June 30, 2007

Are We Surprised?

They're talking to a Scottish reporter on the scene in Glasgow on FNC right now, and she's reporting that the bombers were yelling 'Allah!' as they tried to get away. And the airport worker she's interviewing is confirming that. He was one of the people who helped subdue the suspects.

And she's reporting that all the passengers in the area of the terminal are being told they can't leave the country/area till they're interviewed by police.

New: security alert being raised to critical in the UK which SKY News is interpreting is that the UK officials think another attack is imminent.

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June 28, 2007

Yay!

The amnesty bill goes down in flames!

Now can we stop messing around and start enforcing our laws?

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June 26, 2007

June 24, 2007

Hah!

This was emailed to me by Ed, and it was so cute, I had to share it!

lolcats.jpg

(Ed, if you have a blog, let me know, and I'll add a link to the post!)

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June 22, 2007

Just Walking Home From School

A group of girls returning home from school in Afghanistan's Logar province recently did not for a moment expect what lay ahead.

As they walked down a dirt track, insurgents sprang out of the parched farms and began firing on them.

Some of them fled into the farm, but two girls, one aged 13, the other 10, were killed in the ambush. Three of their friends were wounded.

The whole article here.

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What Would Jack Bauer Do?

Canadian jurist prompts international justice panel to debate TV drama 24's use of torture


Justice Antonin Scalia is one of the most powerful judges on the planet.

The job of the veteran U.S. Supreme Court judge is to ensure that the superpower lives up to its Constitution. But in his free time, he is a fan of 24, the popular TV drama where the maverick federal agent Jack Bauer routinely tortures terrorists to save American lives. This much was made clear at a legal conference in Ottawa this week.

Senior judges from North America and Europe were in the midst of a panel discussion about torture and terrorism law, when a Canadian judge's passing remark - "Thankfully, security agencies in all our countries do not subscribe to the mantra 'What would Jack Bauer do?' " - got the legal bulldog in Judge Scalia barking.

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June 21, 2007

Cool Beans!

How awesome is it that Ralph Nader may run for President again? This could be fun!

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Yo, Ho, Ho and a Chest Full of Sequels

Take this as you will, but I thought I'd pass it along.


Some franchises just don't know when to quit. Whether or not people are getting sick and tired of the whole Pirates of the Caribbean thing, when a franchise makes that much money, it's hard to let it die. We've been hearing rumblings about a possible fourth Pirates of the Caribbean movie for months now, but tonight I got an email from the old friend of the site which not only confirmed a fourth movie will almost certainly be happening, but dropped details on where the series may end up going when it continues.

Our source says that Pirates of the Caribbean 4 is no longer just a possibility, it's almost a certainty. More importantly, Johnny Depp is all but assured to return, though our scooper claims he may end up making as much as $35 - $40 million to do it. Also returning will be Geoffrey Rush and Gore Verbinski as director, but forget about the rest of the cast because from now on the movies will only be about Captain Jack.

That's right, Pirates 4 will cast aside Will and Elizabeth to make it an all Jack Sparrow movie. That won't be the only change Disney is planning to make when the series continues though. Our scooper says, "the ending of Pirates 3, the fountain of youth story might not be the only story they might used the next pirate's film. The fountain story could used in another form to introduce the story for Pirates 4… the next film might be a departure from the same formula of the last three movies as well, meaning that Jerry Bruckheimer could be planning to enter the realm of Science Fiction this time around and it could be the heart of a new trilogy with Jack Sparrow and his crew of misfits. Some of the brainstorming going around involves some Jules Verne type of scenarios involving some pretty big flying machines, a man who wants to rule more than just the ocean, a encounter with the most famous and dangerous pirate of all, a race to get to a lost world (Hint, Hint) and Jack and his crew going to where no pirate has gone before (No, its not space but Disney had made animated movie about this place before with Michel J Fox voicing one of the characters)."

Pirates science fiction? What the heck? The Michael J. Fox movie our source is referring to is almost certainly Atlantis, which would tie in the Jules Verne and science fiction elements mentioned. Apparently we'll also get more of Jack's past and his family, which could also mean more Keith Richards. I'd actually be ok with that, Keith was surprisingly good.

Don't get too attached to the idea of another Pirates of the Caribbean sequel though. Our insider thinks that Disney plans to take a long, long breather between Pirates movies: "word is that the start date could be around 2009 to 2011." I don't think we need another Pirates sequel, but if they're going to do one, giving the franchise time to recharge is probably a very good idea.

