28 February 2010


This has been a very enjoyable Olympics, highlighted by the strong showing by the U.S. team. Apparently this came despite, not because of, the U.S. Olympic Committee.

An example of success coming without the once-considered-essential bureaucracy? Very American.

SPOTD #164

No phrase today, as I'm tired and this has been a particularly low-ouput month for the SPOTD.

How books used to be made.

Science Bummer
It turns out that traveling at warp speed would be hazardous to your health. Like, you would die.

There is a new application for soundwaves, as it is hoped they can be used to treat strokes. This is a tremendous possibility, as it would eliminate the need for dangerous and invasive procedures.

Here are some highlights from the International Toyfair.

Unusual Airports
This is an interesting look at some of the most unusual airports in the world.

Link of the Day
One (expensive) way of taking home movies... in the old days.

27 February 2010

Not so Carnival

I don't really know that much about Brazil's domestic situation. I know a little about the president, the nation's impressive oil and natural gas resources, and some of the cultural aspects, and have long had good friends from Brazil.

I was shocked by the photo accompanying this article, which may not be unique to Brazil. The article describes areas of Rio that are ruled by juvenile criminal elements.

Awesome Video Saturday CXXIV

I don't know much about this guy. I saw this video on Facebook. I think this guy has something going. Could start a trend.

He reminds me of Mr. Bean.

21 February 2010

Mission Accomplished

I thought this was a great post by blogger and Iraq War veteran David Bellavia. The conflict in Iraq has become largely forgotten news. Soon combat troops will leave. The name of U.S. operations there is changing as major combat operations cease.

It is an amazing accomplishment, considering everything that has happened in the last 7 years.

I'm grateful for the blood and sweat expended on behalf of our country, and I hope we remember the efforts of everyone who's served there.

20 February 2010

Awesome Video Saturday CXXIII

This was a great demonstration of the ubiquitousness of the greenscreen in TV and film. I consider myself a discerning judge of the real and fake in Hollywood and I was shocked to see some of the "real" backdrops.

Very cool.

17 February 2010


I used to watch a lot of figure skating...with my mom. She loves to watch it, and while growing up watching the Winter Olympics meant watching figure skating.

I rarely watch it these days, but I found these articles by Jim Caple pretty amusing. This one is extolling the virtues of the sport, and this one considers the role that costumes play in the competition.

13 February 2010

Awesome Video Saturday CXXII

Here is a neat little widget that will allow you to relive Super Bowl glory, commercially.

09 February 2010

Missing the Message

I thought this article was an interesting take on a fairly weak slate of Superbowl ads. I had planned to write more on the subject, but haven't had much time lately.

My favorite? The Letterman-Leno ad.

My least favorite? Audi's implicit approval of civil rights abuse with their "Green Police" ad.

08 February 2010

Winners Again

I was pulling for the Colts (I always root for the AFC), but I didn't mind that the Saints won the game. They certainly earned it.

I was happy that several Hurricanes, Jeremy Shockey & Jonathan Vilma, were able to win their first rings, especially as both had difficult periods in their career up to this point.

Dave Barry has a nice little column on the game.

03 February 2010

Above the Fray

I haven't commented here on President Obama's inappropriately direct criticism of the Supreme Court in his State of the Union. Clarence Thomas, who said that he does not like to attend given the partisan natures of the State of the Union address, defended the Court's recent decision involving corporate giving to political campaigns. This New York Times article has an excerpt. Particularly interesting is this bit of historical context for some of the overturned legislation, a 1907 law which restricted corporate giving in campaigns:

He added that the history of Congressional regulation of corporate involvement in politics had a dark side, pointing to the Tillman Act, which banned corporate contributions to federal candidates in 1907.
“Go back and read why Tillman introduced that legislation,” Justice Thomas said, referring to Senator Benjamin Tillman. “Tillman was from South Carolina, and as I hear the story he was concerned that the corporations, Republican corporations, were favorable toward blacks and he felt that there was a need to regulate them.”
It is thus a mistake, the justice said, to applaud the regulation of corporate speech as “some sort of beatific action.”

01 February 2010

No More Pretense?

Chavez is increasing the intensity of his attacks on those opposed to his policies.

Referring to nationwide civil protests—led by university students—he warned the country Thursday that if they "intensify" he is ready to take "radical measures."

Our government has done a shameful job of standing up for democratic ideals in the hemisphere, appeasing Chavez instead of roundly criticizing him for his actions. The article linked to above, by the WSJ's O'Grady, explains Chavez' predicament, a combination of situations that is very dangerous when someone like him is in charge.