Relax. Life's too stressed out.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Jim Wallis is smiling

Posted: 2005-07-16T20:13:50Z

Source: An evangelical megachurch pastor with a clue!

"It makes no sense to have a baby and have it choke to death on dirty air."

Amen, brother.

Craig is in London

Posted: Thu, 21 Jul 2005 16:14:11 -0800

Source:

TBAiT friend Craig Newmark of Craigslist fame is in London today where he had haggis just before he was caught downtown by the transport shutdown.


The bombing situation is a big deal, but I was no more than inconvenienced by this... and there's a lot more people who are a lot more than inconvenienced.

I'm impressed by the spirit of Londoners.

Special thanks to GW Bush for the Iraqi terrorism promotional activities.


Posted: Fri, 15 Jul 2005 23:46:13 GMT

Source: So, the landlady's coming tomorrow. At ten. That's far too early! The house is looking pretty tidy, hopefully she won't find anything to complain about. And hopefully Holly will fall asleep on the pavement outside rather than our windowsill. But I bet she'll come running over to introduce herself, as always.

Then at 2pm, Bill comes to collect the poster board and to give me my copy of the Half-Blood Prince :D I just watched the midnight reading thing, I was excited Ginny was in it. I hope Ginny has important things to do in this book. I'm going to start reading it straight away and then I'll read it a bit more on Sunday morning but then Sonia will be here and we'll have Final Fantasy to play. I will probably have finished it by Sunday night though. I heard it's a little bit shorter than Order of the Phoenix, and that only took me two days to read. So I won't have to avoid livejournal too much. I will be sure to lj-cut all my spoiler information, of course :]

The tidying took so much effort. Chris and I argued a lot cuz we were tired and grumpy but now its all done and it looks nice. I took some photos of our nice tidy house, I'll probaly post them on Sunday.

I have a whole pile of books waiting to be read. I finished the Wishsong of Shannara last night, though all the cliches kind of annoy me so I don't know why I am reading this whole series. There must be something I like about them, but I've no idea what. Anyway,I've got to order the next few from the library. Then there's Tipping the Velvet which I got out of the library, I want to read that soon. And I'm reading a Star Wars novel that's set between Episodes II and III, it's a bit boring though. Lucy's lending me £11 to pay off enough of the library fine so that I can pick those reserved books up - the novelisations of Episodes III and IV (I have turned into such a Star Wars geek). And then of course there's the Half-Blood Prince! But now that my bedroom is nice and tidy I shall go and sit and read in there when it's hot, cuz it's the coolest room in the house.

I'm sleepy after all this tidying, nightnight.

O'Connor Bemoans Hill Rancor at Judges

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Robert Redford rules!

Posted: 2005-07-16T01:44:24Z

Source:
An upbeat account of a meeting of small-town mayors on climate change ... at Sundance, all expenses paid. That's the way to reel 'em in!

Though I have to confess, anyone who lives in ANCHORAGE, ALASKA and still believes that global warming is a "wacko radical idea" has entirely abandoned the reality-based community. Hello, people? What do you think is happening to your roads? Your forests? The foundations of your houses?

More Finger Foods

Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 15:38:58 -0800

Source:

Just when you thought it was safe to eat again... another finger is showing up in our food supply.

While prosecutors say Anna Ayala bought a finger from her husband's co-worker, it looks like the latest case may be legit.

Lawyers for Pelican Bay State Prison inmate Felipe Rocha filed the products liability lawsuit against GA Food Services Inc., a Florida food wholesaler, in federal court in San Francisco on Wednesday.

The lawsuit says Rocha "chewed on a crunchy object" that turned out to be the tip of a human finger when he ate some cornbread from a prepackaged meal tray produced by the food company on March 20.

Rocha says in the suit, "Plaintiff spit out the object and became violently ill, nauseated and traumatized when he realized he had been eating a piece of human finger."

(snip)

The lawsuit doesn't specify an amount of damages, but the amount sought in a jury trial would be at least $75,000, the minimum threshold for filing the case in federal court.

The lawsuit says, "Unlike the recently exposed fraud against Wendy's, the fact of the chunk of human finger in plaintiff's meal is indisputable, since Mr. Rocha is a prisoner at Pelican Bay State Prison in California, the prepared meal was served to him in its original packaging in an isolation cell, and the defendant company has acknowledged that a worker at its plant severed a finger in one of its machines on the day the meal was prepared."


Posted: Thu, 14 Jul 2005 18:08:37 GMT

Source: I have tidied the whole of the upstairs. It looks good. I listened to the Princess Diaries, whatshername isn't that bad, even if she isn't Anne Hathaway. And she's clearly a proper grown-up and has to make her voice all squeaky in order to sound like a teenager, which just makes her sound whiney. And she does Grandmere's voice all wrong. But never mind.

I heard today that Michael is not in the Princess Diaries 2! :O I can forgive them changing the story from the book, cuz they always have to do that in book adaptations but Michael was such a big thing in the first movie, and the whole ending was about their True Love.... they can't just pretend he wasn't a big deal after all and miss him out of the second one! I've completely gone off the movies anyway now that I've read the books. I am noticing all these little digs at the movies in the books though, it's funny.

Now I just have this room to do. And this is the room that was always going to take the longest. I'm giving myself a bit of a break from it. I guess I could always do it tomorrow and then I could get Chris to help me.

