Tastes Like Chicken

Saturday, February 24, 2001
_Chicken: Impossible
It's entirely possible I am the last person to see this mutant spawn of Chicken Run and Mission: Impossible and The Matrix, as network TV plays a wee role in my life, but since it made me smile I'll point to it:

_Hallucinations are so passe
And LSD with them?

_The Beatles sounded like that because of polution
An examination of the role of industrial polution in the shaping of the Liverpool accent, now noticeable altered by cleaner air.

_Super Vision
Groovy: Applying adaptive optics to laser vision correction to achieve 20/10 vision or better. This technique also improves light/dark contrast, which I have heard is a weakness of current eye surgeries. Two years.

_I finally cave in

Resistance was futile.

_Celebs Missing Fingers
It seems Don Beyer has something going on with the fingers on his right hand, also.

_"Hi. I'm sinking in the water."
The morbidly fascinating story of a woman unable to get out of a car sinking in a canal, and her phone call to 911.

_Man finds rabbits on fire
He didn't even bother to find out if they tasted like chicken.

Friday, February 23, 2001
_The Sopranos Family Tree
HBO shows the right way to use the web in concert with TV, again. This links to a nifty family tree showing all the players and their roles in the mob organization.

But the real reason I blogged this is because I had my own Sopranos moment yesterday when two guys pulled up and tried to sell me some of the boxes and boxes they had in the back of their delivery van for whatever cash I had on me. Nutty.

_Huge Natural Crystals Found in Cave

Not a lot of time, and my PC is gonna be on the move for a LAN party, so I'll probably blow through a ton of links with less commentary than usual.

_Nintendo's 180 Year-Old President Puts the Smack Down On The Games Industry
Nintendo's Curmudgeon In Chief Yamauchi speaks his mind, very directly, on the state of creativity in the games business, and the state of the business itsself.

_Screwed: Catching up with Al Goldstein
When did Al Goldstein turn into Ernest Hemingway:

Whatever the answer, this is a long and interesting interview with Al, who claims that his real goal with Screw magazine has always been political. Read about his court battles, ex-wives, his new chain of brothels, and his thoughts on getting his first Social Security check.

_Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story (1987)
The internet is letting me down. Okay, I can find naked pictures of everyone on the planet except Laura Prepon (grr), but NO ONE has bothered to put "Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story" online in any format? Come on, we've got banned-books weenies in droves, so what is it gonna take for some one to step up to the plate and put this film, by all accounts a banned masterpiece, on the net? It would be everything the internet is supposed to be about: intelectual freedom, sticking it to the man, political commentary, creative expression and resistance to censorship.

There are contemporary descriptions of this 45 minute film here and here, both from the Washington Post.

Update: a reader (got me one!) notes that, like everything else short of a spare kidney, VHS copies can be found at eBay.

Thursday, February 22, 2001
_Doubters Fault Theory Finding Earlier Puberty
Same shit, different month, with yet another go 'round on the panic machine. The hard facts:"[T]he age of onset of menstruation, the only date in the continuum of sexual development for which good data exist, has remained constant for half a century."

Wednesday, February 21, 2001
_Big Iron
What separates the men from the boys when it comes to computers? In these days of gigahertz PC's, what makes a mainframe worth having? Check this out:

Like the POWER4, the Z900 device basically implements two processors on die. But while the extra processor in POWER4 is meant to run independently and increase system throughput, the two processors in Z900 run the same code in lock step and share L1 caches and other logic. Special logic on the chip, called the check point unit, continuously compares the state and computational results of both CPUs. If a mismatch is detected the two processors are halted, the computational state of both is restored from the last saved known good state and the processors restarted.
Now that is hardcore. The main link goes to an interior page of this story, an overview of a recent gathering of microprocessor designers.

_Dr. Menlo Blogs From Space!
The deadly Doctor Menlo and his very funky, not entirely safe for work page, carrying this great nugget currently:

Them's were the Rowhouse Days. "One day," narrated one occupant of that particularly low-rent place I stayed, "there was a gun fight out front. Now, some of the bullets were coming into the hotel, see, so some of our guys got our their guns and began shooting at the bad guys from their windows. The police got on the bullhorn and said, 'Will everyone not involved in the gun fight please put your guns down.'"

_Wash where you're going, kid.
Two good ones from the San Francisco Gate today:

"That explains Pikachu's dilated eyes: Druggies in Fairfax County, Va., are popping PCP-laced Ecstasy pills engraved with a Pokéman character. Fairfax County Police photo via Associated Press"

Ecstasy, hmm, maybe, but PCP is not your friend. Bad joojoo.

And yes, I'm burnt from from being interview grillings again. This one was much more interesting though.

Tuesday, February 20, 2001
_'Sharky and full of death'

Here's a surprise: a long, literate and engrossing article from USA Today about surfing at Maverick's, "a winter surf break of such renown that many of the world's top surfers — including those who long have trumpeted Hawaii's Waimea Bay as the pre-eminent big-wave spot — consider it their aquatic Mount Everest." A good read whether or not surfing is for you. That picture resides at the web site of the owner of the shop featured in the article, and it includes many resources about the geography, hazards and lore surrounding the area.

_Science marches on...

Well, I'm not sure what to tell you, but the two departments named are actual entities at the University of Toronto. You've until April 9, 2001 to find out for yourself.

_Hannibal Lector is seducing Martha Stewart?
Hah! If the premise of this article is to be believed, namely that Anthony Hopkins has been unable to distance himself from the role of Hannibal Lector, then that would mean that the not-so-good doctor is on the scent of Martha Stewart. Would anyone miss her?

Monday, February 19, 2001
_Ferrari 360 Modena
Allright, so I just got through telling Giant to F off, but trips over there do end up being more interesting than I have any right to expect, whether it's running into fat Dick Cheney or today's conversation with a lovely women who showed me her spunky yellow car:

She explained that her 360 had V-12 engine unlike the standard V-8 and said that hers goes 0 to 60 in 3.7 seconds. She's got the F1 shifter (no clutch), which, oddly enough, also has an automatic mode. It has a mid engine, which is visible through the hatch-back type window in the rear. She was very fond of the car, which she said was a birthday present from her husband, who drives a 550 Maranello.

Yes, she was driving it to the grocery store.

Did you folks catch my Slashdot post about sitting in a Subway restaurant, idly looking outside while eating a sub and seeing 2 Magnum P.I. Ferraris and a Mercedes parked on the street in front the Subway? I wasn't kidding.

_10 Most Surprising Things About the Human Genome
Soundbytes from gene researchers:

6. More than 200 human genes are the result of the horizontal transfer from bacteria. Yes, we got some of our genes from bacteria, according to Collins, through contamination that somehow breached the traditional boundaries.