Friday, November 30, 2001

Chunk of the Rock for November 30:

Baderbrau

From the now-defunct Pavichevich Brewing Company. Looks like Goose Island in Chicago was brewing Baderbrau for awhile, but I cannot confirm if this is still the case. Little help? If you want to brew your own (and I just might), here's the recipe. Baderbrau really was good beer. Mmmm... beer.
image
Beatle George Harrison dies - November 30, 2001

Thursday, November 29, 2001

The Lord of the Rings opens December 19.

Are you stoked or what?
Three more reasons why PBS is the best thing going on the tube:

1. American Masters - Sun Records - Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, and Narvel Felts (greatest... name... ever) are profiled among others.

2. Special Effects: Titanic and Beyond - Dr. Ramachandran appears in this episode to again dazzle us with his "Secrets of the Mind". e.g. How the brain can inately sense what is human (or real) and what is not. Good stuff.

3. Life's Greatest Miracle - Indeed! A Nova special that tracks human development from embryo to newborn. Amazing.
Enron Faces Ruin. How the mighty have fallen. Odds on a government bailout for GW's good buddy?

Wednesday, November 28, 2001

Leahy blasts White House over terror probe practices.
Scientist's disappearance confounds police.

What do you think this is all about?
So a couple of weeks ago I get a Word of the Day email for "tatterdemalion" and the definition includes the word "ragamuffin" in it. Which is like one of my favorite words in the whole world (but is much too goofy to just throw around haphazardly in everyday convo). My mom used to call me a ragamuffin when I was a little kiddo. As in, "Let's get you cleaned up a little, I don't want you going over to so-and-so's looking like a ragamuffin." I used to crack me up. It still does. So I'm thinking about this very situation this morning. Say I'm about six years old when this conversation happened (it happened more than once, believe me). Six years old. First grade. Makes sense. Memories were being made for me right then and there! Those memories count, big. I need to remember that and make those memories that I make for others count... starting now.
White House Says Budget Balance Unlikely Before 2005.

This is too easy. Bush says it's due to the "war" and the slowing economy. Uh huh. Wouldn't have anything to do with those tax cuts, eh? This is the part where someone chimes in with the old bullshit about the previous administration made the mess and now the current one has to take the blame. Bullshit. This is direct cause of the tax cutting earlier this year on top of the recession that we were already in. Btw, how's that Social Security surplus "lockbox" doing GW??
New planet sparks hopes for alien life. "Suddenly, discussing searches for Earth-like planets seems quite reasonable."

Tuesday, November 27, 2001

Holiday tours were canceled at the White House.

Oct. 11: President Bush urges Americans to "return to normal."
Nov. 20: "Evil knows no holiday," explained President Bush. (from harper's weekly)
A real commitment to patriotism...

Spotted this morning on the road: A station wagon with a magnetic American flag on the driver's door and two "God Bless America" bumper stickers taped to the inside of the back window.

Saying you're proud of your country doesn't mean you have to take the backing off the sticker.

Monday, November 26, 2001

Avidly listening to: The Avalanches (site) - "Since I Left You"

Guaranteed crowd pleaser. Instant greatest party record of all time. Amazing! Hundreds of samples layered over instrumentation or not. Run, don't walk. Remember the first time your heard "Paul's Boutique"?
Word of the Day for Monday November 26, 2001:

malapropism \mal-uh-PROP-iz-uhm\, noun:
The usually unintentionally humorous misuse of a word, especially by confusion with one of similar sound; also, an example of such misuse. A malapropism is so called after Mrs. Malaprop, a character noted for her amusing misuse of words in Richard Brinsley Sheridan's comedy The Rivals.

We call them ______-isms and, boy, are they a lot of fun. I made one up over the weekend: The time is ripe. Here are some real ones (very short list):

Shag to shag carpeting, Bob wire, Armygeddon, No point intended, Corner panel, Hair raging experience, Rotator cup, Valevictorian, Triple down economics, Flap jacket, Cadillac converter, Skating on thin water, Hianus, From start to beginning, Stonehedge, Give me your intake on that, Prostate hand...
About two weeks ago I posted some information about the USA PATRIOT Act. You know, the one that Congress hastily passed and Bush signed into law on Oct. 26. to make everyone in Washington appear like real... well, patriots. More accurately, it's the one designed to take away civil liberties of average American citizens. Anyway, Marnie had an interesting comment illustrating an example of how this legislation could effect anyone/everyone, not just those who have something to hide.

