This afternoon I was reminded of a favorite episode of The Twilight Zone: “In Praise of Pip,” and a facet of that story I thought worthy of mention here.
The story opens in an Army hospital in South Vietnam, where a young soldier is brought in on a stretcher. He is evaluated by a doctor, who notes the soldier’s unusual name – Pip Phillips – and after examination, estimates that his patient’s chances of survival are not promising. Cut to half way around the world and a seedy…
I started reading Playboy, predictably, as a teen, not too long before I started college. Like any other guy my age, I was fascinated with the women who appeared within its pages, for their inviting curves and beautiful if unavailable breasts. Even with that powerful distraction, I learned very quickly that there were other items of value within the magazine known for its bunny crest.
I remember the first Playboy interview I ever read: Timothy Leary, he of the…
I have something to say … and it isn’t pretty and it isn’t nice and it isn’t remotely politically correct. I am sick unto death of religion, of the prating and the bullshit and the claims they can’t back up … all of it. I’ve tolerated both Jehovah’s Witlesses and Mor(m)ons at my door, neither of which were either invited or welcome, yet I talked to them and tolerated them, even smiled at them and wished them a good day, despite the fact that they have nothing believable or even remotely…
While nosing about YouTube earlier today, I stumbled on a segment of The Atheist Experience, a public access show from Austin, Texas. This show frequently features Matt Dillahunty, a former divinity student turned atheist and activist who comments on atheist-related issues and answers telephone calls and emails on the show.
As a part of a discussion regarding the indoctrination of children in this particular segment, Matt cites an email he has received from a 15-year-old. …
The first faulty assumption is the seed from which an uncounted number of equally questionable subsequent assumptions may come. It may be a hypothesis without basis, a personal experience assumed to be universal, or the result of a misuse of logic, but once that false seed is taken as fact, the results can vary all over the map, with reliability about as secure as the proverbial snowball in hell.
I have just finished watching God On Trial, a dramatization of a trial,…
I suppose I am obsessing over the death yesterday of Christopher Hitchens a bit or more than a bit. Then again, when one is kicked in the balls, that niggling headache of a moment before tends to shrink into the background as a matter of course.
The man both literally and figuratively spoke volumes with words and speech, books and debate. It was as though he had a well within him that overflowed and he had to pour the sum of it out, lest he burst from the pressure. There is a quote…
All right – let me see if I can get this straight:
An assistant coach on the Penn State football team allegedly molested a number of children over a period of time. Result: a previously well-respected football coach – Joe Paterno – and the president of the university both lose their jobs. The media is all over this story like white on rice and a full-on investigation of the entire incident is in process.
Meantime … the story of child abuse within the catholic church has…
Let’s be real: there aren’t a lot of people out there whom you could truly call a “visionary.” Steve Jobs was absolutely one such person, a man who invented and innovated at first, then poked and prodded others in his employ to think along the lines he did and therewith create lines of products which were frequently NOTHING like anything else available in the marketplace.
My first contact with Jobs and his technology was the Lisa, a forerunner of the Macintosh line of…
I'm not a great one for getting into discussions on YouTube, as the level of flaming and general BS are not what I would call conducive to intelligent discussion. However, I found myself moved to respond to the following piece:
And here is the conversation that ensued, such as it is:
So, you think you know the story about the woman who went to McDonalds for coffee, spilled it on herself and sued, eh? Sure, you heard about it, maybe you even saw the parody on an episode of Seinfeld, but I’ll bet you a cup of coffee that you have no idea of the whole story.
Indeed, I’ll bet you didn’t know that:
That coffee wasn’t just hot, it was scalding. McDonalds mandated temperature spec for its coffee at that time was between 180 and 190…
My partner just read up what is one of the more disturbing videos I think I have ever seen on YouTube. On it is recorded a violent assault against a transsexual woman in a McDonalds in Rosedale, MD. The video was shot by an employee who actually egged the attackers on as the assault progressed. Worthy of note, said employee is now looking for work. A bit of Googling yielded more than a couple hits regarding this incident. If you're curious, allow me to offer… Continue
The following is a piece I wrote for another board after a prolonged and largely fruitless discussion with a pair of young, indoctrinated theists, whose naivete not just about their beliefs and religions but how those beliefs and religions interact with our world was downright frightening. I found that I was moved to write a rebuttal to their insistent cluelessness, and have further opted to bring that post here.
To us, most of this post is intuitively obvious. Kindly… Continue
I feel like that cartoon character who, having heard or seen something so fantastic as to be beyond belief, he remarks to the camera, "Well, now I've seen EVERYTHING." And maybe I have.
Believe it or don't, General Motors has decided that, to help preserve the brand and therefore protect it from extinction, Chevrolet will no longer be referred to as "Chevy." Don't believe me? Check out… Continue
Whoever it was who posted Barbara Ehrenreich's piece on the fallacy of positive thinking, I want to thank him/her for that ... because in so doing, I ran onto another piece done by the same YouTube contributor, RSA Animate, this time on the concept of drive and what works in motivating people.
I think about this particularly as regards the financial meltdown and the association with Wall Street and megabucks and the current financial separation between the guys doing the work and the… Continue
I had gone out to my new car to experiment with its iPod interface. After a few fits and starts with the controls, I found it to work very well indeed and that the sound quality coming through the speakers, while not at the utter, premium, state of the art level, was still very enjoyable and would be a plus on an anticipated eight-hour trip to North Carolina to watch and celebrate my daughter’s graduation from college.
Stepping out of my car, I turned to discover a car parked in my… Continue
I have been a habitual watcher of CBS News' "Face the Nation" for more years than I care to count, and for most of those years, I have enjoyed the end commentary of its current host, Bob Schieffer, as much for his common sense as for his incisiveness. Today (4 April, 2010), Bob decided to hold forth on the current dilemma in the Catholic Church, and while I haven't the respect he has for the church's "knowledge" or values, I am very much pleased to hear such a doyen newsman hold forth in the… Continue
Vladimir Ashkenazy is not your average orchestra conductor. First of all, do not expect him to arrive on stage in the traditional formal coat and black tie. The coat may be there, but I think tight collars and he don’t get along, as he prefers a white turtleneck, on stage and elsewhere as well! His style of conducting is equally individual. As opposed to the stiff ramrod school of conducting, Ashkenazy gets his entire body into the act, conveying nuances of the score in front of him with… Continue
Somewhere on A|N I found this video last night. To say I found Dan Harris's report disturbing would put it mildly, and as I am bisexual, I have all the more reason for alarm at the behavior of the catholic bishop and others regarding Uganda's proposed law proscribing homosexuals virtually in toto.
However, something else occurred to me this morning upon… Continue