Archives: December 2005

how much brush is on that ranch, anyway?

From three recent White Houlse press briefings: December 27 Good morning. Let me update you on the President’s schedule. Yesterday, after arriving, he went out and did some cutting and clearing brush, and then was at his home on the ranch. December 28 The President had his normal intelligence and daily briefings this morning, and

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100 things we (the BBC) didn’t know this time last year

According to the BBC. Here are a few of them…. 7. Baboons can tell the difference between English and French. Zoo keepers at Port Lympne wild animal park in Kent are having to learn French to communicate with the baboons which had been transferred from Paris zoo. 17. Bosses at Madame Tussauds spent £10,000 separating

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Nature’s Harmonious Money Cycle

Fafblog explains how trickle-down economics work for you: That’s right! You’re the tiny microscopic planktony thing about to get eaten by the octopus! You’re right next to the leprechaun with the magical pot of pixie gold who’s gonna pay down the national debt. So if you’re feelin cold, sick and hungry this winter while Larry

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Buy Blue Local

Buyblue.org is setting up local chapters to help gather data and spread information on Democrat friendly local businesses. You can contact them if you are interested in setting up a buy blue local group in your area.

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DIY Chess Figures

Site that tells how to build your own chess figures out of Nuts and Bolts. Quite a while back I saw a chess set in the background of a TV show that was a chess set made of different sizes and styles of salt and pepper shakers, and I wanted to create that. But when

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The NonSequitur

My new favorite political blog is The NonSequitur — a blog run by Logic professors that analyze failure of reasoning and logical fallacies of right-wing pundits. Found via one of my other favorite blogs, Americablog.com. I also discovered that Overheard in New York, a site the recounts funny conversations that people overhear, is now a

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A Feast for Crows: starting the book

I started reading one of the books I bought with my Barnes and Noble gift cards, A Feast for Crows this week. It’s the fourth book in the fantasy series “A Song of Ice and Fire” by George R. R. Martin. I really enjoy this series because it turns many of the tired fantasy cliches

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Outrageous Firsts in TV History

YesButNoButYes lists controversial first in TV broadcast history. 1947: First Couple to Share a Bed – Mary Kay and Johnny, on…Mary Kay and Johnny 1957: First Toilet on Television. – Leave it to Beaver 1957: First Exposed Rack on Television – Jayne Mansfield, 1957 Academy Awards 1967: First Time the Word Hell was Used on

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mental notes

I need to remember to set the DVR in January for: Fox’s “Skating With Celebrities” – Wednesday, January 18th Showtime’s “The L Word” – Sunday, Jan. 8th “My Name is Earl” – Thursday, Jan 5th NBC’s “The Office” – Thursday, Jan 5th CBS’s “Love Monkey” – Tuesday, Jan 17th CBS’s “The New Adventures of Old

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The RCA Dome blows

I was reading this entry from the Indy Star blog’s “In Touch” section where people are arguing over increasing taxes and building a new Colts stadium. I had reservations about a new stadium, too, until we went to a Colts game earlier in the season. I discovered at the game that the RCA Dome blows

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Brokeback Mountain does well at box office

According to the Associated Press, Brokeback Moutain is doing well at the box office in limited release, and may appeal to audiences in wide release as well. The movie is playing here at Keystone Art Cinemas at the Keystone at the Crossing mall. We’re planning on seeing it this evening…

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2006 Library Booksale Schedule

Courtesy my friend Melissa, here’s the schedule for the library sales in 2006. Not that I need any more books than I already have. That has to be one of my New Years Resolutions: no buying books other than for Book Club. Holy crap! They have an online zShop at Amazon.com, too.

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The “Where Should I live?” quiz

Rowhouse ‘Hood You scored 32 out of 40 on urban-rural and 24 out of 40 land intensity. People know you as: The Bohemian Gentrifier Quote: “That crack house just needed a little paint.” Your score indicates that you are a city-dweller of the old-school. You like a dense, finely grained neighborhood with restaurants, churches and

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Indiana Bill Watch

If you’re at all curious about the Indiana State Legislature, you may find the Bill Watch section of the state’s website interesting. It posts text of the bills that are currently being considered in the State legislature. You can also search for particular bills if you know the number if them, and do keyword searches.

