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November 30, 2002

seasonal poetic disorder

bogus holidays make me tired, at blue period.

originally posted by daiichi

don't do the rhyme if u can't do the time

Supreme Court judges take issue with rhyming colleague.

originally posted by daiichi

think before you link

On Sunday, hundreds of bloggers, diarists and other personal website publishers will link to resources about HIV and AIDS and reflect on how the disease has changed their lives as part of the Link and Think awareness campaign, an annual observance of World AIDS Day.
Wired News: Linking, Thinking on World AIDS Day.

November 29, 2002

mitten, we salute thee

Suicide Girls isn't so much an offshoot of some kind of emo-porn phenomenon (as a past issue of Spin put it) but rather just a good example of the classic free-market tenet: Where there's a market, there's a way. After all, sex sells, even (especially?) if you bundle it with the DIY aesthetic, a connection to the punk and indie-rock community, and a liberal dash of personal weblogging.
CP: Cynical, Bitter, Jaded As Hell. Also Naked.

originally posted by xowie

Tompkins Square

When you're gathered around the table with your relatives, some new stories are mixed in with the old familiars. This year, we found out that my grandmother went to high school with the daughter of a woman who was thrown from a burning ship as a baby. That story alone captures the imagination. How bad would that fire have been for a mother to throw her baby? Then I read some more about the burning ship.

The final toll of the General Slocum fire has never been fixed: 1,021 dead at least, perhaps 1,031, perhaps 30 more than that, and that number counts only those who were roasted or drowned in 30 awful minutes. Later, dozens of survivors committed suicide in their desolation; more yet were led vacant-eyed to mental wards. In the end, an entire neighborhood — a lively, laughing, gracious, prosperous, bustling lower East Side community called Weiss Garten — disappeared forever.

Other links:

New York History

Long Island History

A blog archive which linked to this NYTimes article.

A website for researchers and survivors descendants.

originally posted by Greer

painters and madmen

Giant guitar
of light-strummed
at dusk
it rests
by the intersection
Tuning not itself
like the organ keys
in a haunted house
but us
To make us see
we are the keys
and it the organist
invisible guitar player
of no spooky music.
Underground artists of Las Vegas.

originally posted by daiichi

different levels of ass-whupping

A television commercial for a local Toughman contest came on. They were looking for tough men and women to fight three one-minute rounds in nearby Louisiana. "I'm drunk. Sitting around in a room full of guys, who are all tough anyway, because they're all prison guards and I'm the only girl in the group. You know, I've gotta be tough, too. So the commercial comes on, and I feel it's my need to assert my feminine side here, so I say, 'Y'all aren't tough.' I said, 'You want to know tough? Women. Menstrual cramps and childbirth. We're tough. You people aren't shit,'" Mahfood recalls. "They loaded my drunk ass up in the car. Carried me down there. I registered. I woke up the next morning and said, 'Oh, my God. What did I do?'"
Dallas Observer on boxer Valerie "The Wolfe" Mahfood: A Girl Named Suicide.

originally posted by daiichi

You'll never map me, Macer!

The scope of human ideas is infinite, some might say. But one researcher says he can count them, and he intends to do just that. Darryl Macer, associate professor at the Institute of Biological Sciences at the University of Tsukuba in Japan, plans to create a human mental map -- a database that would contain a log of every human idea.

For what purpose other than to feed artificial intelligence?
I believe in logging ephemera for posterity, but he might as well try chasing rainbows or catching clouds to pin them down.

originally posted by Jane Die

Don't touch me there, I mean it!

Death Touch: The Science Behind The Legend of Dim Mak, By Dr. Michael Kelly. This is the first book on dim mak written by a medical doctor. Dr. Kelly uses modern medical science to explain the true dangers and deadly effects of dim mak. In addition, he teaches how to use modern medical science to find and develop deadly dim mak techniques.

The flow of ch'i can be fatally interrupted by attacking these Dim Mak Points.

originally posted by Jane Die

November 28, 2002


Page Seventeen is huge.

originally posted by xowie

create something day

I've been thinking about Buy Nothing Day, and about anti-consumerism in general. And I'm considering the words of Starhawk, when she speaks of finding a more positive model for combatting globalization, beginning with what we CALL things. And I'm wondering if it might be more appropriate, rather than participating in Buy Nothing Day, to participate in Create Something Day.

So, with that in mind, I hereby proclaim Friday, November 29, 2002 to be the first annual Create Something Day. Draw a picture, write a poem, sing a song, make a sculpture out of found objects, do collage art, paint, dream, cook a meal, make a friend, write a letter, make a mix tape, start a blog...create something out of things you already have available to you.

Because, generally, when we cease to do something, we find something to take its place. If we cease to participate in consumerism, let's fill that gap with something positive. Let's fill it with something creative.

Because the opposite of consumption is production. And we can choose to produce things that are positive and healthful for others to consume.

If you wish to participate in Create Something Day, please trackback or comment here and let me know what you've created. It doesn't have to be a masterpiece. It doesn't even have to be tangible. It just has to be something that you feel has a positive impact.

(cross-posted at clothespins for the revolution, blog sisters, and Full Bleed)

November 27, 2002

setting tivo straight

Mr. Iwanyk, 32 years old, first suspected that his TiVo thought he was gay, since it inexplicably kept recording programs with gay themes. A film studio executive in Los Angeles and the self-described "straightest guy on earth," he tried to tame TiVo's gay fixation by recording war movies and other "guy stuff."

"The problem was, I overcompensated," he says. "It started giving me documentaries on Joseph Goebbels and Adolf Eichmann. It stopped thinking I was gay and decided I was a crazy guy reminiscing about the Third Reich."

Techno-profiling gone haywire, in The Wall Street Journal.

while he's an undisputed musical genius . . .

"Use your mouse to catch as many babies as you can in the basket. Michael will try to distract you by dropping his latest, horrible records."

The Billie Jean MIDI is funny @ the Michael Jackson Baby Drop

originally posted by Jane Die

kenny g on the rtd

"He'll have jazz playing up his ass all day long! Man, he'll be sorry he met me, 'cause I don't let nobody run my life for me. I'm a man. Can't he see that? I'm a man. And I ain't doing nothing just 'cause some bus driver says so."
Jazz up the ass, by Judith Lewis. Also, art-criminal JERK.

originally posted by xowie

November 26, 2002

sponsored by prozac

What would you do on poetry's behalf?

originally posted by xowie

being right wing

Laura and I were being sooo right wing. We sold a lot of people on our tax plans. For instance, there's the rape tax -- if you get raped, you pay a tax. This is to discourage rape. And the income tax.. up to $50,000 your income is taxed at 90%. Above $50,000, it's taxed at 2%. This is to encourage people to get rich. Of course, there are tax write-offs for Prada shoes and oil rigs. (...)

the economy sucks and i'm getting scared

A week before Thanksgiving, the organization already had reached its quota of 1,400 families -- something that generally doesn't happen until just days before Christmas. By Monday, more than 100 people were on the waiting list.
"We're frightened to death," Dunmore said. "I'm having sleepless nights."
Giftless in San Francisco.

originally posted by zagg

dateline Opelousas

Sweet potatoes aren't really yams; yams, which belong to the genus Dioscorea, are grown widely in Africa, where they originated, and elsewhere in the tropics but scarcely at all in the United States. What we are dealing with here is Ipomoea batatas, which is not only not a yam but not a true potato. Believed to be a native of Central America, it is closely related to the morning glory, with the same purplish, heart-shaped leaves. Sweet potatoes, which are less dense and starchy than yams, are rich in healthful beta carotene, an important source of vitamin A.
The New York Times: In the Kingdom of the Sweet Potato.

