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Florida of the Day Tampa Bay The Current Situation The More You Know...

Florida of the day: Please don’t microwave library books

Facebook post with photo of book with scorch marks around its embedded RFID chip: Temple Terrace and all Hillsborough County Library Cooperative libraries quarantine all materials for 72 hours after they are returned. Please do NOT attempt to microwave library materials as the RFID tags, located inside, will catch fire. Stay safe out there.
Tap the screenshot to see the original Facebook post.

The public library of Temple Terrace (a Tampa neighborhood just a little north of Seminole Heights, where I live) had to post a Facebook notice telling people not to microwave books that they borrow.

It’s generally a bad idea to microwave paper, including money…

…but it’s even worse to microwave library books, as they have RFID tags, which are made of a thin layer of metal. Microwaves heat up thin layers of metal really quickly, bringing them up to the temperature that will ignite paper:

The library quarantines returned books for 72 hours before loaning them out again, which is believed to be enough time for contaminated surfaces to become safe:

Remember, viruses aren’t made of living cells. From a certain point of view, they’re just chemicals — DNA, protein, and fat — but they’re chemicals that have a knack for replicating themselves by rewriting the DNA of cells that they infiltrate:

So yes, keep borrowing books and other materials from the library. Wash your hands after using them. But don’t microwave them!

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It Happened to Me Tampa Bay

Flag of the day

I love this flag, which I saw on my daily bike ride this morning.

Seminole Heights’ seal, which depicts a two-headed alligator

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It Happened to Me Tampa Bay

The neighbor I need to meet (or: Ooh! Unicorn boat!)

Tap the photo to see it at full size.

Seminole Heights’ seal, which depicts a two-headed alligatorI saw this while going out for a neighborhood walk with Anitra this morning. I need to find out who the owners are, and make friends with them so th I too can cruise down the Hillsborough River in a unicorn boat!

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Tampa Bay

The Fast and the Spurious (or: Why does the school board need a car like this?)

Tap the photo to see the excessive vehicularity at full size.

Seminole Heights’ seal, which depicts a two-headed alligatorI snapped this photo during my bike ride this morning. I don’t know how many high-speed chases the local county school board gets into, but they are READY!

(Seriously, are Dom and the rest of the Fast and Furious gang skipping school?)

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Tampa Bay

On my bike route: Lake Roberta

Tap the photo to see it at full size.

Seminole Heights’ seal, which depicts a two-headed alligatorSince I’ve been avoiding the gym since March due to the coronavirus, a good chunk of my regular exercise has revolved around a 10K bike ride that I try to do at least five days a week.

While Florida provides a fantastic climate for year-round cycling, Florida drivers provide a hostile environment for cyclists. The state is still number one in cycling deaths, and I have no intention of adding to that record. Luckily for me, my stomping grounds of Seminole Heights is a lovely residential neighborhood with plenty of quiet tree-lined streets with classic bungalows, “pocket parks”,  gorgeous tropical foliage and other things to see that provide miles and miles of great cycling.

I take a different route every day, but at least half the time, I include Lake Roberta on that route.

Tap the photo to see it at full size.

The word “lake” is a little bit of a stretch — it’s actually a pond surrounded by a residential street, Roberta Circle:

Lake Roberta is home to all sorts of life forms, from the humans who live in the houses on Roberta Circle, to the creatures that live in or near the water. Those include an assortment of different kinds of ducks, a number of ill-tempered geese, ibises, turtles, lizards, squirrels, and possums. I don’t think that there’s a gator in there — with all the houses in the area, I can’t see the people who live nearby not calling wildlife control if they ever see one.

Roberta Circle provides a great way to help collect my 10K. By luck or design, each lap around the “lake” is a quarter mile, and the asphalt is nice and smooth. 4 laps around the lake adds an easy mile to my minimum goal of 6, and I get pretty scenery as a bonus.

Tap the photo to see it at full size.
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Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay deal of the day: Set of 3 “Rat Pack” resin statues for $200

I don’t have the room for them; otherwise I’d already have bought this set of 3 statues of “Rat Pack” members: Sammy Davis Jr., Dean Martin, and Frank Sinatra for $200. They come with stools to seat them on (pictured) and cocktail glasses for them to hold (not pictured).

If you’re interested in picking these up, here are the details, courtesy of the seller:

Rat Pack Set of 3 Statues Retro 50’s Three Singers 3ft Prop Man Cave Fiberglass Resin Display – The Rat Pack. A set of 3 statues Sammy, Dean and Frank. 3 ft tall Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Frank Sinatra Rat Pack Statues some of the titans of television and music sitting on steel + wood barstools + each has a drink glass they hold( not pictured). $200.00 cash ( all three – one price) ( excellent condition) Great for restaurant, bar, music studio, arcade or gameroom, music instruments band store, mancave, home decor or ?

The seller’s based in Palm Harbor. If you’re interested, visit the Facebook page for the sale and contact them!

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Florida of the Day Stranger than Fiction Tampa Bay The Current Situation

Florida of the day: Tampa Bay Times buried the lede on the “Tampa Bay radio DJs are catching COVID-19” (or: They offer COVID-19 tests at strip clubs?!)

In my opinion, the real take-away from this Tampa Bay Times article is that under the right circumstances, you can get a COVID-19 test at a strip club.

It appears in the article titled Mike Calta among staff with coronavirus at 102.5 The Bone. Here’s the relevant part:

The plan for now was for the Calta show to continue broadcasting live with with everyone working remotely from their own homes.

Drew Garabo, an afternoon host on the station who broadcasts from the same studio as Calta, said on his show Monday that he received a call from a supervisor Friday night while en route to a Tampa strip club in a rideshare.

Garabo said that he and a co-host were, coincidentally, offered a COVID-19 test in the back office of that strip club after they arrived. Both came back later showing no signs of the virus. He said he’s unsure if it could have been a false negative, or if he has been exposed since then.

My guess is that the tests at the strip club are for specifically for the employees and that Garabo was on his way to the club to do a DJ gig there. He probably needed the money — if you read the article, you’ll see a reference to co-workers at the radio station being roommates. The moral of the story is to tip well at the strip club; they don’t have the work-from-home options that many of us do, and they could use the cash.

Today’s Tampa Bay Times also has a story about DJs at Orlando’s Wild 94.1 coming down with COVID-19. DJ booths are tiny, high-touch environments; this story seems to be another data point about small, enclosed indoor spaces being a vector for the disease.