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What I Read in 2005 (51 Titles)

I’m going to change around a bit how I record the books I’ve read. This coming year, I’ll log titles by doing a short blog entry about them, instead of doing a running list as I have in years past.

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blowing up commuter trains, weddings, and churches?

Really? When did this happen? In Crawford, Texas, where Bush is spending the holidays, his spokesman, Trent Duffy, defended what he called a “limited program.” “This is not about monitoring phone calls designed to arrange Little League practice or what to bring to a potluck dinner,” he told reporters. “These are designed to monitor calls

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Gourmet Amigurumi

I’ve mentioned before Gourmet Amigurumi, the business run by Beth Doherty that makes great crochet animal dolls. I had Beth make this figure skating monkey for Christmas for Stephanie… along with a monkey for me, too. If you look at Beth’s Flickr photos of her work, she’s got some really amazing dolls. She just recently

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New Yorker Article on P. L. Travers

New Yorker article discusses how much author P. L. Travers dislike the movie version of her Mary Poppins book, even though it made her rich. In examining some details about Travers’ life, it become evident that the movie seems to have an opposite message from the one she may have intended.

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My 2005 Christmas Loot

Everyone’s blogging about how wonderful it was to spend time with their friends and family. I could do that, but I talk about how great they are all the time. Instead, here’s a list of the cool stuff they got me, because they are awesome. (I still have to exchange presents with my friends Dan

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A Christmas Tradition is Born

Author Unknown One particular Christmas season a long time ago, Santa was getting ready for his annual trip … but there were problems everywhere. Four of his elves got sick, and the trainee elves did not produce the toys as fast as the regular ones so Santa was beginning to feel the pressure of being

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ACLU Announces Lawsuit against Santa Claus

by David Bibb CHICAGO – The American CivilLiberties Union announced today that it was bringing a lawsuit against Santa Claus for violations of the civil rights of children. An ACLU spokesman, Mr. E. Scrooge stated that, "Mr. Claus has been violating children’s right to privacy and has been putting that information in a vast database.

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Christmas Fruitcake Recipe

Author Unknown You’ll need the following: 1 C water 1 C sugar 4 large eggs 2 C dried fruit 1 tsp. baking soda 1 tsp. salt 1 C brown sugar lemon juice nuts 1 FULL bottle of your favorite whiskey (Sample the whiskey to check for quality). Take a large bowl. Check the whiskey again

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Cool Cologne Poster by eBoy

eBoy is an artist who makes lots of interesting “pixel art” drawings and posters. He recently produced this one of the city of Cologne, Germany that really rocks. I visited this city in 1997 when I went to Europe to see my friend Cate. If you look at the row of colored buildings on the

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Current Music Videos

My niece pointed this site out to me last weekend at my Dad’s house: Codesandlyrics.com let’s you see current music videos, listen to the music, and grab code to embed the videos into your site. While there, I discoved the video for the song Laffy Taffy, which explains why this page on my site has

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Brokeback Mountain opens Wednesday, Dec. 28th

Due to the large box-office success in its limited run, the movie Brokeback Mountain will open in Indianapolis on Wednesday, December 28th at the Keystone Arts Cinema, rather than the originally scheduled mid-January release date. Who wants to go? Stephanie and I are seeing it…

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Motorola RAZR Phone

I got a Motorola RAZR phone last night. Stephanie and I upgraded our phones together on a family plan with Cingular, so we could call each other for free any time. She’s had the same phone for over four years, and she really needed to upgrade, so we did it together to save money. So

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Time on Two Crosses–The Collected Writings of Bayard Rustin