November 25, 2002

technology vs. environment

Where Computers Go To Die (via slashdot).

OK, but what you should really read is Silicon Hell, the classic environmental expose from the SFBG.

originally posted by jdavis

bounce rock skate roll

Seems that the better skater you are, the less interaction you'll have with other skaters: you'll be skating too fast for conversations; you'll intimidate beginners just by donning your custom gear - and you'll rarely fall down (providing fewer opportunities for someone who fancies you to help you back to your feet again -- one of skating's sweetest, most genuine gestures).
Freaky Trigger, A Rink Like This.

November 24, 2002

def poetry jam on b'way

Lemon taught himself to read and write while incarcerated. Nine years ago, he watched poets performing at a community center. "I never knew they were poets," he says. "I thought they were rappers."
CSM, Hip-hop takes center stage.

originally posted by xowie

speaking of hyper pit bulls

"We do not think justice has been done," they said in a statement. "The dog is still free and is a danger to society. Our children were lucky that they avoided grievous injuries -- other children may not be so lucky."
Princess Anne Dogged by Royal Crime.

originally posted by daiichi

resistance growing rhizomatically

Happy Birthday, IndyMedia.

originally posted by daiichi

cast a spell on me

Elvis Mitchell on Velocity, starring crufty pagan Fairuza Balk.

originally posted by daiichi

crotchless panties of doom

Perhaps scantily clad multimillionaire supermodels flaunting a socially constructed notion of idealized beauty for an hour isn't the gravest threat to women's rights and mental health since the invention of the tube top and/or "Baywatch." Possible?
Mark Morford on the Victoria's Secret fashion show thing.

originally posted by daiichi

waiting to die on a river of salvation

"Tell me, is there any point?" she asked. "Here, I have to work and earn my living. Death will come in its own time, and when it takes me away, I will be happy that I have been released from this world and its suffering."
The shunned widows of Varanasi on the Ganges.

originally posted by daiichi

doc watson plays one, should you?

Pretty Seattle Times feature on the Tacoma Guitar company. I'm finally unloading my Martin (the one judlew's friend's dog ate); but for the offensive Indian branding, I would replace it with one of these Tacomas.

originally posted by daiichi

to witness the gospel of peace

The Name on My Cross

April 23, 1990

Fort Benning, Georgia

Juan Ramon Moreno S.J.,

I carried your cross

in the circular procession today,

shaking my rattle.

I confess

I leaned on your cross a little

during the speeches,

rattling my applause.

Then looked over my shoulder.

The soldiers stood

in little motionless groups

as if posing for photographs with their

personnel carriers,

in battle camouflage and riot gear.

They watched.

I couldn’t tell if they listened.

I hoisted your cross

and turned your name around to face them.

Not to accuse anyone:

I wanted to feel the weight of the wood.

And I wanted them to notice

You had a name.

Not just another dark-skinned man on a cross.

- Stephen Wing

A Poet's Notebook: At the Gates by Robin Kemp

originally posted by xowie

featuring alonzo the mechanical pony

"New Years Eve, nine years ago," recounts Moss. "We had a bunch of this Jager knockoff crap called Beck Torova that nobody would buy or drink for free, not even the bums. Well, one of the bums said 'I'm not drinking that ass juice' and that's how it started."
The Double Down Saloon celebrates its 10th anniversary.

originally posted by xowie

November 23, 2002

world's most destructive bank

Activists serve Citigroup with eviction papers.

originally posted by daiichi

letters to the editor

Writer Alison M. Rosen has contacted us to complain that we are not linking to enough articles by Alison M. Rosen. Such as Sucking Strap-ons by Alison M. Rosen. Or Textbook Love Affair by Alison M. Rosen. Or Dude, Where's My Double-Necked Guitar? by Alison M. Rosen.

originally posted by daiichi

with ketchup or nutrasweet and raisins

Ode to ramen.

originally posted by daiichi

he can't be all bad

Friends in recent years have thought they detected a glimmer of light amid the darkness of Fischer's tortured psyche. For one thing, he has a girlfriend—Justine, a twenty-two-year-old Chinese-Filipina living in Manila, who couldn't care less about chess and has no intention of writing a tell-all memoir.
Rene Chun, Bobby Fischer's pathetic endgame.

originally posted by daiichi

my heart's telling me to kill saddam

''If you want to play the game of truth, I'll tell the truth, and the truth will burn. It's not going to burn me. It'll burn you. Why did you play the Israel card? Why did you play it, America? To try to discredit me?''
NYT: Scott Ritter's Iraq Complex.

originally posted by daiichi

Flag of Iraq

Do you know what the flag of Iraq looks like?

Vonnegut on reviewer rage

"Any reviewer who expresses rage and loathing for a novel is preposterous. He or she is like a person who has put on full armor and attacked a hot fudge sundae." -- Kurt Vonnegut

November 22, 2002

the flip side of world war II

"I would say tiki, and people would say, `What's that?" said Mr. Fisherman, scratching his goatee, his eyes wide behind rectangular glasses. "Nobody had ever heard of it. I was sad."
NYT, The Return of the Parasol-Topped Cocktail.

originally posted by daiichi

"this kid is whatever whatever, this ad is pretty funny"

It was about Chinatown, and the formation of Chinatowns in America. I lost like three pages of it; it was terrible. It was a really, really good paper.

i dowse for love

The order to return to life is often delivered by a religious figure like Jesus or Buddha, but a recent study done in India revealed something striking: at the end of the tunnel of light the Indians were met by a government official. "In three independent reports, the Indians said they were told to go back because there had been a bureaucratic mistake. Something along the lines of, ‘Oh, so you are Kumar from Calcutta? The person who was supposed to die was Kumar from New Delhi!’"
Report of a lecture at the Parapsychology Foundation on E. 71 St.

originally posted by daiichi

Mad Monks on the Web

I'm really not terribly interested because I think that behind Man and Woman is spirit. And spirit is spirit. And that's where I live. I don't give a damn whether a person is a man or a woman. It's just not that interesting to me.
Mad Monk Jim Crotty interviews Ram Dass. Also see the Monk List: D.C. (NY, LA).

November 21, 2002

i don't know the world anymore.

"Quick, what two countries have had a longstanding conflict over the region of Kashmir? Thirty-six percent of the young Americans who answered that question in National Geographic’s recent geography survey got it right. How would you do?
National Geographic commissioned the Roper survey to test the geographic knowledge of 18- to 24-year-olds in Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Sweden, Great Britain, and the United States."

The last time I took geography I was in junior high, I think. So I didn't do so well. You wanna try?

originally posted by Jane Die

does the music get sad that it isn't free?

TOKYO — Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc said Wednesday it will release next January music compact disks (CDs) equipped with a new technology to prevent illegal copying and protect copyrights.

From Japantoday in ENGLISH.

In a related story, Music Industry Unveils New Piracy-Proof Format: A Black, Plastic Disc With Grooves On It.

originally posted by Jane Die

feels good when your heart wakes up

The song, says Lewis, is about those periods of being in a "love drought where you feel incapable of love and you can’t get yourself to snap out of your own self-centered world."

"It’s just another hopeful song," she says, "Because, God, it feels good when your heart is no longer slumbering, and it wakes up, and there’s a person or song or friend that snaps you out of your own craziness."

Rilo Kiley singer Jenny Lewis, by Alison M. Rosen.

originally posted by daiichi

death to fat cat radio

The radical deregulation of the radio industry allowed by the Telecommunications Act of 1996 has not benefited the public or musicians. Instead, it has led to less competition, fewer viewpoints, and less diversity in programming. Deregulation has damaged radio as a public resource.