Yesterday when Chris got in from work we went out to the shop to get something nice to eat and we were two streets away before we heard this really really loud yowling and we turned around and it was Holly! She'd followed us all the way because we'd forgotten to feed her. Aww. She's always shouting at us - when she was a kitten and was being spayed, the vets had to put the anaesthetic down her throat and it hurt her vocal chords, so unless she miaows really really hard, no sound comes out.

I'm not sure where we will put Holly while the landlady is here on Saturday. Even if we put her outside, she'll only spread herself out across the doorstep sunbathing. Maybe if I don't have to be here I could go and sit on the street corner with her and read the Half-Blood Prince and just pretend we're both strays.

Well, I think I'm going to go and watch more Charmed and knit. I'm half way through the Charmed set now though, and season 2 isn't out til October or something so perhaps I shouldn't rush myself. But then Chris isn't back from work til tomorrow, I've got to find something to occupy my time. I might rewatch some of it, I've already watched the first episode twice and it was just as good the second time.

You know that parcel the post office lost? It STILL hasn't arrived. I wonder what I should do about it. I can just imagine going all the way to the parcel office to enquire about it only to find they don't know what I'm talking about because the postman I spoke to isn't there. Aren't I entitled to some free stamps or something?

Hearings' Topic A May Be a Surprise

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Yes, Virginia, industrial agriculture sucks.

Posted: 2005-07-16T01:23:15Z

Microwave Burns

Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 15:16:14 -0800

Source:

Years ago when I was covering news in Dallas Texas, I was interviewing a very nice older woman who was running for the city council on the Lyndon LaRouche ticket.

I asked her what she thought of the current mass transit plan then making the rounds in Dallas.... and her response was "It's obsolete. I don't know what it is but it's probably obsolete."

I then asked her what would be a better solution and her answer:

"I prefer microwave and radar forms of mass transit."

Well, somehow this woman didn't win the election, althought it was fun playing the sound bite for her mainstream businessdude opponent to get his response.

All of this came back to mind when I was surfing news.com for the last entry and came across this gem: "Riot Control Ray Gun Worries Scientists"

I should imagine it would.

The Active Denial System weapon, classified as "less lethal" by the Pentagon, fires a 95GHz microwave beam at rioters to cause heating and intolerable pain in less than five seconds.

The discomfort is designed to prompt people caught in the microwave beam to move away from it, thereby allowing riot-control personnel to break up and manage a crowd.

But New Scientist magazine reported Wednesday that during tests carried out at Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico, participants playing the part of rioters were told to remove glasses and contact lenses to protect their eyes.

In another test they were also told to remove metal objects such as coins from their clothing to prevent local hot spots from developing on their skin.

"What happens if someone in a crowd is unable for whatever reason to move away from the beam?" asked Neil Davison, coordinator of the nonlethal weapons research project at Britain's Bradford University.

Can you say microwave popcorn?

Posted: Thu, 14 Jul 2005 13:52:12 GMT

Source: I have two days to get the whole house tidy. So far the living room is the only room to look even remotely tidy. First I have to go out and buy myself some dinner though. And it's still so hot outside. I'm only wearing a t-shirt and I have all the windows wide open but I'm still sticking to the chair. Maybe I'll wait til evening when its cooler but I just want to get it out of the way.

I wish that I'd got the right Princess Diaries CD. I'd feel so much more motivated if i was listening to that! I wish I had more audio books of my own. I have The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and Ballet Shoes but over the years half the tapes have got lost :[

I have to buy the Half-Blood Prince on Saturday. Even if it means taking the money out of the shopping budget and living off 15p pasta for the next week. Hopefully somebody will buy my poster board, and that'll make things a lot easier, but I'll cope if they don't.

On Saturday night I should feel much better. The house will be tidy, the landlady will be gone, and I'll be reading HBP. *crosses fingers*

Overruns on Time, Costs Ongoing for Visitor Center

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Quote of the week

Posted: 2005-07-16T00:10:55Z

Who is Cisco Kidding or Kissing?

Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 14:46:16 -0800

Source:

A couple of items today on the aggregator about Cisco Systems.

First Om Maliks Broadband Blog points us in the direction of a news.com article about Cisco's acquisition of Danish company Kiss Technology.

Kiss makes DVD players and recorders that can be connected to the Internet to also provide video on demand. Kiss has arrangements with content providers in Europe, including TV stations and video-on-demand service provider Movielink.

The Kiss networked DVD product is similar to a device and service offered by Akimbo, a start-up based in San Mateo, Calif. The Akimbo player is sold through retailers, and the company offers a $10-a-month service for content, which it hosts on its own servers. So far, Akimbo's business model hasn't taken off, namely because it is difficult to secure rights to content.

No one doubts Cisco and every other company in the Valley is interested primarily in making money... but Dan Gillmor at Bayosphere has doubts about the way the company is going about it, particularly in its dealings with China.

Dan points us to this fascinating post in which a Cisco official admits they sell equipment to the Chinese Police... and that some of that technology may be used to restrict Chinese web surfers from seeing free speech areas of the Internet (and here I thought the whole Internet was a free speech area)

Dan says:

The case at hand is the Chinese regime's suppression of political speech and activity that might cause average citizens to question the government's actions, even legitimacy. Cisco, to all appearances, is downright proud of its help for the Beijing authorities.

We can call it unseemly, and should. But Cisco is hardly alone. Is there a Silicon Valley that would not be delighted to make such lucrative profits? The answer is obvious.

