Betsy Devine: Funny ha-ha and/or funny peculiar

Making trouble today for a better tomorrow…

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Entries from March 2005

The blog….is out there!

March 30th, 2005 · Comments Off on The blog….is out there!

Fox Mulder has a blog?

Oh sure, try to tell me it’s David Duchovny who has a blog…

That’s what they want you to think. X-Files fanatics will be more suspicious…

In fact, what if “This whole phenomena is a mystery wrapped in an enigma wrapped in a government agenda“?

via Susan Mernit

Tags: Learn to write funny

Gandalf, Emma, and (in a post script) Eeyore

March 28th, 2005 · Comments Off on Gandalf, Emma, and (in a post script) Eeyore

Character test: can you stop reading halfway through this list?

It’s a collection of favorite literary characters* as chosen by “100 literary luminaries” (one of whom is Terry Pratchett, who liked Flashman).

Abandon restraint and dive into the list (Anne Elliott … Phillip Marlowe … the Cat in the Hat …) , enjoying the tiny blurb that goes with each choice and being reminded of your own special favorites.

Bonus list: an even-more enjoyable collection of
favorite characters sent in by indignant readers. Bonus surprise: the name of a blog superstar, who turns out to share said name with a Graham Greene policeman.

* Via Jason Kottke’s linkblog.

Tags: Learn to write good

Enjoyable load of Taurus

March 24th, 2005 · Comments Off on Enjoyable load of Taurus

Don’t tell George Bush, but Frank Wilczek now seems to be famous in France, according to Google. A French astrological website specializing in famous people (including not only “scientifiques” but also “sex symboles”) has posted Frank’s astrological birth chart.

People who share Frank’s May 15 birthday, according to their list of notable Tauri, include twins Madeleine Allbright and Trini Lopez, both born in 1937–and, among many others, Socrates (466 BCE)!

Back to earth for a moment–Wikipedia has Socrates’s date of birth as June 4, 470 BCE, and the Encyclopedia Britannica isn’t even sure about the year, but what do I care?

It’s more fun to picture Socrates as Frank’s astrological alter ego. And helping people believe what they want to believe has kept astrologers in business for many, many cycles of Sun and Moon.

Tags: Life, the universe, and everything

De canem nil nisi bonum

March 23rd, 2005 · Comments Off on De canem nil nisi bonum

On Monday, our little born-in-1988 dog Marianne–well, I’m not up to blogging much, so I’ll quote you some email I sent to Frank…

After you left this morning, I got Marianne cleaned up and took her out for some spring air. She just wanted to go home, however–she was drooping. She lay in her basket panting and whimpering. The vet examined her carefully and told me she couldn’t figure out just what to do next. She said that Marianne’s pain patch was already the best option they have for a dog in such discomfort.

So she gave Marianne a strong sedative that made her fall peacefully asleep while I sat with her on the floor patting her. Then the vet injected an overdose of anesthesia and listened for Marianne’s heartbeat. Then it was over. They let me stay by myself with Marianne for a while. Then I left her there and went home and phoned the girls. Marianne has been part of all our lives for a very long time.

I feel very sad about having to make this decision. But I do also feel I made the right decision. Marianne trusted me to take care of her, to protect her, to love her. And she was right to trust me, because I did all those things.

I miss you, Marianne.

MarianneMini: West Highland terrier named Marianne Dashwood<br />“></div>
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Republicans “get” viral marketing in blogs

March 21st, 2005 · Comments Off on Republicans “get” viral marketing in blogs


first and only entry in this “blog”

via Frank Paynter

Tags: Editorial

Misterblogger’s neighborhood

March 20th, 2005 · Comments Off on Misterblogger’s neighborhood

Hey, get your own blog-neighborhood map* from Feed Map. I just got mine

I found this toy via Scoble, who has 100 bloggers in his Redmond neighborhood–but according to BlogMap we’ve got only 36 in the Boston area?

Now just a dad-blamed minute…

Steve Garfield (“no ordinary blogger”) is here, but where is Halley? Where is Lisa Williams? Where are the other 8 zillion bloggers I know here?
Where, for that matter, is the super-famous and hyper-local David Weinberger?

Still, I shouldn’t complain–BlogMap is a brand-new work in progress. Furthermore, it did introduce me to one local blogger who deserves lots more readers: Ben Brophy of MIT.

* On a much bigger blog-mapping scale, I liked the
WorldKit by Mikel Maron — here, for example, is Phil Wilson’s UK blogger map.

Tags: Metablogging

Go to Harvard, learn to love the Mac: “It just works!”

March 20th, 2005 · Comments Off on Go to Harvard, learn to love the Mac: “It just works!”

Mac fanatics rejoice–the future is ours! According to the March 18 Harvard Crimson, one of the things you learn as a student at Harvard is that Macs are better than PCs. The article cites a whole lot of reasons why–even more impressive are the numbers:

  • In the fall of their freshman year, only 9% of the class of 2005 owned Macs.
  • By the fall of their senior year, 21% of those students owned a Mac.
  • Of the new computers purchased this year at Harvard, 32% were Macs.

I’m not sure what this means for the future of our planet, but you have to admit that news of the opposite sign would be depressing.

Thanks to Zoe of greenpass for pointing me to this story!

Tags: Life, the universe, and everything

The big Mideast question ought to be “Now what?”

March 19th, 2005 · Comments Off on The big Mideast question ought to be “Now what?”

What’s going on in the Mideast now, and what should we now do about it? I’m sick of the sanitized (or uglified) spin each side creates to justify its own two-years-ago position.

If anyone could, Jeff Jarvis could lead both sides to a truce on “there-weren’t-any-WMDs” or “yeah-but-Saddam-tortured-people.” Such pointless debates just polarize people who need to be working together. Because what happens next in the Mideast is going to matter to every one of us, and to my children as well as to your children.

Oh yeah, I didn’t quite live up to this standard in my most recent blogpost. But I’m planning to do much better in the future!

Tags: Editorial

March 19 and democracy in the Middle East

March 19th, 2005 · Comments Off on March 19 and democracy in the Middle East

Two years ago today, US troops and others invaded Iraq. Today protestors mark that two-year anniversary.

The Bush backers, having long since given up on finding weapons of mass destruction, now claim that invasion was right because…insert their current justification here. A few months ago, it was right because Saddam was evil. Now it is right because democracy is spreading.

March 19 marks another anniversary. On March 19, 1951, the democratically elected government of Iran nationalized oil production. A CIA-led coup followed swiftly, replacing Iran’s elected leadership with the Shah’s autocratic rule–thereby setting the stage for the religious and nationalist backlash that gave the world Ayatollah Khomeini.

Democracy in the Middle East? Great idea! But as Russell Mokhibar and Robert Weissman point out, “We Had a Democracy Once, But You Crushed It.”

Tags: Editorial

When is Tori better than Dostoevsky?

March 18th, 2005 · Comments Off on When is Tori better than Dostoevsky?

Tori” is much, much better than “Dostoevsky” as input to this great new vanity author’s tool….

Thanks to one of the world’s most modest and charming authors– AKMA — for the link!

Tags: Life, the universe, and everything