This research makes an overwhelming case that market consolidation intended by the act does not serve the diverse needs of Americans citizens. Substantial ethnic, regional and economic populations are not provided the service to which they are entitled. The public is not satisfied and possible economic efficiencies of industry consolidation are not being passed on to the public in the form of improved local service.

From the executive summary of a Future of Music Coalition report, much more of which is also online.

little girl games

"What about where I'm the princess and you're my zombie slave?"

originally posted by xowie

The Washington Post: Scientists Planning

The Washington Post: Scientists Planning to Make New Form of Life.

If the experiment works, the microscopic man-made cell will begin feeding and dividing to create a population of cells unlike any previously known to exist. To ensure safety, the cell will be deliberately hobbled to render it incapable of infecting people; it also will be strictly confined, and designed to die if it does manage to escape into the environment.

democratisation of anatomy

Before BODY WORLDS and public dissection is permanently banned, Prof. von Hagens has decided to resume the old tradition of public autopsy in Great Britain and to share the unique experience by opening a real human body in the presence of non-professionals. The aim of such an autopsy will remain professional, namely to establish the reason of death and to search for abnormalities. It will be performed on a consenting body donor.
Last night, the first public autopsy since 1830 took place in London, and yay, we watched it on TV. Professor Gunther von Hagens, the man who invented plastination, brought us the Bodyworlds exhibition and popularised anatomy, may or may not be prosecuted for a breach of the Anatomy Act. Hagens opened up the cadaver and removed all the organs, including the brain. Reading half of these self-righteous crappy articles, you'd think that Krusty the Klown was the one opening up the skull with a hacksaw. Not so. It was beautiful.

log in, little revolutionary

Actually order and consume virtual McD's food, then use The Sims Online's "expressive gestures" in creative ways. Lie down and play dead. Emote the vomiting, sickness, or fatigue that might overcome you after eating a real life McNugget.
Using Sims to bash McDonald's.

originally posted by daiichi

only i am sick enough to enjoy this story

"It's a car. It's not like I'm wearing her nightgown. It's a car. It was his car. He had been driving it. It was the only car he had."
Rabbi Fred Neulander is dating Miss Vicki.

originally posted by daiichi

a groundswell of organizing

And the numbers continue to swell, as senior citizens, high school and university students, a range of religious denominations, blue-collar workers, veterans, progressive businesses, and women's, minority, and special-issue activist groups put their weight behind the cause.
SFBG: Critical resistance. See also: Lisa Rein's movies (via Boing Boing).

originally posted by daiichi

lift as we climb

Younger readers, including young feminists, are not committed to getting news the old-fashioned way. The locally generated and popular "The List" (formerly "Hannah’s List"), for example, is a well-distributed weekly e-mail, an electronic bulletin board, that combines traditional what’s-going-on information with classifieds, links, and a who’s who in young feminist circles — all with clear emphasis on transgender concerns, an edgy area for some, perhaps, but completely acceptable for most twentysomethings.
Boston Phoenix: Where did all the womyn go?

originally posted by daiichi

alt weekly oligopoly

This week, federal prosecutors also began interviewing former L.A. Weekly and New Times Los Angeles employees, seeking information about the two papers' competitive relationship. Among those the government lawyers either have questioned or are seeking to interview are the Weekly's former publisher Michael Sigman, ex-editor Sue Horton (who now edits The Times' Opinion section), former classified advertising director Jim Kaplan, one-time City Hall columnist Marc Haefele and former New Times columnist Jill Stewart.
w00t! Justice Dept. opens alt-weekly inquiry.

originally posted by xowie

orwell is our litmus test

What's wrong with journalism today?

Many journalists now are no more than channelers and echoers of what Orwell called the official truth. They simply cipher and transmit lies. It really grieves me that so many of my fellow journalists can be so manipulated that they become really what the French describe as functionaires, functionaries, not journalists.

John Pilger at The Progressive.

originally posted by daiichi

camera never lies

So you feel like your role is to gather evidence?

That's one of the things we do. We bear witness, we present evidence. It's effective not to do it in a cold clinical way, but in a human way. The images are a cold statement of fact, but they present the human tragedy. There are consequences to what we do and don't do, serious consequences for ordinary people.

Anti-war photographer James Nachtwey.

originally posted by daiichi

November 20, 2002

not for the serious.

Whose butt is it anyways?

For Earl and those who share his proclivities.

originally posted by Jane Die

puff puff give, man!

The Myth of Potent Pot: The drug czar's latest reefer madness
[White House Drug Czar John P. Walters] claims that marijuana is 30 times more powerful than it used to be.
Walters, whose official title is director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, inveighed against the demon weed in campaign swings through Ohio, Arizona, and Nevada (twice). At the heart of Walters' sermon: "It is not your father's marijuana." Today's users, he claims, confront pot that's up to 30 times stronger than what aging baby boomers smoked.

How did he know my dad smoked pot?

originally posted by Jane Die

texas firms line up u.s. aid in peru

In the 1980s, Royal Dutch Shell prospected for oil in a 5-million-acre area of Peru's Ucayali Basin, slicing through the rain forest to conduct seismic tests. Poachers invaded, illegally harvesting trees and importing influenza, whooping cough and other maladies that killed four out of every 10 people in some indigenous tribes.

Shell geologists found no oil but discovered a "world class" natural gas field with potential reserves of 13 trillion cubic feet of gas and 600 million barrels of condensate, a fossil fuel that includes propane, butane and heavier hydrocarbons used in gasoline. Peru's government opposed Shell's plan to remove the gas.

Shell made a new effort in the 1990s, and tribal people objected, aided by environmental groups such as the tiny California-based Amazon Watch and the larger OxFam International. Shell tried to placate the opposition, paying $1 million for the region's first biodiversity review, conducted by the Smithsonian Institution's Monitoring and Assessment of Biodiversity Program. Scientists noted the jungle's "nearly pristine condition" and its wealth of unique, "unidentified species."

The scientists persuaded Shell not to build roads into the region and to adopt strict policies against contact with indigenous people.

But, in 1998, antitrust disputes with the government forced Shell to pull out of the project. Indigenous leaders were elated. Today, they feel differently.

"If we'd only known," said Lelis Rivera, director of the Center for Development of Amazon Indigenous Peoples, or CEDIA, "we would, one thousand times over, have preferred Shell."

Two Texas oil companies, Hunt and Halliburton, are trying to get public financing to develop what sounds like a horribly ill-conceived natural gas pipeline through a Peruvian rainforest.

targeting the media

With over-sized protest signs hanging from their necks or around their bodies and while shouting "Shame On The Washington Post" followed by "Tell the Truth ... Not The Lie!" and then "Spread the Truth and Not the Lies!" they marched in a circular formation on the sidewalk directly in front of the Washington Post making certain that one end of the circle was directly beneath the Washington Post logo, a symbol of corporate media, which is situated above the steps of the entrance way located at 1150 15th Street.

Activists in Washington D.C. protested the media's poor coverage of antiwar activities. Read the Black Voices for Peace statement. Meanwhile, antiwar protestors in Minnesota have targeted the Minnesota Star-Tribune and Minnesota Public Radio with similar grievances.

originally posted by zagg

What would Jesus drive?

What would Jesus drive?

originally posted by dm8k

murder is bigger than hip-hop

When the lyrics touched sore spots in those times, there was little concern among listeners that their favorite rappers could lose their lives. The landscape has since changed as more rappers begin to take sides in what is shaping up to be a hip-hop world war.
VV: World war of words.

originally posted by daiichi

monkey-picked tieguanyin

AllAboutGeorge's Imperial tearoom with occasional randomWalkers.

originally posted by daiichi

anglonoiac, u.s.?

