December 15th, 2012


[links] Link salad calls some people the space cowboy

Deuteragonist — A literary term of art which I did not know. (Via Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

Some People Call Me The Space Marine . . . And Get Threatened By Games Workshop Hogarth wrote a book called Spots the Space Marine, only to find it yanked from Amazon, apparently based on a claim of trademark infringement by I-can't-believe-they-still-exist gaming institution Games Workshop. Games Workshop, it seems, told Amazon that they own the trademark to "Space Marine," not withstanding that (1) they don't own a trademark to it in the context of science fiction books, and (2) they couldn't, because the term has been in wide use in science fiction for the better part of a century. (Via [info]goulo.)

Speed of Perception — This is just cool. From art guru James Gurney. I can think of several ways to use this concept SFnally.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected FailureWired does not like. Howard Tayler does.

Craft Brewers Threatened by Big Beer Brands

Large, old trees disappearing worldwideLargest trees provide distinct ecosystem services.

New milestone for China: Probe snaps close-ups of asteroid Toutatis

Apple Execs Are 'Seething' Over The World's Joyful Reaction To Google Maps For iPhone, Writes Top Apple Blogger — Maybe they should have put out a better maps product before they kicked Google off the platform. "Insanely great" got completely derailed by Apple's corporate dickwaving.

SSDD: If the evangelical mainstream wants me to view the religious right as marginal, then they should do more to marginalize the religious right

Mormon ‘Pants Day’ — debate heats up as women prepare to dress down — Speaking as an atheist, it's hard not to giggle about these kind of religious issues. I recognize they're very serious, for several reasons, but don't religions have better things to do, like saving souls or ministering to the poor?

Despite string of massacres, little change to US gun control laws — An Australian perspective.

"Fuck You CNN": How the Press Got it Wrong on Newtown — How would you feel if this were you.

Friendly Fire Isn'tScrivener's Error on the Connecticut shootings, specifically the media coverage.

Questions I ask myself about Connecticut School Shooting — Juan Cole on the shootings, again with much about the media coverage.

American Exceptionalism: The Shootings Will Go On — James Fallows on the shootings. Guns don't attack children; psychopaths and sadists do. But guns uniquely allow a psychopath to wreak death and devastation on such a large scale so quickly and easily. America is the only country in which this happens again -- and again and again. You can look it up.

Universal Pattern of Voting BehaviourThe same voting patterns crop up in every country that shares a particular type of electoral system, say sociophysicists. Wait, what? Sociophysicists?

?otD: Do some people call you Maurice?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 13.0 hours (ten hours solid plus napping)
Body movement: 0.0 hours (on the chemo pump)
Weight: n/a
Number of FEMA troops on my block enforcing international law and Kenyan Muslim socialism: 0
Currently reading: The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks


[culture] The Connecticut shootings

I've already said most of what I would say about the Connecticut shootings. Now, on chemo when I am cognitively impaired and my filters are compromised, is not the time for me to try to say more. I'll leave you with one thought of my own, and one from someone else.

Via Twitter, from @ethannichtern: A KNIFE Attack in a Chinese School today WOUNDS 22 Kids, kills NONE. #endofargument

As for my part, consider this. Zero guns would equal zero gun violence. By definition. There must be some midpoint between zero and 300,000,000 guns where 30,000 people don't have to die every year of suicide, homicide and accidental shootings.


[cancer] Things you don't think about but probably should

Recently a youthful visitor to my house was playing unattended in my bathroom and spilled open my pillbox. There are five different prescription drugs in that pillbox that would be readily harmful or fatal to a child, and several more that would make a child very miserable. There are additional prescriptions about the counter that would also be harmful or fatal.

It has never occurred to me that I needed to access-proof my bathroom. Although my house is reasonably high traffic, almost everyone who comes here is well known to me. (Including the pill-spiller.) And as such, is trusted by me to be sensible. And frankly, access-proofing my medications would be a giant pain in the neck.

So what do I do? In the short run, I'm considering requiring all non-residents of the house to use the downstairs bathroom. That doesn't change the fact that a destructive (accidental or purposeful) visitor, or a drug-seeking visitor, couldn't just slip into my bathroom for a look around. It just never occurred to me that this could be a factor. About the only possible solution I can imagine is installing a locking cabinet.

Just what I fucking need. A drug safe.

I miss the days when the most dangerous thing in my bathroom besides the cleaners under the sink was my statin drugs. Sigh.