The cotton belt, and the Cornish highlands

Two map-related items of interest:

From Pickin’ Cotton to Pickin’ Presidents correlates deep-south counties voting for Obama with cotton production in 1860, in a very striking manner. I found the following rather notable:

As it turns out, president-elect Obama won with the an overall support of 53%, but that includes over 90% of black voters.

Of white voters, only 43% voted for Obama; since Lyndon B. Johnson, no Democratic candidate for the highest office has ever garnered more than half the votes of European-Americans.

Then, comment #96 provides the geological context, expanded upon here, and in particular pointing at this fascinating map of “shorelines in the Cretaceous period”.

You can just see Britain on the right of that map, and ooh look, it’s all underwater apart from part of Scotland, most of Ireland, and south-west England including all of Devon and Cornwall. The most prominent topographical features of Devon and Cornwall these days are Dartmoor and Bodmin Moor, worn down “ancient mountains” as my geography teacher put it to me one day; it looks like, in the cretaceous, they weren’t quite so worn down…

Where and how far away is the beer?

Two neato sites/apps spotted recently via fellow moderately-curmudgeonly-beer-drinkers’ blogs:

gmap pedometer [rhodri] — plot a course on a google map and find out how far you’ll walk. For example, on Thursday I was able to use this map to ensure that of the sixty-odd people I invited (via Facebook magic) to join me for a walk on Saturday, only one actually turned up, the rest presumably thinking “10 miles? Bugger that!”. As it was we skipped Mumbles Head and chopped it down to eight or so, but still, we look hardcore. Or foolish. My only complaint about gmap-pedometer is that there doesn’t seem to be a way to say “stop recording”, so you (yes, you, reader) could, presumably, go there now and add extra points to my walk, causing anyone coming after you to think I’d spent Saturday yomping enthusiastically from Mumbles to, say, Chicago. Untrue.

Secondly, and maybe more usefully: Beer In The Evening [smallcool] — search pubs by locality and various other (mainly binary) metrics. For example: pubs near my house that serve real ale. Hmmm, I’m sure there are really more than three, but at least it got The Park and would thus presumably help find something good, when in “a tight spot”. While in Llantrisant recently wondering if there were any nice pubs nearby serving food, a beautiful woman suggested to me that it’s a good idea to keep a copy of The Good Pub Guide or similar (eg this one on my wishlist) in your car. We were in her car so I didn’t feel inadequate or ashamed for my lack of pub-finding skills, but seeing this site makes me think that with an iPhone, such a book could be unnecessary. Plus, chicks dig iPhones. And so the ongoing quest to replace all printed media with collaboratively-generated content marches on, driven, as all human activity, by the desire to impress cute friends…

Hmmm, I think I might be overdoing it with the commas…