As always, consider everything above as nothing but rumor till something more develops. Our source is a proven one, but if we can't give you our source, then consider anything we tell you as unconfirmed gossip.

Original here. Pillaged from a POTC email list I'm on.

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Offended

Irshad Manji: The irrational response to Salman Rushdie's knighthood is sadly typical

... As a Muslim, you better believe I'm offended - by these absurd reactions.

I'm offended that it is not the first time honours from the West have met with vitriol and violence. In 1979, Pakistani physicist Abdus Salam became the first Muslim to win the Nobel Prize in science. He began his acceptance speech with a verse from the Koran.

Salam's country ought to have celebrated him. Instead, rioters tried to prevent him from re-entering the country. Parliament even declared him a non-Muslim because he belonged to a religious minority. His name continues to be controversial, invoked by state authorities in hushed tones.

I'm offended that every year, there are more women killed in Pakistan for allegedly violating their family's honour than there are detainees at Guantanamo Bay.

Muslims have rightly denounced the mistreatment of Gitmo prisoners. But where's our outrage over the murder of many more Muslims at the hands of our own?

I'm offended that in April, mullahs at an extreme mosque in Pakistan issued a fatwa against hugging.

The country's female tourism minister had embraced - or, depending on the account you follow, accepted a congratulatory pat from - her skydiving instructor after she successfully jumped in a French fundraiser for the victims of the 2005 Pakistan earthquake. Clerics announced her act of touching another man to be "a great sin" and demanded she be fired.

I'm offended by their fatwa proclaiming that women should stay at home and remain covered at all times.

I'm offended that they've bullied music store owners and video vendors into closing up shop.

I'm offended that the Government tiptoes around their craziness because these clerics threaten suicide attacks if confronted.

I'm offended that on Sunday, at least 35 Muslims in Kabul were blown to bits by other Muslims and on Tuesday, 80 more in Baghdad by Islamic "insurgents", with no official statement from Pakistan to deplore these assaults on fellow believers.

I'm offended that amid the internecine carnage, a professed atheist named Salman Rushdie tops the to-do list.

Above all, I'm offended that so many other Muslims are not offended enough to demonstrate widely against God's self-appointed ambassadors. We complain to the world that Islam is being exploited by fundamentalists, yet when reckoning with the opportunity to resist their clamour en masse, we fall curiously silent.

Read it all.

Posted by Ith at 9:13 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Just Say 'No' To Unsolicited Email

Can't figure out why Sam Brownback keeps emailing me. I didn't sign up for his campaign, and none of the other candidates are sending me email, just him. It's getting rather annoying. Kind of like the guy who kept sending me McCain booster type emails. Finally had to email them and tell me to remove me from the mailing list I never signed up for! Geez! Is there anything on my blog that would indicate I'm a big McCain fan? I think not. Just the opposite in fact.

So just a note to all you presidential candidates out there -- please knock it off with the spam, unless I request said spam. you aren't winning my affection this way, believe me.

kthxbye

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June 20, 2007

Thieves Steal Herman Munster's Identity

Crooks in an underground chat room for selling stolen credit card numbers and personal consumer information offered pilfered data purportedly about Herman Munster, the 1960s Frankenstein-like character from "The Munsters" TV sitcom.

The thieves apparently didn't realize Munster was a fictional TV character and dutifully offered to sell Munster's personal details - accurately listing his home address from the television series as 1313 Mocking Bird Lane - and what appeared to be his MasterCard number. Munster's birth date was listed as Aug. 15, 1964, suspiciously close to the TV series' original air date in September 1964.

Full Article

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June 15, 2007

Amazing

Don't know how many of you have seen this going around the last few
days, but there's a talent show going on in the UK right now, and
this cell phone salesman from Cardiff, Paul Potts, walked on stage and sang the
most amazing opera piece. He blew every one away. Last night, he made
it to the semi finals. And another teary eyed inducing performance :)

Here's the original.

And last night.

I emailed this to everyone I knew this morning, and posted in on my LJ, but in the process, forgot to post it here!

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June 14, 2007

We Has Tribbles

So I've been peripherally aware of the whole Lolcats thing, but
hadn't paid too much attention. A few weeks back, Nin kept bugging me
to go look at the Lolcats 'Trouble With Tribbles' 'episode' and I
kept forgetting. So finally, tired of being pestered, I did. And just
about fell off my chair laughing. So then I went to the 'I can has
cheezeburger
' site and 'meme cats' and ODed on Lolcats!

