Saturday, February 05, 2011

What Are Your Thoughts on the Stores in the Delmar Shopping Centers on RT13?

I went to Food Lion a little bit a go to buy a few things and I was looking at the type of businesses we have in that shopping center and across the highway. A couple cash loans on car titles, payday advances, a tattoo shop, a "we buy gold place", a pawn shop, a poker parlour, a cigarette place etc. Now Delmar has always attracted the type of business that Maryland over-taxes or over-regulates or in some cases just doesn't want, plus Delaware in kissing the asses of the credit card companies allows usury rates that would make the Mafia blush. There is also the general criminal element that travels the Newport News - New York - RT13 corridor and looks for places like this to get rid of their merchandise. All those businesses are legal in Delmar Delaware so it is no wonder people want a gambling casino (I still don't) If you are living a trashcan anyway what differences does one more piece of trash makes. Well it makes a difference to me. I complain about the LeCates building being an eyesore but these business in the shopping centers on RT13 are just as bad. Maybe if there were only one or two it would be a different story but we now have a number of them and continue to attract them. The stores, such as; gold buyers, pawn shops, tattoo parlors, title lenders, check cashers, payday lenders, nail salons and bail bondsmen are a blight on the community and it is what you see when you drive north on RT13. I can't help but think they deter other businesses from opening nearby or in the same shopping center. As your mother may have told you "you can tell the type of person that you are by the friends you keep" and one business like this just attract more of the same. Salisbury isn't any better - these type of shops are allover the place there. These businesses scream out that this area is a low-income, socially and economically depressed area.

So does it come as a surprise that a housing developer wants to build Section 8 apartments in Delmar? The infrastructure is here to handle them. It looks like the kind of town that Section 8 housing should be in. There are days that I think Woodcreek is already a section 8 rental development. I do think there are decent section 8 housing developments that keep their development clean and there is a need for that type of housing. Too scream against Section 8 housing and to allow the type of stores that are in the shopping centers in Delmar is a hypocrisy.

Maryland Natural Resources - No Longer A Good Guy

As has been reported on WBOC news in recent weeks several watermen in Dorchester County have found devices fixed under the stern of their boats. The police were called in but Maryland Natural Resources police shooed them away. Since then it has came to light that it was the Maryland Natural Resources police themselves going to certain boats and screwing a bracket into them and mounting a magnetic tracking device. They say these boats and waterman are repeat violators and they were sanction by Maryland courts in putting the devices on the boats.

There is something just wrong about this. It does raise constitutional questions. Whatever happened to the police being the good guys and not resorting to things like this? If they can do it to waterman they can do it to you. I know some waterman are scum of the earth and they think the rivers and bays belong to them but still going to someone's boat and physically screwing a bracket into the boat and then tracking you like you were doing major drug running is just plain wrong. Perhaps being a native of this area I have a different outlook on "illegal fishing" moonshining, and "Illegal hunting". When you up the ante in the way the game is played it just makes the otherside up the ante also.

Looking At The Stock Market and Cray Computer

The stock market seems to have recovered from two years ago and it still hasn’t arrived at that point of wild greed. But since I am looking at Cray Computer again and with bank interest rates still 1% or under on CD’s the market and my outlook on the market must be improving. I am forced to look back at the market to try and stay below(can’t even hope to be even with inflation) the real inflation rate (don’t look at the government inflation rate - look at the gas pump and Walmart inflation rate). It has not yet reached the point to buy it but one company I have successfully made money on is Cray Computer. For those who may not be aware of Cray, it is a leader in the world of supercomputers and it’s customers are mainly government, government related, and academia. It has approximately 850 employees located worldwide, with engineering facilities in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Washington State and Texas and manufacturing facilities in Wisconsin. I am mainly familiar with them from the 1970’s when Seymour Cray founded Cray Research, R&D and manufacturing in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. Since then they have merged and been bought so their reputation is a little tarnished from the glory years. But for this discussion Cray, the company, is immaterial the point is it is traded on the market (NASDAQ: CRAY) and it is a company that has a good baseline of about $6 a share but it fluctuate up and down over a year by about $2 each way. Currently it is trading for $7.78 a share and the 52 week range is $4.51 to $8.10. I have made some money off it is the past by buying a dollar or so under the average and selling at the average or maybe a dollar over the average - don't get greedy it always screws you in the end. Buy low - sell high is of course the reason for the stock market, it is just that Cray changes a little faster than the market. The changes will usually take place within 6 months so it is a short term gain, but usually my other losses offset that. This can of course be done with a number of other public traded companies.

