May 2005 Archives

Vacation's Over. Everybody Back On Your Heads.

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I decided to take a few days off the daily blog-slog. I'm working on a Memorial Day weekend post, but, frankly, once you get past the wheelchair+golf cart chariot race and breaking into an electrical box in order to light the field for Night Jarts, it's pretty thin.

Anyway, look for a White Trash Wednesday post tomorrow.

I have told you before - if you attack a cop with your car, expect to get your ass shot:

(Angola-May 24) -- An Indiana State Police trooper who was being dragged by his arm after a routine traffic stop shot a motorist Tuesday.

State police say Trooper Andy Smith pulled two vehicles over at a rural intersection in Steuben County after he apparently saw them recklessly passing other cars in excess of 90 miles an hour.

Police say the driver of the first vehicle never hesitated when Smith ordered him to turn his car off. But they say when he approached the second one, a gray pickup, Clayton Bolding, 21, began to wrestle with the officer.

Police say Smith reached into the truck to try and turn the vehicle off, but the suspect hit the gas and started dragging the officer. Smith was able to reach his revolver and fired three shots, one of them striking Bolding, who then kept right on driving through the yard and into a red barn.

This is dangerously close to the Secure Undisclosed Location (where, in fact, we will soon be doing what we normally do on Memorial Day weekend), but all my neighbors' whereabouts were accounted for.

Update: I'm going to keep following this story, as details are changing:

Inconsistencies lie in the actions of Senior Trooper Lionel “Andy” Smith and his interactions with Clayton M. Bolding, 21, of Angola, before police say Bolding dragged Smith by his pickup and Smith fired several shots at the truck.

Sgt. Rodger Popplewell, spokesman for the Fort Wayne post, said May 24 that Smith reached into the pickup through the open driver’s door to turn off the engine after Bolding refused to comply with his instructions.

But a document filed in Steuben County Superior Court on Friday states that the vehicle was turned off when Smith opened the door and ordered Bolding to exit the vehicle.

The two tussled when Smith tried to handcuff Bolding and Bolding declared that he would not go to jail, the affidavit said.

. . .

Bolding pulled away and started the truck’s engine, and at the same time, Smith placed his left foot on the brake pedal and grabbed the steering wheel with his left hand, the affidavit said.

But Bolding put the truck in drive, stomped on the accelerator and drove 10 to 15 feet with Smith hanging on, half in and half out of the car, the affidavit said. Smith reached for his service weapon, then released his grip on the steering wheel and managed to get away.

“… At which time he had his gun in hand and fired approximately four rounds toward the vehicle until the vehicle cleared Trooper Smith and he perceived that the vehicle was no longer a threat to his safety,” the affidavit said.

No mention of the initial attempt to arrest was originally made. It's still damn stupid for Bolding to drive away from a state trooper, but it appears that our two subjects have a bit of a history already:

Of the nine times Bolding has received traffic citations in the past several years, Smith pulled him over twice, according to Steuben County court records. In May 2003, Bolding was found guilty of speeding, and in January 2003, Bolding was convicted of unnecessary use of a horn.

Lots of other people have done reviews of RotS that I can't hope to match (in particular, Dave), so I'll settle for the 'seeing stupid little things nobody else sees' thing that I seem to be known for.

Congress? Who said anything about Congress? I thought there was just a Senate; you mean there's a House too?

A strange and maddening juxtaposition of energy weapons and Stone Age-tactics.

Capital ships engaging at a range of what looked like a few hundred yards was tactically idiotic but gave a real 'wooden ships and iron men' feel that I think was Lucas' intent - especially when he showed two ships exchanging broadsides in a fashion strongly reminiscent of 18th century sea combat.

The shock and 'Ah!' of recognition when Bail Organa's ship is first shown.

How does a woman go from 'five months pregnant' to 'full term' in (at most) a couple of weeks? And does the Republic not have ultrasound machines? She's carrying twins and doesn't know it? And Anakin doesn't know it? Apparently you're not part of the Force until you're born...

And speaking of which, nobody dies in childbirth anymore, and don't give me that 'lost her will to live' crap.