"Very often people do not understand the title of the country," Dr Howells told MPs of Commons culture select committee yesterday. "In America, people had heard of London, some had heard of England, no one had heard of the United Kingdom - they thought it was somewhere in the Middle East."
Guardian UK, 'Americans ignorant of their UK kinsfolk"

November 19, 2002

black holes

This article about a fast-moving black hole also includes a wonderfully clear explanation of white dwarves, neutron stars and supernovas.

harvard speech code

Harvard's Black Law Students Association and some faculty have been pressing since last spring for a speech code that would punish offending students and professors. The law school community was ruptured at that time by a series of racial incidents - most notably one student's use of the word ''nig'' in an online course notebook, a professor's defense of that student, and another professor's comment that feminism, Marxism, and black studies have ''contributed nothing'' to tort law.

Yet while law school officials have taken steps to soothe campus tensions since then, their primary action - forming the Committee on Healthy Diversity, which said it plans to draft the proposed speech code - has created a new wave of concern.

Boston Globe: Harvard Law plan on speech causes stir. What do you think?

the man's a genius

Michael Jackson dangles child from hotel window in Berlin.

originally posted by xowie

support your local

The Sex Worker Arts Festival is under attack!

originally posted by xowie

protecting whose rights?

Then to make it shamefully clear what side the administration is on, the police forcibly removed Jessica from the auditorium, handcuffed her, took her to the UIC police station, charged her with "disorderly conduct," and held her in lockup till 4 am. There, one of the police who had been at the lecture confirmed Jessica's claims to the officer in charge, but this was tossed aside. When they released her, instead of carrying out their duty to insure she would get home safely at 4am, they left her to the mercy of an off-duty policeman who privately offered her a ride home and then tried to arrange for sex.

University of Illinois-Chicago accused of inhibiting free speech.

originally posted by zagg

Paul Muldoon Doesn't Mind Being Called a Difficult Poet

Nine is the ideal age to write a poem. You don't know what you're doing.
The New York Times profiles Paul Muldoon. Some poems are over at Ploughshares.

another reason to move to takoma park

Collectively, the pioneers expect to keep more than 100,000 pounds of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere over the next year by switching from natural gas and electric heat.

"This is not just a wacky thing," Tidwell said. Every jurisdiction, big or small, urban or suburban, "should start thinking about a place [it] could put a corn silo."

Co-op owners in Takoma Park, Md., have built an urban grain silo to store fodder for their corn-burning stoves.

Blackface and fraternities

The November 2001 incident at Auburn University, chronicled at tolerance.org, was the most high-profile incident of blackface at a frat party. But it was far from an isolated incident. In 2001 it also occurred at the University of Mississippi, though that frat was reinstated this week, as well as at the University of Alabama-Birmingham and the University of Louisville. And this year incidents have already been reported at Oklahoma State University, the University of Tennessee, the University of Virginia, and Swarthmore.

originally posted by zagg

interviewing is fun

Lots of the people Strauss called didn't want to talk to her. Getting people to talk who don't want to is hard, but stories are more reliable and more interesting when they include the viewpoints of the people who are at the center of the story.

"It's never easy asking people questions about difficult times in their lives, but reporters have no choice," Strauss said. "I start out by sounding as professional and nice as possible. We usually have to call people more than once, so it is easier if you haven't been rude.

With KidsPost teaching me how to be a reporter, who needs j-school?


Egon is driving us out to see the collection. His ponytail is fluttering in the breeze. "A kind of weightlessness." That's how Kafka describes the experience of riding in a bus. "Like a voyage, where all your senses are more alert. Elevated. Because you sit up high." Participant and observer. "And everything is . . . more."
I wish riding the Metrobus every morning made me feel like that. Meet bus collector Egon Kafka.

what's wrong with a little oprah-bashing

Status and anxiety figure prominently in his recent essay in the New Yorker on novelist William Gaddis ("Carpenter's Gothic," "JR"). In it, Franzen divides novelists into two camps: "Status" authors see difficulty as a signal of excellence that "the author has disdained cheap compromise and stayed true to an artistic vision." "Contract" writers want to entertain and connect with readers. This, Franzen says, is what he is. He then confesses, "I have started (in many cases, more than once) 'Moby-Dick,' 'The Man Without Qualities,' 'Mason & Dixon,' 'Don Quixote,' 'Remembrance of Things Past,' 'Doctor Faustus,' 'Naked Lunch,' 'The Golden Bowl' and 'The Golden Notebook' without coming anywhere near finishing them." Difficult books, he says, are no longer what he aspires to write.
The overwhelming anxieties of Jonathan Franzen.


Mark diagnosed himself with a minor case of "objectum-sexuality," a fetishistic attraction to inanimate objects, in this case, his Mac. "You may find the line between your attraction to your lover's face and your computer monitor starting to blur," he wrote.

Does hardware turn you on, baby?
I don't have a Mac. But I do have a wicked fetish for _______.

< mmm, "one fat and happy backbone" - oh yes! >

originally posted by Jane Die

my new linking technique is oh nevermind

In America, you don't have to be a celebrity like Oprah or Rosie or Martha to put out a magazine devoted to your own personal obsessions. Some energetic souls put out several zines. For instance, David Rees of Brooklyn, who chronicled his kung fu training in a zine called My New Fighting Technique Is Unstoppable, later went on to chronicle his job as a filing clerk in a zine called My New Filing Technique Is Unstoppable.
10 years later, the Post notices the no budget self publishing phenomenon.

common errs

If you think its cliché to point out grammatical errors, you've got another thing coming.

originally posted by zagg

i want to be free like an eagle in the air

Their instincts as con artists, De Francesco reasoned, may have constituted the strongest inherent qualifications of his actors. One of them, Larry Miller, was asked in a television interview if he had any acting experience. "Other than acting like a damn fool? No," he said.
SF Gate: San Quentin inmates taste freedom performing a play about slavery and liberation.

originally posted by xowie

swallow your pride, open your eyes

As long as you're not thinking of Tears for Fears' "Sowing the Seeds of Love" -- and now that you've just read it, I know for certain that you are not -- Tom Coates (via wood s lot) will.

consider me agog

''I'm not sure it will encourage people to read poetry ... But it does show poetry is moving to a more robust condition in America. It's returning a bit closer to the center of cultural life than it was 15 or 20 years ago.''
Ruth Lilly gives $100 million to Poetry magazine.

originally posted by daiichi

bringing the random to this walk

occupy thyself
if your dreams are restless with
unfamiliar songs

love:"use power of now"
uncertainty in this box
is it just a meme?

Enjoy the Leonids and the Full Moon madness.

originally posted by Jane Die

November 18, 2002

This ridiculous display of self-righteousness

So you know that site Black People Love Us? The New York Times: Black-White Harmony: Are You Kidding Me?

"I think the anonymity of the Internet allows people to discuss issues without self-censoring and that's politically useful in discussions of race," said Omar Wasow, the executive director of BlackPlanet.com, the most heavily trafficked African-American Web destination, according to Nielsen NetRatings.

Mr. Wasow stopped short of calling the Perettis' project social activism. "This is more to me like a prank," he said. "A clever, socially engaged prank, but a prank nonetheless."

(More good quotes at ALLABOUTGEORGE.com.)

examination of what


If odd bits of news information is what you seek — you’ll be easily delighted in this site, but unfortunately there are many sites out there quoting random bits of news, and in no way does Random Walks come out on top.

