Riverbend reports on "how messed up the country is."

“The Ministry of Defense requests that civilians do not comply with the orders of the army or police on nightly patrols unless they are accompanied by coalition forces working in that area.”

More here.

(My blog posting software seems to have quit speaking to Blogger for the moment and so I'm experimenting with posting by email. How this looks may be a little weird. But if so that's why, and if not it's all my fault.)

No tickee no wavee.

Sorry. Bad laundry joke. The devil made me type it; it's not my fault.

Anyway Will Durst at WorkingForChange has the goods on this whole anti-immigration hysteria thing.

“Can't let those damn immigrants in, they'll ruin everything.” A popular modern refrain taken from the original Iroquois. And as it turns out, the Iroquois were right.

Meanwhile WIIIAI helpfully imagines streets full of people waving flags - some of them Mexican flags, some American flags, and all of them made in China. The flags, I mean. Not the people of course.

If the Chinese were on top of things they'd start a flag waving service, save all the hassle and the shipping expense. You know, sort of like that praying service the Catholics do. “Two Mexican, one Bolivian, and three Danish flags will be waved in your name....” They'd make a bundle. That is, if we have anything left to pay them with. No tickee, no wavee, see how that works?

They could do flag burning the same way. Did you ever think that if the Rs were a little more particular about air pollution they could ban flag burning on environmental grounds? Just wondering.

Oh well. Durst figures we'd have a hard time building a 15-foot high fence along the 2,000-mile long Mexican border without Mexican labor. He's probably right.

How unhip was that?

Posting a note about a music-playing rock from a cell phone and not getting a picture of it too. That's not just 10 minutes ago, that's more like 15. Definitely unhip.

Meanwhile the app I usually use for posting messages isn't speaking to Blogger at all. Or maybe Blogger's not speaking to it. No matter. If it's some techie screwup I want nothing to do with it. I tell people in class that when their computers start doing weird and inexplicable things - or stop doing, anything - the first thing they should do is go take a nap. So I'm going to follow my own advice. See if by the time I wake up the thing is working again. Anyway tonight is going to be an hour shorter so I might as well make this afternoon an hour shorter too. That way everything will even out.

Not rock, exactly, but at least a rock.

this is an audio post - click to play

Munged blog.

this is an audio post - click to play


An awesome project in Cincinnati,

Help Build Hope - Home:
On Saturday, April 1st, 2006 Help Build Hope will join forces with Habitat for Humanity & Crossroads Missions to launch a project to frame 20 homes for the hurricane victims in one day. Approximately 1,200 volunteers from the tri-state will come together in the parking lot of Eastside Christian Church in Milford and begin the process of restoring hope for an entire community. The completed walls will then be sent to the Gulf Coast and be completed by Habitat for Humanity in New Orleans.
There's a PayPal link on the page - you can drop them a couple of bucks, buy a board or two. Or even three.

Whew. I just thought I was craZy.

But I wasn't. Or, well, not seriously. It was just birds I was hearing. Singing. Imagine that.


On the high road.

Hooters deflates. Errr, downsizes. Downsizes, that's it. Sorry.

Better known as an “international restaurant chain known for its chicken wings” and other attributes, Hooters has also been operating an airline out of Myrtle Beach, NC, offering public and private charters...wait, let's read that again...yep that's right, public and private charters...has decided to cancel its public charters and.... No, look over here.

Oh never mind. ”In the case of Hooters, there's a double whammy,“ says Brad Dean, president of the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce. As well he might.

A distinct distinction this would be, I guess.

A scourge of the '70s returns to Great Lakes | csmonitor.com:
Some say Cladophora's resurgence is a nuisance algal bloom, not a harmful algal bloom...
And in other microbial news...

The Seattle Times: Local News: Viruses prevent cops from opening Huff's computer:
Police confiscated two computer hard drives, one installed recently, from Huff's North Seattle apartment, but computer viruses have prevented police from retrieving data, said Capt. Tag Gleason, head of the violent-crimes unit.

Not to worry, they're confused already.