Marnie: "Let's say you unknowingly meet some guy at your college. You exhange emails. You know he's into leftist politics. You are aware of the fact he knows some radical environmentalists. Guess what: he is by deifiniton linked to a 'terrorist' organization and you are now being surveilled. That's all it takes. You don't have to do anything wrong to be a victim of gov't surveillance."

Well, it turns out you don't have to do anything wrong to be a victim of government surveillance, or just general harassment...
Secret Service agents visit college student over anti-American poster.

Sunday, November 25, 2001

Friday, November 23, 2001

Chunk of the Rock for November 23:

York Theatre

Originally build in 1924, this art deco movie theatre has 1185 seats and was "multiplexed" in 1993 to add 4 screens. (source) Keeler's Candies used to be next door to the north (I believe) and they used to have some killer homemade chocolate confections. My favorite over there were the dark chocolate (always) covered peanuts. Then there was a diner to the south (again with the memory--or was it sandwiched to the north between the theatre and Keeler's?) Total greasy spoon. Let me tell you. But it was no Yorktown Restaurant--but that's for another day and another Chunk.

Juju Bees were always the candy of choice for us at the York. I guess I say "us" because it was always a group project going to the York Theatre in the early days. When we were kids in the summer we used to ride our bikes up for the matinee. We would eat Juju Bees and throw em at each other or the screen or the floor. Their weight to stickability ratio was quite high. We called em "Shampoos" because they had a little aftertaste of Johnson's baby shampoo. "Gimme a box of shampoos, a large popcorn and a large Coke!"

And that floor... that floor, boy would your shoes stick to the floor. It was like the effect was intended. But was probably just 50 years of... shampoos, et al.

My parents took me to see Burnt Offerings there when I was quite young. 1976, judging by the date on the film. Scariest movie I had ever seen in my life up until that point. Scared the fuck outta me. There was this creepy-ass chaffuer who kept popping in (apparently scare the 7 year old piss out of me) to kill people, or just be present when bad things happened to the nice, oblivious family staying in this house. At one point, he pushes a casket at a queezer lying in bed and she dies. I had nightmares for a week where my bedroom door would fly open and that scary-ass chaffuer would fling a casket at me. I'm sure if I saw this film now I would just fall asleep, nightmare free. I think the Oliver Reed character dies at the end when the chimney collapses on him from the outside of the house. I bet I could out-run a collapsing chimney. Anyway, these memories are very sketchy considering they are about 25 years old and I was viewing the film through the finger-cracks of my hands. But I digress...

Hasty web research on my part has turned up the fact that the Theatre Historical Society of America currently offices at the York. And there is a pipe organ there (now, I guess). I don't recall a pipe organ ever being played. Anyone?

Anyone? What about your York Theatre memories?

Wednesday, November 21, 2001

Tourist guy speaks - From the doctored WTC photo email that made all the rounds. (Actually, the "photo" page I linked to has some additional Zelig-ed shots. fav)
"By tying the merger to a timely issue, one that the public is very sympathetic to, Conoco hopes to get the merger through the regulatory process with a minimum of pain..." Security. There's that word again. "'This [merger] is good for the United States,' Mr. [Archie W.] Dunham [chairman of Conoco] said during a conference call on Monday. 'It's good for energy security.'" Energy security, riiight... (nods head knowingly but has no clue what the "suit" means)

Meanwhile, Enron could use a little security... or at least a little stimulus. (say, a quarter bil worth?)
Merry Christmas (from fc)
Now, take a week off... on you. God Bless us all. *Christmas Day and New Year's Day will be paid holidays as usual, tho.

And Happy Thanksgiving. I give thanks for the six-day work week.

Tuesday, November 20, 2001

Review: Billy Corgan's Zwan at the Glass House, Pomona, Calif. LiveDaily | NME | VH1

Matt Sweeney on guitar!
(The VH1 link comes complete with one of those ridiculously annoying animated ads on top of the content.)
On Bended Knee
...all in the name of national security

"In the last two months, the Bush administration has proceeded with several regulations, legal settlements and legislative measures intended to reverse Clinton-era environmental policies." Like reversing the moratorium on road-building in national forests, eliminating a ban on snowmobiling in national parks, and drilling in ANWR. story

Note that a lot of these changes directly benefit some of the Bush-favored special interests of oil, gas, mining and timber.
"Where's the beef?"