NY Rising

forgot to link the NY Rising webpage

originally posted by hcog

beauty queens not pandilleras

Cristabel, 17, pulls up her top to show the numbers 'one' and 'eight' tattooed on her midriff, signifying her allegiance to the Calle Dieciocho, the 18th Street gang, named after a Los Angeles street. To enter the gang, she had to be ritually beaten by three of her 'homies' while the gang counted slowly to 18. On her back is a tattooed crucifix and RIP, in memory of her 'homegirl' who was killed by the rival Mara Salvatrucha gang last year. Cristabel's 17-year-old boyfriend, Nelson, has diecocho inscribed on his forehead, making him a walking target. It is ugly, but what is pathetically tragic is that it is spelt incorrectly - the tattooist has left the second 'i' out of dieciocho.
LA style cholos in San Salvador (via RWWL).

originally posted by daiichi

this teapot is not conscious

At the heart of the Crick-Koch hypothesis is a simple idea with vast implications. It is that consciousness, rather than representing some spiritual or God-given quality, is a biological process like digestion or circulation, generated by the activity of neurons in the brain. As he wrote in his 1994 book, "The Astonishing Hypothesis": "You, your joys and your sorrows--your sense of personal identity and free will, are in fact no more than the behavior of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules."
LAT: Francis Crick tackles human consciousness.

originally posted by xowie

i pity the fool who scrabbles with me

People who play Scrabble around the kitchen table usually score in the 200s. Good Scrabble players hit scores of 450 or more, said Wapnick, whose top score is 662.
via Fark: Canadians win first Can-Am Scrabble tournament.

originally posted by daiichi

sitting in her nowhere world

I just got an email from the e-sheep guy saying:

I'm excited to report my friend Justine Shaw (or, as I like to
call her, The Superstar) has just launched Part Two of her epic web comic NOWHERE GIRL. If you haven't yet read part one of Nowhere Girl, all I can say is: Justine's work blows E-sheep, and pretty much every other web comic, out of the water. If you *have* read part one already, I'm certain you've clicked through and forgotten all about this email by now :-)

hebron means to unite

The Hebrew root of "Hebron" is the same of that of "to unite," and the Arabic name of the city, El Khalil, is based on the word for a close friend. Yet peaceful coexistence died bloodily here decades ago, to be replaced by fear and seemingly irreconcilable claims. This is the Israeli-Palestinian conflict's frontier, and perhaps its future.

Gazing at the darkened Palestinian houses, Mr. Menachan tried to envision the city in 20 years. "What I hope is, no Arabs," he said, as a fire made of brambles and olive branches crackled nearby. "If they continue to make trouble, no Arabs, and a Jewish city. If they're good people — if they know this is our land, that God gave it to us — they can stay.

"If they behave like animals," he added, nodding at the site of the shooting, "then not."

New York Times: On Hebron Ambush Site, a New Settlement Rises.

I am not rich, famous

I am not rich, famous or heroic. No one pounds at my door—thank God—asking for either my sperm or my autograph.
OC Weekly: The Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy Against Mike Davis. Also: Brandi Lyon, by Alison M. Rosen.

originally posted by daiichi

When meta intends to

When meta intends to teach us a lesson -- that is, when it's a drag -- it's usually instructing us that we shouldn't confuse fiction with real life.
this is a link to a headline for an essay about meta.

originally posted by daiichi

November 17, 2002

The fingerprints of koala bears

The fingerprints of koala bears are virtually indistinguishable from those of humans, so much so that they could be confused at a crime scene.
While investigating the scientific link between koalas and raccoons, I stumbled upon this website. There's even more exciting information out there.

originally posted by Greer

nice place for a visit?

Diana Griggs, a local African-American internist, would have been the only black person counted by the 1990 census in this little town 30 miles south of Indianapolis -- if she had felt safe identifying herself as such on the census form.

Extremists Undermine Town's Efforts to Overcome Racist Legacy

smooth tea

right to left: george, jane die, half of gwen.

originally posted by daiichi

November 16, 2002

if all the filipino nurses in the us went on strike simultaneously, the health care industry would have a stroke

[Marivic] Bautista was an honors student in [Everett Community College]'s nursing program until her third quarter. When she started having trouble in April, she went to see [nursing instructor Karen] Heys, her adviser. Bautista said Heys closed her office door and told her, "Whatever you do this quarter, your grades will always be lower than the rest of the group because you did not have your primary education here and you do not have English as your primary language," according to Bautista's complaint.

Think discrimination is wrong? Maybe you should sign this petition.

one unintimidating chunk

The title refers to an incident when Anne was a child. Her brother had waited until the night before a school project on birds was due to start work on it. He sat at the kitchen table, with a blank pad of paper and a pile of bird books, overcome by the immensity of the task. His father sat down, put his arm around him and said, "Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird." This has become Lamott's way of tricking herself into writing. She tells herself that she's only required to write a small amount each day, just one "bird." No matter how busy, how distracted, how depressed, how uninspired, surely there's time enough for one measly paragraph or character description or scene outline? Of course, once you sit down to bang out that one small block of text, you end up producing two or three or more. But you always tell yourself you're gonna take it one unintimidating chunk at a time: bird by bird.

and she likes it and drinks it, and he likes it and drinks it, and they

Would you even read a review of Guinness without your own preconceptions? When you clicked on the link to read this article, you didn't really click it to find out our opinion of Guinness- you already know that we like it and drink it and that you like it and drink it. Something else brought you here. Perhaps it was interest in the widget... perhaps it was interest in the new draught bottle. Perhaps you were wondering if the correct spelling is draft or draught. Well, let me try to satisfy your interests.

November 15, 2002

wronged side of the tracks?

"As crazy as it sounds, you need to educate the cop about our strange hobby in under 60 seconds," wrote Todd Clark, the webmaster of Trainorders.com.

Clark said in an interview that, for the most part, railroad police are familiar with the hobby but local police "think it's bizarre that grown men would be out there taking pictures of trains."

Heightened security intended to snag terrorists is also making life difficult for trainwatchers.

Gay Games VI 2002

Did you know 38,000 people, including 13,000 athletes, were in Sydney, Australia last week for the Gay Games VI 2002? NY Rising, my girlfriend's bad news bears team from Brooklyn (most of the team smokes at half-time) won the silver in soccer! (They gave up smoking this summer and became a bunch of amazon, circuits training freaks.) Go team!

originally posted by hcog

On Tuesday, November 19th, go to a mountaintop in the Adirondacks at 5:20 AM


  • What is the best location for viewing the 2002 Leonid meteor shower?
  • What night do I need to go out to see the the shower from my hometown?
  • How active is the shower expected to be?

Then you need NASA's Flux Capaci..., er, Estimator.

originally posted by Ben Fried

Take two steps towards the gods

"Deities and demons do not exist "out there" in some other space where we will eventually travel and hang out and romp giddily and watch porn and eat all the pie and candy we want. They're internal, as facets and aspects of our own spiritual beings. This is what Campbell teaches. So simple. So beautiful. So radically misunderstood."

PBS is airing the Power of Myth again - but Joseph Campbell has never gone out of style. Among his legion of fans, Mark Morford. I've been to Skywalker Ranch, to Lucas' library, and went directly to the letter C, where he had many JC books. Maybe it was just my hopeful imagination, but that part of the bookcase radiated heat. I will never tire of Campbell's series with Bill Moyer - it's everything I wanted to know.

originally posted by Jane Die

i still love you even if you hate my comics

I saw Justice Scalia speak this summer at a special event for University of Pennsylvania law students. Now I know what he was up to on
January 04, 2001,
May 17, 2001,
June 14, 2001, and
October 17, 2002.

when is a dove not a dove?

I want to take this occasion to say that the United States will never again seek one additional foot of territory by conquest. —Woodrow Wilson, 1913

I have said this before, but I shall say it again and again and again: You boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars. —Franklin Delano Roosevelt, 1939

We are not about to send American boys 9,000 or 10,000 miles away from home to do what Asian boys ought to be doing for themselves. —Lyndon B. Johnson, 1964

We should give President Nixon our backing and support. —Jimmy Carter, 1973

Our objectives are clear. Our forces are strong, and our cause is right. —Bill Clinton, regarding the 1998 deployment of U.S. troops to the Persian Gulf.