But she's very sorry now that she did, because I'm captioning
our cat, the neighbour's cat, her, me, TV shows. [rubs hands together
in evil glee] There is no end to my Lolcat mania! That'll learn her!

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'I Remember You Not Fondly'

My latest story, a WIP, but six parts up so far.

Rating: PG13
Fandom Highlander
Warnings/Notes: A story in my Bloodties series (No relation to the TV show), set in the Star Trek future/time line, WIP
Character(s): Methos, OFC, Kronos, Silas
Summary: When the past becomes part of the present, the consequences can be deadly for those around you.

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June 13, 2007

60 Million Missing

Infanticide, Abortion Responsible for 60 Million Girls Missing in Asia

There is a little-known battle for survival going in some parts of the world. Those at risk are baby girls, and the casualties are in the millions each year. The weapons being used against them are prenatal sex selection, abortion and female infanticide — the systematic killing of girls soon after they are born.
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The Trouble With Islam

Found this video linked on The Corner this morning.

It certainly doesn't pull any punches!

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June 12, 2007

You Have To Love It

Working at a place where you can get one of your coworkers to explain the ins and outs of breaking someone's wrist when you're researching for a story.

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Experience Ancient Rome, Virtually

Computer experts on Monday unveiled a digital reproduction of ancient Rome as it appeared at the peak of its power in A.D. 320 — what they called the largest and most complete simulation of a historic city ever created.

Visitors to virtual Rome will be able to do even more than ancient Romans did: They can crawl through the bowels of the Colosseum, filled with lion cages and primitive elevators, and fly up for a detailed look at bas-reliefs and inscriptions atop triumphal arches.

"This is the first step in the creation of a virtual time machine, which our children and grandchildren will use to study the history of Rome and many other great cities around the world," said Bernard Frischer of the University of Virginia, who led the project.

The rest here.

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June 11, 2007

So Why Bother Voting?

So much for the will of the people and the consent of the governed.

I didn't vote in the latest local special election because I did not have the time or the energy to study the issues thoroughly to make an informed choice. The ballot measures all had to do with land use and development issues, and I can't remember when I have seen and heard as much obfuscation on both sides of an issue. At one point I was tempted to vote against one measure based solely on the sign pollution of the side in favor.

The voters soundly defeated all four ballot measures, so that should be the end of it. Right? Wrong! Those Who Know BestTM are taking steps to thwart the will of the people.

. . . supporters said not so fast. They are plotting a comeback with lawsuits and creating GPU-5, a plan that combines the concepts of Measure A and GPU-4 while rejecting development in the Rancho San Juan area.

Several lawsuits are already pending against the county and more are expected to be filed. County counsel said it could be years before this issue is settled in court.

Despite the fact that voters shot it down two years ago and again on Tuesday, the Butterfly Village project, a provision of Measure D, could still move forward.

I think I'm getting a headache.

Cross-posted at Cranky's place

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June 8, 2007

A Giant In the World of Dragons

J.R.R. Tolkien's 'The Children of Hurin' is on my to read table. Might even try to get to it this weekend. In the meantime, here's an article on the book (though they keep spelling 'Hurin', 'Hurim'!)

An excerpt:

....Indeed, it is a tale of unremitting blackness. The elves we meet here are even icier and more callous than those of the Lost Tales; and the hero is so flawed, so "wronged" and so ruthless, and so weighed down with suffering that his death is something of a relief.

Only at the very end does his father return from Morgoth to find what has happened and to watch their mother, Morwen, in despondency. It would make a wonderful opera.

Now the army of Tolkien imitators and creators of alternative universes fill the fantasy sections of the libraries. They are books largely written by and for nerds.

Yet with the master, it isn't so. In this new book, as in The Silmarillion, you feel yourself in the presence of a personal genius.

It is an odd thing to say, since his aim was to create an impersonal mythology, and you can see the affinities it has with Hebrew, Greek and Nordic equivalents. The ineluctable tendency for events to go wrong, and for the beautiful and the delicate to be vanquished, knows no let-up.

Yet, though there is not one word of preaching in The Children of Hurim, you never doubt that it is worth being good, even though evil triumphs.

You close it thinking how extraordinary was the life of Tolkien, who for well over half a century, while pursuing an academic career, continued to evolve - unpublished and without much encouragement - a self-contained world of myth.