Moreover, the issues get even more fuzzy when you consider our own government's race toward creating a surveillance state, or worse. As Congress moves to reauthorize the grotesquely named "Patriot Act," who are we to blame domestic companies for cooperating with repression overseas when we're creating our own version at home?

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Posted: 2005-07-22T21:10:32Z

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Posted: Thu, 14 Jul 2005 13:08:18 GMT

Source: I still don't think I can afford to buy the Half-Blood Prince on Saturday :[ So I am trying to sell my big Harry Potter posterboard... not had much luck so far. But click the cut if you're interested!

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us
Front and back are exactly the same.

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us
A side view.

As you can see, it's very pretty. Chris used to work in HMV around the time of the PoA DVD release and he brought this home for me. So it is a bit scuffed as it was outside a shop for a while. But it still looks pretty good.

Height: 57.5 inches (146cm)
Width: 32 inches (81cm)

BUYER MUST COLLECT because its far too big to post. I live in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire (ENGLAND!).

Price: £15
OR
Trade: for a copy of HP & the Half-Blood Prince

If loads of people want it, I might give it to the highest bidder. But I'm not that optimistic anybody will want it, cuz most people round here aren't that obsessive :[


And if you're too far away but know anyone in my area who might like it, please point them in this direction! :]

Game (Court), Set (Chevy Chase) -- Match

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

The Spirit moves ...

Posted: 2005-07-11T20:06:53Z

Source:
... and the Church of England opens the way for women bishops.

Of course, some are grumbling and griping.

See Margaret's blog for the coolness of the new Bishop of York.

Learning about Space Travel

Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 14:22:33 -0800

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Posted: 2005-07-22T20:15:14Z

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Posted: Wed, 13 Jul 2005 17:17:40 GMT

Source: I am such a bad mood. There was obviously a reason for being lazy today, I was obviously trying to warn myself not to go out or I'd come back really fucking pissed off.

Its really really hot outside which doesn't help. And I have no suntan lotion. So I have gone pink instead of my usual nice pale colour. Plus I am all sticky. And this stupid house has no shower.

You know last week I said I had a £6 library fine? Well, now it's gone up to £16. I'm not sure what all the charges are from but its pointless arguing with them especially when I brought back FIFTEEN library books today. Which I had to carry in three bags all the way to the library, in this heat. They have now switched their fines system from 20p a week to 15p A DAY which probably accounts for some of the charges. I had three books that I had ordered waiting for me, but I couldn't pick them up without paying at least £11 of the fine. Which I can't afford to do. If I don't collect them by Saturday, they go back to where they came from. But I will still have to pay for them, even if I don't get to read them. And then I shall have to order them again and end up paying for them TWICE.

But that was Chris' ticket (albeit my books). Mine only had a £2 fine so I paid that and decided I might as well get something to cheer myself up. For once they actually had something I really wanted - Tipping the Velvet. So I got that, and I got also got the fifth Princess Diaries on CD. It was only when i left the library that I realised it was NOT ANNE HATHAWAY!!! It's somebody called Clea Lewis who I have never heard of and who is not going to be half as good as Anne Hathaway, who is the ONLY person who could EVER be Mia Thermopolis. And so now I have wasted 90p!!! I should have been cheap and got the book, this is my punishment, obviously.

I think I may have to give up the library. I said that back in January when I had a £50 library fine (I'm still not sure how that happened), but I get so bored without books to read. Even if I pay this off, I'll still build up another fine I'm sure. Its annoying cuz every time I go in they said "shall I renew your other books that you left at home?" and I say yes but then of course the dates on the books are meaningless and I have no idea when things are due back. I won't be able to give it up, there's no point saying that, but I suppose i will have to be strict with myself. No more than three books out at a time... and if I get them renewed at the library I must come back and write it down on the calendar. But doesn't that take all the fun out of everything?

I'm going to have go to the bank and get my savings out. I'm going to wait for a cooler day to do that though, even if it means sacrificing those ordered books I have. The bank is always so hot and there's always such a queue. And its always so difficult trying to explain things to them, they're always so bewildered by the fact I don't have a bank card, even though its because they took it away from me.

Today I wore my nice new top that Lucy got me. It made me realise that when I wear crap clothes, I'm afraid that everyone will take my quietness for sulleness, but when I wear nice clothes I'm afraid everyone will think my quietness is snobbishness. I think I'd rather be sullen because then at least I'd fit in with the rest of Morrisons, including half the cashiers.

So I was in a bad mood when I went to Morrisons and couldn't work out what i wanted for dinner, besides chocolate milk. In the end I got pasta because that's what I always get. But the thing is, whenever I am on my own and cooking pasta, I do something very stupid. When the timer goes for the pasta, I go into the kitchen and switch it off and come back to the computer WITHOUT NOTICING. A bit like how when you're really asleep and turn the alarm clock off without noticing. Only I'm actually awake, just daydreaming, so I have no excuse. It has taken me a long time to realise that this is what I'm doing. At first I thought I just forgot to turn the timer on, but the last few times I definitly remember turning it on and its only afterwards when I think about it very hard, that I have vague recollections of turning it off. Its fucking annoying. Aside from the fact I always end up with over-cooked pasta, it's pathetic that I daydream so much. How am I supposed to get a job if I have no attention-span?

I'm in such a bad mood that I think I can't tidy tonight. Which is very inconvient of me but I don't care right now. I am going to knit, watch Charmed, and drink chocolate milk until I calm down. I think I'd better have a cold bath first.