Crap, this link isn't working appropriately. (I believe properly is the appropriate word here) You'll have to right-click on it and "Save Target As" to play it. Yeah, it's the Wendy's commercial, and I was trying to be irreverant or something. Actually, I randomly thought about it and wanted to hear it. Once I found it, I thought I'd post it, and this is what you get, eh? Anybody else have any random bits of commercial culture to share?
"Ross's expanding circle of viewers are, for the most part, not even painting, nor do they have any plans to start. They watch because 'The Joy of Painting' is the most relaxing show on television. It is unfailingly simple, a three-camera production with a black background and, at Ross's insistence, no edits. Ross wears the same thing every time — blue jeans and a John Henry shirt — and in 26 minutes not only completes a painting but also, in his lullaby voice, murmurs familiar Bob-isms like 'happy little trees' and 'what the heck, let's give him a little friend over here' and 'there are no mistakes, only happy accidents.' As the Ross fan Matt Lauer once admitted... it's hard not to slip into 'a little Bob Ross coma,' so entrancing is the show." The Undying Magic of Bob Ross's Happy Little Trees (NYT link)

Very true about the "Bob Ross coma", this show is so hypnotic. Just thinking of his voice makes me all dreamy. This is a great article. Who doesn't love (the late) Bob Ross!! (found on svn)

"This is your world, you can do anything you want." -- Bob Ross
Good advice for life, not just painting.
”Total Behrens Park…”

The Brown Town Elmrock crew partied hard with the Land of the El Caminos this weekend. Representin’. Feeney and I decided that Lotec rocked Fort Collins harder than it’s been rocked in a long time. In spite of the fact that the band drove 14+ hours that day from their Thursday gig in Missoula, MT. The show the next night was even more energetic; they tore the 15th Street Tavern in Denver a new one Saturday. Most of all, it was great to share many Old Styles and tons of laughs with Dan, Ken and Aaron.
Interesting Op Ed piece in NYT. I haven't posted anything in a long time, so I'll just give it my best shot. article.

Friday, November 16, 2001

Chunk of the Rock for November 16:

Al's Hobby Shop

It's all about planes, trains and automobiles these days. But when I was a kid, it was all about fake barf, handshake buzzers, and whoopee cushions. Note the logo on the whoopee cushion is still the same.
This is cool: Earth view from satellites (from mefi)
Mad props dept.: To Chef Matt Hallendy of Emma's for making Denver magazine 5280's annual dining issue as one of the 10 best expensive restaurants in town.

Way to go Matty!

Thursday, November 15, 2001

THE CASE AGAINST HENRY KISSINGER
The making of a war criminal. by Christopher Hitchens

"There exists, within the political class of Washington, D.C., an open secret that is too momentous and too awful to tell. Although it is well known to academic historians, senior reporters, former Cabinet members, and ex-diplomats, it has never been summarized all at one time in any one place. The reason for this is, on first viewing, paradoxical. The open secret is in the possession of both major political parties, and it directly implicates the past statecraft of at least three former presidencies. Thus, its full disclosure would be in the interest of no particular faction. Its truth is therefore the guarantee of its obscurity; it lies like Poe's "purloined letter" across the very aisle that signifies bipartisanship.