Next Up: Graffiti On The Willis Bridge


Fort Wayne has a public art project called Mastodons On Parade, where over 100 local artists painted fiberglass mastodons to celebrate IPFW's 40th anniversary. After an unveiling party on April 30, the mastodons were distributed to various locations throughout Fort Wayne.

And here's where I'm beginning to wonder whether Fort Wayne really is the dumbest city in America, because less than a month later, three of them have been vandalized.

Why? What were you thinking? I'd like to ask the same questions J-G columnist Frank Gray wants to:

I can’t help but wonder exactly who committed the vandalism. If they get caught, I’d like to know. I’d like to put their name in the paper, just so they get credit. I’d like to interview them and ask them exactly why they decided to smash up one of the statues, let them explain exactly what their rationale was.

Were you drunk, or just in a bad mood, or bitter about who you are? Is this something you’d planned pretty carefully so you wouldn’t get caught?

Do you like to destroy things in general, or does it just bother you to see people cooperate in projects like the parade of mastodons? What other things in the city would you like to spoil? What else does the city have that you would like to take away?

The final question would be, where are you going to get the money to replace the mastodon you smashed up? Or will you just agree to buy it when it is auctioned off, promising to be the high bidder?

I should take some comfort in the fact that other cities that have done similar things have had vandalism problems, but that just means we'd have company in the 'Stupid, Stupid, Stupid!' department:

Auburn University in Alabama put tigers around its town, and people stole them.

In Lafayette, pigs were put on display around the town, and the damage to those was so extensive they had to be moved off the streets and into buildings to protect them, said Irene Walters of Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne.

Did Somebody Get The Number Of That Thought?

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A couple of thoughts arrived in my head simultaneously from different directions this morning:

  1. If you zap a guy wearing a bomb belt with a Taser, will the bomb go off?
  2. Why was Anakin's nickname 'Anny' and not 'Ana?'
The resulting collision nearly knocked me off the elliptical machine.

Dangerous Logic leads, CBS News follows. Back on April 10, the Taipei Times had a story on million-dollar mobile homes in Malibu. Two days ago, I did a WTW story on it. Later that night, the CBS Evening News also did.

First Rathergate, then Bob "Every-other-word-is-'uh'" Schieffer, now this. When they're getting scooped by some schmuck who uses Google to find a month-old newspaper article from Taiwan... wow. It doesn't get much lower than that.

Off To See The Emperor

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I'm taking off now to go see Episode 3. I suffered through two crappy prequels to get here; the payoff damn better well be worth it. Hopefully Hayden Christiansen has learned to act in the last three years.

Update: Short answer: yes, it was; yes, he has.

Broadcasting From A Secure Undisclosed Location


I've listened to Bob & Tom for about ten years now, ever since they graduated from being just another Indianapolis morning show to syndicating their show to the rest of Indiana (with affiliates in Fort Wayne, South Bend, and Evansville). Back then, they were pretty Indiana-centric, talking a lot about the Pacers, the Colts, IU, Purdue, Notre Dame, and stuff happening around Indy.

Now that they've gone hugely national, they go to great pains to disguise where they're actually broadcasting from. There was a perfect example of this on yesterday's show, where comedian Ron Pearson is talking about an upcoming appearance with America's Favorite Survivor. Note how Tom squishes him when he's about to mention that Rupert is from Indy.

I'm not a nostalgic guy in general, but sometimes I miss the old B&T days, with bits like "Lord Help Our Colts," "Amish Bell," and "I Can't Drive 465."

Kelly at Time to Lean has some good advice on animal sacrifices (timely, too, as I'm going back to the beach in 21 days and 20 hours (not that I'm counting or anything)):

Of course, being attacked by a shark is a relatively rare phenomenon. However, Yahoo offers up a tidbit of advice when you're near to shark-infested waters. Here's a summary if you're too lazy to read: Don't sacrifice animals in the ocean. Always helpful to remember when engaging in your day-to-day animal sacrifice activities.

We'd better do the chicken sacrifice in the hotel pool instead. I think I'd rather pay extra for filter cleaning than become shark shit.