The Democrats and War

originally posted by zagg

don't fear the banner

Click the strip.

originally posted by xowie

ano ang pangalan mo??

National ID for Philippines?

originally posted by daiichi

this is earl

toon by Mr. John Van Vliet.

originally posted by daiichi

eat your heart out, mr. s-bomb

At last it happened...my name was called. It was time to be questioned for jury selection. The merry, chubby attorney for the plaintiff asked me what I did for a living. I told him I was a food writer, and that I had just returned from the legendary Peter Luger Steak House...where I had eaten during the lunch break. His mind boggled...I was in like Flynn!
UNCLE EARL SAYS: I am that merry, chubby attorney. Eds.: Meet me at the Imperial Tea Court to see if I exist or not.

originally posted by daiichi

November 14, 2002

true to the filmmaker

"I did smoke a joint and I did inhale,'' he said, taking a jab at President Clinton's famous statement. "The bottom line is that's what it was in the '70s, that's what I did. I have never touched it since.''
Schwarzenegger Backs 'Pumping Iron'.

originally posted by xowie

but can they haiku?

West Marin women strip for peace.

originally posted by daiichi

magic, as in abracadabra

After a judge granted him permission to postpone his scheduled testimony until the afternoon, the reclusive pop star arrived at the courthouse without the surgical mask he had worn a day earlier, but carrying a black umbrella.
Michael Jackson shows up late.

originally posted by daiichi

HyperDictionary is the only online

HyperDictionary is the only online dictionary I'll ever use from now on. Ever. Ever. See a word, click on it, get information. Isn't that what we were promised? That and flying cars.
Leuschke likes the HyperDictionary.

buy nothing day

Buy Nothing Day is November 29, 2002

synergy before its time

Margaret Phillips, who played Ruth-Anne Miller on Northern Exposure, died Nov. 7 at the age of 84. NPR remembered a collision of their two worlds, when Ruth-Anne landed a commentary on All Things Considered and real-life host Robert Siegel introduced it.

Do you think that English holds a certain appeal to Japanese people? If so, please explain.

Everyone interviewed was familiar with this phenomenon - that is, Americans being fond of wearing shirts emblazoned with kanji, oblivious as to its actual meaning. Or actually having it tattooed directly on their skin, with probably no greater authority than the tattoo artist present to assure them that they are not forever being branded with characters that mean "stupid American." For the most part, even the most serious-sounding of the respondents couldn't help but laugh at the phenomenon. They find it as funny as most Americans probably find "Japlish." Moreover, the majority of the respondents saw it as a parallel cultural phenomenon to Japanese-English: after all, both give a "sense of exoticism in a twisted way," both hold an appeal that has little if anything to do with literal meaning, and both appear rather humorous to individuals who are actually familiar with the meaning. Therefore, on at least this superficial level, the two phenomena are indeed extremely similar. There are, however, a couple of differences.

For one, the degree to which both cultural/fashion developments have flourished in their respective countries is separated by a rather wide gulf. While one can often find kanji on T-shirts and tattoos in America, that is more or less where its presence ends. English, on the other hand, literally cannot be avoided no matter where one should happen to go in Japan; even a blind man would perhaps pick up snippets of students practicing their English, or hear it used in commercials. Furthermore, while an American may put on a kanji T-shirt, or even consider a tattoo, it is not likely that he would feel enticed to buy a product because its advertisement contained Japanese characters. The language may seem fascinating and exotic, but with none of the "race envy" discussed earlier.

From half of a senior thesis on English as cultural capital in Japan.

but do they play Camper van Beethoven?

WDVX in Clinton, Tenn., broadcasts Americana and roots music from a 14-foot camper at the Fox Inn Campground. Yeehaw!

such a pretty House

A decade after Bill Clinton pushed his party toward the center of American politics, inspiring a vibrant movement of "New Democrat" followers in Congress, a liberal resurgence is sweeping the party, threatening to brush centrists to the side.
That's the best lead paragraph to a newspaper article I've read all week. And go Pelosi!

speaking of literary couples

"Whatever the result, we are going to have to be terribly well behaved about it. We don't want one or the other sulking and moping around."
Guardian, Husband and wife vie for prize.

originally posted by daiichi

as if microsoft needs more breaks

The hearing officer was unmoved - and found him guilty on all 22 charges, ordering him to pay the full $1,100 in fines.
Fabiano points in disgust to the way the city handled Microsoft's recent illegal ad blitz, which blanketed city sidewalks and subway stations with butterfly logos as part of a $30 million advertising campaign. In that case, the company last month was allowed to plead guilty to a single offense, paying a modest $50 fine.

originally posted by zagg

an el camino with switches

Best be bumpin your ride, homie.

originally posted by xowie

the thrill of choice packets.

Oh my internet
you remember my shadows
my reflections and

what i once believed.

Thoughts, fly to heaven, or a

hard drive for your heart.

revel in collective consciousness.

originally posted by Jane Die

I'll take the standard model, please.

"Candygirl is one of the most cutie love doll in the world !
We are waiting for the order from the whole world."

Candy Girl and Fantastick. Like the Real Doll, but like, less real.
The Engrish is also charming.

originally posted by Jane Die

what's that on the hardwood floor?

night of media
like a telesymphony
trying to stay warm

i swear i'm sober
just a little frenetic
Earl, control yourself!

originally posted by Jane Die

November 13, 2002

produce this

As controversial as the show sounds, Darnell noted that 60% of all marriages worldwide are still arranged, although not in most Western countries.
Meet the official offensive reality show of randomWalks.

originally posted by xowie

the onion knows...

A straw poll on our latest fiasco of apathy, i mean, election:

originally posted by Marise

shut down school of the americas!

Indigo Girls will help kick SOA's ass this weekend.

originally posted by daiichi

apropos of nothing i can talk about

A few links about using weblogs for knowledge management:


Attack Iraq? NO!100 stickers for $30 seems like a good deal.

a flat world after all

Unlike most of Timberline's dome-dreaming clientele, Ingle and Thompson had no particular drive to become dome dwellers. "I got the first Whole Earth Catalog and was excited," he says, shrugging. "I'm part of that generation. But I never thought I would live in a dome."
Why haven't Buckydomes caught on?

originally posted by xowie

speaking of role-playing games

And there it sat for over a decade ...

Until I received several pieces of email recently, the combined gist of which is that there are rumors abounding on the Net and the Web about a last episode of the show, either scripted and never produced, or produced and never aired, in which we learn that the kids actually died on the rollercoaster that supposedly took them into the Realm, and that they are, in fact, imprisoned in Hell and being tormented with a complex fantasy (as if just being in Hell wouldn't be torment enough) by the Devil masquerading as Dungeon Master, and do I have any words to share with the masses about this issue?
I just about jumped when I discovered this unproduced script for the last episode of the Dungeons and Dragons cartoon. Speaking of role-playing games, wouldn't the world of Norton Juster's The Phantom Tollbooth be a great place to role-play? But did you ever hear those rumors? I didn't.

November 12, 2002

a revelation that gives new meaning to the terms "drug war"

According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, the effects of the fentanyl class "are indistinguishable from those of heroin, with the exception that the fentanyls may be hundreds of times more potent."