The Road By Cormac McCarthy

I tend to live in my own little world so I haven’t seen the movie and just finally got around to reading the book, “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy. Some books by McCarthy I like, others I just could never get into. If you like his books you can’t put them down, if you don’t they tend to be the most boring thing on earth. I enjoyed “Suttree” and “No Country For Old Men” however I just could not get into his trilogy of “All The Pretty Horses,” “The Crossing,” and “Cities Of The Plain”.

McCarthy has a definite style, mostly a narrative form of writing and when comments are made by characters he doesn’t use quotation marks. We should be thankful McCarthy left us periods and commas to work our way through “The Road”, as he does away with chapters, proper names, and many times verbs, apostrophes, and dialog breaks. Frankly one of the reasons why I found the book hard to put down was due to not having chapters in the book.

The book is 287 pages long. As I said it was quite interesting and hard to put
down. McCarthy has a way with writing so it is an easy book to read. He does however always have a few words to look up, such as envacuuming which I think he made up as I can’t find a definition of it.

In the short form a father and son tries to head south to the sea for a better place in a post-apocalyptic county. No names are given so we don’t really know it is in America but we assume that. The only hint as to what region of the county it is in is when Kudzu is mentioned. “The clocks stopped at 1:17. A long shear of light and then a series of low concussions” There is no cause given for why everything is burn and only ash and gray skies are left. The days, time, calendars cease to exist. No animals seem to exist and about five to ten years after this event only lawless cannibalistic bands that stalk the road looking for old cans of food seem to be left. Altho called The Road it is series of roads they traverse pushing a shopping cart with old clothes tarps blankets and a pistol. The tone of the novel is almost unremittingly bleak and perfect for reading this time of year when everything outside looks like the novel.

“People were always getting ready for tomorrow. I didn’t believe in that. Tomorrow wasn’t getting ready for them. It didn’t even know they were there.”

What stands out in the novel is the great love the father has for his son. Today, fathers seem to take a beating for being uncaring and unloving to their children so this is refreshing. The mother had committed suicide a couple of years earlier as she just could not take the world as it was. “You cant protect us. I’s take him with me if it weren’t for you. You know I would. It’s the right thing to do. …Sooner or later they will catch us and they will kill us. They will rape me. They’ll rape him. They are going to rape us and kill us and eat us and you wont face it.……… “she was gone and the coldness of it was her final gift. She would do it with a flake of obsidian”…..”She died alone somewhere in the dark”

The father and son continues to face obstacles but as he tells his son “we are the good guys.” You do wonder why they only seem to meet “bad’ people instead of a few “good” people.

Read the book if you haven’t already did so. If you are unfamiliar with McCarthy style you will find it refreshingly different.

“Every day is a lie, he said. But you are dying. That is not a lie.”

Friday, February 04, 2011

What To Do With Those Left Over Ducks

Make scrapple!!! See this post

Maryland Land Granted To People Of Virginia - 1662

On Feb. 4, 1662/3 - Maryland - Somerset County - Petition of diverse persons well affected to this Province now or late inhabitants of Northampton County, otherwise called Accomack in Virginia who are desirous to transplant themselves and families into Maryland. John Elzey, Randall Revell and Stephen Horsey appointed to grant warrants for land upon the Eastern Shore in any part below Choptank River per conditions of plantation 22 September 1658.

On Feb. 4, 1662/3, power to grant lands as well as to keep the peace was
entrusted to a single commission, of which John Elzey was made the presiding
justice, with Randall Revell and Stephen Horsey, associated with him ; but on
Feb. 20, a new commission was issued with Elzey and Horsey " continued "
and William Thorne and Capt. John Odber " joined ", and with the provision
that Randall Revell "bee out" {Arch. Md. in, 469, 471). Scarburgh and
Revell were now obviously under suspicion. On April 29, 1663, August 15,
1663, and February 10, 1663/4, the same four commissioners were recom-
missioned {Arch. Md. Hi, 476, 488, 490).