White Trash Wednesday

I had thought White Trashdom was something we in flyover country had all to ourselves. We make fun of it, but we relish it, because it's people behaving however they want and to hell with what everybody else thinks, and there ain't nuthin' more Murrican than that.

No more. I am saddened to say that White Trash has gone Hollywood:

After making a fortune from his skateboard firm, World Industries, Steve Rocco could have lived anywhere he wanted. He chose Paradise Cove, a woodsy neighborhood on a cliff overlooking the Pacific, where he bought a home for nearly US$500,000 and then spent more than US$1 million replacing it with a Craftsman-style cottage.

But Rocco's place is not exactly on millionaire's row. Paradise Cove is a mobile-home park.

"It's probably the best spot in the Southern California coast," he said.

Trailer parks may conjure images of retirees and low-income families in most of the country, but in Malibu parks that once drew the elderly, working class and bohemian are now being transformed into the new playground for the rich. Here new owners with the means to decorate with marble floors, recessed lighting and Sub-Zero refrigerators are replacing 1970s flat-roof aluminum metal-sided trailers with mobile homes in Craftsman, Cape Cod, Tuscan or Spanish villa styles that come with two-car garages.

It's White Trash Wednesday! Take the whole tour:

I've got to start reading slower. Drudge headlined this link with "Social Worker: Boy Denied Abuse by Michael Jackson", and when I read it I thought "Poor bastard can't catch a break. Now he's being accused of not abusing a kid?"

More Pub We Don't Need

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Great. In addition to being the dumbest city in America and having a city attorney whose conduct in January resembled a drunk driver's to three decimal places (without him even having to answer questions about it), Fort Wayne can now be known as the home of the George Washington impersonator busted with 200,000 child pornography pictures:

A Fort Wayne actor known in several states for his impersonation of George Washington at historical events was sentenced Tuesday to 87 months in federal prison for admitting he had received a digital image of child pornography.

Steven A. Black, 61, of the 200 block of West DeWald Street, made a brief, inaudible statement to U.S. District Court Judge Theresa L. Springmann before she accepted his plea agreement and meted out the recommended sentence.

. . .

According to a plea agreement, Black admitted to receiving one digital picture of a young girl having sex with an adult man. The prosecution told the judge in February that if the case had gone to trial, it would have presented evidence that suggested Black had at least 200,000 images.

Iron Chef: Battle Oxtail

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Theme Ingredient: Oxtail
Iron Chef: Sakai
Challenger: Koji Hosogai, Head Chef, Poisson D'Or, Niigata.
Remarks: Photographer Tenmei Kanoh tasted but didn't judge. Warning: horsemeat (horsefat, actually) in use. Comments based on the Food Network's October 28, 2000 airing of this episode.

Weekend Wrapup

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Nothing really blogworthy by itself this weekend, so let's just roll up a few little things.

Hallelujah! Governor Daniels signed Daylight Saving Time into law, bringing Indiana into the 20th Century only five years after everybody else has entered the 21st (six, actually; we start observing DST next April). Now it's just a matter of whether we go Eastern, Central, or both; frankly, I don't really care which, now that we've gotten rid of Indiana Stupid Time.

The Freedom avoided a letdown after winning the battle of the unbeatens last week, beating Peoria 52-32. I've got a few pictures that I'll be adding later. Also, Sioux City lost again, giving Fort Wayne a two-game lead in the home-field advantage race. Yeah, I know, the season isn't half done yet, but still.

The Komets forced a split at Muskegon after blowing a two-goal lead in Game 1. They now own home-ice advantage in the Colonial Cup finals. If you're an out-of-town reader laughing at my parochialism, bear in mind that the UHL is the second-highest tier of pro hockey being played this year.

