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got this from wirenth and wonder if I'll regret it :)   
12:36pm 19/09/2011
  The problem with LJ and DW: we all think we are so close, but really, we know nothing about each other. So I want you to ask me something you think you should know about me. Something that should be obvious, but you have no idea about. Ask away.

Then post this in your LJ and find out what people don't know about you.
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Writer's Block: Gamer's Choice   
10:48am 14/04/2009
What is your favorite old-school video game?
Qix for the Atari 400/800. Close second, Tetris.
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here's a feather duster   
09:32am 13/12/2008
mood: cheerful
happy birthday rianrenee! when you get a few minutes you really need to update your site.
circle game   
11:22am 10/12/2008
mood: nostalgic
from now on I'm much more likely to be found at:


I'll still make important announcements here, as and if they happen, and of course I'll still read my friendslist. But I just feel like going in a different direction, after these crazy eight years.

10:28am 08/12/2008
mood: relieved
I don't suppose most of my friendslist have felt like they were sitting on a cactus for the last couple of weeks, but I have, and that's why I'm turning cartwheels of delight because the Supreme Court shot down Donofrio:


If you haven't kept up with every wrinkle, nuance, and hairpin turn of the "Obama can't be president" waterfight, here's a pretty good summary:


There are other suits to be dismissed, but given the trend of decision so far, I'm not nearly as worried as I was. The only thing that's bothering me now is that, between the cryptofascists who think Barack is a socialist, the right-wing legalist nutcases who want him disqualified on principle, and the Pumas who hate his guts because he's not HRC, there are probably going to be about ten million people who think he never should have been president and refuse to shut up about it. And he really didn't need that, and I'm sorry he has that kind of dissension to cope with on top of all this country's legitimate problems.

Oh, and while we're here:


Not that I have any objection to Karl Rove naming names, but does it annoy you more than a little that he would get that kind of money for doing it? godalive, I'm livid.
looming constiitutional crisis?   
11:09am 04/12/2008
  since my friends are a notably intelligent crowd, I'm putting this up just to see what you think:


I really hope this isn't an October surprise in December.
not to be overlooked   
08:15am 27/11/2008
mood: cheerful
happy birthday lightlack!!
infodynamic crackup   
11:24am 18/11/2008
mood: baffled
I got this in e-mail this morning:
This lady has changed her habit of how she lists her names on her mobile phone after her handbag...which contained her cell phone, credit card, wallet, etc... was stolen. When she called her husband from a pay phone 20 minutes later, telling him what had happened, he said 'I received your text asking about our PIN number and I've replied a little while ago.'

When they rushed down to the bank, the bank staff told them all the money was already withdrawn. The thief had actually used the stolen cell phone to text 'hubby' in the contact list and obtain the PIN number. Within 20 minutes he had withdrawn all the money from their bank account.

Moral of the story: Do not disclose the relationship between you and the people in your contact list. Avoid using names like Home, Honey, Hubby, Sweetheart, Dad, Mom, etc.... And when sensitive info is requested through texts, CONFIRM by calling back. Also, when you're texted by friends or family to meet them somewhere, be sure to call back to confirm that the message came from them. If you don't reach them, be very careful about going someplace to meet 'family' or 'friends' who text you.
Now: A lot of that is good common sense and is reproduced in the public interest. The italicized part, however, poses a diabolical contradiction. A couple of years ago, it became popular to pick one person's number on your outgoing list and designate them as "ICE," standing for "in case of emergency," so that if anything happened to the person carrying the phone, emergency workers would know who to call as the first contact. Okay... if somebody steals your phone, pages through your contacts, and finds an ICE number, what's the chances that your emergency contact will be a fruitful source of your sensitive information? 90%, maybe?

Years ago, long before this became a cliché, one of the pioneers of the Internet said to me "Information is like water, it just wants to flow." No -- it turns out that information is like superfluid helium; it will flow in defiance of almost any attempt to contain it, and when it does, it is very likely to cause problems.
11:59am 15/11/2008
mood: cheerful
since I don't have a paid account, I'll just ask:

Secretary of State: Bill Richardson, Hillary Clinton, or "other?" comments to explain your choice, please.
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further to...   
11:48am 12/11/2008
mood: cheerful
Oh, and yeah, if you have a minute, please go do this:


and I won't put the arm on you for any of the others, but I think Paul Krugman would be a really good idea for Treasury.
I think I'm in recovery   
10:43am 12/11/2008
mood: exhausted
As a salute to the departing political frenzy, this fabulous red-blue-purple map of election results by county, created by Mark Newman at the University of Michigan:


and I'll also link to his thoroughly impressive whole site, wherein (bonus!) we learn how a cartogram works:


You know, I hope, that if you want to share an opinion with the President-elect's team, you can go here:


Now the only question on my mind is when on earth they're going to finish counting Missouri.
the charm of strangeness (not a physics joke)   
09:44am 08/11/2008
mood: amused
As you can probably guess, during this election, I immersed myself deeply enough in politics to encounter all kinds of trivial weirdness -- literally the weirdness of trivia.  Last night I was thinking to myself "Gee, now that we have a president who was born in the sixties, we'll probably never have one who was born in the fifties."  So this morning, I looked up presidential birthdates, and ohh, that's only the beginning.

Ronald Wilson Reagan     February 6, 1911
Richard Milhous Nixon     January 9, 1913
Gerald Rudolph Ford     July 14, 1913
John Fitzgerald Kennedy May 29, 1917
George Herbert Walker Bush     June 12, 1924
James Earl (Jimmy) Carter     October 1, 1924
George Walker Bush     July 6, 1946
William Jefferson (Bill) Clinton     August 19, 1946   
Barack Obama     August 4, 1961

Now please note:

Four presidents born in the 1910s, the middle two six months apart.
Two presidents born in the 1920s, less than four months apart.
NO president born in the 1930s.  (Had McCain been elected, this would have changed.)
Two presidents born in the 1940s, less than two months apart.  (Also both within two months of me, but that's just me.)
NO president, so far, born in the 1950s.
One President, so far, born in the 1960s.

