Thursday, March 31, 2005

Speak Up!

Come on, my sister bloggers, let's show these boys what we've got! [Of course, the much larger issue that's been circulating lately is on women's [lack of] representation on editorial pages, not in the blogosphere, but this article offers up at least one good strategy for increasing our influence in any contest of opinions.]

At the "Women and the Media Conference" this past Saturday in Cambridge, Mass., hosted by The Center for New Words, Nelson said the solution is
"cross-pollinating" efforts with a continued push for space for women in the
established press as well as in Internet news outlets and blogs.

The Web blogs so popular with Generation Y--and now deemed worthy of press credentials by the White House--are the cyberspace answer to individual
newsletters, cable-access shows and ham radio. All of these offer a wide-open
range for opinion makers to bypass gate-keeping editors who seem to "just say
no" to the women who come along...

..."Given how corporate media is, for us to expect The New York Times to change is not going to happen," said AlterNet's Chaudhry. "We need to empower ourselves with blogs. Not only will we have our voices heard but we have access to the kind of women we want to read it."

Female bloggers need to link to each other and other outlets of women's opinions, print journalists need to support each other's editorial efforts and keep making noise by sending in queries, well-researched and written columns and knocking on the big doors at least as often as do the men.

Instead of disappearing into the back of the room again, we must push the issue. Though many female journalists are opining 1,000 illuminated points of view in the media galaxy, unless we cluster our stars together into a fireball, we will not be seen by the major telescopes.

--From a Women's eNews story by Michele Weldon

Monday, March 28, 2005

Controlling Clock Skew

Apparently clock skew has something to do with generating randomness. Don't ask me what; I just like how the term rolls of my tongue. But in honor of controlling clock skew, here are some random items I came across today:

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Disgruntled Doctors Rock

When did Tuesday night TV get so good? Not since the days when Rescue 911 graced TV sets across the nation have I been so eager to sit in front of the tube on Tuesday nights. [Thinking about William Shatner declaring in his deep voice, "We begin on a cold night in November in suburban Milwaukee..." still makes my heart jump. Will the robber realize she's hiding under the blanket? Will the boy's leg get removed from the drain before he drowns?]

And now on Tuesday we have American Idol. No need to dish about that here because enough gets said about that show already. [Go Bo Bice!]

Everyone knows the real draw on Tuesday nights, though, is House, M.D., starring the ever-so-captivating Hugh Laurie. Not only has his portrayal of House captured the hearts of those of us who can't help but love brainy curmudgeons, but he's also a bestselling author and a former classmate of Emma Thompson and Stephen Fry at Cambridge. Oh yeah, and I hear his performance in Blackadder is something to check out.

People keep saying House is the best hospital drama since ER. Well, folks, ER wasn't that great, so I think you mean it's the best hospital drama since Chicago Hope. I'd like to see you pit Adam Arkin, Mandy Patinkin, and Hugh Laurie against George Clooney, that bespectacled guy, and that doctor with the cane, and you just see who wins.

P.S. Tuesday night TV is closely followed by Thursday night TV in awesomeness. The O.C. vs. House is increasingly becoming less of a competition in my book. Don't tell Alex.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Republican March Madness

Some junior staffer in the House Democratic office got a little creative. Check out the second annual GOP March Madness bracket to pick which "special interest priority is the biggest outrage."

Thursday, March 10, 2005

If You Build It...

For all other architect junkies out there, check out this fantastic web resource: The Great Buildings Collection. They even celebrate a "Building of the Day" and some "Greatest Hits"!

The site also has a great search function, which you can use to search by architect, building, or place. Or you can browse by any of those categories, which is what I did to find the above beautiful geodesic dome designed by Buckminster Fuller and Shoji Sadao for the US Pavilion at Expo '67, which is located in Montreal. Sweet.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Who Are You Inclined to Believe?

The United States has said soldiers at a Baghdad checkpoint "attempted to warn the driver to stop by hand and arm signals, flashing white lights, and firing warning shots in front of the car," it said. "When the driver didn't stop, the soldiers shot into the engine block which stopped the vehicle, killing one and wounding two others."

But Italian Foreign Minister Gianfranco Fini told his parliament Tuesday that the car was not speeding and was not ordered to stop by U.S. troops at a checkpoint.

[Click here for full Washington Post article.]

I know who has my vote.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Pit Stop Jacket

For all Red Sox fans who want to look sharp and have an extra $100 lying around, click on the picture to order this swell jacket. Maybe Kevin Millar will don one when he appears on Queer Eye.

P.S. For all Red Sox fans who want to look sharp, want me to look sharp, and have an extra $200 lying around, I'll take a Small.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

I Like This Band

Yeah, that's right. I like Guns N' Roses. A whole lot, in fact. "Mr. Brownstone," "Patience," and "Sweet Child O' Mine" -- some of my all-time favorite songs. "Knockin' on Heaven's Door" and "Since I Don't Have You" -- two of my all-time favorite covers. I even own The Spaghetti Incident. Yeah, I'm that big a fan.

So, what's prompting this sorta defensive spiel about G N' R? Well, see, I'm a feminist. And G N' R is one of the most notoriously misogynistic bands to have ever existed. "Have you not heard the lyrics to 'I Used to Love Her'?" I am frequently asked. Actually, yes I have, and it's a goddamn funny song. ACK! Did I just say that?

See, I've been tagged (correctly) as someone easily incensed by anti-women sentiments. Thus, I often have to justify my love of a band that seemingly spews such sentiments from their very pores. But good music is good music, and I can't deny that G N' R and all their blessed mid-song transitions make me wonder in amazement and awe. Sure, some of their lyrics make me want to hurl, but only while my eyes are simultaneously glazed over in music-lover heaven. And I sure as hell will not stop listening to them no matter how our views on women clash.

Which brings me to my next point...and I do have one.* Thanks to Jon, I now definitively possess the knowledge that my beloved "Idiots" love Bush. (And not the good kind, FYI.) Sure, we all knew about Schilling, and, let's face it, Timlin was no surprise, but the rest of the guys? Couldn't someone have leaked their disgust about having to meet the guy? I guess I'm still holding out hope that Millar and Damon were just being polite, but I'll admit that's a long shot.

So I'm ready to renounce my Red Sox loyalty, right? Nope, not even if the team holds a parade in Bush's honor on International Women's Day. As I may have indicated before, in my mind baseball and politics don't mix. Am I happy that my team is Republican? Obviously not. But that doesn't diminish the love that's steadily grown for them over 24 years. And I doubt anything could.

Which brings me to a third and final recent instance when I wanted to forget any social conscience I may have: Million Dollar Baby. Since I'm on so many listservs, I've been "treated" to a slew of passionate discussions about this movie, mostly surrounding the gender and disability-rights elements. It's a movie, kids. With characters and plots and perspectives you may not agree with, but it's still a movie. Creative license and all. Can't we just leave it at that?

OK, so maybe this discussion isn't fair of me. After all, can I really expect to have it both ways? Is it fair to be an uber-feminist when it suits me, and then want to forget my politics when it's time to enjoy music, sports, or film? Maybe not. These are important issues and perhaps I should be consistent.

But sometimes I want a song to be just a song; a baseball team to be just a baseball team; and a movie to be just a movie. No strings attached. No longwinded discussions. And no defensive explanations for why burying your wife in the backyard can be supremely funny.

[*That was a nod to Ellen, for those of you not in the know.]