Ian is the worst liar in the history of Survivor. Of course, that's an admirable trait in real life, and it's endearing that his integrity was worth enough to him to intentionally forfeit a chance to be in the final two (particularly since Tom made him exactly that offer about ten hours before). I thought for sure he was going to propose to Katie at the reunion show, but it looks like they aren't even dating. Congratulations to Tom, who survived his vulnerable moments, seized control of the game at the end, and had the good sense to pick the thoroughly-unlikeable Katie as his final opponent. Katie, a word of advice: if you crack on everybody but the person you're speaking to, it doesn't take a great deal of intelligence on their part to conclude that at some point when you're talking to someone else, you're cracking on them (I can diagram this out if you need me to). If it weren't for Coby's deep-seated need to stick it to the jock (heh), you wouldn't have gotten any votes at all!

Iron Chef: Battle Tuna

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Theme Ingredient: Tuna
Iron Chef: Kobe
Challenger: Shinya Tasaki, 1995 world champion sommeiler
Remarks: Comments based on Food Network's October 22, 2000 airing of this battle

If I didn't know better, I'd swear that Andrew Gilligan still has a job at the BBC writing headlines. How else would you explain a headline like Iraqi living standards 'plummet', with the clear implication that it's all the US's fault, when compared to the actual text of the article?

In 2004, a year after the fall of Saddam Hussein, some 22,000 households were questioned about their lives.

The study paints a "rather tragic situation of the quality of life", said Iraqi planning minister Barham Saleh.

He blamed the former regime, but the insecurity which has followed its fall is also seen as playing a key role.
. . .
It is highly likely that most households now have a lower real income than almost 25 years ago, said the report, entitled the Iraqi Living Conditions Survey 2004. [emphasis added]

Well, let's see. 25 years before 2004? That would be 1979. What happened in Iraq then? Hm, let me think.

Ah, yes. Now I remember.

Iron Chef: Battle Girls' Festival

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Theme Ingredient: None, really. Clams, kinda. All is explained later.
Iron Chef: Sakai
Challenger: Motohito Kondo, Master Chef, Hifumi, Kamakura
Remarks: Funniest. Battle. Ever. Comments based on Food Network October 15, 2000 airing of this battle.

Short Attention Span Posting

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Distracted by lots of shiny things so far today, and it shows:

The UAE cleverly catches a codeine smuggler using a dastardly new method: her own bloodstream!

A Schneider on Security post about whether showing 'all car bombings, all the time' on the news is the proper way to cover OIF attracts some truly chowderheaded comments:

piglet: He [Tiernan] only wants us to forget that there was no terrorism in Iraq before Bush took the "war on terror" there, and that the terrorists have been able to get huge amounts of explosives because the US army didn't care to guard them.
Since my definition of terrorism includes thugocracies, I would contend that Iraq was under terrorist rule from 1979-2003.
Michael Ahlers: All of this assumes the bombings in Iraq are acts of terrorism in the first place. The attacks seem to be aimed at strategic targets, not those which will impose a huge number of civilian casualties.
Bombs in markets. Coordinated attacks where a IED goes off, then terrorists ambush the first responders. Yeah, sure, strategic. Pull my other leg.

I have found my new favorite website: PETA Kills Animals (H/T doubleplusgood infotainment).

I was going to touch a few other bases, but something shiny just crossed my field of vision so I'd better post this while I'm still thinking about it.

It's A Right Turn To The Airport, So Turn Left


A couple of quick thoughts on last night's TAR finale.

1. FINALLY, they went someplace I've been to; specifically, Potters' Field Park in London:

Potters Field Park, London.  Pit Stop for leg 11 of The Amazing Race 7

The Tower Bridge is in the background (it's NOT the London Bridge, which is several hundred yards upriver to your left, and is just a regular concrete bridge now that the original is in Arizona), the Tower of London is across the Thames just out of the left side of the picture, and just off the right side of the picture is where David Blaine hung out for 40 days in the fall of 2003 (I was there on day 3 of his stunt and didn't know what all the fuss was about until I got to the hotel that evening and saw it on the news - it was still Britain's top story at that time).

2. Once the doors of an airliner are closed and the jetway is pulled back, that flight has DEPARTED. I've never heard of the pilot saying, "Uh, never mind, hook us up again so we can let two more people on." I have to admit that it sure looks suspicious, like the producers bribed American to allow two teams on the first flight so that we wouldn't have a boat race ending, and I say that as someone who really wanted Uchenna and Joyce to win.