The Quakers from Northampton, who had begun their trek into Maryland
in 1660 and 1661, settled themselves in great part in Annemessex, while as
said before, the Manokin district was apparently largely settled by Virginia
Anglicans. Judging from the number of land grants the population was rapidly
increasing. The Virginia Assembly, which met in September 1663, apparently
upon false representations made to it by Scarburgh, passed an act declaring
the northern border of that colony to be a line drawn east through the fictitious
Watkins Point lying some thirty miles north of the true point of this name,
and ordering all the inhabitants in the disputed territory to submit at once to
the Virginia authorities {Hcning; Statutes at Large of Va., ii, 183-184).

A Novel Idea

In a "Letter to the Editor" of the News Journal, Keith L. Thompson, has a suggestion about the proposed pay raises for Delaware Superior Court Judges. Since the pay raise was to provide equalization between Chancery Court Judges and Superior Court judges why not DECREASE the Chancery Court Judges pay so it is equal to the Superior Court Judges? As he points out, the result is almost a $200,000 saving in the budget.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Mencken, Arkansas, Blondes

On this day in 1931, the Arkansas state legislature passed a motion to pray for the soul of H. L. Mencken. Now those of us on the Eastern Shore also loved H. L. Mencken, that Baltimoron who wrote so highly of the Eastern Shore in the 1930's.

The title of this post however is referring you to "Today In Literature" post on H. L. Mencken. An interesting tale also about Anita Loos writing the 1925 best-seller, "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" somewhat based on Mencken and his preference for Blondes.

Delaware Gives Us Federal Income Tax - 1913

Today in 1913 Delaware was the final state to ratify the 16th amendment to the U.S. Constitution bringing income taxation to the United States.

The 16th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution
The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.

In 1913 less than 1% of the population paid income tax at the rate of 1%.

In 1895 the Supreme Court had declared a federal income tax law unconstitutional. In typical government manner, not getting what they wanted in 1895, they rewrote the law and tacked an amendment on to the constitution granting them the power to do so. This amendment reversed that decision and authorized a tax on income

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Even The Church Isn't Safe

Following the easy break Bill Hitch got with his theft we now have a series of frauds

NEWS RELEASE: Pastor indicted for theft of Parish funds

Wilmington – Following a 5-month investigation by the Delaware Department of Justice, the New Castle County Grand Jury has indicted Father Cornelius Breslin in connection with disbursements he made from church accounts. The Indictment charges Father Breslin with 2 counts of Theft over $100,000 and 2 counts of Falsifying Business Records related to checks he wrote to himself from the bank accounts of Wilmington’s St. Mary’s and St. Patrick’s Parishes, where he is Pastor.

“Stealing from church funds is an abuse of trust and a criminal offense which we take very seriously,” Attorney General Beau Biden said.

The investigation was initiated following a report of suspicious financial activity that the Attorney General’s office received from the Diocese of Wilmington. The investigation revealed that Father Breslin wrote checks to himself for more than $358,000 from church accounts over the period from July, 2009 through August, 2010, and that he deposited these funds into an account at another bank.

Breslin turned himself in to Capitol Police in Wilmington this morning.

The investigation is ongoing.

The Delaware Department of Justice reminds the public that an indictment is merely an allegation and is not evidence of guilt. Defendants are presumed innocent and are entitled to a jury trial at which the State bears the burden of proving each charge beyond a reasonable doubt.

Delaware Justice

Vincent McCants was charged with shooting Jamel Benson while Benson was standing on the porch of a house in Wilmington on Nov. 29, 2007. The case has finally come to trial and McCant did a plea deal and got away with a five year jail term. A Superior Court Judge Mary M. Johnston (one of those people who may get a pay raise in Delaware) imposed a 25-year sentence, with 20 years suspended. That means if McCants gets in any trouble in the 20 years after he is released, he could be sent back to prison to serve the remainder of the sentence. However because McCants has been incarcerated since June 2008, he could be free in less than three years. (according to the News Journal)

Now certainly I have always considered the scenario of "if I had terminal cancer" perhaps correcting old scores since the state could do nothing worst to me and if nothing else would pay for the medical bills. However - only five years in jail - perhaps there is no need to wait for cancer.

Nine Teacher - Student Crimes In Sussex County in the last three years

Over at WGMD the site is reporting that there have been at least 9 teacher-related crimes in Sussex County, in the past 3 years. What is wrong with these people and why in Sussex County? Some were part time employees, one was a principal but all were expected to up hold a certain moral level/standard and not take advantage of the lack of judgement the students seem to have had. With nine crimes reported in the last three years how many are unreported?