Wired News: Spring Forward and Miss a Meeting:
Currently, most Indiana computer users set their PCs to a special “Indiana East” setting -- Eastern time that doesn't spring forward every April. Starting this April, however, they'll change their PCs to Eastern Daylight Time. The few who observe Central time set their computers to Central, and will also make the switch.
Most of Indiana is on Eastern time in the winter, except for a little corner of it just south of Chicago that's on Central. But in the summer all hell breaks lose. Or broke, is it turns out. Because this year will be different. This year they'll observe a state-wide DST, whereas in the past it's been a sort of local option thing.

So it transpired, in past years, that a city like South Bend, for example, would be on the same time as New York in the winter but the same time as Chicago in the summer. (And to complicate matters further the sun, in South Bend, is always on Chicago time.) People who live just north of South Bend, as I used to, in Southwestern Michigan, were on the same time as South Bend in the winter but an hour earlier in the summer, which meant that for business meetings in South Bend one was always either an hour early or an hour late. And it was entirely possible - indeed likely in some parts of Indiana - to live for part of the year in one time zone and work in another, all without ever leaving the state. And for the other part not.

So this year's switch to state-wide DST, while it may make things more difficult for the computers, should make things markedly easier for the people, assuming they don't get too confused by being un-confused.

I don't want to think, though, about the cows.


The geezer in spring.

Well we all know what a young man's fancy turns to but the geezer's fancy - at least one's, and I'm not naming names - turns to hitting the road. Not that the one in question is likely to get there any time soon but no matter, it's always worth the wait. In the meantime check out the American Highway Project and don't miss perusing the resources (links) page. And the gallery of course, which is full of fantastic stuff.

Well it seems pretty suspenseful to me but hey, some people like to live on the edge.

Dear DMC:
Yes, you can lead a dull life in Paris [too] like anywhere else in the world. One of my favorite activities is going to the nearby park and observing the ducks there. I like watching them hop out of a pond quacking in a small group, cross the park alley and then plunge into another pond (there are four ponds in this park).
This from a correspondent to the Dull Men's Club, which we have added to our YAME blogroll. That's the list of other sites over there on the right. The club, not the correspondent. Is what we added.

Tube steaks tonight because I'm too damn tired to make Beef Wellington. Only they were all out of those squishy no-taste buns so I had to make do with good ones. Still, a dog is a dog. Especially with lots of ketchup.

Otherwise it was close to 70° today, must have been, warm and sunny and all together awesome for the end of March. Here.


Maybe we'll finally find out if it's really true they rub noses.

Now the residents of this far-flung village have become, in one sense, among the most watched people in the land, with — as former Mayor Freeman Roberts puts it — “one camera for every 30 residents.”

Dillingham, Alaska, a town of 2,400 people and, soon, 80 surveillance cameras.
“You better smile. You're on camera,” says Roberts, 64, a barge captain. Roberts himself isn't smiling as he points out a single camera on the side of a building. The camera is aimed toward an alley.
A fishing town on Nushagak Bay, Dillingham is ice-bound half the year. “I don't think we have to worry about Osama bin Laden,” Roberts says. But Police Chief Richard Thompson disagrees, insists terrorists could “backdoor it,” next thing you know, “phoooom.” And anyway it's only 800 miles from Russia, Dillingham is, Thompson points out. And only 1,200 miles from Seattle. So just do the math.

Meanwhile high school wrestling coach Johnny Johnson takes the American way out: “If you're not doing anything wrong, what does it matter?”

Turn your head a little to the right, Johnny. I think we're getting your bad side here.

Feminists are fine with us as long as they, you know, stay in their place.

The Observer | UK News | Young, successful, well paid: are they killing feminism?:
The thesis was expounded in a highly controversial article for Prospect magazine by Alison Wolf, a professor at Kings College London and author of Does Education Matter? She argues that the meteoric rise of this new generation of 'go-getting women' who want high-powered, well-paid jobs has dire consequences for society. Wolf says it has diverted the most talented away from the caring professions such as teaching, stopped them volunteering, is in danger of ending the notion of 'female altruism', has turned many women off having children - and has effectively killed off feminism.

Next time forget the cheese.

Man Is Charged $4,300 for Four Burgers - Yahoo! News:
Beane ordered two Whopper Jr.s and two Rodeo cheeseburgers when he pulled up to the drive-through window last Tuesday.

