Saturday, January 31, 2015

Europe 2005: The train to Naples

Roma Termini: Waiting for the train to Naples

April 5, 2005
"Passing through a crowded Rome"

When I arrived in Rome, the crowds were incredible. Pope John Paul II had just died three days before, and the devout were gathering in Rome to await the selection of a new Pope.

The train from the airport to the station in Rome (Roma Termini) was thick with people. Literally every square foot of the compartments and corridors were filled, standing room only. The crowd gently swayed back and forth as the train rattled down the tracks toward the station, curiously silent and subdued.

When we arrived at the station, the platforms were as full as the trains arriving there; it took me more than 20 minutes to disembark. Once I wrestled my way past the inbound platforms, though, the crowds magically evaporated; all roads were leading into Rome that day. Nobody was going out.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Only a tiny minority are radical extremists, remember

Watch a room full of members of the religion of peace agree that stonings and beheadings and the cutting off of hands are proper punishments for crimes.

And then watch the speaker explain that this view isn't extremist, since they all hold it. It reminds me of the argument made on Egyptian television, that it isn't anti-Semitic to believe that Jews are pigs, since they REALLY ARE.

Norway should bring in another million of these lovely people.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Constitution of the United States: Fifth Amendment

Fifth Amendment

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Useful Links:

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Shame on Java

I hate that Java attempts to install a goddamned browser toolbar as part of their upgrade (the toolbar install is on by default). Seriously, Sun? That is such a low thing to do, worthy more of some shady outfit operating from a strip mall in Lahore than a world-class software company.

You guys should be ashamed of yourselves.

Radical Muslims a minority?

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Europe 2005: The flight over

April 05, 2005
"The flight over"

I went to Europe in 2005, probably for my last time. It was a lot of fun, although traveling by yourself is a little strange - there are none of the normal little social pressures that occur when you are with someone else, no natural limits to your lingering. In the normal pulse and rhythm of living, I think people rely on the tether of others actions to move through the day. Untethered, it feels a lot like floating.

This was taken on the flight from Seattle to Rome. The flight was not too full, so I had nobody sitting next to me. Luxury, on a transatlantic flight; it meant I could spread out and not have to engage in "armrest war 2005" with some fat asshole.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Constitution of the United States: Fourth Amendment

Fourth Amendment

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Useful Links:

See also Probable Cause

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Consiitution of the United States: Third Amendment

Third Amendment

No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Useful links:

Note: The amendment is one of the least controversial of the Constitution and is rarely litigated. As of 2014, it had never been the primary basis of a Supreme Court decision. (From the wikipedia article.)

Standing Up For The Right

Because asserting a right in the face of fascist attempts to curtail it is infinitely more important than being considerate of the feelings of the perpetually offended.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Constitution of the United States: Second Amendment

Second Amendment

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Useful Links:

Comment on "Coachella 2015 Lineup: Still A Boys Club"

The Coachella Festival Is Still a Boys’ Club

I posted this comment:

Are "women musicians" like "men musicians", except female?

I only ask because I have never seen the usage "men musicians", or even "men-(verb)" anything, now that I think about it.

The article itself seems to be unclear about the usage, as well. From top to bottom:

female-fronted (x2)
woman-fronted (x3)
all-male duo
women artists
female festival attendees
(those last two in the same phrase, as "women artists and, indirectly, female festival attendees")

What is the style guide on woman-verbed versus female-verbed versus man-verbed? And more importantly, is there a difference between a female-fronted band and a woman-fronted one? Or would the phrase "female artists and, indirectly, woman festival attendees" be just as good?

On that note, it's interesting to compare the difference between a google search for "woman-fronted" and "man-fronted".


Friday, January 9, 2015

Constitution of the United States: First Amendment

First Amendment

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Useful links

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Greatest hits of Marcel Marceau

Places that have jukeboxes should include, as a selection in the jukebox, four minutes of silence, paid for just like any other selection.

That way, people who are willing to pay for a short respite from the "thomp thomp thomp" cacophony of shit that spews from jukeboxes can put in their .50¢ and enjoy four minutes of blissful silence.

I am guessing that it might be the single most popular choice in the entire jukebox.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Mohammed Large As Life

Mohammed the child molester

Though most Muslims are not murderous pigfucking savages, some apparently are. And yes, Mohammed was a child molester, who married a child (Aisha) and consummated the marriage while she was still very much a child.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Puttin' On The Ritz

Yeah! Winner, bitches! Howard Richardson is going to send me a big ole fat paycheck ... he only needs my checking account number to complete the transaction.