Friday, October 31
Thursday, October 30
Wednesday, October 29
Oh, how wonderful it is to play. It is also wonderful to know that there are others who like to play too . . . .
Every time I see Escher's Relativity, I think about how cool it would be to have a model of it. Of course, it never occurred to me to use Legos. Apparently, it did occur to Richard Bushnell.
Tuesday, October 28
These photographs by Jason Salavon are "the result of mean averaging every Playboy centerfold foldout for the four decades beginning Jan. 1960 through Dec. 1999."
The results are four blurs one for each decade. They are beautiful, and strangely, still obviously feminine.
Friday, October 24
I'll rarely tell you what you should do, gentle reader. But, today, wishing desperately that I could follow my own advice, I'll tell you that you should go back to bed.
If you are unable to go back to bed, you should browse the sites listed in Web Exhibits, allow yourself to be hypnotized by Zombo.com, amuse yourself with Sci-Fi Fan Films, ponder the skills of the Precision Lawn Chair Demonstration Team, determine just how many Ferraris you might have purchased over the years with your drinking money, and/or download everything at Sine Fiction to judge their music-to-sci-fi-novel matchups.
Whatever you do, don't troll the news from this week. You might then have to . . . .
- ruminate over whether choosing not to breed is a viable tradeoff for living hundreds of years,
- think about homeless Patagonian penguins,
- consider who has the right to decide the life-long fates for the over 35,000 people born so far this year without a discernible gender [check paragraph five],
- ponder Rummy's real views on defense against terrorism and watch the spin,
- wonder whether solar flares could fuck up a bunch of satellites today,
- consider that it takes an ex-President to broker deals with pharmaceutical giants to provide low-cost Aids drugs to developing countries,
- realize that innocent research can provoke the FBI's Joint Terrorist Task Force.
[BTW: No posts for a few days. I'm getting out of the city to visit my friends Conni and Darrell at Coach Stop Farm. I'll be back early next week.]
Wednesday, October 22
I feel a rant coming on.
Up until now, when discussing sexism in the workplace, I would honestly state that I had never seen anything overt first hand, although I heard stories.
I've observed blatant favoritism, but, have honestly been the favorite a plurality of times, perhaps prohibiting me from analyzing the concept objectively.
I recently witnessed something that I wish I could have labeled as favoritism. That would have made me more comfortable. But, really, the only conclusion I can reach with the facts I've accumulated is sexism. What must one think, what can one say when all the boys are invited and none of the chicks are? [And, no, I’m not one of the women. This really doesn’t impact me directly.] Especially when a few of those men are subordinates of the women? I said, "That's really fucking blatant!" But, I said that to very few people. And, I said it privately, in hushed tones, as to avoid conflict.
I feel offended and deflated.
- shooting fish in a barrel
- mutually beneficial
- drill down
- when the rubber meets the road
Tuesday, October 21
Sunday, October 19
Friday, October 17
[Yeah, I know, no posts recently. But work's been busy, and I've been going through a bit of a mental defrag . . . . and we all know how unrecommended it is to run nonessential programs when you're defragging. Anyway . . . . ]
I had to be in early today because of a 9:00 am meeting. Not toooooo early, just 8:15 am. But, that's early enough to mess with my already-less-than-strict routine. Actually, the only strict thing about my routine is coffee. And I had to skip that. Anyway, I get in and throw my purse and jacket onto my chair and run to the conference room to show the caterer where things should go. After everything is settled, I go back to my desk to find a typed note:
Last night was an example of the true spirit of Yankee baseball, where Pedro Martinez can go from a king to a peasant and Aaron Boone could hit the winning home run in extra innings.
Never quit, stay the course, work hard and stay focused on winning.
This is the attitude we have and will continue to have to ensure the success of [the project].
Yankee Spirit = Persistence & Confidence!
Keep that Yankee Spirit! We’re doing a great job!
No, it wasn’t signed. But, I know [actually, everyone at the office knows] the culprit. For those in my office with a preference, about two-thirds are Cubs fans, about a quarter are South Siders, and the rest favor various other teams. If there's another Yankee fan in the office, [s]he ain't talkin'. Anyway, apparently, there was much groaning over this little note. So, I fired off an email to that particular visiting New Yorker that said:
You are a cruel man. You are a sick man. And, to think, I liked you.Still no response.
Saturday, October 11
Friday, October 10
"What this says to me is that too many whites are getting away with drug use. Too many whites are getting away with drug sales. Too many whites are getting away with trafficking in this stuff. The answer to this disparity is not to start letting people out of jail because we're not putting others in jail who are breaking the law. The answer is to go out and find the ones who are getting away with it, convict them and send them up the river, too."
Rush Limbaugh show, October 5, 1995
Thursday, October 9
Alas, anyone with any life experience could have told us that without the studies.
I am drunk, thanks to Jennifer. And, I am feeling neither physical nor emotional pain. Again, thanks to Jennifer.
What would life be without friends?
I do not care to know.
Time to wash up and go to sleep.
Tuesday, October 7
Long day. Left the house at 8:20 am, got home at 10:20 pm. Very long day.
I seem to be reverting to an old bad habit: picking and peeling the polish off my fingernails. I don't know when I stopped, but I remember that, years ago, I used to do it. Today, I picked half the polish off most of my nails. I didn't even realize I was doing it until I had a few so thoroughly damaged that sparing the rest didn't really matter. It's oddly satisfying to peel off a large chunk of polish off cleanly. I don't know why.
Time to carbo-load and get some sleep.
Sunday, October 5
Thursday, October 2
Wednesday, October 1
I can't even imagine going out tonight.
The cable was back up when I came home last night, so, I spent several hours trolling for news. The only productive thing I did was ensure my laundry would be picked up and talk to the dude who picked it up.
Tonight? Equally mundane, really. I shall order pizza and watch The West Wing, and, perhaps, put away the laundry when it arrives.
I don't feel bad about this . . . . it happens every year at about this time. I shall blame it on the chilly weather, which, for me, always amplifies my nesting tendencies.
Reefer Madness: Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor in the American Black Market by Eric Schlosser
The book had gotten so much press, I couldn't pass it up when wandering through the Unabridged Bookstore. Schlosser, in his introduction and conclusion makes a point of telling us that this is a tale of money. In reality, it's three vastly different tales, and the dollars frequently are a secondary focus within them. The first, Reefer Madness, largely deals with the ridiculousness of marijuana law in the US, and wasn't terrifically enlightening. In the Strawberry Fields, the second essay, discusses the treatment of migrant and illegal-alien farm workers in California's strawberry industry, from housing and sanitary conditions, to the often-bought fantasy of the benefits of sharecropping. I hadn't considered before that so many of our fruits and vegetables must be laboriously hand picked. It is a story of greed, prejudice and governmental collusion. I'll never look at a strawberry the same. In An Empire of the Obscene, Scholosser chronicles the machinations of Reuben Sturmann, from his selling comic books from the truck of his car through his virtual control of the entire US porn industry and beyond. It is also a history lesson, reminding us of Comstock's legacy, and of our varying prurience as a society throughout time, among factions, as private seekers who would publicly deny it. Throughout the book, I guess the money does bleed through: we want what we want and if we can find it, we'll buy it, regardless of its legality, or the perils involved in its production.