Saturday, January 8, 2011

Xmas HDR part 2

Here's another HDR shot from last year's holiday festivities

I'm not entirely satisfied. The background isn't sharp. Next time I'm taking my tripod.

Ebert not PC

Imagine my horror as I read Roger Ebert's latest blog entry. It's about the Huck Finn controversy and he uses the N-word!

Note that I said "imagine my horror". You'd have to because I didn't feel any. I agree with him completely. And fuck those assholes at HuffPo.

"One of the most striking differences between a cat and a lie is that a cat has only nine lives." - Mark Twain

Friday, January 7, 2011


"The Exorcist Files will recreate stories of real-life hauntings and demonic possession, based on cases investigated by the Catholic Church"
Guess who else is taking a shot at a reality show? (Former) Pastor Ted.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Piltdown Medicine

It's been a bad few years for (former) Doctor Andrew Wakefield. Once the shining star of the "vaccines cause autism" crowd, he's been discredited, disgraced and defrocked. And then today:
"As bad as the findings were that Wakefield had committed scientific fraud, it turns out that it was even worse than the original reports indicated. A few hours ago, the British Medical Journal (BMJ) published an analysis of the scientific fraud committed by Wakefield, fraud that journalist Brian Deer likens in an accompanying editorial to the Piltdown Man"
Respectful Insolence

Butt dialing = SWAT team

A garbled mobile phone call prompted the man's wife to call the police and report a hostage situation

BTW, this picture has nothing to do with this story. It's actually from this story.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Toilet not yellow enough?

Oldie but Goodie

This one's been around for a while but only recently came to my attention. In addition to secretly being gay, the late Robert Reed (better know as Mike Brady) was a serious actor who chafed at his gig on The Brady Bunch. On the eve of the last episode he sent a long memo on "theatre" to Sherwood Schwartz...

The most generic problem to date in “The Brady Bunch” has been this almost constant scripted inner transposition of styles. 
1. A pie-throwing sequence tacked unceremoniously onto the end of a weak script.
2. The youngest daughter in a matter of a few unexplained hours managing to look and dance like Shirley Temple. 
3. The middle boy happening to run into a look-alike in the halls of his school, with so exact a resemblance he fools his parents

The John Rowe Archives


Tuesday, January 4, 2011


" the Baghdad park is nearly waterless, more than two years after a U.S. military inauguration ceremony that included a marching band and water-scooter rides"

"The park drew large crowds after it opened. By spring 2009, however, the power supply in the district where the park is located was cut sharply, the water pumps stopped working, and the lake dried up."

Get some science up you

Mossad spy animals

"Saudi Arabian officials have reportedly arrested a vulture suspected of being a Mossad spy."

This comes close on the heels of the suspected Mossad shark attack in Egypt.

Image by

Twain spins in grave

IN this book a number of dialects are used, to wit:  the Missouri negro dialect; the extremest form of the backwoods Southwestern dialect; the ordinary "Pike County" dialect; and four modified varieties of this last. The shadings have not been done in a haphazard fashion, or by guesswork; but painstakingly, and with the trustworthy guidance and support of personal familiarity with these several forms of speech.
I make this explanation for the reason that without it many readers would suppose that all these characters were trying to talk alike and not succeeding.
I'm sure Twain would be thrilled to learn that they've finally removed words like "Injun" from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

Some other word too—can't quite think of it. Starts with an "N",  IIRC.

Turlyey's Blog

Monday, January 3, 2011

HDR Xmas Photography

[Updated 1/4/2011 with higher quality images]

I'd be just another lame shutterbug if it weren't for High Dynamic Range photography. It doesn't hurt that the table was set for me (click to enlarge):

Here's one of many pages explaining HDR. Here are some more interiors.

I do have a problem with HDR. Everyone is spending all their time creating otherworldly images with it. I want my photos to look good, not psychedelic.

"The Future of Our Past Looks Bright"

This clip from The Henry Rollins Show on IFC really fucking nails it.

Historical revisionism is our future. I can hardly wait.

I just missed getting tickets to his 50th birthday bash in D.C. They sold out in less than 2:30. Damn.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

RatCave Book Wrapup—December 2010

I read a lot. Locally we have a "Book Fair". This is run by the area's most upscale auctioneer. He buys damaged pallets, overstock, seconds, etc. Generally everything is 1/3 or 1/4 the cover price. As a result I have a lot of books. Here's what I read in December...

Not everything comes from the Book Fair. I got this from Amazon (free shipping):

Henry & Glenn Forever—A love story featuring Henry Rollins (Black Flag) and Glenn Danzig (The Misfits). The rumor hill has it that Henry likes it and Glenn hates it. And for "Bob"'s sake don't miss this heart-warming Xmas special/commercial for the book featuring the boys.

Next up we have The Barbary Plague, the story of the arrival of bubonic plague in turn-of-the-century San Francisco. A classic tale of racism and denial with a dash of scientific medicine. I love the one negative review as it perfectly illustrates the same sort of Asio-centric racism that was a major factor in the initial failure to accomplish anything.

Also in the clean-up vein is Sin in the Second City, the story of the battle over prostitution in teens Chicago just before the Capone Era. The action revolves around the super-classy brothel run by the "Everleigh" sisters. They were definitely ahead of their time.

Of a more scientific bent is Meteorite Hunter. Professor Roy Gallant rambles all over Russia in search of impact sites while dealing with a variety of colorful characters in the former Soviet Union. (I got it for $1.99.)

Finally, what December would be complete without some Oliver Sacks? The Island of the Colorblind is also a travelogue with Dr. Sacks island-hopping around the Pacific. It's his usual blend of human interest mixed with fascinating neuropathology. He also gets stoned on a local substance and talks a great deal about his life-long cycad fetish.