Here is the secret in plain words. In the fall of 1968, Richard Nixon and some of his emissaries and underlings set out to sabotage the Paris peace negotiations on Vietnam. The means they chose were simple: they privately assured the South Vietnamese military rulers that an incoming Republican regime would offer them a better deal than would a Democratic one. In this way, they undercut both the talks themselves and the electoral strategy of Vice President Hubert Humphrey. The tactic "worked," in that the South Vietnamese junta withdrew from the talks on the eve of the election, thereby destroying the peace initiative on which the Democrats had based their campaign. In another way, it did not "work," because four years later the Nixon Administration tried to conclude the war on the same terms that had been on offer in Paris. The reason for the dead silence that still surrounds the question is that in those intervening years some 20,000 Americans and an uncalculated number of Vietnamese, Cambodians, and Laotians lost their lives. Lost them, that is to say, even more pointlessly than had those slain up to that point. The impact of those four years on Indochinese society, and on American democracy, is beyond computation. The chief beneficiary of the covert action, and of the subsequent slaughter, was Henry Kissinger."
Jehovah's Witnesses are accused of flogging their 12-year-old daughter to death with a 5-foot stretch of electrical cable. Larry and Constance Slack, described by neighbors as "devoutly religious," hit her 160 times. "The parents... have told police they were meting out the biblical punishment of '40 lashes minus one, three times,' detectives said Monday. The Slack's five other children all showed indications of physical abuse." Sick.

Wednesday, November 14, 2001

Still listening to: "3 Feet High and Rising". Just remastered, just re-released, and just scored used... gotta love it!
Q: How can I prevent a hat of meat from going bad?
A: We suggest that when not in use, you keep your hat of meat in the refrigerator or freezer. For periods of prolonged exposure, spraying your hat with a thin coat of hairspray or Pam provides hours of protection.
A gallimaufry (today's wotd) of good stuff from Harper's Weekly, annotated by yours truly:

"Federal agents, who now believe the anthrax to be the work of a lone domestic terrorist, still have not gotten around to locating all the labs in the United States where the bacteria can be legally handled, though they were busy cracking down on medical marijuana in California and assisted suicide in Oregon." The Bush administration has begun its first major crackdown on the distribution of marijuana for medical purposes. Wait, don't conservatives favor states' rights? Thought so.

"The first clinical trial of marijuana released preliminary findings suggesting that pot is a 'wonder drug' for people suffering from osteoporosis, cancer, AIDS, arthritis, spinal injuries, and some forms of mental illness." Sheesh, I coulda told you that! Especially that mental illness part. Link to a study of MS patients. Great medical maryjane resource page.

"President Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan came to the United States asking President Bush for 'visible gestures' of appreciation for betraying the Taliban, and received $1 billion in aid." Is that visible enough? story
Great Op-Ed piece in the Times today about scumbag politicians (read: Republicans) giving away what's left of the Social Security surplus to corporations and then blaming it on the "war" on terrorism. Most of this has been "reported" at length here at Gang, but it sure doesn't hurt to get the facts straight again. "...even on Mr. Armey's self-justifying estimate, we're talking about giving at least $600,000 in corporate tax breaks for every job created. That's trickle-down economics without the trickle-down." That's the Bush administration for you. Anybody want to discuss this?? I didn't think so...
You know Google rules, so why are *you* still using Yahoo? Check our their cool logo today.

It was a Monet-ed version of the Google logo in honor of the anniversary of Monet's birthday.
Reading this NYT article about the legal mathematics behind valuing someone's life in monetary terms recalls the human for sale site (careful, they are collecting marketing data on you there).

"The clerk's father, who asked not to be named, said he was stunned to learn the role a person's income played in lawyers' math. 'The value of a life is certainly not determined based on earnings,' he said, his voice breaking. 'We're talking about my son.'" Well, that's just too bad that your son wasn't a heavy hitter "like the salesman". I guess the moral of this story is that you should work your ass off your whole life so that your life has real value. Makes sense, doesn't it?
Check out this email from some fuckstick VP/CFO of bigdough.com. It's a motivational piece. Apparently McGahey (the fuckstick) has clawed his way up the corporate ladder through a stunning command of the King's English and stellar interpersonal skills. "...my wife bitches I work too much already." Well, you know what they say, the cream always rises to the top and gives up it's life to become a high-powered executive rolling in the big bucks. What a "looser". (from fc) A side note: Notice the picture of the dork on their homepage... that'll keep ya comin' back, eh?

Tuesday, November 13, 2001

Further proof there is no god: Sailor back from war killed in N.Y. crash.
All's fair in love and war, I guess. Some of you will take pleasure in this, some of you won't. So much for the Third Geneva Convention.
"Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, one of only three Republican lawmakers to buck the House leadership and the Bush administration to vote against this legislation, is outraged not only by what is contained in the antiterrorism bill but also by the effort to stigmatize opponents. Paul tells Insight, 'The insult is to call this a "patriot bill" and suggest I'm not patriotic because I insisted upon finding out what is in it and voting no. I thought it was undermining the Constitution, so I didn't vote for it — and therefore I'm somehow not a patriot. That's insulting." It sure is Congressman. Well said.