Now Hiring; Only "Raven"s Need Apply


White Trash Wednesday

According to Freakonomics, here are the five most popular 'Low-End White Girl Names' in the 1990's:

  1. Amber
  2. Heather
  3. Kayla
  4. Stephanie
  5. Alyssa
What a coincidence: substitute 'Jasmine' for 'Stephanie' and you've got the dancers roster at our local titty bar! Incidentally, but probably not coincidentally, Amber is the name of the model for my WTW logo!

I learned the above while perusing the book at the store (not the part about the dancers), but Slate has an excerpt that discusses the whole baby naming thing in a lot more detail. I especially like this observation:

There is a clear pattern at play: Once a name catches on among high-income, highly educated parents, it starts working its way down the socioeconomic ladder. Amber, Heather, and Stephanie started out as high-end names. For every high-end baby given those names, however, another five lower-income girls received those names within 10 years.
I have also commented on babynaming stupidity here and here.

It's White Trash Wednesday! Take the whole tour:

Iron Chef: Battle Chinese Cabbage


Theme Ingredient: Chinese Cabbage
Iron Chef: Chen
Challenger: Cui Yufen, Head Chef, Han-mei-fang, Tokyo
Remarks: was also used as a reference for this battle, mainly because I lost the second page of my notes. Comments refer to the Food Network 11/11/2000 airing of this battle.

Somebody Has To Win, Even If They Try Not To

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We took a few minutes before the reception Saturday to watch the Kentucky Derby. Of course, by know everybody knows that the winner and second-place horse were both REALLY long shots, but when I saw that the fourth-place horse was another long shot, I started wondering what the superfecta would have paid, and if anybody won it. The answers are, in order, 'over $860K' and 'yes, seven winners':

Hertzog bought one of seven $1 tickets to hit the Kentucky Derby superfecta, which yielded the highest payout in Derby history. Two of the other winning tickets were sold in New Jersey, one each was sold at Philadelphia Park and Suffolk Downs and two others came through clearinghouses in Maine and Nevada, said Churchill Downs spokesman John Asher.

The gigantic payoffs came after 50-1 long shot Giacomo sprang the second biggest upset in Derby history, edging 72-1 longer shot Closing Argument. Afleet Alex, one of the favorites with odds of 4.5-1, finished third. Another long shot, 30-1 Don't Get Mad, was fourth.
And winner Chris Hertzog has a story of his own:
Hertzog figured all was lost as he sifted through the trash at Turf Paradise, frantically searching for his winning Kentucky Derby supefecta ticket. The Phoenix firefighter gave up after two hours, wondering how he could've let $864,253.50 slip away.

''I couldn't believe I lost this once in a lifetime payday,'' the 39-year-old Hertzog said in a statement released through the track on Monday.

According to Turf Paradise, the mutuel clerk who sold him the ticket came to the rescue on Sunday, finding the misplaced slip of paper next to the machine where Hertzog had placed the wager the previous day.

''Don't you just love happy endings?'' Hertzog said.

. . .

Hertzog made 100 $1 bets _ 50 superfectas and 50 trifectas _ all in random computer-generated quick picks. When he thought he'd lost after the Derby, he left the tickets on a table and walked off.

Later, according to Turf Paradise, a track official told mutuel clerk Brenda Reagan that her machine had spit out a superfecta winner. Track owner Jack Simms told Hertzog, but when he returned to the table, the tickets were gone.

''I couldn't believe it,'' he said.

Maintenance crews gathered all the garbage bags in the clubhouse and Hertzog and others picked through them with no luck.

The next day, Reagan noticed two tickets lying next to her machine, according to track officials. One of them was Hertzog's winner.

''When I punched Chris' tickets, there were so many that they bunched up and these two must have fallen on the side,'' she said in a release from the track.

After taxes, Hertzog walked away with over $604,000.

Iron Chef: Battle Bean Sprouts

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Theme Ingredient: Bean Sprouts
Iron Chef: Chen
Challenger: Takeshi Ohkubo, Head Chef of Kinachi China in Ginza
Remarks: $10,000 worth of Daioh sprouts was used. Comments based on the Food Network 12/8/2000 airing of this battle.