My friend Marti passed along this quote from Bayard Rustin, who was a friend of Martin Luther King’s, and who worked alongside him during the civil rights movement: “Indeed, if you want to know whether today people believe in democracy, if you want to know whether they are true democrats, if you want to know

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Movies I Need to See (or see again)

Movies that I’ve never seen, or need to see again because it’s been a long time. 2001: A Space Odyssey “The 400 Blows” (1959) Francois Truffaut “8 1/2” (1963) Federico Fellini A Bout de Souffle A Room With a View A Streetcar Named Desire (1951) Aguirre: The Wrath of God Around the World in 80

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Chairman Mao’s Little Red Book

I heard this report first that a student from UMass Dartmouth had received a visit from the Department of Homeland Security after reserving a copy of Mao Tse-Tung’s “Little Red Book” of quotes through inter-library loan. My initial impulse was to buy a copy of the book to see what would happen. Thankfully, I didn’t,

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Inherit The Wind

I happened to catch the 1960 screenplay of Inherit The Wind on Showtime this afternoon, and was blown away. I wish I had recorded it, because it’s extraordinarily timely. I’m guessing that a lot of other people haven’t seen it either. [grin]

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The Dynamic of a Bush Scandal: How the Spying Story Will Unfold (and Fade)

Sadly, Peter Daou’s analysis of the current spying scandal, in the context of the numerous other impeachable offenses the president has committed, is entirely correct. Bush commits a crime, the media fumbles the story, the Republicans front for him, the Democrats back down, the public gets confused, and eventually the story fades and the crimes

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Either Or And Why? #4

From belicove.com: Sugar or Splenda? Sugar, after hearing Elizabeth’s brother talk about Splenda at Thanksgiving. Paper Clips or Staples? Staples, unless I have to separate the pages later. Fish or Birds? Fish. Window Shades or Window Blinds? Curtains, then blinds, then shades. Online Bill Pay or Mail Them a Check? Online. Mountain Bike, Road Bike/Cruiser?

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Weird text at the bottom of a spam email

A spam message I received this morning had this text at the bottom. I wonder where it came from? I’m guessing from the stuff I’ve seen in the past that they grab text from a website somewhere and insert it into their spam. Exactly! roared Sykes. And do you believe Johnny St. Jay would willingly

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Cool bumperstickers and magnets

I clicked through an ad from my site to the Pro-Democrat Progressive Anti-Right Wing Products and had a fun time looking around, so I thought I’d give them an extra plug. I loved their flag bedecked ribbon magnet that says “Just pretend it’s all okay” and the “F the President” sticker designed like the “W”

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Absolute Power corrupts absolutely

Obsidian wings has some commentary: September 11 started the war. When will it end? Maybe never. Where is the battlefield? The entire world, including the United States. Who is an enemy combatant? Anyone the President says is an enemy combatant, including a U.S. citizen–no need for a charge, no need for a trial, no need

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Goth Embroidery (and pirates, and monkeys!)

Sublime Stitching‘s site says, “This ain’t you gramma’s embroidery!” And they’re quite right. With patterns for everything from tikis, sushi bars, goth patterns, mexican wrestlers, pirates and monkeys, they make a really boring craft into something fun and hip. Well, okay, about as hip as embroidery can get, anyway.

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Bomb Threat at the City-County building

People were evacuated from the City-County building today at 12:20 due to a phoned in bomb threat. Hmm. I’m guessing people are a little upset at last night’s city-county council meeting.

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Local FBI spying on vegan groups

In another article about the domestic spying on left-wing organizations, this time from the New York Times, the article mentions in passing: One F.B.I. document indicates that agents in Indianapolis planned to conduct surveillance as part of a “Vegan Community Project.” Wow. If they’re spying on vegetarians in Indy, what do you think they’re doing

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Prop 622 passed, 15-14

Proposition 622 passed at the City-Council this evening, 15-14. My councilor, Patrice Abduallah voted for the ordinance. And we’re on the fox news at 10 again. I’m very tired, and I’m going to bed.