Lewes Becomes A Town in 1818

On February 2nd 1818 – Lewes Delaware is incorporated by an act of the Delaware Assembly. Each year there after they could elect five people to be known as the Trustees of the Town of Lewes to represent them.

Mike Rowe At The Scrapple Factory

I am sure you all watched the Discovery Channel last night to see Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs do a show at the Hughes’ Delaware Maid Scrapple plant west of Felton. I shuddered when he said he liked scrapple with ketchup, but to each his own. The Hughes plant looked like a small plant or at least with as many people cramped into each production room it made it looked small. It certainly was clean, a lot cleaner than I would expect a processing plant to look. I don't think the show made many converts to scrapple however. I understand the Hughes’ Delaware Maid Scrapple plant knock out about 8,000 pounds of scrapple a week and was founded by Thomas and Edith Hughes in 1933. The TV show certainly point out it is a family operation and it supports my ideal that if you are a native from Delmarva every other native you meet is at least a 32nd cousin once removed.

Mike Rowe was born in Baltimore in 1962 and was a stutterer who overcame this problem while still in school. I can appreciate the stuttering problem as I had a bad stuttering problem up until I was in my twenties before I was able to meet with some success in controlling it. The problem certainly influenced a number of decisions I have made in my live.

Local Bounty Hunting

Over at Delmar Daily, Tom talks about his bounty hunting capture of Charles Brendel.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Treasure Chest Tuesday

Betty Brosmer a major pinup model from the 1950's, who said her measurements were somewhere around 38-18-35 (Did she really inspire the invention of the Barbie doll?). Brosmer was the epitome of the Californian girl, with that girl-next-door look. Brosmer stayed with modeling, both commercial and pin-up, instead of doing movies.

At one point in the 50's she was the highest paid pin-up model around. During this time, she turned down Playboy because of her rule of never doing anything more than just chaste cheesecake shots. In the 1960's, she stopped her pin-up career when she married publisher of fitness magazines Joe Weider. Since then, she has been a regular model and writer for his publications and a role model for good health and fitness in later age. Betty Brosmer was born in Pasadena, California on August 2, 1935.

Betty somewhere close to today's time period.

What's Wrong With This Picture

The News Journal today is reporting that Delaware Governor Markell has in his budget a 3.6% pay raise for the highest paid state employees - Superior Court Judges. Everyone else is in a pay freeze but these judges who make from $174 thousand to $185 thousand a year may receive pay raises. Oddly enough a similar thing happen in Maryland a couple years back. Like they say the rich gets richer and the poor gets poorer.

Things not to do in the public eye

Mixing Firearms and religion - sure sign the state is going to send you for a Psych evaluation and put you on the "Do Not Fly" list

Monday, January 31, 2011

The 2011 January Delmar Joint Council Meeting

The January Delmar Joint Councils meeting was held last night at 7:00PM. Last night's missing member was Mayor Niblett. My usual disclaimer is I am not part of the council and what I write is my personal views, not the minutes, of the meetings. It is also just the parts I want to comment on or write about. If you want to know the real story go to the meeting or buy a newspaper. Tonight was a long meeting night (sitting in those wooden chairs your rear end told you how long it was)and I left about 9:45 P.M. as they were going into executive session.

First item they went over was the CDBG Application. The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program (Via HUD) provides money to the State to demolish, rehab, or generally fix up homes for low income families. Brad Whaley, Assistant Director of Community Development and Housing from Sussex County, was there to talk about it. He said over the last ten years Delmar has received about $108,000 to fix up six homes. Currently they have nine Delmar homes on the waiting list. Qualifying Income levels start at $32,000 for a one person home and goes up by $4,600 for each additional person. The council approved the application and will apply (via Sussex county) to the state for $140,000 in CDBG Rehab Program money. If you want money to fix your house now is the time to apply as it is a first come first serve process.

Somewhere in the discussion of CDBG application there was a lone voice from out in the lobby asking if anyone was in the building as that person wanted to pay their taxes. Happily Kimberly Layton, Municipal Clerk / Office Manager, was there, so she took their money and the town is a a little richer today.