Hitch 'Em Up, Move 'Em Out

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The weather was glorious for BB and Mountaineer's wedding on Saturday (alluded to here): upper 70's with sun-and-clouds and a nice breeze. flower_goddess coordinated the event, and (per usual) had everything ready to go by W-10 minutes, including as many official pictures as we (by which I mean 'I') could take without prematurely colocating bride and groom.

Unfortunately, nobody briefed the Justice of the Peace on the importance of punctuality; he arrived at W+10.

Despite the personal satisfaction that would have been derived from reading the Riot Act to a judge (not to mention scoring 2300 Irony Points), we refrained from doing so because it's hard to coordinate a wedding from the county lockup. And this guy didn't look anything like any judge I've ever known: fiftyish with flowing blonde hair and a tanned, weather-worn face that made we wonder whether he'd spent the past thirty years on a longboard off Dana Point. I half-expected him to be wearing board shorts and Tevas under his robe, and for the ceremony to go something like this:

"Sistas and brahs, we're gathered here on this most excellent Saturday afternoon to hook up BB and Mountaineer. BB, do you take Mountaineer to be your dude?"
"Awesome. Mountaineer, do you take BB to be your emma?"
"Righteous. By the power vested in me, I now pronounce you Kahuna and Betty. Surf's up!"
But no. It was a fairly conventional outdoor civil service; the biggest surprise was unfortunate ground conditions that forced BB to abandon her shoes and go barefoot down the aisle (and her dress was long enough that nobody saw it).

The reception was excellent but uneventful by Neighborhood standards; despite the fact that the single police officer originally present was augmented by two compatriots as the night went on, nobody got a bracelet ride (at least as far as I know). We capped things off with the mandatory drunken circle-dance sing-along with 'Friends In Low Places.'

Iron Chef: Battle Lobster

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Theme Ingredient: Lobster
Iron Chef: Sakai
Challenger: Ron Siegel, Master Chef at Charles of San Francisco
Remarks: My comments are based on the October 29, 2000 airing of this episode, so take that into consideration when reading. Sakai was riding a 6-battle winning streak, but he had lost his previous two lobster battles.

Take Your Break, Comrade... Or Else.


If you work at the local GM plant, and you choose to work during your break, your union bretheren won't like it:

General Motors Corp. and UAW Local 2209 are investigating an April 29 complaint that a union member wielded a two-by-four at co-workers who were voluntarily working during their break time at the southwest Allen County plant.

According to a report filed by the Allen County Sheriff’s Department, a witness told responding officers that “there is an ongoing problem” at the plant. “Those that choose to work during their breaks are harassed and intimidated by others who are in the union but do not agree (with) working during breaks,” the report states.

But why would you want to work during your break? Because there's extra money in it!

Working during breaks isn’t new, [president of United Auto Workers Local 2209 Don] Swegman said. When the production line is behind schedule, employees in that area are offered the chance to work during their breaks for overtime pay, which amounts to time and a half.

[GM spokeswoman Pam] Reese said the opportunity to earn extra money varies depending on the production schedule but doesn’t always fall on the same department. Swegman agreed.

The local union president said the company is within the parameters of its contract with the union when it makes such work available. [empahsis added]
It's extra money, the company's cool with it, the union's cool with it. What's not to like?

But some GM workers apparently resent those who choose to work during breaks. Union workers traditionally refer to people who cross picket lines to work as “scabs.” According to the police report, the workers who were intimidating others were calling them “scabs.”
I must have missed the point where the union rank-and-file decided to become communists, because the only possible explanation for this is that they want to punish people who work hard. And speaking of communists,
Catherine Mulder, an assistant professor of labor studies at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, said anytime that many people are working together, tensions will crop up.

“There are going to be personality conflicts,” she said. “It doesn’t seem like a big issue to me. It could happen in grammar school. It could happen anywhere.”