Poll: Most Americans Say Roberts Should Be Confirmed

Posted: Fri Jul 22 17:09:07 EDT 2005

Hey Hold it Down in Here, I'm Trying to Talk!

Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 14:09:40 -0800

Source:

So what gets into some people? They think that just because they DON'T have a cell phone that they can get away with making a ruckus.

Kurt at Other People Exist ran into such rude people during a recent visit to the neighborhood cafe.

So this morning, I was sipping a coffee and chatting with someone from my challenge group on my cell, and these two people at the next table were talking about this movie they saw, and whenever they talked about this one scene they would start laughing. It was kind of loud, and I couldn't hear what the person on my cell was saying. So I said to them Can you keep it down, I'm having a conversation!

I guess I was a bit sarcastic (again), because one of them took offense and wanted to argue about the uses of public space. I so couldn't care - I just wanted them to shut up.

I'm sorry, what did you say? I was talking on my cell....

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Posted: 2005-07-22T19:31:57Z

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Posted: Wed, 13 Jul 2005 15:38:57 GMT

House to Back Bush on Moon, Mars Trips

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Watch Henry's Garden in Swahili!

Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 13:54:36 -0800

Source:

How about Rob Black and Your Money in Farsi?

Or Bay Cafe in its native French?

Find your Bay Area Bargains in Romanian!

It could happen in the future if this trend takes off...

Eric at Blogola points us to a Hollywood Reporter article on Reuters about how TV programmers are remaking popular shows in other languages overseas...

The NBC Universal TV Distribution unit on Wednesday launched an original content unit that will partner with local media companies abroad to develop and create local programing in foreign territories. NBC Universal's library includes more than 50,000 hours of television programing and 4,000 feature films.

"We have such an enormous library, just full of riches," said Leslie Jones, vp international sales and format production. "We can go back even to the black and whites and do modern remakes in foreign territories."

While stressing that no titles have been earmarked for production for foreign broadcasters, Jones pointed to such classics as "Munsters," "Miami Vice," "Kojak" and even Dick Wolf's contemporary "Law & Order" franchise as being examples of titles that might be looked at.


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Posted: Tue, 12 Jul 2005 22:06:03 GMT

Source: My knitting is not going so well :[ I keep dropping stitches and the whole thing won't lie flat, I obviously have been pulling some areas tighter than others. Still, I'm going to have to make a few squares to make up the blanket and if the first one is too awful, I'll just make an extra one at the end. By which time I should be so good and speedy it won't be a problem. And I'll probably be so addicted to knitting I'll use any excuse to knit too many.

Isn't my new default icon pretty? I love Maggie! <3 I just saw some cute pictures of Kirsten and Jake, looking like they're back together, but who knows. They are the only celebrity couple I could ever care about!

Has anyone here got Charlotte Church's new album? What do you think of it? I've been looking forward to it for so long but sadly, the clips I've heard haven't been that great :[ The single's good, but I was hoping the rest of the album would be more poppy and it doesn't appear to be that way. I can't really afford to buy it right now, especially if I don't think I'll like it, but I can't help but wonder if actually I'd end up loving it.

I also doesn't know if I can afford to buy the Half-Blood Prince. I pre-ordered it months ago from WH Smiths so I have to get £9 together. I have to buy it on the day of release because I don't want to hear any spoilers at all, and even though I trust you lot to be good with your lj-cuts, the slightest squeeing or crying will be too much spoiling for me and I can't possibly avoid LJ for longer than a couple of days. I'm only half looking forward to it though. Order of the Phoenix depressed me so much I didn't feel right for days. I think partly the whole reading it in one day thing doesn't help the experience be less emotional. I will get the money together though, even if it means going into the bank and demanding they give me the £30 that I have in my savings account but won't give me because I don't have any ID. Its strange, cuz last time she told me to bring a bill in my name, which I don't have. But then she said "well, anything with a signature on it" but bills don't have signatures on, do they? What will count as ID for them? I usually use the council tax agreement cuz its like a bill and does have my name on, but they wouldn't accept that last time.

Army Boosts Benefits for Recruits Taking High-Demand Jobs

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Trump to UN: You're Fired

Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 13:45:14 -0800

Source:

There are few things to show that you have no life quite as palpable as sitting down in front of your TV set to watch C-Span. But as my friends will tell you, I have no life and can often be found popping some popcorn to enjoy a classic episode of "Booknotes" or my personal favorite, "Prime Minister's Questions"

Fiat Lux was surfing C-Span earlier today only to spot the Donald:

We had the kittens out for a play session and I flipped on C-Span for some background noise. Sen Coburn was holding committee hearings on renovating the UN Building. And what do I see but His Hairpiece, Donald Trump, sitting there in the first row.

I'm assuming he's there to testify but didn't stick around long enough to find out. It did get me thinking though... the new UN building, brought to you by Donald Trump? It could happen...

Indeed it could. Here's a link to a full story on the Trump Testimony...

The United Nations says it will cost $1.2 billion to overhaul the 39-story building along New York's East River. No, says the city's highest-profile developer. More like $3 billion, he told senators.

This project is no more challenging, he said, when he refurbished the skating rink in Central Park. That was years ago, when New York could not.

"This is a bigger version of the Wollman Skating Rink, that's all it is to me. ... I don't want any money. I want nothing," said the star of NBC's "The Apprentice" and author of "Trump: The Art of the Deal."