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If you can’t maim them, Auntie Mame them

Mame Dennis: Well, now, uh, read me all the words you don’t understand. Patrick Dennis: Libido, inferiority complex, stinko, blotto, free love, bathtub gin, monkey glands, Karl Marx… is he one of the Marx Brothers? Patrick Dennis: …Neurotic, heterosexual… Mame Dennis: Oh, my my my my, what an eager little mind. [takes the list] Mame

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I have a cold

This is one of those completely self-involved, totally uninteresting to anyone but me posts… I have a bad cold. I’m a human snot factory right now, and I have cold shivers. Fortunately I’m on vacation this week, and I was planning on hanging about the house anyway. But this sort of takes some of the

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Belief-O-Matic

I discovered this via my friend Mikal… Belief.net has an interesting quiz on personal beliefs about faith and religion.. Here’s how I stack up: 1. Neo-Pagan (100%) 2. Unitarian Universalism (96%) 3. Liberal Quakers (88%) 4. New Age (87%) 5. Mahayana Buddhism (86%) See how the rest of my beliefs stack up below the jump…

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People outside of Indianapolis coming here to tell us how to live

One of the things that needs to be pointed out about Proposition 622 is that many of the people opposing it don’t live in Indianapolis and wouldn’t be affected by it. For example, in today’s Indy Star, there are several letters from people opposing this ordinance. One of them is from Eric Miller, the director

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I’m blogging because Fox 59 News is filming me right now

The News came to talk to us about Proposition 622, and I’m doing an action shot right now where they’re filming me at the computer, so I have do something. So I’m writing this blog entry. Say hi to the news!! I’ll be on Fox 59 news tomorrow night at 10 p.m., so don’t forget

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Bush Illegally spies on US Citizens

According to the New York Times, and later also reported by the Washington Post: Bush Secretly Lifted Some Limits on Spying in U.S. After 9/11, Officials Say Months after the Sept. 11 attacks, President Bush secretly authorized the National Security Agency to eavesdrop on Americans and others inside the United States to search for evidence

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All I Want

All I want to do with my life is to go to work, work hard all day, come home, and sit down with my dog and my girlfriend and read some books. And then later, take a walk around the block. Why is it I can’t seem to make that happen? Why does everything always

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Hate Crime Legislation: A Respectful Response to Common Assertions

I had this article on my site a few years ago while the State legislature was debating the hate crimes legislation. It was written by Chris Douglas. I’m re-posting it because he needed to find it again, and because it’s an informative and well-written piece. It’s quite long, though, so I’m putting the body of

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Cute Overload

Cute Overload is a site devoted entirely to posting pictures of cute animals. Like this, for example: I’m thinking of sending them the movies of my dog humping his favorite pillow. That’ll show ’em.

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Weekly Grocery Lists for Ennis Del Mar and Jack Twist, Summer 1962

WEEK ONE Beans Bacon Coffee Whiskey WEEK TWO Beans Ham Coffee Whiskey WEEK THREE Beans Bacon Coffee Whiskey K-Y WEEK FOUR Beans Pancetta Coffee (espresso grind) Whiskey 2 tubes K-Y WEEK FIVE Fresh fava beans Jasmine rice Prosciutto, approx. 8 ounces, thinly sliced Medallions of veal Porcini mushrooms 1/2 pint of heavy whipping cream 1

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Penguin Books is Podcasting “A Christmas Carol”

Penguin is podcasting Dicken’s A Christmas Carol in serial form, beginning today. You can download the mp3, link to the files via RSS, or get them from iTunes. I tried the direct download, but I’m having trouble getting it to start. Looks like they have a lot of traffic.