That mystery drug? Shh. It's legal in the U.S.
The Village Voice: Fentanyl Story Quietly Absorbed By Media.

the windows of finca vigia

There are some 3,000 photographs and undeveloped negatives in the house as well as bullfighting paintings, antelope heads from hunting trips to Africa and unfinished bottles of gin, Campari and Bacardi next to Hemingway’s favourite reading chair.
Castro opens door on Hemingway's life.

originally posted by xowie

down with country joe

Listen, people, I don't how you expect to ever stop the war if you can't sing any better than that. There's about 300,000 of you fuckers out there and I want you to start singing! Come on!
Singing back memories at the Wall.

originally posted by xowie

get content size

Adrian Holovaty has created a nifty tool called GetContentSize, which calculates the ratio of a Web page's text content to its total page size. The Washington Post, for example, scores a bloated 9.7 percent. randomWalks, on the other hand, pulls a 26.93 percent -- not bad, but low among the other blogs Holovaty sampled.

stand for something

Today's Democratic Party is less a party than an entrenched Washington apparatus, which operates as a sort of simulacrum of itself, bellowing the names of past icons, while it carries on the business of responding to the interests of one lobby group or another.
James Ridgeway, The party's over.

originally posted by daiichi

get on the martian roster

When the insect overlords from Mars Attack(s), or when you travel to their red planet,
at least you'll be on their guest list by sending your name to Mars.

originally posted by Jane Die

sixteen rivers press

"I fixed my teeth, bought a new computer and started the project," Saidenberg says. "I wanted to run it as a collective, because of my background working as an activist. It was really important that it not just be me publishing my friends."
Do-It-Yourself Poetics by Margaret Berry.

originally posted by daiichi

she has a new tattoo on her left arm that she calls "the Buddhalupe"

"People to me are like walking Smithsonians, and when they die, all this goes with them unless you document it. (...)

"I never saw an upholsterer in American literature," Ms. Cisneros said. Her father, Alfredo Cisneros, had an upholstery business in Chicago that is now run by three of his sons. "He was such an example of generosity and honest labor," she said. "I didn't want people to erase him."
The New York Times: Telling a Tale of Immigrants Whose Stories Go Untold. Sandra Cisneros' second novel, Caramelo, has just been published and apparently her first, The House on Mango Street, is on its way to joining the canon. I haven't read it, but I clearly remember coming across it when I was shopping for textbooks in college and browsing the readings for other classes. Wasn't that a great way to find books? Mango Street has been on my "sooner or later" list ever since.

November 11, 2002

phrenology is the new orange

Until a moment ago, The Roots and Michael Chabon had but a tenuous connection in the map of my head.

the things i do for love

If you do not have previous experience with Chinese culture or medicine, be prepared for a cultural experience that can not only relieve your medical condition, but enrich your life.
FROM THE DESK OF EARL STONER: After last week's brutal assault on my person, I was forced to seek acupuncture from Dr. Gu. Does this stuff work?

originally posted by daiichi

note to self

Figure out what's going on here (CSS Styling of Namespaces in HTML?).

better late then ...

This is actually from a few weeks ago, but I think it's well worth drawing attention too. For one, it provides excellent data to counter the old "Americans are too bought off to fight back" argument as well as breaking down the notion of who really benefits from America being the richest country in the world. To quote just one gem from the article:

But the main point is that though Sweden may have lower average income than the United States, that's mainly because our rich are so much richer. The median Swedish family has a standard of living roughly comparable with that of the median U.S. family: wages are if anything higher in Sweden, and a higher tax burden is offset by public provision of health care and generally better public services. And as you move further down the income distribution, Swedish living standards are way ahead of those in the U.S. Swedish families with children that are at the 10th percentile -- poorer than 90 percent of the population -- have incomes 60 percent higher than their U.S. counterparts. And very few people in Sweden experience the deep poverty that is all too common in the United States. One measure: in 1994 only 6 percent of Swedes lived on less than $11 per day, compared with 14 percent in the U.S.

Full text available at the useful The Unofficial Paul Krugman Web Page. And speaking of unofficial pages related to New York Times columnists, check out the Anti Thomas Friedman Page.

originally posted by zagg

"andre the giant has a" -posse

Unlike Andre the Giant, Metafilter has a Wiki.

what used to be called Southern literature

William Faulkner. Eudora Welty. Richard Wright. Tennessee Williams. Thomas Wolfe. Truman Capote. Carson McCullers. Reynolds Price. Zora Neale Hurston. Katherine Anne Porter. Robert Penn Warren. James Dickey. Flannery O'Connor. Willie Morris. Those dogs could hunt.

Granted, they wrote in different styles and with varying degrees of success. But there was still something there. Something solid and familiar and identifiable -- something Southern.

As the South has been swallowed up by America, all that has changed. The region has lost some of its manners and moorings. Irate drivers honk at each other in Jackson. You can buy the New York Times in Mobile. There's sushi everywhere. Faux moonshine, Mason jar and all, is sold -- and taxed -- in liquor stores.
Washington Post: Gone With the Wind: Has the Once-Towering Genre of Southern Literature Lost Its Compass?

November 10, 2002

Kentucky Fried Homophobia

This afternoon in Boyd County, Kentucky, a group of local ministers is holding a rally to protest a decision by the local high school to allow a gay-straight alliance to form. Last Monday, almost half the student body stayed home from school to protest the decision.

The boneheadedness of the ministers' obvious bigotry and their crybaby insistence that federal law shouldn't apply to them is maddening enough alone, but the intimidation and hostility that those kids in the GSA must be feeling right now simply breaks my heart. Anti-gay harassment and violence in schools is a huge problem, and I can only imagine how horrible it must be to go to a school where you know so many students hate you and live in a town where it's considered godly to try to stamp out what few civil rights you have.

Want to do something directly for the kids of the Boyd County GSA? The ACLU, which wrote the letter that forced the school to admit that it is bound by law to let the GSA form, issued a statement last week about the protests at the school, and included this email address for students having trouble forming GSAs to contact for help. You can also send an email to the same address voicing your support for the kids of the Boyd County High School GSA, and the ACLU will make sure those get forwarded to the kids.

Pass it on, will you?

originally posted by Chris

November 9, 2002

You don't just have to eat at Denny's

"I’m a paper monkey. I basically do all the boring paper Asian girl things," she says. (And before you yank your underwear up your ass and get on your soap box, pal, please note that she herself said it, not us.)
Michelle Kim, by Alison M. Rosen.

originally posted by daiichi


Sedona, Arizona, Takes on the Big Boys of Sculpture, by my homegirl Patti Cohen.

originally posted by daiichi

Get your Ur on

The computers will get input from carbon-14 results or data from ancient texts--cuneiform, not a Sim City expansion pack.
Scientists are simming Mesopotamia.

originally posted by daiichi

November 8, 2002

Rez + Vibrator = Oh, God!

"It was a bit odd," said Justin, "my fingers were working the controls, but they were also kind of working you."
Whoa, and I was all set to get the GameCube.

Never mind the truth

Rhetorical figures: from alliteration to zeugma!

NYT: Life, Unplugged: Surviving 'Off the Grid'

You gain a keen awareness of where your power is coming from, of the climate, of living close to nature. You conserve much more when you see the meter on the batteries go down. You tend to turn off the lights.
Living off the grid is, apparently, thoughtful living. It sounds wonderful! (As always, if you don't have a login you can use ours.)

