Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Oil Tops $68 For First Time In More Than Three Years -- April 18, 2018

From CNBC:

Weekly petroleum report, link here:
  • US crude oil inventories: decreased by 1.1 million bbls; now at 427.6 million bbls
  • operable refining capacity: 92.4% (flat, but technically down a bit)
  • otherwise, ho-hum
  • I no longer track "time to re-balance"; that metric has become irrelevant
  • the "old" US crude oil inventory baseline number was 350 million bbls
  • the "new" US crude oil inventory baseline number is 400, maybe 420 million bbls
For The Granddaughters

Well before the 15th century, the Chinese were using the equatorial system for open water navigation. From Gavin Menzies, 1434, page 33:

For the stars, the Chinese had the same system of measurement they used to determine latitude and longitude. This system was called the equatorial system -- vastly simpler than the equinoctial system [Wiki does not have a page for the equinoctial system], used in medieval times which relied on the ecliptic or the horizon. After 1434, Europeans adopted the Chinese system, which remains with us today.

For The Granddaughters

If there is one part of the world's geography that gives me the most trouble, it is Indonesia, Malaysia, and Brunei.

I was reminded of that while talking to a woman of Asian descent recently (the Tucson wedding).

My wife is Hispanic-Japanese -- her mother was Japanese, born in Japan and emigrated to the United States during the Korean War.

I have always enjoyed trying to recognize the ethnicity of people I meet -- based on any number of criteria. I remarked to this woman that I was was having trouble with her ethnicity, running through about six different Asian possibilities. I failed to mention Filipino. When she said she was Filipino, I was quite taken aback. She did not appear Filipino to me and after after a bit of conversation it turned out that only her mother was Filipino. Her father was not Asian. That explained everything.

She looked more Japanese than Filipino and interestingly, had a connection to Malaysia -- and that's where the blog helped me out immensely.

I know almost nothing about that part of the world (geographically) but because I had been following the route of the Shaden on the blog, I was somewhat familiar with the straits, Malacca, and Singapore. Absolutely fascinating.

Just one more reason why I love to blog and how much it has permeated all aspects of my life.

[I completely missed the next one, but I was working with almost no information. I suggested to the woman next to Ms Filipino above that she looked to be Welsh or Irish -- completely wrong: she was of Lithuanian/Polish background. When we were stationed in Europe, we were struck by how beautiful Polish pottery was -- and, of course, that became the topic of conversation.]

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