August Rambling: Deep dark secrets

I wrote this blog post about my ambivalence about blogging on the Times Union website.

The Hook-Up Culture Is Getting 20-Somethings Nowhere. On the other hand, Casual Love.

How we get through life every day.

Nixon’s still the one. And What We Lost 40 Years Ago When Nixon Resigned. See Harry Shearer recreate Richard Nixon as he preps and delivers his resignation speech. Plus George Will Confirms Nixon’s Vietnam Treason.

New Zealand’s non-partisan Get Out the Vote campaign. I don’t see such things often in the US. Sure, there’s get our SUPPORTERS to vote, but that’s a different animal.

Deep Dark Fears is “a series of comics exploring those intimate, personal fears that mostly stem from your imagination getting darkly carried away.” Read more about it.

Rod Serling’s closing remarks from The Obsolete Man episode of The Twilight Zone. “It remains profoundly prescient and relevant.”

All these in a 48-hour period: How games’ lazy storytelling uses rape and violence against women as wallpaper and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) has come forward with several stories of being called “chubby,” “fat,” and “porky” by her male colleagues in Congress and Fark prohibits misogyny in new addition to moderator guidelines and Snappy response to sexist harasser in the tech field.

Modern Office with Christina Hendricks.

FLOWCHART: Should You Catcall Her?

Guns and The Rule of Intended Consequences.

What our nightly views might look like if planets, instead of our moon, orbited Earth.

Cartoon: Pinocchio, Inc.

Remember when I wrote about flooding in Albany this month? Dan explains the systemic reason WHY it happened.

Arthur makes the case against “the case against time zones.” I’m not feeling the abolition of time zones either, at this point.

Nōtan: Dark and Light principles of Design.

The jungle gym as math tool.

The disaster drafts for professional sports.

The Procrastination Doom Loop—and How to Break It.

One of my favorite movie quotes, maybe because it’s so meta: “That’s part of your problem: you haven’t seen enough movies. All of life’s riddles are answered in the movies.” (Grand Canyon, 1991)

Seriously, Rebecca Jade, the first niece, is in about four different groups, in a variety of genres. Here’s The Soultones cover band – Promo video. Plus a link to her latest release, Galaxy, with Jaz Williams.

Tosy’s U2, ranked 40-31 and 30-21.

Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? Paul McCartney and Heather Mills, 2004.

August 22, 1969: The Beatles’ Final Photo Shoot

Coverville 1043: The Elvis Costello Cover Story III, in honor of him turning 60.

4 chairs, 4 women; 4 women, no chairs.

12 billion light-years from the edge. A funny bit!

Don Pardo, R.I.P..

Lauren Bacall: always the life of the party. And cinema icon of Hollywood’s golden age, 1924-2014. A Dustbury recollection.

More Robin Williams: on ‘cowardice’ and compassion. Also, a Dan Meth drawing and Aladdin’s Broadway cast gave a him beautiful tribute. Plus, a meeting of Yarmy’s Army and Ulysses.

Jaquandor remembers little Quinn. Damn middle recording made me cry.

The Wellington Hotel Annex in Albany, N.Y. was… murdered in plain sight in front of hundreds of onlookers. “If I were a building, this is how I’d like to go.” Here’s another view.

SamuraiFrog’s Muppet jamboree: C is for Clodhoppers and D Is for Delbert (who evolved) and E is for Eric the Parrot and F is for a Fraggle and G Is for the Gogolala Jubilee Jugband.

New SCRABBLE words. Word Up has identified some of the new three-letter words.

I SO don’t care: one space or two after the period. Here’s a third choice.

The ultimate word on that “digital natives” crap.

Whatever Happened to the Metric System?

Freedom from fear.

Ever wondered what those books behind the glass doors of the cupboard might be thinking or feeling?

The New Yorker thinks Yankovic is weirdly popular.

Here’s a nice Billy Joel story.

Pop songs as sonnets.

House of Clerks, a parody of House of Cards.

Saturday Night Live Political Secrets Revealed.