Inspections AND War

5. Decides that Iraq shall provide UNMOVIC and the IAEA immediate, unimpeded, unconditional, and unrestricted access to any and all, including underground, areas, facilities, buildings, equipment, records, and means of transport which they wish to inspect, as well as immediate, unimpeded, unrestricted, and private access to all officials and other persons whom UNMOVIC or the IAEA wish to interview in the mode or location of UNMOVIC’s or the IAEA’s choice pursuant to any aspect of their mandates; further decides that UNMOVIC and the IAEA may at their discretion conduct interviews inside or outside of Iraq, may facilitate the travel of those interviewed and family members outside of Iraq, and that, at the sole discretion of UNMOVIC and the IAEA, such interviews may occur without the presence of observers from the Iraqi Government; and instructs UNMOVIC and requests the IAEA to resume inspections no later than 45 days following adoption of this resolution and to update the Council 60 days thereafter;


12. Decides to convene immediately upon receipt of a report in accordance with paragraphs 4 or 11 above, in order to consider the situation and the need for full compliance with all of the relevant Council resolutions in order to secure international peace and security;

originally posted by zagg

All the Saints of the City of the Angels

"All the Saints of the City of the Angels is a poetic and historical road trip through the City of Los Angeles, California, exploring our cultural and spiritual heritage by traveling through our 85 streets bearing the names of saints." Though I've only been to LA once (when I was four, and the cylons on the Universal Studios tour scared the sh!t out of me), recent developments in my life reveal more and more connections with that place. [via Pop Culture Junk Mail]

I read it in the paper so it must be true

It's official: the station wagon is back!

November 7, 2002

nobody does it like nyc

Kosher pizzerias have cropped up in the Midwood section of Brooklyn and on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Greeks have opened pizzerias in all five boroughs, making a Greek-style pizza with a highly seasoned sauce that finds echoes in the cornmeal-crusted pizzas served at the Two Boots minichain. Italians now share the Arthur Avenue neighborhood in the Bronx with Albanians, and while Tony & Tina's, a pizzeria there, serves decent if not great pizza, it has fabulous bureks — multilayer savory pies made with spinach, cheese and ground beef. And for the increasingly South Asian population in Jackson Heights, Queens, two Famous Pizza shops offer pizza with curry powder and jalapeño toppings. By the slice.
But who's got the best vegan pizza in New York City?

wild, undisciplined, pure, coming in from under, crazier the better

"There some challenges at Jack Kerouac Park, where if you're an advanced skateboarder, there's a challenge in the grinding and things," said Thomas Bellegarde, director of the city's Parks Department. "The skateboard parks we have are for the learner and the inexperienced person."
Lowell Sun: Kerouac fan wishes skaters would 'Beat' it.

"We've had some odd occurrences in the store," said Haslam's co-owner Ray Hinst. "The temperature seems to change in certain spots, and books have flown off the shelves." Hinst said a psychic recently went through the store with "little sensing things." "She concluded spirits were around and one was Kerouac. He was restless . . . but comfortable."
St. Petersburg Times: Hunt for Haunts.

November 6, 2002

Moments earlier, Flores says,

Moments earlier, Flores says, he and friend Raybblin Vargas, both counselors at W.E.B. Du Bois high school in Brooklyn, had noticed the cop and his partner shoving a handcuffed black teenager face-first into a metal gate alongside the turnstiles in the Kingston-Throop C train station in Crown Heights. Flores fished the Kodak DC3200 from his backpack and from about 10 feet away started snapping.

But soon he and Vargas were snarled in their own tangle with police. Before it was over, they claim, they were unjustly maced, assaulted, and imprisoned. In fact, before they could request it, NYPD Internal Affairs initiated a probe that night. A police spokesperson had little comment last week, saying only, "It's an active investigation. We take the allegations very seriously."
Cop Watchers Beware - by CHISUN LEE.

via lia:

i can't get into blogger to post this on rwalks, think you'd want to post it? remind me to never photograph cops with my digital camera EVER. keerist.

smoke 'em if you got 'em (or, what's that smell?)


Shall the Nevada Constitution be amended to allow the possession and use of a plant of the genus Cannabis (marijuana) for the treatment or alleviation of certain illnesses upon advice of a physician, to require parental consent for such use by minors, and to authorize appropriate methods of supply to patients authorized to use it?

% of Vote

Total Votes







Wow! Too bad the state glows in the dark...

D'oh! Turns out these results are from the 2000 election. This year's results are here.

Fantagraphics is blogging!

Fantagraphics is blogging!

November 5, 2002

guided by voices

Things it hurts to learn: (1) The late Dr. Smith was from the Bronx, not the UK. (2) Flea from RHCP is the voice of Donny.

originally posted by daiichi

a crow in the bush

Direct from Phil Agre's RRE, "several astounding articles about the coming election in Florida"

November 4, 2002

Christina Aguilera, Sex Mallet

She is showing even more of her ass. She is shrugging about her multiple body piercings. She says she likes to drink tequila. She has revealed the requisite amount of family problems. She claims she has actually had sex, and even liked it, sort of. Take that, Brit.
Mark Morford, A cautionary tale.

originally posted by daiichi

which is why you need me

Boing Boing is the top blog.

rW is #252.

originally posted by daiichi

October 23, 1979. I was

October 23, 1979. I was in my bathtub in the wee hours of the morning, as naked as a cartoonist. I put two and two together, and voilà! Just two decades later, my book. (...)

Cartooning is creativity stripped down to its core, because it's removed from the real-world constraints (and consequences) that complicate other applications of the creative mind. It's a form of play which depends on spontaneity and, by extension, creativity.
The New Yorker: Q & A: The Naked Cartoonist. You can see a few pages of the book through that link up there.

November 3, 2002

These are the scribblings of

These are the scribblings of a once beautiful, angry, petulant, spoiled, drug-addled middle-class white boy from a divorced family who just happened, with the help of two of his slightly more stable peers, to make an album hailed as one of the best rock records ever.
"Why he died before he got old," Pete Townshend's take on Kurt Cobain's "Journals."

November 2, 2002

a post to a post of a letter to the NY Times

As a longtime researcher of the computer gaming interests of teenage girls, I know that these are the very game characteristics that they have always yearned for. If the industry hadn't virtually ignored girls for the last 20 years, it wouldn't be playing catch-up now. Hiring a lot of women in creative management roles at these companies might just solve their design problems.
via game girl advance

back to normal

At City Hall, a Jazzy Earful for Callers Put on Hold (By JENNIFER STEINHAUER)

We bent down and began

We bent down and began picking cotton. It was beautiful. Across the field were the tents, and beyond them the brown cottonfields that stretched out of sight to the brown arroyo foothills and then the snow-capped Sierras in the morning air. This was so much better than washing dishes South Main Street. But I knew nothing about picking cotton. I spent too much time disengaging the white ball from crackly bed; the others did it in one flick. Moreover, fingertips began to bleed; I needed gloves, or more expeience. There was an old Negro couple in the field with They picked cotton with the same God-blessed patience the grandfathers had practiced in ante-bellum Alabama; the moved right along their rows, bent and blue, and their bag increased. My back began to ache. But it was beautiful kneeling and hiding in that earth. If I felt like resting I did, my face on the pillow of brown moist earth. Birds an accompaniment. I thought I had found my life's work.
from On the Road by Jack Kerouac.

November 1, 2002

jam master jay RIP

a tribute from the kittens and PE.

A protest Gandhi would approve of . . . .

"We challenge the railway authority to prove that we are men. We don't have male organs - how do they put us in the category of men?"

Let's hear it for the train-flashing trannies of India!

originally posted by judlew

Lemme just finish this game... are there any more pretzels?

Ladies and gentlemen, we've done it. The Buy Bush a PlayStation Campaign has collected $370, enough to send the commander-in-chief a PlayStation 2 with all the trimmings. Thanks again to everyone who made this protest possible with your donations, ideas and support.

Over the next couple of days, I will begin the very serious business of buying the PS2, making the proper arrangements with the White House's office of presidential correspondence so that the Secret Service doesn't tear it apart, and turning the whole thing into a photo essay for your edification and amusement

Wonderful. Via the important new No War Blog.

throw your jaw away

Oh my god, have you seen the gamebutton arcade?