Thursday, October 31, 2002

Missive from my wife in the Ukraine:

''And then, Oleg was fucking me from behind while Evalina sucked my tits. My mouth being free, I asked, 'What is it like, being the first generation not raised under communist rule?' Between thrusts Oleg told me, 'It is hard, but we are learning. I would like to have a car some day.'''

It's going to be a hell of a book, if you ask me.

A French tourist got so fed up with having her chest wanded by airport security in the USA that she took off her shirt and bra to demonstrate her bomb-and-boxcutter-free chestular region. The airport was closed for 10 minutes. Under the USAPATRIOT Act, she faces up to three years in jail. Here is the weirdly translated Babelfish link.

Wednesday, October 30, 2002

Look--it's the New Economy in our classrooms!

For-Profit U.S. Schools Sell Off Their Textbooks

Dot-com dorms...old ideas that don't die, bit's good to see them in colleges, where the obsessive hours and freakish schedules make more sense.

Monday, October 28, 2002

Thursday, October 24, 2002


Offered Free Shipping to North Korea

Under pressure from U.S. diplomats, Internet retailing giant admitted today that it sold nuclear missiles and other weapons of mass destruction in an effort to prop up its sagging bottom line.

While it had been widely known that Amazon had branched out into such non-book items as automobiles and patio furniture in recent years, the revelation that it was selling nuclear weapons still came as something of a shock.

The United States made the discovery about Amazon's foray into international weapons dealing almost by accident, sources say.

A U.S. diplomat attempting to buy "Dance Upon The Air," a book by best-selling author Nora Roberts, noticed under the "Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought" section the ominous phrase "Fissionable Nuclear Material."

Clicking on that link, the official soon found an entire section of the Amazon site devoted to weapons of mass destruction, including a "Favorites" list authored by Iraqi strongman Saddam Hussein.

Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, admitted late this afternoon that Amazon had indeed been selling weapons of mass destruction to various rogue states in order to offset losses from disappointing sales of the new Rod Stewart CD.

Mr. Bezos acknowledged that his company had even offered free shipping in order to induce North Korea to buy a nuclear weapons system from Amazon, and a "two for one" discount if they added a biological weapons plant to their order, but he promised that such practices would be discontinued.

"From now on, if rogue states want to buy weapons of mass destruction, they're going to have to go on eBay," Mr. Bezos said.

Wednesday, October 16, 2002

Saddam's campaign theme song is Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You," Somehow I doubt that he's paying royalties...I'd like to see the RIAA working on that issue.

Monday, October 14, 2002

Directions to J. D. Salinger's house and how to send him a letter.
Yes kids, now we have LIVE NUDE CATS

A review of the new book Slack, which posits that companies should keep workers 70% busy--that way they are happier, healthier and able to respond to unexpected challenges with some wiggle room.

Sunday, October 13, 2002

Thursday, October 10, 2002

An article in Fortune explores the long-term damage the dot-com bust has done to Generation X. Here's an excerpt:

No generation since the Depression has been set up for failure like this. Everything the dot-com boom delivered has been taken away--and then some. Real wages are falling, wealth continues to shift from younger to older, and education costs are surging. Worse yet, for some Gen Xers, their peak earning years are behind them. Buried in college and credit card debt, a lot of them won't be able to catch up as they approach their prime spending years.

Give it a read.

Comic Sans is the President of Shitty Fonts.

Times New Roman is the Vice-President.

Wednesday, October 09, 2002

Man dies after playing computer games non-stop.

Idiocy of the highest order. At a conference on racism, all the white people are expelled.
A frank discussion on the future of the TiVo. I have to agree with the author's sentiments, though I think that the prospects for bundling the service with existing cable providers makes a hell of a lot of sense, and could save their bacon pretty handily.

i also think it is interesting that Microsoft's mouthpiece, SLATE, does an article about the impending death of TiVo, and the foolish fate of any company that innovates. Meanwhile, even the article asserts that MSFT intends to enter the DVR field with their own XBOX add-ons.

Gabriel Garcia Marquez learned in 1999 that he had lymphatic cancer. He promptly cloistered himself with a single-minded pursuit not seen perhaps since he wrote the 1967 masterpiece, "One Hundred Years of Solitude," in a little more than a year, his only vice a steady supply of cigarettes provided by his wife, Mercedes. Interesting article, and I hope that were I to receive similar news, my reaction would be to buckle down and get to work. I fear that instead I would eat a lot of tacos and play too much PS2.

My only consolation is that in the depths of the night I know Marquez sits in his house, lit only by the blue television screen and playing Grand Theft Auto after a long day of writing.
Eggers new book gets a polite whipping from the NYT.
The new Miss America had meetings yesterday with Attorney General John Ashcroft. Whaaaa? As a nation prepares for war? Why?

I think he's just beside himself that one of the young lady's statements makes clear that she feels that sexual promiscuity is directly linked to violence...apparently, women are bringing abuse down on themselves. I suppose this will be part of the exciting ANTI-WHORE OF BABYLON platform Ashcroft has been backing as a lifestyle choice.

Bush 2002: It's smells like Reagan 1982 without the comfort of sincerity.

Monday, October 07, 2002

So, what is the strangest part of this story: the priapic man who dresses as a Sumerian god-figure while he attempts to have sex with 20 women, the impromptu exclamations of the jaded onlookers or the walls of the set disintegrating around the publicly copulating record-breakers? I don't know either, but it is really quite odd.
Update: Still in pain, but we seem to be winning the war over here. I am growing very weary of the walls of my apartment.

Sunday, October 06, 2002

I am suffering under one of the worst toothaches I have ever experienced, and I've had more than a few in my time--this one is truly the Mother Of All Toothaches. It started early in the week, shortly after my return from Maine, has gained momentum, swelled and now has engulfed my life entirely.

I dislike dentists, but I dislike unbearable pain a hell of a lot more, and I know when I've been beaten. I went in for treatment today, and as a consequence am now composing this entry under enough Vicadin to kill a small camel.

Hopefully once the penicillin kicks in and knocks this out I will emerge triumphant, reborn and blissfully which point my life will resume, and the quality and quantity of this blog should improve.

Now I must take my stoned self to the couch, and watch THE MARY KAY STORY the way it was meant to be watched.

Saturday, October 05, 2002

Exchange emails through a handshake. The future keeps smacking us in the back of the head.

Friday, October 04, 2002

Marvelous stuff from the marvelous Cat and Girl. I saw this strip's creator perform a PowerPoint animated slideshow at the latest Little Gray Book lecture where I spoke, in Williamsburg.

Thursday, October 03, 2002

With no end in sight, the market dropped for the sixth consecutive week. We are now trading at the same level we were in 1996, effectively erasing the dot-com era, and making it clearer and clearer that those days are almost like another age entirely.

Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear to be bright. Until you hear them speak.

Wednesday, October 02, 2002

My friend Oliver turned me on to a remarkable article on Lawrence Lessig in the L.A. Times...trully remarkable stuff, and a great overview of the information war that is already upon us. Naturally the L.A. Times wants personal information and you must login to get to the story: just use the log/pass: thewhale/understands.

It's rare that you read a story of someone fighting a good fight for an unknown cause, and even rarer that it seems that person may actually make a difference--while at the same time, it's these small battles that make all the difference in this life. I really thought this article makes a wonderful introduction to topics every citizen on the Net should be aware of.

More on the trip to Maine and assorted issues soon, as I catch up.

Tuesday, October 01, 2002

My good friend John is making an important life decision, and since we live in the virtual world now, it's suddenly a semi-public event. Chime in if you have some advice for him.