fraunhofer Institute

26th July 2015 Poison in your Washing Machine: Allergic Contact Dermatitis from Laundry Detergents, Softeners, Conditioners and Whiteners

29th December 2012: Spreading diarrhea and vomit through the washing machine– The Norovirus propagator in our kitchen

…please visit chrisduggleby.com again.

Rats! Mouse in Bedroom Leads to Premature Death and Release of New Electro Baroque Album

Rats! Mouse in Bedroom Leads to Premature Death and Release of New Electro Baroque Album. “She may have been a bit of a dirty rat but she certainly knew how to move in bed“. This week’s article describes the loss of one of my most recent photographic models, Mandy, who sadly took her life following our relationship breakdown. My new Electro Baroque album has just been released and a track is dedicated to Mandy – or as my Mother used to call her ‘that African rodent’.

Mandy would lie in the dark staring at my naked body - I had to dedicate a special track on my Electro Baroque Album to her memory

Mandy would lie in the dark staring at my naked body – I have dedicated a special track on my Electro Baroque Album to her memory

Before I share with you the tragic news of Mandy’s demise let me first dispense with the obligatory commercial (I know it’s a bit tacky but I have to support my pension fund). Yesterday after long protracted negotiations we persuaded Apple to re-release my ‘best selling’ electronic baroque tracks.

Some readers will have been lucky enough to download my earlier album (Baroque Transformation) before it got pulled by iTunes. You can never be sure with record industry executives but we believe that there was an issue with my collaborators not having US Tax codes or PayPal accounts. This may have been due to the fact that Bach, Handel, Vivaldi etc. all died over 250 years ago.

George Frideric Handel 1685-1759 who inspired Chris Duggleby's interpretation of the Hallelujah Chorus from the Messiah

George Frideric Handel (1685-1759) flatly refused to get a US tax code or open a PayPal account to cover iTunes royalty payments

So all the tracks have now been renamed – they no longer mention the names of any dead composers (goodness knows what will happen when I snuff it!). These are now re-released under the album name ‘Electro Baroque‘ which can be downloaded from iTunes using the link here. On iTunes you can sample these tracks and if you find something you like they are all available to buy (I do not recommend waiting too long in case this one gets pulled too). For those interested in the other Albums I have produced as an artist (don’t laugh) the iTunes page is here.

If you would like to know which dead composers collaborated on the Electro Baroque album I have added a key with all the details on my dedicated music site (TRANSFORMATES.com) – just follow the link here. As I could not name any dead people on the new album I have taken the opportunity to create some new track names. On the assumption that sex sells some are a little bit sensuous…like this one:

This is actually based on ‘My Lord Willoughby’s Welcome Home a sixteenth century English ballad for which John Dowland (1563 – 1626) wrote a nice lute duet. It was his tune that was the basis for my interpretation. If you would like to compare my version with the original one here is Julian Bream playing with himself (well I did say it was a duet).

 

Having done the commercial I will now move on to this week’s tragic love story. To set the scene let me explain that on Wednesday night I was persuaded by my kind Llandudno neighbour to accompany her and three other beautiful ladies to the dunes in Hout Bay for some fun. A sensible friend, Ian, also accompanied us to help us maintain a modicom of respectability and to get us home safely.

Normally I don’t drink, but being a recluse I am very shy as far as ladies are concerned – on Wednesday I found that large quantities of Merlot helped to reduce my inhibitions. I an planning for my next musical project which will focus on love songs and here was a perfect opportunity to carry out a peer review and test some of my creative ideas. Anyway my memory is a little hazy about how the evening ended but the following morning I awoke to a fantastic red moon setting over the Ocean (no there wasn’t a wine bottle on the window sill). It was at this point that I noticed a creature of great beauty was nibbling at my ear lobe – clearly the night had ended well.

she-was-a-bit-of-a-rat-but-i-loved-her-electro-baroque-album-track-dedication-see-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf2687-3Yes it would appear that during the night this exquisite creature, Mandy, had invited herself into my sleeping chamber – I suspect she was enticed by my irresistible Eau de Merlot. Well, eventually we put passion to one side and Mandy agreed to do some naked modelling for me on the balcony. The pics you see here are the results – she was a natural.