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New Year’s Resolution: More Gay Sex

Right-wing “media advocates” Accuracy in Media (AIM) are urging people to “Quit Gay Sex” and promoting a false parallel to news organizations that are urging people to “Quit to Live” smoking. They claim, falsely, that: gay people are in “the dangerous and addictive homosexual lifestyle” and “Life-threatening sexually transmitted diseases among homosexuals are on the

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Communism is an economic structure, not a political one

[link deprecated: http://navywxman.journalspace.com/?cmd=displaycomments&dcid=44&entryid=44] Navywxman is a leftist. [link deprecated: http://odysseus.journalspace.com/?cmd=displaycomments&dcid=211&entryid=211] Odysseus is a right-wing dude. They’ve been having an argument on Navywxman’s space about Communism and fascist states. Navywxman claims that there has never been a true communist state, that they were all run by right-wing governments. Odysseus is disputing that Russia wasn’t a communist

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The difference between “blogs” and sites and pages

Channel 8 news this morning had a news story on about a 25 year old male student teacher from a local high school who has been accused of having an inappropriate sexual relationship with a student. During the course of the story, they show a web page they called his “blog” and mentioned that students

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Oldest Blog Ever

I signed up for Media Matter’s Blog Registration the other day, and the sent me back an e-mail saying I had the oldest blog they’d every seen. (I have entries dating back to 1995). Yup. I’ve been around that long, keeping my journal online, using BBEdit, long before blog software was invented. Most of the

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Under Pressure From KKK, Ford Pulls Ads From Black Media

The Holmes Report is a large corporate communications/PR publication, and the above headline is on an article on their site. Ford is doing a hell of job damaging their brand if this kind of article is showing up in heterosexual corporate publications.

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Melissa Etheridge and other cool stuff

My friend Amy gave me Greatest Hits: The Road Less Traveled by Melissa Etheridge a few weeks ago. I’ve been listening to it, but didn’t get around to paying attention to some of the new tunes on it until this week. There’s a very beautiful song called “This Is Not Goodbye” about going into surgery

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Prop 622 passed out of committee; vote to be Monday

Last night, Proposition 622 to amend the Human Rights ordinance passed out of committee by a vote of 5 to 3. It will be voted on in the full committee in a special session on Monday night. I’ll post details of time and room as soon as I hear them. Here are the undecided councilors

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Bush on the Constitution: ‘It’s just a goddamned piece of paper’

Capitol Hill Blue: GOP leaders told Bush that his hardcore push to renew the more onerous provisions of the act could further alienate conservatives still mad at the President from his botched attempt to nominate White House Counsel Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court. “I don’t give a goddamn,” Bush retorted. “I’m the President and

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Prop 622 information and updates

Your help is needed to get the HRO passed and to stop discrimination. Task #1 – – Contact your City-County Councillor and tell him/her that discrimination is wrong and that they should support the HRO amendment. Write, call, phone or all three –just do it. Find out who your Councillor is by calling 327-4242 or

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City-Council President Steve Talley backs Prop 622

Thanks to the tireless work of Indiana Equality Region 8 (especially Bil Browning, Jerame Davis, Jeff Newman, Seth Kreigh, Gary Welsh and many others including the folks from Greater Indianapolis Fairness Alliance) in getting information and education about anti-gay descrimination to the city-county council, the president of the council, Steve Talley (D) has decided to

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What is my robot name?

2012 Update: Sadly, the meme at cyborg namedecoder seems to be no longer working. But you can generate your own robot nickname over at Rhetorical Ramblings. Mine is “Defensive Suit Gonlion”

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The Chronicles of Narnia Movie

I so wanted to like this movie, because I loved the books as a kid. I re-read the books in 1997 and didn’t enjoy them as much as I had when I was young, but there still was a lot of the magic there, even though some of the story bothered me. But this movie…

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Christmas 2005, so far

I’m way behind in my Christmas obligations this year. I’m not done shopping, which I usually have finished before Thanksgiving. I haven’t got my Christmas cards sent, which I usually have in the mail the Monday after Thanksgiving. I haven’t got my house decorated, which I usually do the first week of December. This year,

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Want a cat? Seriously, it’s cute.