I don't know about you, but to me, that distribution seems a little strange.
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sometimes I don't mind being wrong   
09:15pm 06/11/2008
mood: relieved
From my October 29 entry:
a good foundation for a close race...assumes that McCain takes Colorado, Indiana, Ohio, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida... all of which are "pessimistic-realistically" in play.
... and all of which, as of today, Obama captured. The magnitude of his achievement becomes clearer, slowly.
new honor and new power (2)   
04:33pm 05/11/2008
mood: determined
I didn't feel as though I had any ownership in this country. Correctly! The fool spoke of "the ownership society" and meant: The society in which you are owned. The fool called us free, because he knew that he did not own us. He did not know -- can he have? -- that he was as owned as we were.

and we were all sitting back and watching in horror as everything fell apart. Yes, and the next step -- standing up and making that horror into action -- was beyond most of us. There is no blame in that statement. We were told that if we stood and acted, as everything fell apart, we were suspect, we were obstructive, we were not patriots, we were traitors. So we sat and watched, in a tailspin, with no compass, no map, no instructions.

All the magic of voting and campaigning and standing up for what you believe in, all of those things were suddenly ridiculous and cliché. Well, under fascism they are. When the corporation and the military and the executive are welded into a single authoritarian power, voting becomes meaningless, campaigning becomes a distracted waste of energy, and standing up for what you believe in becomes dangerous. When did I stop saying "cryptofascist" and start saying "fascist?" When I realized that the Pentagon was paying Blackwater. When I realized that the corporation supplied the army which was commanded by the executive which owned the corporation, and around and around it goes, and where it stops --

And last night
it stopped.
I think.
I hope.

President Obama.
Please give me back my compass
and my map
and my place to stand.
And I will serve my country as gladly as you do.
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new honor and new power (1)   
04:28pm 05/11/2008
mood: contemplative
I have been trying for hours, and I cannot do better than what soshesays wrote, as a place to start:
Gradually I descended into a deep cynicism. I still voted in every election, but I also watched our nation go into a tailspin, and I knew that we had done it to ourselves. We had relinquished our control. We had passed the reins to an incompetent fool.

I didn't feel as though I had any ownership in this country. But the worst part was that everybody else seemed to feel that way, too -- particularly as the years progressed and things continued to get worse. It felt like this entire country had given up on itself, and we were all sitting back and watching in horror as everything fell apart. All the magic of voting and campaigning and standing up for what you believe in, all of those things were suddenly ridiculous and cliché.
What she has written is as dense, yet as clear and bright, as a gemstone. In every one of her words I find more words, illuminations, reflections, glitters, glints, lit slivers.

We had relinquished our control. We had passed the reins to an incompetent fool. Yes, but even aware of that, we were less aware of a less obvious and more corrosive truth. Our control was given over, but not to the fool. The fool was as controlled as we were. There was no telling, from what he said, whether he knew, because there was terrible disjunction between his words and his meaning. What he said was not what he meant -- that we took for granted. Sometimes we had to assume that he didn't know what he said. I routinely used to conclude that he didn't know what he meant. And I never knew whether, being the fool, he realized that he was controlled by the same people whom he allowed to control us.

I also watched our nation go into a tailspin, and I knew that we had done it to ourselves. That was a horrible thing to know. What was at least as bad was to know that we did it to ourselves only as a kind of psychotic reaction to what had already been done to us. Caught in a trap, like a fox, we chewed off a leg to escape. Then we wandered three-legged and bleeding inside a larger trap, whose perimeter we sought frantically. Yes, we were a nation in a tailspin, and as such, we could never find a horizon or a way to stand.

We did it to ourselves, because we had been assured that there was nothing else we could do. We did not trust the people who assured us of that, but they seemed to be correct. Whether or not we found truth in what they said, we cast about trying to find other things to do, and there were none. So, like most people in that position, we did the first things that came to mind. That was where the tailspin came from. Again and again the fool told us, stay the course, stay the course. But he was really exhorting us to follow him, and he had no compass. He had no map. He had only instructions that he followed, without understanding them. And if we followed him, we did it not hearing the instructions that he heard.
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more cryptofascist bullshit   
02:26pm 04/11/2008
mood: furious
Voters with cell phones in Florida, Virginia, Missouri, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Maryland and Arkansas are being sent text messages that say, literally or approximately:

"All Obama voters, due to long delays, are asked to wait and vote tomorrow 11/05."

I can't quite believe that anyone who's reading this would fall for that, but -- this is a trap. Voting day is today. Vote today. Then complain to your state supervisor of elections.
NOW call me an optimist   
06:25pm 03/11/2008
mood: elated
Just before I go cook dinner, everybody catch this:


Now, as to why this is more interesting than the 400 other maps out there:

One) This is Karl Rove's map -- the one he sells -- which has to make it one of the most pessimistic from Obama's standpoint.

Two) Obama gets Colorado, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Florida.

Three) No tossups.

I love you,
you're only a day away.
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11:10am 03/11/2008
mood: on tenterhooks
just as a quick followup:


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a good McCain scare   
03:53pm 02/11/2008
mood: apprehensive
for your evening's entertainment:

thanks to 411mania.com. two days...
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01:18pm 01/11/2008
mood: determined
I hope nobody I know is still waiting on their absentee ballot, but if you are, this may do you some good:


I was saying it weeks ago, and I'll say it again -- if you want your vote, you'll have to fight for it.

Three days.