"Before the USA PATRIOT Act, the government had to obtain a warrant and give notice to the person whose property was to be searched. With one vote by Congress and the sweep of the president's pen, say critics, the right of every American fully to be protected under the Fourth Amendment against unreasonable searches and seizures was abrogated." Finally, we got rid of that pesky little "illegal search and seizure" thing. Now how can we get rid of those archaic Miranda rights?

"Paul confirms rumors circulating in Washington that this sweeping new law, with serious implications for each and every American, was not made available to members of Congress for review before the vote." Huh? What the fuck did he just say?! Well, c'mon, what red-blooded American patriot lawmaker actually needs to look over a bill such as this before voting on it??

Here's the real beauty part. In typical lowest common denominator fashion, the name of the bill (now law) is actually an acronym: USA PATRIOT Act = "Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act" Holy fuck, that makes *me* feel like the "tool".

EFF's analysis: "The civil liberties of ordinary Americans have taken a tremendous blow with this law..." But this will help us catch those filthy A-Rabs, so ain't it all worth it? I can hear the rallying cry now: This only bothers folks that have something to hide. Bullshit. story

Monday, November 12, 2001

With friends like these...
NYC city council is considering naming a street corner after Joey Ramone. Right on. Why wouldn't they...
Spotted: Some dude, driving a p.o.s. blue Volvo, both hands up to his mouth smoking a bowl while his passenger was steering.
Excite@Home to sell portal assets: "Two years after paying $7.8 billion in cash and stock for Excite.com, parent company Excite@Home has agreed to sell its money-losing Web portal for a mere $10 million." How's that ROI?

"Once a Web powerhouse, Excite began a long slide. The company tried to keep boosting traffic with new deals, including a nearly $1 billion agreement to buy digital greeting-card company Blue Mountain Arts, which had millions of visitors but no revenue. Excite@Home sold Blue Mountain Arts last month to American Greetings for $35 million in cash." Already covered here.

Moral of the story: Traffic does not equal revenue (but we already knew that two years ago, didn't we?)

Saturday, November 10, 2001

Propaganda war update: This NYT article is somewhat snoozy, so allow me highlight the morsels for you...

"Television has been banned by the Taliban..." Wait, they don't have cable in Afghanistan? Like, what do they *do*?

If we're going to start a Radio Free Afghanistan, shouldn't we be dropping some of those wind-up transistors along with the leaflets announcing hot sessions of 90-minute commercial free propaganda? Or am I wrong to assume the general Afghan population doesn't have radios?

Actual leaflet: "Seek a safe place, and stay well away from anything that might be a target." Like mountains, or sandy areas, or especially sandy areas with known caves, stay out of caves, or tents, we will also shoot down all flying carpets...

"On Sunday, Karl Rove, a senior political adviser to President Bush, will visit Hollywood, where he is expected to receive a warm welcome from producers and directors eager to show their patriotism. Sean Daniel, a former studio executive and producer of 'The Mummy,' said he expected Hollywood to help." Oh great, I guess we can expect more weepy, sentimentalized pap from the likes of Tom Hanks.
Ken Kesey has gone further.

Kesey column from espn.com - page 2.

Friday, November 09, 2001

Commenting is working again. Feel free to speak your mind when necessary. Using blogback now.
Chunk of the Rock for November 9:

Salt Creek

It still runs right behind my mom's house. When I was a kid they moved it (slightly to help ease it's flow and prevent flooding, I believe). The week before heading off to college, in 1987, it flooded. I've spent many hours of my life in the company of the creek. I try to spend time along it each time I visit home. I remember Mrs. Fordyce (my kindergarten teacher) telling stories about swimming in the creek as a child. Elmhurst's settlers originally set up shop along its banks. Anybody remember "the rope"?
Eroding civil liberties... If you're a suspected terrorist, you can kiss your attorney-client priviledges goodbye.
I guess my intention with this weblog was to create a place where the gang could post commentary, opinions, links to cool and interesting shit found on the web, etc... Instead it's become more of a one-man gang (with the occasional 2 cents from Ebs, Marnie or Umoc). I love spouting off here and it kicks my ass that any of you bother to show up and read it. Thanks! But I'm going to work on some ways that may make it easier for gang members (and maybe anyone and everyone) to post. Blogger, itself, has a couple of cool tools that make posting a lot easier. So I'll post and/or email "team members" that info soon. In the meantime, keep lurking--it's cool--but at least make a comment from time to time so I know you're at least thinking. Thanks for reading.

