Happy Valentine’s Day

Filed under:Music — posted by Anwyn on February 14, 2008 @ 7:50 am

Probably the only Beatles song I actually really like, as opposed to just “Yeah, that’s the Beatles.” This version is by Ben Taylor, who looks a little scary but sounds so much like his dad that you could close your eyes and wonder at times which one it is.

And speaking of James and closing your eyes:

Rally ‘Round the Flags

Filed under:History,Photoblogging — posted by Anwyn on February 12, 2008 @ 11:09 am

Flags at Fort Sumter. Plus park ranger:

Plus moon:

Plus honor (the flag that was flying when Beauregard opened fire on the fort, which Major Anderson later had hauled down and carried away when his men were permitted to march out):

Just plus–from left to right, an earlier version of the American flag, the first Confederate flag, the South Carolina flag, the current American flag, the second Confederate flag, and an earlier American flag:

Did New Line Bother to Pay *Anyone?*

Filed under:Movies,Not Cool,Tolkien — posted by Anwyn on February 11, 2008 @ 6:35 pm

First Peter Jackson sues for his cut of Lord of the Rings, now the (!) Tolkien Estate.

“The Tolkien trustees do not file lawsuits lightly, and have tried unsuccessfully to resolve their claims out of court,” Steven Maier, an attorney for the Tolkien estate based in Britain, said in a statement. “New Line has not paid the plaintiffs even one penny of its contractual share of gross receipts despite the billions of dollars of gross revenue generated by these wildly successful motion pictures.”

Maier also claims the film studio has blocked the Tolkien estate and the other plaintiffs from auditing the receipts of the last two films.

An Ugly Game of Chicken

Filed under:Politics,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on February 10, 2008 @ 8:37 am

SeeDub has laid out the best possible case for McCain to “come to Jesus” (not in the Huckabee sense) on amesty, McCain-Feingold, and all the other anathema positions he’s taken. Read it all because it’s a model of clarity, but summarized, it’s like this: 1) McCain will do what he must to win the war. Hillary or Obama will do what they must to end our involvement in the war, however ignominiously. 2) McCain needs the conservative base in order to get elected. 3) Therefore McCain should recant a few of his nastier positions and jettison a few of his rabid amesty supporters in order to get our support, win the election, and win the war.

As I said in SeeDub’s comments, McCain should read the post, but there are a couple things wrong with it. 1) It assumes McCain doesn’t need only partial support of the conservative base to win. Out of three Democrats I know personally, one says he will still vote for Hillary if it’s Clinton v. McCain; the second says “probably Hillary” but it’s a harder call and she’s somewhat on the fence (interestingly, she cited McCain’s intention to make permanent the Bush tax cuts and Hillary’s Bill-shaped baggage, both as disincentives for each, but never mentioned the war at all). The third said he would vote for McCain. That’s 1.5 out of three Democrats, an unrepresentative sample to be sure, but the best I can do out of my limited Democrat acquaintance. How much conservative support does McCain actually need? Coulter says that given a choice between the Democrat and a Democrat, Democrats will always vote for the Democrat, and in the main I agree with her (a fourth Democrat of my acquaintance, not asked about the 2008 scenario, has said that he would have considered voting McCain in an earlier election had the choice been available. Considered being the most viable word, I think, and I do suspect that my friend #2 will vote Hillary when push comes to shove), but a significant number will most likely break the other way. How many? is the question.

2) SeeDub is saying that to continue to be an honorable war hero, McCain must consider that winning the election by meeting conservatives partway is just as much his duty as winning the war after election. But if we count on McCain to see it that way, then we ourselves are saying we’d rather lose the war than vote McCain. Not honorable in the least. I know that it’s not time to have to make such a declaration yet, that it won’t be time until November, that SeeDub advocates not saying which way we’ll break until McCain makes a few moves himself–which is still very good advice. But I’m a basically transparent girl, sometimes too honest for my own good, I’ve been told, so I can’t help pointing out, even at risk (if too many people write and speak as I am now) of making McCain think himself secure without cutting right on at least a few issues, that this scenario makes an issue of only McCain’s honor, not ours. Think about your own while you’re counting on McCain to save his, is all I’m saying.