The town auditing firm TGM Inc gave a brief overview on the finances of the town for last year. The audit firm gave an unqualified opinion on the town which is always good. There has been years in which an unqualified opinion has not been given. An Unqualified Opinion, in accounting terms, gives the town a “clean bill of health” financial wise. It is always accompany by a number of if, an, and buts to protect the auditor's ass in case fraud is found later but it is the best we can expect from today's professionals.

The Bloosurf wireless hi-speed item on the agenda was not discussed brcause Mike Jackson did not show up.

April 16th is the sign up date for Little League

A long discussion of the traffic pattern at the High school, which started back at the Police Commission meeting, continued tonight. The end result was rather than have barriers put on 8th street and change drop off patterns they would simply have the town police show up each morning and direct traffic. As you know the school board pay for a Delaware state trooper to be in the school each day so we don't know what that person does in the morning when students are being dropped off but in the future two town policemen will be there. Tax payers should be use to the pay more expect less philosophy by now.

An even longer confused discussion followed on Red Speed, Ordinance 714 and Ordinance 715. All of this currently pertain to the Maryland side of town and the Elementary school, which is not in the town limits.

First Redspeed USA; Delmar is looking at this company which places a car with a speed camera in it in a school zone to catch speeders, because Fruitland is doing this. The company will issue a ticket of $40 for speeding and $25 of that will go to the town. There was some confusion as to who would get the money if the speeder was not in the town limits. I won't go into all the points discussed, in the end it was decided to wait and see if Wicomico County was going to use Redspeed and if so the town would leave it alone.

Due to the Redspeed issue being considered; the two ordinances 714 and 715 were discussed (like the town needs two more ordinances to have on the books and not enforce). Ordinance 714 would establish a school zone a half mile around the school. The town attorney pointed out signs stating people were in a school zone would have to be put on every street in that school zone. The Maryland Council approved this, I think as the whole thing was confusing, as a first reading.

Ordinance 715, using speed monitoring systems in school zones, was not approved as a first reading and as such died for lack of a motion to continue with it.

The Town Manager, Sara Bynum-King, gave an update on the LeCates building which wasn't much change from the previous updates over the last two years. John LeCates owns the building. He has a contract to sell the building to Chris Mills. Due to deed and property problems the other business people in that downtown area has to sign an agreement about a right a way in the back of the building. One person, who the town manager did not name, has refused to sign the agreement and has held everything up. Hearsay now says the person has told Chris Mills if Chris will pay his legal bill he will sign ( might call it blackmail). John LeCates is current on his taxes on this building. He is not being fined for any housing violations by the town.

Mayor Houlihan said he had talked to EVO brewery and they were not planning to move out of Delmar. The Salisbury project for EVO in the news recently is just an expansion of their business.

Other things were discussed and if you had been there you would know what they were.

The council went into executive session about 9:45 P.M.

Politically Incorrect

I picked up a 1932 yearbook (The What-Not), some time ago, for The Girl's Latin School in Roland Park, Maryland. I don't know that school still exists. 1932 was still a time you could speak and write without being worried about being politically correct, even in yearbooks. I noticed the description given one of the seniors, Helen Gurny, that described her as;

This little girl, someone may say, has been cheated when it comes to stature. However one person couldn't have everything and what's lacking here in inches is certainly more than made up by the surplus of brains...... It then proceeds to talk about their harass of her because she was of Polish descent. So they seem to have had a smart, Polish, Redheaded, midget who played basketball on their hands.

Now this may happen today but would any school board allow such a description to be put in print? As usual click on photo to enlarge.

A Couple Comments on Downtown Revitalization, Preservation, Baltimore and the LeCates Building

Those who read my blog know my constant wonderment as to why the LeCates Building still exist in it's current condition. There is a Joint Council Meeting tonight and once again nothing is scheduled to discuss this building. The LeCates Building is that eyesore on the corner of State Street and Pennsylvania Avenue. It is what you see when you drive on State Street. The condition of it takes away from any improvements that have been made in the Downtown part of Delmar. There is a saying that whores and old buildings gain respect with age. I can't say the LeCates Building has much respect going for it. For the last twenty years it has mainly been a pigeon roost (another violation of town ordinances.)

If you, as a home owner, had your property in that shape for as long as the Lecates building has been in the shape it is in, the town would have torn it down, simple as that. Yet this building continues and I have heard of nothing in the way of fines being levied against the owner.

There was a discussion about someone buying the building and renovating it into a restaurant etc but that has dragged on for so long I think it is myth.