In fact, Mulder said, union shops often have less conflict than non-union shops because members have a sense of solidarity and well-defined work rules meant to ensure that people are treated fairly rather than rewarded based on how much management likes them.
Hey, prof, did you even hear what you said? '[R]ather than rewarded based on how much management likes them?' What about 'punished by their co-workers for trying to excel?'

This is yet another reason why unions have far outgrown their usefulness.

Iron Chef: Battle Banana

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Theme Ingredient: Banana
Iron Chef: Kobe
Challenger: Hironobu Tsujiguchi, chef at Mont St. Clair in Jiyugaoka. Winner of 1998 World Cup of Desserts.
Remarks: $6000 worth of chocolate also used. Kobe's first dessert battle.

I'm getting another batch of fresh hits on my Cod Roe Iron Chef recap, so I think it's time to bring the rest out of the archives. Back in 2000, I wrote about two dozen Iron Chef episode recaps for Pyroto Mountain, a combination trivia/political game and online community. I've haven't played Pyroto for years, but I still have the recaps. I'll be converting them into blog entries over the next few weeks, starting with Battle Banana, which I expect to have later today.

And of course this is as good a time as any to mention my IC parody episode.

Now It Can Be Told

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The Jeopardy method of studying from your notes, where you form questions based on your notes and use them as test prep later, is one facet of the Cornell Notetaking System (I've also written about it here). It also works for most textbooks. Now that the semester's ended, I present the questions I derived from most chapters of CISSP All-in-One Exam Guide, Second Edition by Shon Harris. Out of deference to those readers who don't care about the CISSP exam (and also because it's about 900 questions), I present it below the fold. You can also visit it directly as a text file.

Next Time, Get Tear Gas-Proof Makeup, Fool

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AQ #3 busted in Pakistan:

Pakistan has shared with the United States initial results of its interrogation of reputed al-Qaida No. 3 Abu Farraj al-Libbi, who stayed silent for hours after his capture this week before confessing his identity, an intelligence official said Thursday.

Hey, I thought KSM was the #3 guy. Oh, wait, now I see - it's like the AP rankings: if you lose (get busted), somebody else takes your spot. Anyway, what's with his face?

Did his mascara run or something? And look at his eyes - those are some seriously dead eyes.

H/T INDCBill (as if he needs it). Furthermore, Arthur Cherenkoff has a photo essay demonstrating just how bad pissing off the U.S. can be for your health.

The Latest Thing In Lead-Lined Jockey Shorts


Ever dreaded going to a meeting where you expect to be chewed out? You'll want a pair of these (the link is subscriber-only; the text below is from the print edition):

Marines concerned about injuries to sensitive areas of the body [hee!] may someday have the option of special ballistic protection - as long as they don't mind lugging around more pounds.

The Marine Corps has developed a small number of armored shorts as a potential option to protect Marines in certain jobs from lower torso injuries due to small-arms fire and shrapnel from improvised explosives.

. . .

A batch of the $1,500 armor shorts has been field-tested by turret gunners in Iraq. So far, the feedback is that they may be too heavy to be practical.

The oversized Kevlar shorts are worn over the cammies, covering a Marine from the waist to four to six inches above the knees. Because of their 11.5-pound weight, they include a harness that goes over the shoulders.
Sounds like my hockey pants!

...And The Volvo You Drove In On!

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Ace notes yet another example of the exempt media doing sloppy fact checking when the alleged fact is to their ideological liking, and compares it to the longstanding dilemma of whether to argue with a professor whose politics run counter to yours, or just spew back what s/he wants to hear:

If you had liberal professors in college, you know this for a fact: Yes, you could argue with them when it comes to final exam time. And, if you present a perfectly-argued essay with very few gaps in logic and sufficiently backed up by evidence, they might even give you a good grade.

But they are going to be reading your essay much, much more carefully, and little slips here and there are going to cost you.

On the other hand... if you just parrot back to the professor the crap she was spouting all semester, you can turn in a rather shoddy effort and get an A.

If you're principled, you may have chosen the former course. If you were me, on the other hand, you almost always chose the latter.

