Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Adventures in Leaving the First Paragraph Out

Take the hare, for instance. This example exemplifies exactly what I've been trying to explain. Not the rabbit. The rabbit doesn't work. The hare, though--think about it. I thought of the Air Force (as opposed to the Marines), but then I realized--as you probably did--that it doesn't quite work. The hare is lyrical, but the Air Force is spherical. It is qualitatively different. Twenty thousand Air Forces wouldn't equal one hare; nor would twenty million. It's in the hare's gait, whereas the Air Force does not have a gait. (An Air Force base has a gate, but not a gait.)

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Orwell on Spring

From "Some Thoughts on the Common Toad":

Before the swallow, before the daffodil, and not much later than the snowdrop, the common toad salutes the coming of spring after his own fashion, which is to emerge from a hole in the ground, where he has lain bruied since the previous autumn, and crawl as rapidly as possible towards the nearest suitable patch of water. Something--some kind of shudder in the earth, or perhaps merely a rise of a few degrees in the temperature--has told him that it is time to wake up.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

NCAA Top 25

NCAA Top 25 Euphemisms...

...found in press statements on the Duke Athletics website for the incident during which a stripper reported she was held down, strangled, raped and sodomized by members of the Duke lacrosse team at a March 13 party

1. “this incident” (4)

2. “the current situation” (2)

3. “the Lacrosse Situation” (2)

4. “the controversy involving the men’s lacrosse team”

5. “the latest developments involving the men’s lacrosse program”

6. “behavior that is inconsistent with what is expected of a Duke student”

7. “this case”

8. “the episode”

9. “this episode”

11. “these questions”

12. “the lacrosse team incident of March 13/14th

13. “the party of March 13”

14. “allegations against members of the Duke lacrosse team stemming from the party on the evening of March 13”

15. “this troubled time”

16. “the challenges before us”

17. “the issue that is troubling our community”

18. “the events now rocking our community”

19. “the challenges our community faces”

20. “the immediate situation and these wider challenges”

21. “the legal situation involving team members”

22. “the allegations against the team associated with March 13”

23. “the acts the police are investigating”

24. “the March 13/14th episode involving members of the lacrosse team”

25. “what happened”

sensory overload

Things I saw and heard today:

A laboratory full of bagged cadavers.
An adorable black bunny rabbit. On a leash.
An even cuter song with the following lyrics: Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!! Puppies!!

I'll let you know about my dreams tomorrow morning.

Monday, April 03, 2006


A knock on my door at 9:22 a.m. I open, expecting it to be my super--he's supposed to fix a leak in my ceiling. But it's a young, fresh-faced guy with a sheepish smile.

"Are you against HIV?" he asks.


"Do you have any condoms?"

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Condoleeza Rice, pianist

One insight into why the Bush administration botched America's first fully improvised war.

Kaplan Well what about just playing with abandon and disregarding all that tidiness, organization, discipline and just going for it?

Rice Well, one reason that I love Brahms and Mozart is one can't play with abandon. You have to be pretty disciplined. I'm one of those people now if you put it in front of me, I can read it. But if you ask me to play it by ear or with improvisation, I have much harder time, so I guess I'm tidy and disciplined even when I'm playing the piano.

Bill Clinton never looked cooler.

via About Last Night

Saturday, March 25, 2006

generational obits

Dice and baseball, two Max Mannings,
One is a Negro pitcher.
One is a bullet catcher.
Both reside at the side of their maker,
And in the Bronx,
One of the two who took their places honks.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Why cigarettes are so great/will kill you...

...by Emily Flake.