Trump's estimate for the work: $600 million to $700 million. He appealed to members of a Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs subcommittee to let him do it. He would manage the project, and waive his fee.

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Posted: Tue, 12 Jul 2005 20:02:45 GMT

Pentagon seeks higher age limit for recruits

Posted: Fri Jul 22 11:20:34 EDT 2005

Hey Baby, Check Out My Cultural Affirmation!

Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 13:12:20 -0800

Source:

You know that car commercial where the salesguy has to bend down in his seat so the test-driver can impress a former girlfriend with his "new ride"?

I suppose you could call that a form of "cultural affirmation".

There's a story going around on the wire about the new Subaru Forester. Scott at Urbification found it in the Trib. I couldn't find it there but found the identical article on Boston.com:

Subaru's standing as the car the rich can drive without attracting attention to themselves, and the politically active Birkenstock set can drive while drawing cultural affirmation, will not be harmed with this newest rendition of the Forester.

Subaru was, after all, known as the staff car of the Howard Dean for President campaign.

The new Forester just might be enough to make Dean himself raise a fist to the sky and shout, ''Yeeeee-haaaaah!!!"

Scott is shouting at the sky... but not about Howard Dean. Instead he goes back to this idea of cultural affirmation.

Huh? I don't get cultural affirmation from driving; driving lets me get from Point A to Point B when no alternative exists. (Full disclosure: Our family owns a Forester.)

Personally I get great cultural affirmation when I drive my car to the restaurant and affirm my culture of food.

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What's wrong with me?

Posted: Sun, 10 Jul 2005 19:16:20 GMT

Source: You know how when its rainy and damp, sometimes old injuries start aching? Well that happened to me a couple of weeks ago when it was stormy, and I didn't think much of it. But that was a few weeks ago, and the weather's being quite hot and dry now, but I'm still aching!

Its my left ankle mostly, which I sprained quite badly (I think, I never got it checked out) about four years ago. It twinges when I lift my foot up, especially to go up steps. And my left forearm, which I fell on a few years ago, that's aching too. Not loads really, but more than you'd expect from something that has no reason to hurt. I think they're both getting slightly worse, but you know when you start thinking about things like that you can't remember how long things hurt for cuz you don't pay them much attention. They both feel really uncomfortable though, like they're in the wrong place or something. And my elbows and knees are being ever so slightly achey too even though I haven't ever injured them.

The Reformer and the Gadfly Agree on Health Care

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Patriot Act-Up

Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 11:47:31 -0800

Source:

You get a knock on the door.

It's the FBI (or maybe Homeland Security)

"We have information," the first agent says, adjusting his sunglasses on the bridge of his nose, "that you've been visiting a subversive web site."

"Subversive? Me?" you stammer.

"That's right," Agent #2 says, "under the power given to us by the USA Patriot Act, we've determined that you are a frequent visitor to 'The Bay Area is Talking (dot com)'"

So what are you going to do then? "I had no idea that Brian guy was such a subversive," you'll say, then agree to sign a loyalty oath on the spot.

Could it happen to you?

Probably not. But there is already some response to the House vote extending the Patriot Act.

The Daily Pepper was outraged by something that came up during the debate:

In the debate over the extension of the Patriot Act in the House yesterday, Tom Feeney (R-FL) cited the fact that the four London bombers had shopped at the same bookstore. He went on to defend the Act's authorizing of the right to check bookstore records. He claimed:

If the British authorities had known about the possible link, and had a 2.15 clause, the main clause being attacked by the opponents of the Patriot Act, perhaps there would be 56 people alive today.

Horrible. To add insult to British suffering, Feeney suggests that British law itself caused the deaths. There is an implicit suggestion that the British are themselves to blame.

(snip)

Terrorism is never inevitable. Which is to say, that we should completely disconnect it from the idea of fate. To say that one particular policy destined it to happen is to cling to a fetish that may help to calm our panic, but tells us absolutely nothing about the future.

SouthernGunnut at I'm just waiting for the robot invasion calls it "An Unfortunate turn of events."

Eight a.m., and this is the first thing I see.

The Senate (sic) has voted to extend the Patriot Act. Friggin' sheep

Angie also finds the vote disappointing.

Just lovely!! Wonderful people we have in office there. Don't you just love how they think about us?? (grumbles)

Well, we think the world of you, Angie..

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Posted: Sun, 10 Jul 2005 18:43:23 GMT

Source: Sonia came over this afternoon and I started playing Final Fantasy VII. Seems pretty cool so far, but I've always kinda resented it because it's EVERYBODY's favourite Final Fantasy and I don't want to turn into everybody XD I don't think it will become my favourite though, I think IX will stay as my favourite. After VII I want to try playing Star Ocean cuz it looks cool.

I am loving this Tegan and Sara album, thankyou
[info]_rapturous! :]

My knitting is going very well. Now that my mum has showed me how to hold the needles properly and how to loop the wool round my fingers, I'm not really having tension problems anymore. Now my main problem is just clumsiness, I drop the needles and then half the stitches fall off. I also keep forgetting what I'm doing - half way through casting off yesterday I started knitting without noticing and had no idea how to undo it. Luckily that was while I was at my mum's and she fixed it for me. She started learning to knit when she was pregnant with Lucy, and she did it by knitting a big patchwork style baby blanket and by the time she'd finished, she could knit (these days the blanket has been passed onto Muffin). So that's how I'm learning too. Only I want this blanket to be for me so I'm going to knit one as big as the needles will allow, then stop and make a few more and then sew them all together and hopefully it'll be done by winter and then I can hibernate in it.

