Drooling on the Pillow

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Fear the Orange 

LCCS Kings and 1 Queen 6, Subia's Organic Cafe 1

Friday, October 28, 2005

Grandad, As He Was 

Grand Grocery Company, Lincoln, Nebraska, 1942, John Vachon

From Michael Blowhard of 2Blowhards, who remarks:
If you're like me, many of the images you have in
your brain of the Great Depression come from the
Farm Security Administration, and all of them are in
black and white. So The Library of Congress' new
show is startling, and literally an eye-opener: a
collection of color photos of that era from the FSA.
The website includes a terrific online exhibition.
Amazing how much more immediate color often
makes photographs, isn't it?

I can look at old pictures and old film footage all day long. I remarked recently that I'm not inclined to look back and reflect on my life, but other peoples' lives are endlessly fascinating to me.

I think one reason these pictures are so startling is that color home photography didn't really become widespread until a decade after the shots in this collection (1941-1945). I have boxes and boxes and books and albums of pictures of my family going back to the beginning of the 20th century and after hundreds of hours of looking at them it's almost inevitable that, on some level, I think of the years before 1950 as black and white. That's seems comforting, or at least appropriate, since the vast majority of the people in those pictures are dead.

In fifty years the 7 bazzigabyte digital images of today will seem equally flat, removed and interred along side the holographic bio-implant projectors of the day.

Or whatever. But the point of this collection of color images from the 1940s is that it removes the remove.

Also from 2Blowhards a completely different photographic experience here.


Thursday, October 27, 2005

Customer Service 

Yes, it's Carrot Top. And, yes, you're going to have a tough time getting this out of your head.

You're welcome.

I stole this from Hall Detox.

Hail The Sox, The Good Sox 

I'm a National League guy (except when the Yankees are involved, except in the purely theoretical case of the Yankees playing the Pirates again) so I was notionally rooting for the Astros.

But I'm very okay with the White Sox winning and I'm glad to see the mantle of 'biggest losers' fall upon the shoulders of my youngest brother's team, the Cubs. If there's any additional pain inflicted on him by the fact that the winners are cross-town rivals, well, so much the sweeter.

It was a terrific, well played series with two teams playing top flight baseball with nary an overpaid superstar among them. It's too bad the umps missed most of it, but I don't think it can be said that they seriously influenced the outcome.

It's also too bad more people didn't watch it, but unless it's wrested away from Fox, I'm afraid it's headed for Air America numbers.

The TV talent is good, actually. Joe Buck is a competent play-by-play guy with a good voice. He's been drifting a little far into Ironyland lately, though, and needs to check that impulse. Tim McCarver always has interesting and insightful color comments to make, but he beats them to death. They're playing too deep. They're playing too deep. And his voice goes all chipmunk.

But the production end is just god-awful. The next time they cut a replay to have *#@# Scooter come out and tell us what a fastball is, I swear I'm going all Hunter Thompson on my TV. The dirt-cams, the in-game interviews, the (exclusively Fox) celebrity shots; it's all junk. You'd think that after years of trying to Wink Martindale the series to expand their audience and seeing the numbers go down and down, it might occur to them to try to appeal to their core audience. You know, baseball fans.


Yesterday a jury decided that the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center was 32% the fault of the terrorists and 68% the fault of the Port Authority.
Separate trials will now be held to determine monetary
damages in more than 100 other lawsuits. The settlement
of those lawsuits could cost the Port Authority millions
of dollars.
You think?

Obviously, both the Port Authority and Al Qaeda have a lot of money, but it will probably be somewhat easier to get into the Port Authority's pockets. I do understand that what the jury was charged with calibrating is the percentage of responsibility for the damages, not the act, but to me, that lends this decision not 1% more sense.

The plaintiffs claim that a 1985 report citing the underground parking garage as a possible terrorist target should have caused the Port Authority to close the facility. There were also reports that warned of terrorists using airplanes. Perhaps the fact that no anti-aircraft batteries were installed on top of the buildings will open up the Port Authority to suits relating to 9/11.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

It's, Like, So Unfair 

A gormless cornhusker was doing his homework today, hoping MSN Search could provide him with this information: thanksgiving and independence day how does they remind native american marginal status. I was a little depressed to be on the first page of this search until I noticed that among the others were Eject! Eject! Eject!, Althouse, and Marginal Revolution.

Maybe this poor kid will learn something from them.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

The Giants, The Jets, Now This 

I should have mentioned that I came across the items mentioned in the previous post because Mr. Snitch!, our bi-riparian blogger is hosting the Big Apple Blog Festival. Showing them how it's done.

Across The River 

I don't get into NYC politics much. The only entertainment value these days is watching what may very well be the worst-run campaign in history fold like a venus fly-trap over Freddie Ferrer's head.

Here, via The Man at GOP and The City is the Ferrer campaign's idea of a radio ad.

And there's this:


Or Howard?

Monday, October 24, 2005

I Remember Nada 

I've got a lousy memory. Always have. Short term, long term, kinetic, you name it, it's lousy. I like to think that my mind compensates with equivalent strengths, but, as with anything you 'like' to think, the evidence is scant. So if I've forgotten your name, please forgive me.

What was I talking about?

Oh, yeah. I have one very early memory, which involves a breast, believe it or not, and then only a handful of images from my first eight years. I do have evidence that I was aware of my sieve-like brain even then as I recall sitting in my living room around the age of eight consciously memorizing a mundane domestic scene just to see if I would be able to recall it years later. I still have that image, though it's gone all wonky and out of focus and bleached of colors. Just the TV on a table with the steps rising up from the outside door to the second floor behind. And an African Violet on a side table beside the TV. I thank my eight-year old self for making the effort, but I fear it was all in vain.

I recall climbing a hill behind the filling station my grandfather (dead before my arrival) used to own and losing a shoe to the mud. I remember cutting through my Aunt Mid's backyard and being stunned nearly into a coma by the sight of my great aunt sunning herself in the nude in the grape arbor. I remember Dorcus Evans, a young lady almost twice my size, giving me a look outside Colfax Elementary that stirred me in a way that was entirely new to me. I remember playing football with Billy Hill and Bobby Jones (really) in Bobby's backyard. And I remember climbing the cliff above Bull Creek Run and nearly slipping off the path onto the rocks fifty feet below.

It's just the nature of things, I guess, that just mentioning these moments brought back a few other moments I didn't know I still had. Two or three for each one. I'm sure there are many more in there, somewhere, if I chose to look.

But the curious thing to me is that it's my nature not to do that. I've wanted to be a writer since, well, I can't remember, of course. But there's something that discourages me from looking back. As far as I can recall, I had a normal childhood. There were tensions that waited another decade to detonate, but I wasn't abused or mistreated or neglected. The only plausible theory I have is that I've always lacked confidence in the brains department. There may be a notion floating around that with severely limited storage capability, the only way I can grow and learn is by periodic data dumps.

I don't know. The reason I mention all this is that I'm watching someone start down the road to Alzheimer's. Her short term memory is mostly gone, but, for the moment, at least, her long term memory seems more reliable than before. I'm wondering if that's because, as with my theory above, there is temporarily more storage space or because all of the agendas relating to the long ago memories have been disassociated from the events. If you can't remember why you preferred to think of Cousin Rupert as a thieving braggart, maybe you'll remember him more like he actually was; someone who was just luckier than you.

I'm sure I'm wrong, I'm sure memory doesn't work that way. I've probably read something about this, but for some reason, I just can't remember.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Carnival of The New Jersey Bloggers, Number 23 

Kate's a real sweetheart and she does a terrific job with the new Carnival.
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