In the Fall term of my senior year in college, I took a freshman sociology course. The professor was an unreconstructed Marxist (two of our alleged textbooks were Feminazi Chowderheads Bitching About Capitalism, Vol DCLVI and It's Not About East vs. West, You Capitalist Pig!, and it was clear ten seconds into his first lecture that the cause of every problem the Third World ever had, has, or will ever have is the fault of Ronald Reagan.

Now I had a dilemma. In that lecture hall with me were about two hundred first-term freshmen, their minds empty. Did I dare let this Commie bastard get away with pumping their heads full of shit, thus guaranteeing another generation of clueless activists, or did I just say "Reagan's fault. Okey dokey." and regurgitate all his shit right back at him?

Let's just say I took the Ace approach. I had two other classes that term (one of which was a compiler construction class), I was working 35-40 hours a week, and I just wasn't going to have the time to deconstruct the little Lenin like he deserved.

I had a small slice of revenge at evaluation time, though. I wrote him an evaluation that went something like this:

I will get a 4.0 in this class, but it isn't because I learned anything. I recognized immediately that I could get an easy 4.0 just by parroting back what you wanted to hear, and, frankly, engaging you in classroom debate wouldn't have been worth my time. The hardest part of this whole class was figuring out how to make "It's all Reagan's fault!" fill up two bluebook pages per essay question without making it look like I was repeating myself. You'll never know which of your 'prize pupils' was merely your echo board (hint: there was more than one of us); alternatively, if you find out who I am and give me anything less than a 4.0 as political punishment, I'll be in your department chair's office filing a protest before the envelope with my grade report hits the floor, because I did 4.0 work all term and I can prove it.

White Trash Academy

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'Dja ever wonder where our rural bretheren learned (sorry, 'learnt') their meth-cooking skills? Well, if they're anywhere near Elma, Washington, they could just go to high school and take Recreational Pharmacology 101:

ELMA - A local woman went 'through the roof' when a deputy took his anti-drug message to high school.

She says he showed students how to make methamphetamines, and she has the video to prove it.

Grays Harbor County sheriff's deputy shows class, "And the reaction will start occurring down there and start bubbling up."

It is part chemistry class and part drug enforcement as a member of the Grays Harbor drug task force talks to Elma High School students about making Methamphetamine.

Deputy shows class: "Then you'll have a little bit down at the bottom, the white stuff, and that's your meth."
And this is not a new thing, either:
We [KOMO-TV] showed the same video to Grays Harbor County Undersheriff Rick Scott. He says it's the same demonstration the drug task force has been putting on for several years, but they'll review it.
The Sheriff's department is playing the MacGyver card (being vague on details or leaving a step out, so they don't show millions of viewers exactly how to, say, build a thermonuclear device out of three paperclips and a box of Cream-O-Wheat):
The sheriff's office says they don't give specifics about the recipe . . .
but that has its own problems:
. . . and they emphasize how explosive the process is.
Given that we haven't seen a series of meth lab explosions in Grays Harbor County, it doesn't look like they've created an annual pool of Darwin Award contestants, but still. It's only a matter of time before somebody accidentally figures out how to build a meth bomb.

H/T chain: PunditGuy via Malkin via hubs and spokes via Garfield Ridge.

It's White Trash Wednesday! Take the whole tour:

flower_goddess's birthday party turned out to be a relatively nominal event, especially when compared to the standard of our other Big Four parties (my birthday, Halloween, and Christmas). I mean, nobody was caught by his wife making out with another neighbor's wife, nobody set their hair on fire, we didn't have a front-row seat for a dozen-car police response to a 911 call across the street, and none of Fort Wayne's finest showed up in our driveway. That's not to say that interesting things didn't happen, but they'll be below the fold.

More Blegging

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Astute readers will recognize Thursday's post as a thinly disguised bleg for links; after all, when I first signed on to the Ecosystem as an Insignificant Microbe, I would have loved for a Adorable Little Rodent to link to me out of the blue.

Actually, I'm exercising a little literary license here; when I signed up for the Ecosystem, I was pleasantly surprised to find two Ecosystem sites already linking to me (spankysplace and One Little Victory (now part of Liberty and Pie)).

Without further ado, I introduce the Dangerous Logic Class of May 2005:


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