Umoc points out that the Reblogger commenting system is not working--you get an error message when you "Submit". That's what you get for free, not sure when or if it will get fixed. You can always email or text message me your comments.

Thursday, November 08, 2001

Without Sanctuary... You need to click this link and cycle through all of the postcards. (posted to mefi)
This article, "Home Sweet Clone", from an October Westword issue discusses the typical homogeneity and conformity-police issues associated with living in a planned community. (Highlands Ranch, CO is disputedly the nation's largest.) But even more compelling than the article is a letter to the editor (scroll down to "Send in the Clones" header) published in last week's issue: "At the end of the day, if this twisted world starts to get to you, you can put a "We are all Columbine" sticker on your car and forget about it, because you've done your part...right?"

A related take on the Columbine demographic. (Note further down in Reidy's rant that he has seen it)

Wednesday, November 07, 2001

Assuming most of you are using some version of MS Internet Explorer. Go to "Help" and click on "About Internet Explorer", you'll get this: "Based on NCSA Mosaic. NCSA Mosaic(TM); was developed at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign." You got it bitch!

Of course, we also invented HAL: "I am a HAL Nine Thousand computer, Production Number 3. I became operational at the HAL plant in Urbana, Illinois on January 12, 1997."
What's your favorite Mmmm...?
Awhile back I said I was going to watch Network. Well, we finally did (like most things done later than sooner), and I have my review ready...

Kevin Keenan of Gang... a weblog calls Network "Totally plugged in!!!"

Excellent film, great story, and top-notch acting. It holds up very well and is, perhaps, *more* culturally relevant 25 years later (it was made in 1976). Rent this one.


One good weblog recommendation deserves another. I heard about Steep Tea from svn awhile back, ordered some, waited for it to arrive, called Jeff when it didn't, and finally procured some killer tea balls. Now, you should know, that I'm a complete coffee person to begin with and so is my wife. But this tea is the bomb. Key tea. If you like tea at all (or just like the idea of tea, but haven't ever really had a decent cup--which was always my deal), order some up. Cost disclaimer: It's expensive... but worth it. My favorite is the Deep Tokyo, Mary likes the Dresden Park. I can't wait to try their cocoa. You can bet we'll be sampling more flavors this winter and probably be holiday gifting like crazy the Steeps. About to enjoy an afterlunch cup of the Crayon Sun right now. Yummy.
We watched American Movie last night. It is excellent, four stars. Ever have a dream? This documentary pushes all the right buttons. It's funny and sad at the same time. You laugh at these people and you totally root for them simultaneously. The strength of a good film (especially a documentary) is when it forces you to reflect on your own situation relative to the characters (real people) and, in turn, to project the drama of what's on screen back into the reality of your own existence--and vice versa. This film does that. Simply put, ever have a dream?

Well, I'm totally rooting for Mark Borchardt (and Mike Schank--he rules). Hell, I'll probably buy the video of Coven just to take a look. "It's pronounced Coe-ven, not Coven, why the fuck would I call it Coven, that sounds like 'oven'!" (paraphrasing Borchardt from the movie) He's at 4721 Units Sold and counting...

FDA Approves Ecstasy Clinical Test (NYT link) It's about time! This reminds me of a study I read as a freshman in college... we were to dissect the lyrics of a song of our choosing. I chose "Break On Through" by the Doors and got into the whole Huxley angle ("If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is, infinite."--William Blake) It was a shameless excuse to undertake an educational exercise in recreational drug use. But in the course of researching that, I stumbled upon this thesis that if the world's political leaders would just all drop acid, there would be a much higher probability for world peace. (It may be this guy: Captain Trips) Sure, pie in the sky... very much the type of thesis one might concoct during extended periods of hallucination. But intriguing to me at a time when... frankly, I was concocting my own wild fantasies about the universe whilst tripping my balls off somewhat frequently. Similar in concept is Rick Doblin's thesis that was a long-term follow up on a study of the potential of psychedelic drugs to facilitate mystical experience. I read about this deal yesterday in the WSJ (offline) and they discussed Doblin and his organization, MAPS. There was a quote describing Doblin's family as being one "that values psychedelics". Sounds like a nice family.

