October 31, 2002

Is it safe?

All around the country today both little children and adults are carving pumpkins and dressing up in costumes in honor of my last day of work. It's quite the heady experience. To celebrate, I went to the dentist and had a cavity filled.


October 29, 2002

"Fish, plankton, sea greens... protein from the sea!"

The DVD of the original Rollerball includes a memory game in which you have to correctly sequence 16 thumbnail scenes from the movie. Only the brave will manage to slog through and receive the ultimate reward - a 10 second clip from the flick you've just finished watching.

Still, Rollerball certainly represents a more well-heeled version of the 1970's future.

Circadian Syncopation

And now I get up at 8am to ensure a good jump on my second to last day of work.

October 28, 2002

Gotta get up to get down

It's either the after-effects of gluttonous Zachary's pizza consumption, or the fact that there's no more sun ... but either way I'm lagging. Incidentally, there's a whole mess of folk, some of them Czech jews, opposed to Daylight Saving Time.

October 27, 2002

Everybody do the Michigan Rag

Apparently all varieties of animals have been found sealed in stone, iron ore and even chalk. Mostly frogs are found but every once in a while you stumble upon a live pterodactyl. The common explanation for these occurances is similar to the way Winnie the Pooh ended up stuck in Rabbit's hole ... so to speak. But then again they may be reincarnations of those stuck in one of the outer circles of Buddhist hell.

October 24, 2002

Do you ever get the feeling you're being cheated

The current SF Weekly cover story is about getting to the bottom of the "Monkey Knife Fight" streetmeme currently plaguing the Mission. They basically pull their version of Salon's non Un-Masking of Deep Throat - altho' you don't have to buy the eBook. The weak conclusion - "It's with this realization that we come up with a theory. 'Monkey Knife Fight' means NOTHING."

Sweet. So will it stop now?

October 22, 2002

And pull the trigger until it goes 'click'

"It takes prodding from a colleague for Mr. Heston, 79, to raise a flintlock over his head in his signature pose and challenge his critics to pry the rifle 'from my cold dead hands.'"
In other news, the NRA also runs an ISP.

October 20, 2002

The well water black of a digital clock

"Although the remark has the ring of memoirs written after the event, it may well have been spoken. Fateful moments tend to evoke grandeur of speech, especially in French."


October 18, 2002

Guns don't kill people. The beliefs of a person or social group in which they have an emotional investment kill people.

Ari Fleischer was asked why the President doesn't support a national ballistic fingerprinting system given, you know, certain media-hyped gun violence in the DC region. His response:

"And certainly, in the case of the sniper, the real issue is values. And that's what is at stake here. The real issue is values. These are the acts of a depraved killer, who has broken and will continue to break laws. And so the question is not new laws; the question is the actions here represent the values in our society."
See, it's that whole culture of death we've got going on that's to blame. If only we didn't have abortion and violent video games this never would have happened (NB: the death penality is not, despite appearances, part of the culture of death).

October 17, 2002

We defy augury

And numerology, too, for that matter. I'll find you a pattern in the abstraction and leave you convinced the Pope is the Devil. Maybe that's not too hard. But if I tell you that the 6th, 7th and 8th primorials are 30030, 510510 and 9699690 ... don't you shiver a little bit.

October 11, 2002

A tournament of lies

My tall, salty friend Steve Yuhan has a weblog, the discovery of which lead me to find that there are many fine debate-folk in the blogsphere. This makes sense. However, I have trouble figuring out why this debate webpage is being hosted by the soap-box racing site, National Derby Rallies, Inc.

October 10, 2002

"i want to rent blackhole and think about the human beings buried in the hoover dam cement"


Star Wars

This evening's Frontline is on everyone's favorite intersection of pork barrel politics and unscrupulous militarism, missile defense. I'm confident the folks at PBS will do their usual bang up job; the episode has already received a ringing endorsement from the National Review. Yes, I'm sure that by the end I'll be shouting at the TV and afraid to go to sleep lest I discover that a military-industrial junta has taken over America. Oh wait. That being said, my favorite account of missile defense comes from JoAnn Wypijewski's article in the December 2001 issue of Harper's. The article is quite lengthy, so here's a little taste:

"Sometime after I returned from Kwajalein, I came upon a newspaper column by Paul Loeb, recounting a meeting he'd had with executives at Lockheed's Missile & Space Operations in Sunnyvale, California. He quoted one fellow saying, 'Let's get real. We all know that if anyone ever attacks America, the bomb is going to be delivered by a suitcase, a car or a truck, or in a boat.... We all know that we're lobbying for these programs because they make us money. We don't care whether they'll ever work, or even be useful. We care that the dollars come our way.'"

October 08, 2002

Infinite Guest

Being the account of one man's obsession with and struggle against Bill O'Reilly. In fun hyperfootnote format.

October 07, 2002

How many times has this happened to you?

There will be no precious.
There will be no darling.
There will be no sweet stains left drying in dark corners.

There will be no downbeat.
There will be no whimper.
There will be no teardrop held up and in soft pause.

October 04, 2002

October 02, 2002

How's your ass, ace?

"It hovered inches above the horizon, dancing, waiting almost as if it were taking a stoked breath, then swelled in puffing spasms, poking high into the stratosphere, edging out the pale skyrocket vapor trails at either side, the ball going sickly yellow, the shock wave releasing its roar, the entire spectacle catching fire, blazing chaotically, shaming the paltry sun."



The more things change:

"The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in order to defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq."
the more things stay the same:
"Congress approves and supports the determination of the President, as Commander in Chief, to take all necessary measures to repel any armed attack against the forces of the United States and to prevent further aggression."