my-family-said-leave-her-she-is-just-a-rat-but-when-i-did-she-killed-herself-electro-baroque-album-track-dedication-see-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf2719-2Sadly after a few hours of artistic fun I had to leave Mandy to take a flight from Cape Town to London. With two new albums to promote there were a lot of red carpet events that I needed to attend. At such short notice it was impossible to get a visa for Mandy – the UK authorities are becoming very strict on overseas visitors following the Brexit vote. Although she tried not to show it I realised later that our short night of passion had left a profound impression on my cuddly partner.

rodent-sex-leads-to-premature-death-and-electro-baroque-album-track-dedication-see-chrisdugglebydotcom-dscf2670-2

Shortly after my arrival in London I received news from the appropriate authorities in Aftrica that Mandy had been found dead on the road beneath my penthouse apartment in Llandudno (near Cape Town). It looked as if she had taken her own life by jumping from my balcony.

To honour Mandy’s short but wonderful life I am dedicating one of the tracks on the new album to her memory. Perhaps she has found a nice little spot in heaven and can enjoy listening to my music with the angels. The track is called Angels Weep When Child Dies – here is the video (and of course you can download it from here – any resemblance to Gregorio Allegri’s Miserere Mei Deus from ca 1630 and performed  in the Sistine Chapel of the Vatican is purely intentional):

So clearly this has been a pretty eventful week. If after all this emotional outpouring you can cope with more baroque inspired music here is the video play list with new videos for all the tracks on my Electro Baroque album:

As Sunday draws closer how about a nice picture of the Sistine Chapel where Allegri’s Miserere features at Easter time. In the past anyone trying to reproduce this music faced excommunication by the Pope – until a rather naughty boy called Mozart nicked it and published the score in London. As Wolfgang got away with it I am hoping that releasing ‘Angels Weep When Child Dies‘ will not reduce my chances of joining Mandy in Heaven.

Enjoy the Weekend,

Chris Duggleby.

170211-sistine-chapel-see-chrisdugglebydotcom

If you found this article interesting please consider taking a look at some of my other recent reports on similar subjects.

Just click on the titles below:

…starting with some fun related articles:

8th Mar 2017: Nano Chip Cock Ring Detects STIs – Size, Thrust, and Speed – From Penis via Smartphone to Facebook

28th Feb 2017: Vaccinations Cause Children to Masturbate – Public Frustration At Austrian Article:

16th Oct 2016: How to Prevent Smelly Trumps – Scientific Breakthrough in Australia – Good Carbs Mean Good Farts 

9th March 2016: Penis Ring Emergency – German Fire Fighters Rescue Man From Painful 13 Cock Ring Torture: Vorsprung durch Technik and erectile dysfunction

21st June 2015: Bio-undies: Guilt free Passion with ‘Easy Emma’ and ‘Loose Harry’and Getting Rid of Garden Snails with Rent-a-Duck

4th March 2015: Hamburg Reeperbahn (St. Pauli): Germans install walls that urinate on passers-by

17th April 2014: Niche On-line Dating Services (Specialities: Herpes, Thrush and Genital Warts)

18th August 2012: How Bavarians and Austrians use their middle fingerFingerhakeln: a men-only sport (did Arnold Schwarzenegger start training this way?).

You can also find some of my more humorous reports in the Alpine Press section of this site using the link here.

some here is some more serious stuff:

12th June 2016 Hospital Serial Killer – Super Bugs Created With Jumping Genes During Bacterial Sex

21st May 2016 Skin Cancer and Cataracts From Your Car – Poor UV Side Protection – Windows Tested From 15 Vehicle Makers

19th April 2016 Torture In The Shower – Face and Body Soap Allergies – Main Suspect: Pears Transparent Soap

3rd March 2016 Using Gene Drives To Change Mosquito Sex In Fight Against Zika, Dengue and Malaria

3rd Feb 2016 Zika Infection Spread By Sex In Dallas – Earlier Sexual Transmission In Colorado – Detailed Symptoms 

31st Jan 2016  Bed Bugs – Insecticide Resistance – Arbovirus Transmission – Zika and Microcephy

13th Jan 2016 Kill Head Lice In A Day With The Newly Developed Plasma Nitcomb From The German Fraunhofer Institute

26th July 2015 Poison in your Washing Machine: Allergic Contact Dermatitis from Laundry Detergents, Softeners, Conditioners and Whiteners

29th December 2012: Spreading diarrhea and vomit through the washing machine– The Norovirus propagator in our kitchen

…please visit chrisduggleby.com again.