Mixed Bag Special

Posted in Miscellaneous, Mixed Bag Special, Pop Culture on September 17th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

:: I’m backed up answering e-mails, and checking out web sites and articles of possible interest.

:: This Scientific American article discusses the Six Degrees of Separation theory, suggested by sociologist Stanley Milgram in 1967. The project at Columbia U is called Small World, and you can participate if you like.

:: Michael Moore‘s new book, Dude, Where’s My Country?, is due out on October 3rd. Hot on the heels of Al Franken‘s Lies and The Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look At The Right, the book is sure to continue to tick off the right and get them dutifully steamed. Franken, of course, was sued by Fox for using the expression,”fair and balanced” in the subtitle of his book. Interesting that Moore’s book title is a play on the movie, Dude, Where’s My Car?, which happens to be a Fox production. Lawsuit, anyone? Franken’s publisher, Penguin, moved up the launch date of his book from mid-September to late August, in hopes that the publicity and fallout from the lawsuit might help sales. Duh. The book opened at #1 on the NYTimes Best-Seller List, and remains there to this day.

It’s an interesting time, where we are seeing more books from the left attacking the right. Also out there are Joe Conason’s Big Lies: The Right-Wing Propaganda Machine and How It Distorts the Truth, and Eric Alterman’s What Liberal Media? The Truth About Bias and the News, among many other titles.

:: While it appears this site may no longer be updated, check out The Useless Pages.

Various and Sundry

Posted in Mixed Bag Special on May 2nd 2003 by Randy Reichardt

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:: This Scotsman thinks we should “stop the blooming blogging“.

:: Remember the corporate greed-mongers at Enron? The US federal prosecutors certainly do!

:: I am so looking forward to seeing A Mighty Wind, and am pleased to see that it is scoring high praise from the critics.

Various and Sundry

Posted in Mixed Bag Special on April 24th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

:: As I type this, the rink announcer in Dallas just announced, “Last minute of play, in the 7th period.” The game between the Dallas Stars and the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim is now the fourth longest in NHL history.

:: What the hey? All this stuff was found in Uday’s Pleasure Palace?

:: Interested in RSS? Read’s Geoff’s piece, then check out this list of RSS Readers.

:: Many of the states in the USA are in deep financial trouble. In Missouri, the governor ordered every third lightbulb unscrewed to save money. (May require registration.)

:: “Is this the dawning of the age of hysteria?” You be the judge.

:: From the Sunday 20 April 2003 NYTimes: “THE RETURN OF SEATTLE Out of the ashes of grunge, Seattle rock has risen again, with bands like the Chromatics, Blood Brothers, Akimbo, Minus the Bear and Pretty Girls Make Graves. Most make a post-punk fracas of harcore, metal-indie-rock, occasional dashes of electronica and T-shirts that are two sizes too small.” (Neil Strauss, Section 2, p24.)

:: In the 8th period (5th overtime), Anaheim won the game.

(Cobalt) Blue Mood

Posted in Mixed Bag Special on April 24th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

¦¦ Those who know me know that I physically warm up easily. That is to say, my body needs to be around cooler air to feel comfortable at the best of times. I hate long sleeve shirts, I always feel too warm in them. Two weeks ago it was still cold in Edmonton – tonight, at 12:20 am MDT, it’s 15C (60F) outside, and I’m in my home, feeling too warm already, and it’s only April. This seems to be getting worse every year. The bedroom fan is back in business.

¦¦ Geoff sent this link about the tourism industry in Toronto getting hammered because of the SARS scare. The World Health Organization has advised travellers to postpone all but essential travel to Toronto. This warning does not bode well for the forthcoming joint Canadian Library Association/American Library Association Conference, to be held in Toronto, 19th-25th of June, 2003. 20,000 attendees are expected. The City of Toronto is working hard to assure visitors that the risk of contracting SARS when visiting is extremely low.

¦¦ PLEASE go to this entry on Tonya’s site, and look at EVERY photograph of these properties in Santa Fe NM. I want to go there now. I want the one with the porch light at dusk. I like this bedroom, and want this or this in my backyard, and this in my bathroom, and this for a workspace.

¦¦ I’m getting bored with the layout of my website again. Don’t know what to do to change it, but I don’t have the energy to do much at this time. Hell, I should be asleep now as it is.

¦¦ Moveable Type has announced the forthcoming launch of TypePad. More details are here.

¦¦ I saw someone today who made my world a better place for a little while.

All Over The Place

Posted in Mixed Bag Special, Music, Pop Culture, Random Thoughts on April 18th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

¦¦ I just finished a workout, 30 minutes on the cross-trainer, and it felt excrutiating. But upon returning home, the sun has just appeared, and that feels so nice.

¦¦ Here’s a fascinating proposal: A barn-raising for civilization.

¦¦ I’ve never played a round of golf, but like millions of Canadians last weekend, I was thrilled when Mike Weir won the Masters. It was a nice diversion from the rest of the world’s woes, and a morale boost for the country. Nice to also hear that he’s made the cover of Sports Illustrated.

¦¦ This is interesting: QuickTopic, a service which allows users to create their own one-topic bulleting boards/group discussion space. Also offered is a service called Quick Doc Review, to allow collaborative review of HTML or Word documents.

¦¦ What Liberal Media?, sez Eric Alterman.

¦¦ Another Canadian band worth supporting: The Boomers, led by Ian Thomas, brother of Dave (SCTV) Thomas, and a Canadian music icon in his own right. Here is a good, concise “omni” of their musical output to date. Their newest album is called Midway. Thomas’s lyrics focus on love, life, and getting older, and the music is laid-back but intricate and multi-layered.

Bits and Pieces

Posted in Film, Mixed Bag Special, Observations, Pop Culture on March 27th 2003 by Randy Reichardt

¦¦ Yesterday in Sydney, Australia, there was a huge protest against the war in Iraq. A participant videotaped some of the march, it’s mostly raw footage with some short interviews interspersed throughout. (Note: an ad plays before you can watch the video.)

¦¦ The only film nominated in one of the major Oscar categories that I did not see in 2002 was Y Tu Mama Tambien. I hope to rectify that soon. In the meantime, read this fascinating short interview with the director, Alfonso Cuarón, from last Sunday’s NYT Magazine. Chances are you won’t guess what film he’s now directing.

¦¦ On March 25th in Toronto, Paul Cellucci, the US Ambassador to Canada, spanked our national ass and sent us to bed without supper.

¦¦ The Book-Film-TV-Video Critiquees are the awards voted on by members of Blogcritics (of which I am one – but didn’t vote, this happened before I was invited to join.)

¦¦ Many reviews of the Oscars have been written this week, and my favorite was in Michael Musto’s column in The Village Voice. His take on Jennifer Connelly is too good.

¦¦ “Should Celebrity Activists Shut Up for Now?” This piece appeared on Salon.com, and is “reprinted” on Bill Maher’s site, featuring interviews with two of my favorite entertainers, Maher, and Janeane Garofalo. (I saw both of them in NYC in November 2002)

¦¦ Did you hear that the Boeing 777 carrying Tony Blair to the USA to meet with Dubya was struck by lightning? A message from God, perhaps?