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June 7, 2007

Did I Mention?

That I now have a region free DVD player? And it rocks! It's much nicer than the bargain basement predecessor. And now, I can watch HEX, the entire season of which Nin got me for Xmas. I was at Amazon UK and discovered many box set series at half the price of what they are here as well. Right now, I'm waiting for the first season of Rome to arrive, which was nearly half of what it was here. I had the opportunity to see a few episodes a few months back, and decided it was worth getting the season.

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Friday Night Lights

I seriously love this show! And since I didn't watch it from the beginning, I was stoked that NBC was going to reair it in the summer. Yay! Except they didn't start it from the beginning, but farther in! So I still don't get to see the episodes I missed. Guess I'll have to buy the DVDs when it comes out.

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She's Back!

I had no idea Rachel had started blogging again!! I'm thrilled to pieces! Best news I've had all day. I've missed her, and every morning I'd open the cupboard to see her smiling face on her mug and wonder what the heck happened to her. But she's back now! Wheee!

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'Simple Pleasures'

Today's Lunch Hour Drabble

Rated PG13, in the extended entry.

Simple Pleasures

Methos had always believed that simple pleasures were best.

A bottle of wine, a loaf of fresh bread. Sitting on the porch holding the hand of the one you loved as the long summer twilight lengthened into dark. Listening in companionable silence as the frogs and crickets began their night song. Taking a deep breath, inhaling the delicate scent of flowers, warmed by the sun, releasing their perfume into the dark. And the simplest pleasure of all: claiming the lips of your lover with your own, reminding them night was beginning, and the hours before morning were meant for pleasure.

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Immigration Attitudes Survey

I was asked to put up a link to this survey for my readers.


Increasingly, Americans are turning to the web for news about politics. This is a survey about online news coverage of the immigration issue. We are interested in your thoughts on this important political controversy. If you decide to participate in our survey, you will start off by answering a few questions about yourself and your political attitudes. Then you will watch a short news clip of an immigration story. After the clip, we will ask you some questions about your position on immigration policy. In total, the survey should take about 15 minutes to complete. The survey is completely anonymous and you can skip any questions you do not wish to answer.

Click here to take the survey:


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Drabbling

Way back when, I used to post my fic here. Once I set up my Live Journal, I stopped. Though I should remember to post the links to new stories here (if anyone has actually missed seeing them, of course) (probably not). But I think I will start posting my drabbles here. Yes, yes, try to contain your excitement!

A drabble, if you didn't know, is a story exactly 100 words long. I'd never written one before last year, and now I've come to quite enjoy them. I tend to write most of them on my lunch, so I started calling them my Lunch Hour Drabble Series :)

So look for one in a bit.

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Sampling

I got a bunch of perfume samples from Lucky Scent in yesterday. Last night I tried Burning Leaves, and today is In the Library. I thought I'd post about them as I go, or until I forget.

Burning Leaves really does have a scent of well, burning leaves. I like it, but at the same time, can't imagine smelling like that.

Burning Leaves notes:
The smoke of burning maple leaves

And that's it! I may try it one more time, just out of curiosity.

Today, I'm wearing In the Library and it's pleasant, but not to my taste.

In The Library notes:
Russian & Moroccan leather bindings, worn cloth and a hint of wood polish

Both scents, and most of the samples I got, are from a new line called CB I Hate Perfume, if you were interested in more information. Each scent comes with an essay on the website from the creator.

Posted by Ith at 10:28 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 6, 2007

Behind The Veil

In Saudi Arabia, a view from behind the veil

....I was ready to cope, or so I thought. I arrived with a protective smirk in tow, planning to thicken the walls around myself. I'd report a few stories, and go home. I had no inkling that Saudi Arabia, the experience of being a woman there, would stick to me, follow me home on the plane and shadow me through my days, tainting the way I perceived men and women everywhere.

I'm leaving the Middle East now, closing up years spent covering the fighting and fallout that have swept the region since Sept. 11. Of all the strange, scary and joyful experiences of the past years, my time covering Saudi Arabia remains among the most jarring.

I spent my days in Saudi Arabia struggling unhappily between a lifetime of being taught to respect foreign cultures and the realization that this culture judged me a lesser being. I tried to draw parallels: If I went to South Africa during apartheid, would I feel compelled to be polite?

(emphasis mine)

Thanks to KC Anathema for the link.