Tunnel, younger than I, requires “mammoth” repair.

4 options offered to fix Storrow tunnel - The Boston Globe:
Already, the roof is leaky, the steel beams holding it together have corroded, and chunks of concrete have rained down on the roadway...

'We're going to do everything we can to make this as painless as possible, but there will be detours and complications,“ said Karl Haglund, a regional planner for the Department of Conservation and Recreation.
Detours and complications. Get used to it.


Some days you can't seem to remember where you put anything.

Crackers Are Reminders of New York City's H-Bomb Fears - New York Times:
Amid fears of Axis sabotage, the city's Office of Civilian Defense was created in 1941 under Mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia. By the 1950's, magazines were trying to predict what would happen if, say, a 20-megaton bomb were dropped on Manhattan.
Back half a century ago and more, in those halcyon pre-911 days when, according to Dubya's somewhat blurry understanding of history we thought the oceans would protect us, while New York City officials were proposing building a bomb shelter under the flower beds in front of the New York Public Library, someone stashed a supply of “water drums, medical supplies, gauze bandages and bitter-tasting ration crackers” under the Brooklyn Bridge's main entrance ramp in lower Manhattan (which would make it an easy walk, by the way, from the World Trade Center site). Which was recently discovered. The cache, that is, not the bridge. The bridge, as far as I know, has been pretty much right there all along.

The Museum of the City of New York wants to add some of the supplies to its “collection of ephemera,” the NY Times reports.

Absolutely, no posh here.

Ananova - World's first beer health spa :
Owner Jiri Plevka said: “Beer can treat a range of conditions, particularly skin conditions, and the health centre should appeal to men who are put off by 'posh' traditional spas.
And there is no evidence, sniffs Oxford American by the way, ”to support the folk etymology that posh is formed from the initials of port out starboard home.“ Which I mention here as evidence. And also, incidentally, to propagate the folk etymology for which there is none. If you see what I mean.

They'll hide anything if you give them half a chance.

Gotta love that Time, always right on top of the news.

TIME.com: Polar Ice Caps Are Melting Faster Than Ever... More And More Land Is Being Devastated By Drought... Rising Waters Are Drowning Low-Lying Communities... By Any Measure, Earth Is At ... The Tipping Point -- Apr. 03, 2006 -- Page 1:
Suddenly and unexpectedly, the crisis is upon us.
Global warming? Oh that unexpectedly. Right.

In Seattle some people pretending to be dead get dead, nobody likes that.

BBC NEWS | Americas | US 'Zombie party' killings probed:
“It was a zombie party. People had a lot of make-up on,” Mr Kerlikowske said. “There was fake blood squirted, and people were made-up to look as if they were dead.”
A participant shoots eight, six die. Not counting himself.

How much fuel would this save, I wonder.

Parents, teens split on driving age - The Boston Globe:
HANOVER -- In the marble halls of the State House, the consensus among lawmakers is clear: Massachusetts should raise the age at which a teenager can get a drivers' license from 16 1/2 to 17 1/2. They say drivers under 17 1/2 are unready for the dangers of the road.
Of course the plan is heartily opposed by (are you ready for this?) kids, including one Andrew who wants to “experience the open road.” And Rachel, who doesn't want to ride with her “psycho cousins” any more. And the usual suspects.

Thirty percent of 16-year olds get into serious accidents, says the Registry of Motor Vehicles. But hey, it sure beats having to ask your Mom for a ride.


The thing about a war is, well, when it's over you miss it. And you want to start another one.

WorldNetDaily: Is Easter latest holiday hijack?:
Already, many stores and malls across the U.S. are preparing for seasonal events, with some refraining from usage of terms like “the Easter Bunny,” opting instead for more generic terms like “Spring Bunny,” or other names avoiding the name “Easter.”
A war on Easter! Just like the good old days. Errrr, months. I'm still suffering PHSD from Christmas. And I skipped Valentine's Day. Not that CVS did - they spent a couple of months on it. Seems like every holiday takes a couple of months now, even New Year's Day by the time they finish playing all the bowl games.

I'm figuring we should just declare some sort of universal holiday, celebrate it year round, get it over with. As long as we seem to be into never-ending wars.