3.31.2005

Requiescat in pace, Mitch Hedberg... He made me laugh until I cried.
Now here's a cool thing - a watch that monitors your sleep pattern and wakes you up at the most optimal time. Definitely a neat gadget.

3.30.2005

Penny Construction Project: Creations built entirely out of pennies. No glue, no additional support of any kind. Really neat. (And a good band name.)

3.29.2005

Cool new MRI application.
Good ol' McSweeney's: Lyrics to the Billy Joel song "We Didn't Start the Fire" if they were written by a muskrat instead of by Billy Joel.
Funny CNN headline: Laura Bush Making Unannounced Trip to Afghanistan
Um...so much for unannounced, there, CNN.

3.28.2005

Gee, this is great. There's a law on the books to prevent collection agencies from defaulting active-duty military personnel (or their spouses) on loans, mortgages, etc. while said personnel are deployed. The problem is, there are a fair number of judges who don't know the law exists, so they've been phenomenally screwing people who are supposed to be protected. Good job, folks.
NCAA+NCLB = Harrison Bergeron? (you'll have to read to the end of the list)

1. All teams must advance to the Sweet 16, and all will win the championship. If a team does not win the championship, they will be on probation until they are the champions, and coaches will be held accountable.

2. All kids will be expected to have the same basketball skills at the same time and in the same conditions. No exceptions will be made for interest in basketball, a desire to perform athletically, or genetic abilities or disabilities. ALL KIDS WILL PLAY BASKETBALL AT A PROFICIENT LEVEL.

3.26.2005

This morning while walking to the convenience store at Caltech, I saw an really old fat white guy walking a tiny little dog. He was wearing a FUBU sweater.

3.25.2005

A completely fascinating piece on This American Life, tonight. In the mid 80's, Jello Biafra was prosecuted in Los Angeles for obscenity by ADA Michael Guarino. The prosecution failed, and eventually, the Guarino dude left the DA's office and has come to like Jello. They spoke, in this piece. It was pretty cool.

3.24.2005

I like dried cranberries, but craisins are disgusting. The concept is great, but the consistency is all wrong, and I accidentally got the cherry flavored kind... ugh.
More animal blogging...this is totally wacky. There's a small species of octopus that can do this funky two-limbed tiptoe thing. Definitely check out the video clips (requires QuickTime).
Apparently, elephants have now been added to the list of animals that can vocally mimic. Pretty funny.
Here's an interesting NYT article about a problem with urban development that I hadn't really considered:
"Portland is a great city that attracts a lot of educated people. But the real estate is becoming outrageously expensive. And then you get wealthy singles and wealthy retirees. What's missing are kids."
School enrollment in Portland has apparently decreased by 10,000 kids in the last decade, and there are currently more dogs than children in San Francisco.

3.23.2005

Target tops wedding registries. Interesting- bed linens and bath towels are the most common items registered for both first-time wedders and repeat offenders.The average wedding gift rings up at about $130, while the average shower gift is roughly $60. Crazy.

3.18.2005

Ahh, Susan's kind mother:
CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) - An Oregon State football had a stolen sheep in the bed of his pickup when he was pulled over for speeding last week, Benton County authorities said.
That's some alma mater. Ba-dum dum!
The members of the King of Kings Skateboard Ministries team "do not skate for adulation or even for the thrill of catching big air. They skate for Jesus."

3.16.2005

Oh man. I would have killed to have been able to do this when I was a kid.

3.14.2005

Sick cat

Loki, the evil cat that lives with us, developed a stricture in his urethra a week we took him to his vet. After a week, his vet for some reason did not get back to us about his urinalysis (we took him in last week because he was spending a lot of time at the litterbox to little effect). So yesterday we took him to the emergency animal clinic and they had to catheterize the poor bastard to allow him to eliminate liquid waste.
Damn our regular vet (with whom Loki will be staying for the next few days).

3.10.2005

Okay, this is just ridiculously amusing.

3.09.2005

Your Honor, the prosecution rests, doggone it.
Some Stanford research profs are working on producing mice that have brains made up of 100% human cells. Fascinating work, but some of the potential ramifications are a wee bit creepy.
There is growing unease over whether human stem cells could migrate to other parts of the animals, creating human sperm or eggs in their reproductive systems. Should two such "chimera mice" mate, it could lead to the nightmarish scenario of a human embryo trapped in a mouse's womb.

3.08.2005

Useful Latin phrases for everyday life. (via Geekpress) Magister mundi sum!
Soon, they'll change the name from "Afghanistan" to "Arrakis," and from "heroin" to "spice." (Referring to Frank Herbert's Dune, wherein a planet called Arrakis is the source of a potent drug (spice) used throughout the universe, supplying great power to whomever controls Arrakis. Like Afghanistan, only with no competitors. And magic. And interstellar space travel. And giant sand worms.)

3.07.2005



"Excuse me, Mr. Bolton, but we're not taking your picture for the new Got Milk? ad until after the press conference..."

3.03.2005

Hehe. Dinosaurs have problems, too.
Trying to schedule my candidacy exam. I have 75% of my committee members on board... getting so close. Currently it looks like April 4-10. Wish me luck in herding four cats.

Update: Zero hour: April 6th, 3:30pm.
Hey...how'd my cat get to New York?