This Sergio Aragonés masterpiece is included as a fold-out poster within Inside Mad. His priceless gift to all Mad fans shows over six decades of Mad contributors and ephemera within a mish-mash of Mad office walls. The only thing missing in this beautiful mess is a key. Doug Gilford will be attempting to label everything you see with brief (pop-up) descriptions and links to pertinent pages…

Hello Kitty is not a cat. You may have known that; somehow, I missed it.

You May Have Something Extremely Valuable Hiding In Your Change.

Improved names for everyday things


I wrote this blog post about my ambivalence about blogging on the Times Union website. J. Eric Smith, who used to be a TU blogger, responds at length.

SamuraiFrog responds to my response to 16 Habits of Sensitive People. Also, per moi, he does his #1 songs on his birthday: 1987-1996 and 1997-2006, and 2007-2013. I’ll go back to this myself, eventually.

Dustbury on the theme song to My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, which a passage in Schutte’s Mass resembles more than slightly. He discovers a Singapore McDonalds product.

Jaquandor answers my questions about vices such as swearing and politics/American exceptionalism.

He also writes of buckets and the dumping of the water therein, which Gordon thinks hurts nonprofits. Snopes, BTW, debunks the claim that 73 percent of donations to the ALS Association fund executive salaries and overhead.

Do you know that ABC Wednesday meme I mention with a great amount of regularity? I think this recent introduction I wrote explains it fairly well.

J is for Just large enough, and Jupiter

My father painted, right on the ceiling in my room, the solar system!

When we were growing up, we lived on the first floor of a small two-story house, which was owned by my maternal grandmother; my paternal grandparents lived upstairs. On our floor was the master bedroom and kitchen in the back; the parlor, bathroom, and another bedroom in the middle; and the living room in the front.

I had two younger sisters, so they eventually slept in bunk beds in the second bedroom. To make a room for me, my father built a wall in the parlor that ran from the kitchen entrance about 2/3 of the way into the room, then another wall at a 90-degree angle from the first, leaving about an entrance to my room the size of a standard door, though I did not actually HAVE a door. Then he built a solid piece of wood – think one large shelf – held up by the two new walls and the existing wall to serve as the frame for my “bed”. On top of that was actually a foam mattress.

I did have room for my stuff under the bed, including a very low dresser. Around the corner was my bookcase, filled with my Golden Book Encyclopedias, my World Almanac, and other books.

In one of those books was a description of the solar system, and it gave relative sizes of the sun and the planets. The sun was a beach ball, Jupiter was a grapefruit; I forget the rest. So my father painted, right on the ceiling in my room, the solar system! This huge sun, and the various planets, including their known moons at the time. I specifically remember that according to the book: Jupiter had 12, Saturn 9, Neptune 5, Uranus and Mars 2 apiece, Earth and Pluto, 1 each.

And since the walls my father built didn’t go to the ceiling – there was a single ceiling light that illuminated the parlor, now essentially a hallway, and my room – anyone coming to visit us who came into the kitchen or bathroom was likely to see at least this massive star on the ceiling.

Incidentally, my father painted on the walls a lot. In my sisters’ room, there was a very good Tinker Bell and the head of Felix the Cat. In the living room, on one wall, was a stark snowy mountain scene. On the other was a marketplace in Europe done in the style, as I think back on it, of Monet.

Oh, yeah, Jupiter, named after the Roman god. It now has over 50 satellites; some may actually be asteroids, pulled in by the planet’s massive gravitational force. It appears that Jupiter has lost a stripe fairly recently, having something to do with dissipating gases. From a NASA Voyager recording, you can actually hear Jupiter. The planet 11 times the size of Earth was, on September 20, 2010, only 368 million miles away, as close as it will get for 12 years.


Jupiter’s Two Largest Storms Nearly Collide, storms larger than the diameter of the planet Earth (Credit & Copyright: Travis Rector (U. Alaska), Chad Trujillo (Caltech), et al., Gemini Obs., AURA, NSF)

ABC Wednesday – Round 7

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