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See, I'm doing quite well except for a few dropped stitches and the fact that it looks a bit mishapen. I think it will pull itself together as I go along though.

I'm really having fun with it. Its the perfect thing for my restlessness, I can knit quite happily while watching television without having to keep looking down at it like I did my cross stitch. My new ambition in life is to be able to knit my own socks. Really chunky cosy ones to wear at home with my pyjamas.

I'm really enjoying Charmed too. I want to like Piper best but for some reason I find myself liking Prue more. Prue/Andy 4eva!1!!

This morning [info]lipstick_letter came over and I made her an LJ layout. I hate working with screencaps cuz I can never clean them up nicely but never mind, Lucy likes it anyway. Working on Lucy's LJ has inspired me to make myself a new layout. I know I only bought this one a little while ago but I feel like I may have gone off Mary-Kate and Ashley a bit :O Plus this Boxer thing isn't working out, I don't think. If I can make a decent header, I think I want a Narnia themed Opal or Componant. You know that movie promo picture of Lucy peering into the wardrobe? I'm going to try and do something with that.

I am drinking chocolate milk out of the carton, and this makes me happy!

In Americans, Lower Levels Of Chemicals

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

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Posted: Fri, 22 Jul 2005 11:41:54 -0800

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Posted: Thu, 07 Jul 2005 16:33:52 GMT

Source: Nicked from [info]kitty_liek_whoa:

10 REALLY RANDOM THINGS ABOUT ME
♥ 1. I don't like smiling.
♥ 2. I pick my fingers.
♥ 3. I don't shave my legs.
♥ 4. I don't like talking.
♥ 5. I am a vegetarian.
♥ 6. I'm wearing my pyjamas.
♥ 7. I have big feet.
♥ 8. I sleep too much.
♥ 9. I have an ulcer on my tongue and I keep biting it.
♥ 10. I'm lazy.

9 WAYS TO WIN MY HEART
♥ 1. Don't get annoyed if I don't talk very much.
♥ 2. But then don't get annoyed if I talk too much once I get to know you.
♥ 3. Cuddle me lots.
♥ 4. Text lots if you're far away.
♥ 5. Read the books I love.
♥ 6. Play with my hair.
♥ 7. Don't hate me for being lazy and never washing up.
♥ 8. Spend lots and lots of time with me.
♥ 9. Tell me you love me. All the time.

8 THINGS I CARRY/WEAR EVERYDAY
♥ 1. mobile phone
♥ 2. minidisc player (well, i would if it wasn't broken)
♥ 3. kitty mary-janes
♥ 4. my white bra cuz my black bra hurts
♥ 5. polly pocket pencil case
♥ 6. plasters
♥ 7. house keys
♥ 8. my purse with a pic of a tiara-wearing kitten in a shoe

7 THINGS THAT ANNOY ME
♥ 1. Having to wash up.
♥ 2. The computer being difficult.
♥ 3. People in the supermarket who get in people's way and don't care. Or who don't make their kids get out of people's way.
♥ 4. Complete strangers who try and small-talk to me about the weather/the bus/something pointless.
♥ 5. Computer games where you have to do one really tiny bit over and over again til you get it right and its usually just down to luck.
♥ 6. The library charging me for fines I've already paid.
♥ 7. All my socks being hard.

6 PLACES I'VE VISITED
♥ 1. Spain
♥ 2. Mallorca
♥ 3. Wales
♥ 4. Scotland
♥ 5. London
♥ 6. Essex

5 THINGS I WANT TO DO BEFORE I DIE
♥ 1. Get a job and like it.
♥ 2. Write something I'm really happy with.
♥ 3. Get married and have babies.
♥ 4. Have a really nice house.
♥ 5. Be really happy with everything.

4 THINGS I'M AFRAID OF
♥ 1. Spiders
♥ 2. Being outside at night
♥ 3. Other people dying
♥ 4. Talking out loud

3 THINGS I DO EVERYDAY
♥ 1. Eat
♥ 2. Sleep
♥ 3. Check my emails and my friends page

2 THINGS I'M TRYING NOT TO DO NOW
♥ 1. Being lazy, I've got to go to the shop and get dinner
♥ 2. Open PSP and make icons instead of going out. Oops, too late...

1 PERSON I WANT TO SEE NOW
♥ 1. Chris.

Specter Threatens an End Run To Get Vote on Stem Cell Bill

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Smoking Out the A.G.

Posted: Thu, 21 Jul 2005 16:49:12 -0800

Source:

Dave at Davenetics and Electablog got the chance the other day to sit down for a conversation with California Attorney General Bill Lockyer.

Dave says the subject turned to what he calls "the insanity of the nation's medical marijuana debate." He says Lockyer called the current restrictions "silly."

I wondered if now isn't the time that a group of politicos could finally begin to add some common sense to this debate. Lockyer's take was that, no matter how you position the issue, law enforcement sees pot as a gateway drug and to them it's no different than coke or heroin.

It's hard to accept that argument (for me and the Attorney General). After all, when you consider the cocktail of toxic prescription drugs that many of these patients are subjected to, if anything, marijuana is a drug that provides a gateway back towards weaker and less intense drugs.

Dave says if we're really worried about "weak drugs that bring out the addictive parts of our personality" that we should target our enforcement efforts at the local Starbucks. He adds we shouldn't be worried about "Gateway drugs" that the problem is with "Gateway Stupidity."