The building is historical in the sense of it's age. Over the years it has been occupied by food stores, coffee shops, liquor stores, jewelry stores and even a murder committed in it. If actually purchased would it really be an economic development and a historic preservation or would it become another problem the taxpayers of Delmar would be faced with due to the lack of downtown parking? Perhaps a parking lot is the best use for this spot in Delmar.

Not to compare Delmar to Baltimore and Salisbury, but Baltimore like Salisbury always has a downtown revitalization going on. The most recent Baltimore project is the Super Block, on West Side it is bounded by Howard, Fayette and Lexington streets and Park Avenue. This project came to a grinding haul when Afro-American groups realized the the former Reads Drug Store at the corner of Lexington and Howard Streets (now empty and city owned) was going to be torn down. The building claim to being historically significant is the role it played as being the spot where on January 20, 1955, Dean McQuay Kiah of Morgan State University, along with the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and a group of Morgan students staged a sit-in at this location to protest the racial segregation of Read’s lunch counters. The sit-in led to the desegregation of the entire Read’s chain throughout the region and helped provide a model that guided later and better known student-led sit-ins in places like Woolworth’s in Greensboro, North Carolina in 1960.

These groups are now singing the historic restoration song. They feel the Read's Drug Store should be turned into a museum (at taxpayers expense of course). They should have sung the historic restoration song long ago before the building started to crumble, but apparently developers are the impetus for preservationists to come alive. Those of us on the Eastern Shore don't expect any better from Baltimore but to be a drain on the taxpayers of Maryland. Those of us in Delmar can only hope that the Lecates building is not another drain on the taxpayers and that the council will eventually do what they were elected to do and force the owner of building to fix it or tear this eyesore and safety hazard down. They could also fine him for each day it stays in this condition and bring some money into the town.

Motivation Monday

Delmar January Joint Council Meeting Tonight

On Monday, January 31, 2011, the Joint Council, consisting of the Mayor & Council of Delmar, Delaware and the Mayor & Commissioners of Delmar, Maryland, will meet at the Delmar Town Hall for their regularly scheduled meeting at 7:00 pm. The following Agenda is scheduled:
7:00 P.M. PUBLIC HEARING- DE- CDBG Application Development
• TGM Inc., Jason Gidge- 2010 Financial Statements
• Bloosurf, LLC. Mike Jackson- Permission to access and
install Wimax Equipment on north and south water towers for
wireless Hi-Speed Internet access for Delmar.
• Animal Control
• Traffic Pattern Changes- High School
• Red Speed, USA- MD

Howard's comment; once again no part is scheduled to discuss the LeCates Building.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

More Than One Way To Skin A Cat or Change A Will

My grandparents lived outside of Delmar, close to St George's Church on a small farm of about 26 acres. When my grandfather died in 1936 his will was typical of the wills made in that time period and before. In the will he allowed my grandmother to continue living on the property and on her death or remarriage the land was distributed to their sons, with an allowance made for their one daughter. As I said up until about 75 years ago this was typical of the wills. The wives were not deemed capable of managing property or financial affairs. Just a hundred years before that wives were not even deemed capable of raising their children after the death of their husband and a male guardian was appointed by the courts to oversee the welfare of the children.

Anyway my Grandmother was much disturbed by the will, she felt strongly she had worked just as hard for the farm as her husband had. Her answer to the problem was to not pay the taxes on the farm. The farm went to a tax sale and she bought the farm with the withheld tax money. The farm was now in her name, thusly voiding out the wishes of the will.

A Couple of Middle East Archeology Comments

I recently read about two Middle East Archeology items. The First is a stone tool kit was found in the United Arab Emirates that seems to date from 125,000 years ago. This tool kit is suppose to be sign, that based on the theory humans originated in Africa, people started migrating out of Africa about 125,000 years ago. Prior to this tool kit it was felt the migration started about 60,000 years ago.
Big Yawn on that one. Altho I am sure it is interesting to someone.

The second is with the riots and looting in Egypt, the Egyptian Museum was damaged by an out-of-control mob. Two mummies were seriously damaged

Civilians forming a human chain around the building and took it upon themselves to save the priceless artifacts. Cops later arrived and locked the area down. A Big Thumbs up to those people that didn't wait for the government to protect the building and contents but took it on their selves to do so.