Other webs of note:
Psychedelic Library - additional resources
mescaline.com - great Huxley quote on this page
acidmagic
cannibus culture
(Make sure to visit all these sites while at work!)

Tuesday, November 06, 2001

"It really is possible to love your country and value your freedoms and still believe the government is full of fools and prevaricators and BS artists..." column (this is all over the web)

What I love about Morford's piece is that he nails the dim-witted President's fatuous sermonizing to the American public, "...he furrows his brow like a serious Muppet and offers carefully scripted reassurances deliberately lacking in polysyllabism and detailed explanation because that would be, you know, complicated," while peppering his rhetoric with words like: "chthonic" and "aggro". Very nice.
Rumor has it that christianity.com is donefer... as in history, caput, irrelevant. Just like the real thing.
Irony, it's a bitch: "Official sources revealed that the CIA's New York counterterrorism office was destroyed in the attack on the World Trade Center." (also harper's wkly)
From the "Thanks for the grub, now how do I eat this shit with no arms and no face" Department:

General Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that United States forces would change the color of the yellow food packets being dropped from the air. "It is unfortunate that the cluster bombs — the unexploded ones — are the same color as the food packets," he said. (harper's wkly)

It gives new meaning to M.R.E.'s (meal ready to eat)... Meal Ready to Explode.
"NOTE: YOU MAY NOW USE ONLY ONE SPACE AFTER A PERIOD AT THE END OF A SENTENCE BECAUSE OF SOFTWARE CHANGES." Phew, finally. I have a strong preference for using ellipses as tool to convey speech patterns through the written word...
My current, kick ass, D desktop photo

Monday, November 05, 2001

Random Scraps of Paper
...because underdeveloped thoughts are easier to post.

As he got older, more and more people underestimated him, he thought. But that was probably because he knew more people now. Let's face it, your circle of acquaintances is not real wide as a second-grader. But were there more believers back then? Or, were their voices just louder... if only in his head... or was it all in their heads? Underestimation. Maybe it's growth, he thought, and grabbed another beer.

Islam v. Christianity... the modern-day Crusades. It's a chess match to Bin Laden and his Muslim cohorts. One where they have not only thought their moves out, but ours too. But it's unthinkable that those people are smarter (more cunning, perhaps) than us. Reality is a lifetime--or lifetimes--worth of Christian propagandizing and brainwashing starting at an early age. This leads to homogeneity and a general subconsciousness that equates skin color with intelligence.
Can't wait to use this one in a sentence (or limerick)...

Word of the Day for Saturday November 3, 2001:

troglodyte \TROG-luh-dyt\, noun:
1. A member of a primitive people that lived in caves, dens, or holes; a cave dweller.
2. One who is regarded as reclusive, reactionary, out of date, or brutish.

Once knew a man who was a troglodyte,
Always getting mocked for being uptight,
So he let down his hair,
Not wanting to seem square,
Now everyone thinks him full of shite.
Sure to be a big hit at the upcoming Winter Games:

Polygamy Porter (scroll down to the bottom)

"Why have just one!" is the motto. The "Take One Home For the Wives" billboard was nixed by local Mormons.
IBM's Open Source bet. Watch this work.
Joey, have you ever been to a Turkish prison?

Bill Safire's (channeling Tricky Dick) solution to the current mess. "Change the flow of money and power in the Middle East and bin Laden and his boys will fall into our hands like rotten fruit." Interesting.
Tomorrow is Denver's first all-mail balloting election. I'm dropping off our ballots tonight. This is kind of exciting, not to mention convenient. Usually Republicans don't like making voting convenient for "most" folks, because "most folks" tend to be unwashed, hence democrats. Remember the controversy surrounding the motor-voter laws about a decade ago?
This is The Simpsons Archive, that was mentioned in a previous, and now invisible, comment. The episode capsules are key.