There are so many political issues where one has to, for sanity's sake, sit back, sigh and just accept the nonsense.

There are other times when the stupidity crosses the line. Maybe we should call that gateway stupidity.

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Posted: Wed, 06 Jul 2005 22:26:07 GMT

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Me and my sister :]

U.S. Missile Defense Being Expanded, General Says

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Friday, July 22, 2005

Another Horror

Posted: Thu, 21 Jul 2005 16:26:31 -0800

Source:

On this day when we're reminded of all of the terrible things people do to other people in the name of religion (or greed or any other motive, frankly) Trey at Daddy, Papa, and Me confronts us with this photo:

This hit me hard today. Iran executed two gay teenagers today. They were 18 and 17 and were hanged. Read about it from the link. The photo is haunting me. My heart sank. According to the article, the Iranian government executes over 100 gay and lesbian people every year. I somewhat suspected that, the photo makes it real. (RepublicofT has something to say about this too)

Trey says this makes the kind of discrimination he's faced in this country pale in comparison.

Still he worries this could be in our future.

I have a feeling (and have read some of their words to this effect) that this is truly what groups like the FRC and CWFA want for us gays.... that nice biblical supposed injunction against gays and lesbians, execution.

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Posted: Wed, 06 Jul 2005 14:16:04 GMT

Source: I don't suppose any of you posted me anything recently? I got a little card through the door saying I have to pay for a parcel that didn't have enough stamps on. 20p to make up the cost of the postage and £1 charge just for the postage being wrong in the first place. So anyway, I went to the sorting office today to collect it and pay the silly charge, but they said they'd lost it. They said when they find it they'll deliver it to me and that I don't have to pay the charges. So hopefully it'll turn up, I'm not sure what I'm supposed to do if it doesn't. Can I claim compensation or something?

But the thing is, I don't know what this parcel is! I can't think of anything I'm expecting that I haven't already got, except for something that I know hasn't been posted yet. Please tell me if it was you, I won't be mad about the charges, especially as I don't have to pay them now. I'm just mad at the post office for losing it. And I want to know what it is that's lost!

O'Connor Bemoans Hill Rancor at Judges

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Craig is in London

Posted: Thu, 21 Jul 2005 16:14:11 -0800

Source:

TBAiT friend Craig Newmark of Craigslist fame is in London today where he had haggis just before he was caught downtown by the transport shutdown.


The bombing situation is a big deal, but I was no more than inconvenienced by this... and there's a lot more people who are a lot more than inconvenienced.

I'm impressed by the spirit of Londoners.

Special thanks to GW Bush for the Iraqi terrorism promotional activities.


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Posted: Sun, 03 Jul 2005 00:35:58 GMT

Source: Because I might as well...

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I've actually found one that's international and doesn't require you to spend money. (thanks tara!)

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Hearings' Topic A May Be a Surprise

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Cowardice in the Face of Terror

Posted: Thu, 21 Jul 2005 15:49:05 -0800

Source:

Our friend Chris Nolan at Politics Left to Right is having a friendly disagreement with one of her site's writers based in Great Britain.

Chris says she strongly disagrees with Josh Trevino's post calling Spanish citizens cowards for pulling out of Iraq after the Madrid Train Attacks.

Josh and I may never agree. The issue here for U.S. citizens isn't really whether the Spain have -- as conservatives and supporters of the Iraqi War insist -- caved into pressure from terrorist. The issue is -- and it one that has not been adequately answered on the Left -- what to do about it.

Clearly, the Right believes in the power of condemnation and ridicule. The Left believes in hand-wringing.

In the wake of Wednesday's London bombings, Chris sees a clear distinction between British Prime Minister Tony Blair and President Bush when it comes to the rhetoric of the war on terror.

I particularly like the way Blair outlines what he thinks is at stake:

"What we are confronting here is an evil ideology. It is not a clash of civilizations - all civilized people, Muslim or other, feel revulsion at it. But it is a global struggle and it is a battle of ideas, hearts and minds, both within Islam and outside it.
Blair, unlike President Bush, draws a very different line when he talks about the fight against terrorism: he asks all the world's people – who he assumes are as "civilized" and peace-loving as he is to condemn their violence. He doesn't draw a line between good (us) and evil (them). He talks not about "evil-doers" but about "evil ideology."

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Posted: Sat, 02 Jul 2005 20:49:44 GMT

Source:


Look, I actually managed to get a pic of myself looking alright, for once.

There is the most disgusting beetle flying around. If you want to see a really disgusting picture of it -



I keep having to check where it is so that I know its not crawling up my leg. I wish I wasn't on my own!

While I'm picspamming...

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I was too far away for good pics, I just took those to prove it. But I thought somebody might be excited about them, all the same.

Overruns on Time, Costs Ongoing for Visitor Center

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan, A Stately Pleasuredome Decree

Posted: Thu, 21 Jul 2005 15:39:26 -0800

Source:

"... where Alph the sacred river ran through canyons measureless to man down to a sunless sea."

Somebody look up your Coleridge since I did that based on my memory of 6th grade...