Shithead is a stray kitten that showed up on my girlfriend’s porch last night. He’s currently residing in my bathroom until I can take him (her?) to a shelter. Want a kitten? We’re only calling it shithead because it’s a bit inconvenient right now for us to deal with it. But it’s a very cute,

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You’ll need to tell me more before you get my money

I got a fundraising letter from a local gay organization today (quoted below the jump line) in my inbox today… the kind that drives me absolutely bananas. I’ve written it on my site and on the gayindy.org mailing list dozens of times, and I’ll say it again: this is not enough information for me to

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Either/Or

Courtesy of Mikal Belicove: Books or Magazines? Books. Disneyland or Disney World? Don’t know the difference. Laptop Computer or Desktop Computer? laptop. I like to work all over the house. Chronicles of Narnia or King Kong? Oh, come on. Really. Skateboards or Rollerblades? Skateboards. Robert De Niro or Al Pacino? Neither. House Plants or Gardening?

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Either/Or

I’m catching up on a backlog of Either/Or memes from Mikal… Courtesy of Mikal Belicove: Trampoline or Ping-Pong Table? . Trampoline; more fun due to possibility of injury. Maple or Oak? Maple. Prettier leaves. Thanksgiving or Christmas? Christmas! Strip Mall or Shopping Mall? Shopping. Mornings or Evenings? Mornings. Sunday’s Newspaper Cartoons or Saturday’s Television Cartoons?

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Either Or

Courtesy of Mikal Belicove: Cats or Dogs? I can’t answer: I have both and don’t want to get in trouble at home. Beer or Wine? Beer. Sunday paper: In bed or On the couch? On the couch. Too messy for bed. Baked Potatoes or Mashed Potatoes? Baked; I like the skin Target or Wal-Mart. Normally

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Good and Bad Reasons for Believing

Richard Dawkins letter to his daughter Juliet on good and bad reasons for believing things. The way scientists use evidence to learn about the world is much cleverer and more complicated than I can say in a short letter. But now I want to move on from evidence, which is a good reason for believing

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Great, now I have to buy a new truck

According to the Advocate: The antigay American Family Association claimed a cultural victory on Thursday and called off its threatened boycott of Ford Motor Co. On Friday, Ford spokesman Mike Moran confirmed to Advocate.com that the company will stop advertising its Jaguar and Land Rover brands in gay publications but insisted it was strictly a

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Last night’s City county council meeting about the HRO

Advance Indiana does an excellent job of narrating the action from last night’s city county council meeting, so I won’t duplicate the effort here. If you want to see it for yourself, the committee meeting will be broadcast several times on Channel 16, so haul out your TIVO. I was asked to speak at the

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Here’s a story that terrifies me

This just makes me want to stay home with the doors locked all the time: A 17-year-old girl went to police at the urging of her friends after she was allegedly gang-raped by three men, including her boyfriend. The men testified that the act was consensual. After reviewing all the information and statements, prosecutors decided

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Thomas Jefferson

“Bear in mind this sacred principle, that though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will, to be rightful, must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal laws must protect, and to violate would be oppression.” –Thomas Jefferson: 1st Inaugural, 1801. ME 3:318

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Lost for the Lost

I watch Lost religiously, and I actually picked up a few tidbits of information from this article on the show by Paul Scheer. I didn’t catch that there were six Dharma Initiative science stations around the Island. I didn’t catch the Dharma Initiative logo on the shark, or that ghost Walt was speaking backwards. Ethan

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Training the Iraqi army to do what?

Zbigniew Brzezinski, in an interview with American Prospect makes this incredibly astute observation: I think our course with the Iraqi forces verges on the absurd: It is all about us training them. The question arises: Training them to do what? If it is a matter of knowing how to use a Kalishnikov in order to

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Monday December 5th hearing on amending the HRO

I will be at this meeting. Please, please, please come with me, or meet me there. If you’ve never been to the city-county building, it’s very easy to find parking; just east of the building, where Market Square used to stand is a parking lot that charges 3 dollars. You can park there easily. I’ll

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