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Feed Broken?

I didn't realize the feed thingie here was still broken. Or at least I think it is. Does anyone know how one would fix it? I'm willing to give it a try if I had even the remotest clue about it.

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5pm?

I turned on the TV just before 6pm to watch the debate last night, only to discover it was almost over! I vote the next one be on at 8pm PDT just to be fair and all.

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June 4, 2007

When Atlantis is Grey's Anatomy

This week's episode, I kid you not!

Detials below for spoilers...

Okay, first off, why do all the kleenex heavy episodes of shows air all at once? First Doctor Who, then I start on Atlantis. By the end of the night, I couldn't breath and I had a terrible headache. But on with the show.

I'd heard rumours that Carson died, but I didn't have any details. So last night, we're watching, and as soon as I heard the words 'explosive tumours' I knew what was going to happen. (Side note: I can just see a bunch of writers around the table and some guy saying, "I know! Explosive tumours!! That would be so cooool!) So how was it like Grey's? Well, there was an episode in second season where a patient had an unexploded bazooka shell in him. Carson was a combination of Meredith and Burke and 'Bomb Guy' (Kyle Chandler in a guest role). The surgeons refuse to leave the patient, operate to remove the shell, they carefully place it in Bomb Guys hands, he walks down the hall toward the disposal container and BOOM!!! Since I'd seen it in Grey's, I wasn't totally shocked when Carson got blown up.

I liked Carson! And who's going to take care of his turtles? :(

Some of the not sad things I liked: While this show is totally free of any sort of ship for me, I had to say, I found the Teyla and John, and Rodney and Plant Chick interactions adorable. While I wouldn't want this to become a frequent feature of the show, I wouldn't be adverse to a little exploration on that front. Even Elizabeth and her lunch date were cute.

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June 3, 2007

Forget the G-String

Now you can 'wear' the C-string!

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Hey, Western Canadians

My uncle just got married, and my mum wants to give him and his wife a gift certificate from a store local to them. Is there a Canadian equivalent of Bed, Bath and Beyond (those may even be in Canada for all I know)? Someplace that sells housewares and linens. They're going to be building a house in Vernon, and currently live in Terrace. Our default is a gift certificate from the Bay.

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DW: Human Nature & Family of Blood

Whoa! I didn't know Doctor Who had it in it to pack such an emotional punch. We watched the two newest episodes last night, and I went through half a box of kleenex. And Martha, I just love her more and more. A real improvement over Rose.

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Spoileriffic AWE Interview

Ted Elliott & Terry Rossio on 'At World's End'

If you've seen the movie, I think you'll enjoy this interview.

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June 2, 2007

Crossing My Fingers

Yes, I know the comments have been pretty much broken for a lot of you for awhile. and it's been hard for me to balance spam against letting people comment at will. I think I've managed to get a bit of a working compromise. I won't know for a dew days, of course, till I actually have comments to judge.

What I think it's going to now is: if you're registered with Typekey, MT sees you as a 'trusted commenter' (It's a bummer I can't decide who is trusted myself, but I can't) and will publish for comment. If you comment and aren't logged into Typekey, your comment will be held in moderation till I can approve it.

Let's see if this works, okay? So please, if you would leave comments, both signed into Typekey and not, and see how it all works. Thanks.

And thanks so much for all your patience! I know it's been frustrating.

Posted by Ith at 1:11 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Fog

It's not that I'm not used to days of fog, but this is getting to be a drag. I can't remember the last time I saw more than half an hour of sun. And this is supposed to go on through next week. The dampness and the dreariness are getting me down -- and making my poor bones ache.

Posted by Ith at 12:38 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 1, 2007

Set Me Off, Why Don't You?

One thing that's virtually guaranteed to get me irritated, is a missive from my elected representative, the permanently entrenched in power, Sam Farr. If you want to make me growl bad words at my computer screen and stomp around the office for a bit, then you send me this:

Dear Denise: Like you, I am deeply disappointed the President refused to modify his position on the Iraq war

Like me? LIKE ME? Nothing, and I mean nothing, sets me off than a politician or an organization acting like they know me, that they know what I think, or how I feel. It's like NOW trying to tell me that they speak for all women. Horse pucky!

I'm tempted to reply to the email...

Dear Sam, I am nothing like you. Nor will I ever be. In future, please be so kind as to not presume you speak for me, or assume that you in any way could express my feelings.

Thank you

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