I know some of you may conjure memories of Olivia Newton-John when the word "Xanadu" comes up in conversation (as it must daily)

Carl at Friskodude has a story for us of a Xanadu of a different kind... the secret city being created in the mountains on Myanmar (you may remember it from geography class as Burma) to hide out when the U.S. invades. (The idea that the U.S. could FIND Myanmar, let alone invade it, defies credulity)

The contest for most insane, ruthless, and paranoid country in Asia is a close race between North Korea, ruled by the squinting midget, and Burma (Myanmar), ruled by a gang of deranged generals. Today, Burma seizes the crown as the Asia Times reveals that the generals have completely lost their minds, and now are building a new capital way up in the hills to prepare themselves for the imminent American invasion.

Carl then points us to a more extensive Asia Times article on the project.

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The worst thing about Kate is ________.
The best thing about Kate is ________.
My worst memory of Kate is ________.
My best memory of Kate is _________.
I know that Kate likes ______.
I know that Kate dislikes ______.
When I think of Kate, I think of _______.
Someday, I think Kate will ________.

1. Give me a nickname and explain why you picked it.
2. Am I loveable?
3. How long have you known me?
4. When and how did we first meet?
5. What was your first impression?
6. Do you still think that way about me now?
7. What do you think my weakness is?
8. Do you think I'll get married?
9. What makes me happy?
10. What makes me sad?
11. What reminds you of me?
12. If you could give me anything what would it be?
13. How well do you know me?
14. When's the last time you saw me?
15. Ever wanted to tell me something but couldn't?
16. Do you think I could kill someone?
17. Describe me in one word.
18. Do you think our friendship is getting stronger/weaker/or staying the same?
19. Do you feel that you could talk to me about anything and I would listen?
20. Are you going to put this on your LiveJournal and see what I say about you?

Game (Court), Set (Chevy Chase) -- Match

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Overruns on Time, Costs Ongoing for Visitor Center

Posted: Fri Jul 22 00:00:00 EDT 2005

Range of encroachment in Florida of Osteopilus se...

Posted: 2005-07-16T00:30:58Z

Source:

Range of encroachment in Florida of Osteopilus septentrionalis, according to the USGS. Data is grossly lacking in this assessment, though the author(s) of the USGS study does admit: "The range of this species as of 1997 is shown ... (and) further expansion has been reported by several sources, including this study...". This author is, however, happy that this team was funded to do this study. It shows that we are making headway against this potential threat to our American ecosystems. If only more funding was allocated to teams whose main objectives are to study the actual continual spread of this and other invasives, its subsequent impacts, and solutions to the problem of radiation by invasive species. It is hard to forget that this is only one of many species and only one among many factors impacting the very survival of our native species. Posted by Hello

The Spirit moves ...

Posted: 2005-07-11T20:06:53Z

Source:
... and the Church of England opens the way for women bishops.

Of course, some are grumbling and griping.

See Margaret's blog for the coolness of the new Bishop of York.

I Love a Mystery

Posted: Thu, 21 Jul 2005 12:39:56 -0800

Source:

What the heck is that?

Well, we know it was something Sam at Becks & Posh bought with part of the $113.95 already spent from the $300 gift certificate to Sur La Table.

We see lots of other cool stuff but the image above remains a mystery.

Can you figure it out? I can't although it reminds of one of those old "fractal" videos...

UPDATE: As long as we're talking unusual kitchen utensils...

The Librarian in Black points us to this "a bit morbid but...pretty cool" item.

Cingular Wireless Kic Prepaid Cingular Ogo ... ...

Posted: 2005-07-16T18:50:13Z

Source:

Cingular Wireless Kic Prepaid

Cingular's Prepaid division (KIC Prepaid) was looking for a way to ...





GoPhone� - Cingular Wireless
Free2Go; Keep in Contact (KIC); Cingular Prepaid; GoPhone Pay As You Go ...Simply dial 611 from your wireless phone and enter your PIN. ...





KIC Prepaid Wireless
KIC ( Keep in Contact ) Prepaid Wireless. KIC Prepaid Nights and Weekends Plan.This plan may be great for you if you like to make calls at any time of the ...





Prepaid Accounts - Cingular Wireless
Other Prepaid Accounts Manage one of these accounts:. Take Charge; KIC Prepaidand Cingular Prepaid; Former AT&T; Wireless GoPhone; Free2Go; Ogo ...

Posted: Fri, 01 Jul 2005 19:38:04 GMT

Source: I ____ Kate
Kate is ____.
Kate > _____.
If I were alone in a room with Kate, I would _______.
I think Kate should _____.
Kate needs ______.
I want to ____________ Kate.
If I used one word to describe Kat, it'd be ______.
The worst thing about Kate is ________.
The best thing about Kate is ________.
My worst memory of Kate is ________.
My best memory of Kate is _________.
I know that Kate likes ______.
I know that Kate dislikes ______.
When I think of Kate, I think of _______.
Someday, I think Kate will ________.

1. Give me a nickname and explain why you picked it.
2. Am I loveable?
3. How long have you known me?
4. When and how did we first meet?
5. What was your first impression?
6. Do you still think that way about me now?
7. What do you think my weakness is?
8. Do you think I'll get married?
9. What makes me happy?
10. What makes me sad?
11. What reminds you of me?
12. If you could give me anything what would it be?
13. How well do you know me?
14. When's the last time you saw me?
15. Ever wanted to tell me something but couldn't?
16. Do you think I could kill someone?
17. Describe me in one word.
18. Do you think our friendship is getting stronger/weaker/or staying the same?
19. Do you feel that you could talk to me about anything and I would listen?
20. Are you going to put this on your LiveJournal and see what I say about you?