Simpsons feature from Sunday's NYT.

Sunday, November 04, 2001

The Reblogger commenting system we use here at gang must have gone out again (or periodic clean up?) and threw out all the comments. I guess it would be more heartbreaking if it were being used a little more often (hint). Introduce Yourself

Friday, November 02, 2001

Chunk of the Rock for November 2:

Joe Newton

York High School Boy's Cross Country coach for 40 years. The architect of the "Long Green Line". I don't think "legend" is too strong of a word here. The state cross country meet is tomorrow, and I bet Coach Joe and the boys will have their tuxes packed. My alma mater was famous for taking the championship trophy (nearly) every year wearing tuxedos and shaved heads to the awards dinner. Coach Joe's as old-school as you get and he never minces words. But there is no one I have ever met in my life who commands and equally gives universal respect like he does. Coach always treats everyone as a man (until proven otherwise), and in turn helped shape more men than not. I doubt anyone could look back on time spent in the presence of Joe Newton and didn't themselves feel more powerful for having been there. Out of all the stories I could tell about Coach, I think this one sums up his motivational powers the best. He was the featured speaker to our freshman orientation, the capstone speech. Kind of a "welcome to York and good luck" number, except his was much more colorful, and poignant. It was something like this... If you are going to get anything out of your time here you need to understand something. You, as an individual, need to be the best you can be at whatever gets you going in your life. If you are a runner, then be the best damn runner you can. If you are a dancer and that's what you love, then goddammit you need to say, "I'm going to be the best dancer I can be." And if you're a fucking pothead, then for chrissakes make up your mind, smoke more pot than the next guy, and be the best pothead there is! But the important thing is, to strive to be your best at what it is you want to do.

The man is NO bullshit... and that's what I love about him.

Here's a taste of his success... 21 state titles (and counting)!
Update: York took fourth this year.
Bobbleheads are back in a big way, boo-yah.

Remember in the old days when they used to be made out of plaster or some shit and would ruin themselves after too many bobbles?
"The Bush administration, which prompted an outcry by suspending a Clinton proposal on acceptable levels of arsenic in drinking water, has now decided to adopt the proposed Clinton level after all." NYT article

A liberal "bone" to appease the masses before future bullshit is heaped out the back of the Bush dumptruck. Think: Approval for drilling in Alaska (covered in all bullshit-glory depth here previously) and the repeal of the Alternative Minimimum Tax (discussed here now).

Paul Krugman has an excellent piece in yesterday's NYT noting that the "stimulus" package not only benefits large corporations very well proportionate to their size, but it also benefits, disproportionately well, certain smaller corporations that "tend to be in the energy or mining businesses; and they tend to be based in or near Texas." For example, Enron, the Houston energy company and a major Bush supporter, plans to get $254 million, and "TXU (formerly Dallas Power and Light), a company with only 16,000 employees, would get a check for $600 million." In other words, Cheney/Bush figured out a way to dish out their good-old-boy mining and gas subsidies after all. Nothing like good old fashioned politics while we're Enduring Freedom. Bullshit.

Thursday, November 01, 2001

Let's talk football, it's been too long. Gruden to ND? He doesn't seem to deny it in his NFL.com diary: "I've been fortunate to be exposed to some great home fields. When I was a kid, my dad was an assistant coach at Notre Dame. To see that marching band walking across campus at 8 o'clock in the morning, to look up and see Touchdown Jesus and the Golden Dome, to feel Rockne's ghost, the best word I can use to describe it is chilling. Every time I see Notre Dame on TV, it gives me goose bumps." Sounds like he'd jump at the job, let's hope the powers that be in South Bend are smart enough to offer it.
Speaking of Fox, if you checked out that link, you were bombarded with a flash intro for "24" and I gotta say that the concept is killer. Real time, one hour episodes that make up a day. Good idea. Good show?
Heard again tonight on Fox during the World Series, another promo for Sunday NFL on Fox. The promo song is "Re-Ignition" by Bad Brains! Sweet. This reminds me of the time (about ten years ago) I caught WBBM-TV in Chitown using "Under the Christmas Fish" by the Didjits(!) to open their Sunday sports wrap show.

Has this happened to you? Have you ever heard any mainstream media using underground/under-the-radar music--or other iconography--in their message?