It’s unfortunate that this election looks likely to come down to a very ugly game of chicken. McCain can stop it with a few steps towards the blank space between his positions (and his insults, which he can stuff in his and his staff’s ears, frankly) and those of many conservatives. I hope we can count on him to start walkin’.


Filed under:Movies,Television — posted by Anwyn on February 9, 2008 @ 9:49 pm

Off-track topic. Bear with me here. You ever see a show or movie in which a man took steps to turn himself into a woman–or already had taken them–in which that person was played by a man? Where the woman was supposed to be serious and believable, that is, not obviously a man in drag.

Because if it’s so realistic that men can do this, why are they so frequently (always, in the ones I’ve seen or can think of off the top of my head–Veronica Mars S1-03, Ally McBeal, Transamerica) played by women?

CPAC Blogger of the Year–Speech! Speech!

Filed under:Blogging,Cool,Politics — posted by Anwyn @ 7:13 pm

Ace invokes the Reagan in all of us.

Good News, Bad News

Filed under:Television — posted by Anwyn @ 7:11 pm

The strike is nearly over.

Chuck will not return until fall.

NBC, stop the insanity! Even Smallville is going to shoot new episodes, for pete’s sake. Of course, if they didn’t I doubt CW could continue to exist as a network, but still–all my available viewing hours will now be given to your rivals. Faugh.


Filed under:Jerks,Not Cool,Politics — posted by Anwyn @ 3:18 pm

Kansas, what is your problem? Are you located too close to Iowa?

This is what comes of too many people dropping out before all the primaries have been run.


Filed under:Cool,Photoblogging — posted by Anwyn @ 8:22 am

There’s nothing like going someplace, taking a batch of pictures, then seeing pictures of several of the same subjects turn up on the blog of a pro photographer. Makes me think I’m somewhat on the right track in improving my shots. Charleston, South Carolina:


Filed under:Blogging,Cool — posted by Anwyn on February 8, 2008 @ 2:24 pm

Ace wins Blogger of the Year at CPAC.


I seriously considered going to CPAC, but decided what I really wanted was a few days of wandering D.C. at my own pace, looking at stuff both in and out of museums, rather than listening to political speeches. But if I’d known Ace would speak … I’d have been right there.

Congratulations, Ace!

Quote of the Day

Filed under:Heh,It's My Life — posted by Anwyn on February 7, 2008 @ 2:53 pm

Or, Memo to George Lucas on Another Symmetrically Designed Female Hairstyle Featuring Oddly Shaped Monuments Over the Ears.

Son, lifting a handful of hair on each side of my face up until they look like pointy wings or scythe blades: “You look like Yoda!”

That Didn’t Take Long

Filed under:Politics,Sad — posted by Anwyn @ 11:11 am

What, a week since Slublog made me that cool Romney button?

Yesterday in History. In Indiana.

Filed under:Heh,History — posted by Anwyn on February 6, 2008 @ 2:23 pm

Or, Where’s Waldo? He’s back in time saving the legislators of Indiana from signing a piece of mathematical ignorance into law.

1897: Egged on by an amateur mathematician, the Indiana General Assembly almost passes a bill adopting 3.2 as the exact value of pi (or π). Only the intervention of a Purdue University mathematician who happens to be visiting the legislature prevents the bill from becoming law, saving the most acute political embarrassment.

I love Indiana. And I love Purdue. And Indiana loves Purdue. Now you see one reason why. I wonder if the Purdue guys weighed in on the whole Daylight Savings Time thing, either when Indiana refused to go on it or when they mandated it and then tried to split the state into a few different chunks based on what large out-of-state city each chunk was closest to. If you can make sense of all that, be my guest. I pretty much keep track of what time it is where my parents live and don’t bother with the rest.

But back to Purdue. Ever heard the Engineers’ Cheer? The correct value of pi (or the beginning of it, at least) is built right into the sports at Purdue:

E to the X, DY, DX
E to the X, DX
Cosine, secant, tangent, sine
Three point one four one five nine
Cube root, square root, BTU
Slipstick, slide rule, GO! PURDUE!

Via Instapundit.

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image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace