Friday Stuff

  • From Dark Roasted Blend: The Art of Extreme Sleeping. Photos of nappers from Japan, to China, to the States, including cats, kids, and Japanese girl students. An incredible photo story.
  • The “crowd-sourced justice” types (thanks to Dave Rogers for the term), may find themselves the target of the laws they advocate. One of the local laws being considered in the state of Missouri (and elsewhere) would hold sites like MySpace, Blogger, and Facebook liable for comments and posts considered ‘threatening’, or a form of harassment. The same would apply to Google, AOL, and Yahoo, for any threats or ‘harassment’ via email.
  • Today marks the anniversary of Pearl Harbor, an event celebrated less and less every year. Wired has a short and wonderfully dispassionate look at the events of the day. On the day before Pearl Harbor, my Dad turned 31 years old. He was a train conductor, somewhere over the midwestern plains. When he heard about Pearl Harbor, he got off at the next stop and immediately signed up–serving in the 82nd Airborne throughout the war. Dad received battlefield commissions, eventually making the rank of Captain. What kind of soldier was he? Well, he greatly admired Bradley, and despised Patton. That should tell you all you need to know. (via 3 Quarks Daily)
  • Discussing his new book, How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, Mark Bittman writes:

    I’m not a vegetarian, and I’m not an advocate of a vegetarian diet; I’m an advocate of Americans eating fewer animal products – less meat, fish, poultry, and dairy. And there are two excellent reasons for this….First off, we eat too much of that stuff for our health; every single responsible, independent, and impartial study shows as much. But they also show that replacing the beef in your diet with potato chips and soda won’t do you any good. You can be a “vegetarian” and still eat plenty of food that’s bad for you.

    Secondly, the production of animal products as food is a major contributor to global warming. See the UN Report entitled Livestock’s Long Shadow … which says, ultimately, that 18 percent of greenhouse gasses are a direct result of the production of animals for human consumption.

    So if you cut back your consumption of animal products significantly, you not only reduce your chances of heart attack and other so-called lifestyle diseases, you reduce your carbon footprint – the impact you have on global warming.

    The concept is not to cut out all meat, but to cut down on the amount of meat we eat. Americans eat far more meat then is needed–especially with diets like Atkins, which are environmentally equivalent to Indonesia’s deforestation . Via Sierra Club Compass.

  • David Lance Goines from Illustration Art:

    I am a competent technician. I give value for value. I am an honest workman, and I do not want people to think that I am a con-man…. therefore I do not call myself an artist. I create flat, representational objects—books, illustrations, posters, stained glass windows, greeting cards, wedding invitations, wine labels–in return for money. I’m glad that people like what I do, because that means that I can go on doing it. I like what I do, and consider it a privilege to be able to make my living doing it. But, I am not, at least in twenty-first century terms, an artist. I’ll leave that to those who have no idea at all of what they do, or who they are, or where they are going, and must, for want of any other word, call themselves artists.

  • From Loren, on Following your Bliss:

    For me, at least, the best reason to spend so much time and money producing a web site is to attract others who share your interests and appreciate your efforts. Such a community has helped me to grow in ways it’s hard to imagine until you’ve actually been part of one. Virtual communities of poets, photographers, philosophers and programmers have enriched my life in ways I would never have imagined before blogging began.

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7 Responses to Friday Stuff

  1. Elaine says:

    I’ve probably mentioned this before, but your dad & my sister have the same birthday. Oddly enough, given your entry, yesterday was her 31st birthday. I have the impression that they are equally ornery, if in vastly different ways.

    And what a lovely quote from Loren.

  2. Bud Gibson says:

    Shelley, reading about your dad reminded me of my wife’s family’s good friend, Berge Avadanian, also a veteran of the 82nd who jumped in Sicily, Naples, D-Day, and Market Garden. We always saw Berge this time of year in a large party my wife’s family held.

    I liked him a lot. He wore his his 82nd airborne pin and looked you directly in the eye when he spoke. A force and a power still when I met him almost 20 years ago, we lost him in 2005 on the anniversary of the D-Day jump.

    We have lost our fathers, and we are become them.

  3. Disclaimer, I am not a lawyer, but you’d have to change FEDERAL law to hold sites liable for user comments and posts. It’s a well-known issue, the key phrase is “Section 230 immunity”. There’s lots of case law now. Basically, it’s not going to change without an enormous fight, and not by state law.

  4. Shelley, you might be interested in Harry Turtledove’s alternate-history novels on Pearl Harbor: ‘Days of Infamy’ and ‘End of the Beginning’.

  5. Shelley says:

    Bud, thank you for that link. Elaine, I think you might have mentioned it once. Odd about her turning 31, considering the story. Wish her Happy Birthday for me.

    This time of year, it’s always a little difficult since Dad died. I get maudlin, and Dad wouldn’t approve ;-)

    Seth, agree, the law is silly. The point is, even at a federal level (and it wouldn’t happen), the only ones impacted with the recent Meiers/Drew story are those harassing Lori Drew.

    Michael, thank you for that recommendation. I’ll check them out at the library.

  6. You’re welcome Shelley. I like pretty much everything by HT, but so much of his work is part of enormous, sprawling series, that it’s hard to recommend them to people. These two books are a self-contained duology. If you like them, I can point you at further self-contained (or short series) works of his that I liked.

  7. Bud Gibson says:

    Shelley, we’re at a point of generational passing. The comfort is that that generation lives on through us as your father so clearly does through you.

    Have you considered non-tech writing? A memoir might be an appropriate way to start.