August 16th, 2013


[links] Link salad loves the halflings' leaf

Richard Derus reviews Endurance — Another part of his Jay Lake Pre-Mortem Readathon. He seems to have liked the book.

Archaeologists Just Found the Oldest Board Game Tokens Ever — This is nifty as heck. (Via [info]threeoutside.)

Hyperactive Brain May Create "Near Death" VisionsA new study shows that even after cardiac arrest, the brain keeps on going. Light. More light.

Stem cells turned into cancer-killing immune cellsIn cases where immune therapy works, it could allow mass production of treatment.

Fossil Reveals Long-Lived Mammal Group's SecretNew Jurassic find in China provides fresh evidence of early mammal evolution.

How to Build a Time Cloak with MirrorsA simple arrangement of switchable mirrors can create “holes in time” of almost any length.

Search for centuries-old galleon off Oregon coast begins anew near Manzanita — Arrrh, me hearties.

Scrapbook of early aeronautica (1783) — Oh, cool. (Via [info]threeoutside.)

DC-10 arrives at the Falls fire — Wow, this is a hell of a photo of a water bomber.

Tensioned Suspension — This be some cool art.

Scientist banned from revealing codes used to start luxury cars — (Snurched from Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

Earth’s inner heat helps control Greenland’s iceDifferences in the Earth's crust create hot and cold spots under the ice.

West Antarctica Warmed Quickly ... 20,000 Years AgoThe modern meltdown of the Antarctic Ice Sheet mirrors the frozen continent's big thaw after the last ice age ended 20,000 years ago, a new study finds. Amazing, the degrees even the climate itself will go to in order to support the liberal lie of climate change.

Yep, We’re Screwed: Top Ten Recent Climate Change Findings that should Scare You — Nothing to see here, citizen. Move along.

2 Trenton police detectives shot — Thank god for the NRA and the Republican party and their absolutist defense of your Second Amendment rights. Otherwise this shooter wouldn't have been able to exercise his theoretical defense of essential civil liberties by wounding two police officers. But these daily shootings are a small price to pay for America's gun owners to feel safer.

Obama-Impersonating Rodeo Clown Offered Political Asylum by Congressman-Impersonating Clown Steve StockmanQuoth Stockman: “Liberals want to bronco bust dissent. But Texans value speech, even if it’s speech they don’t agree with. From Molly Ivins to Louie Gohmert and every opinion between, Texans value free and open political speech." Apparently Representative Stockman has never met any Republicans, ever listened to Rush Limbaugh, and was not alive during the Bush administration. The idea that conservatives value free speech and dissent in any form, let alone by comparison with liberals, doesn't event begin to make the laugh test. Not to mention failing to meet any reality-based criteria whatsoever. Dixie Chicks, anyone? More of that just famed conservative intellectual honesty and self-awareness on display.

Three Republicans Who Opposed Sandy Relief Now Demand Disaster Aid For Arizona — Because being a conservative means never having to be intellectually honest. Nuance, donchaknow?

Congressman Doesn’t Believe White Collar Crime On Wall Street ExistsAt a town hall meeting in El Dorado Hills, California on Tuesday, a constituent asked McClintock for his “stance on Wall Street criminal practices.” The congressman responded, “Well first of all, for a criminal practice there has to be a gun. It’s pretty simple.” Your Republican party, ladies and gentlemen. It's cretins like this who have a hammerlock on the American political process.

Santorum: Term 'Middle Class' Is 'Marxism Talk' — This is so stupid I cannot even begin to comprehend it. But, hey, Republicans!

QotD?: Is your mind clouded?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 7.0 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.5 hours (stationary bike)
Weight: 246.4
Number of FEMA troops on my block forcing conservatives to enroll in Obamacare: 0
Currently reading: Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Program by Sharon Salzberg


[travel|cancer] Open letter to the woman sharing my flight from LAX to PDX

Dear woman who shared my flight from LAX to PDX this past Wednesday —


I know you expected to board the plane first. You were proudly standing at the front of the First Class/premium status boarding lane when I limped up the economy lane with my cane, Lisa Costello and [info]the_child following close behind and juggling our bags.

I know you were suspicious of my coming forward at the call for passengers needing a little extra time in boarding. I saw you studying my cane, my plump-and-pink face and body. I could practically hear you thinking, He doesn't look sick, is he carrying that thing for a prop?. I'm sorry you were suspicious, and I'm sorry I ruined your experience by getting on before you.

I know you were glaring at me when I walked down the aisle of the plane to the lavatory mid-flight, astonishingly enough, without my cane. Which I don't need for short distances, especially with my shoes off, and which would be somewhere between inconvenient and dangerous to take into the tiny airplane lav with me, should we hit turbulence while I was voiding my bladder. Once again, I did not look sick to you. To you I looked like I was abusing the privilege of my disability to inconvenience the privilege of your premium traveler status.

I know I don't owe you or anyone else an explanation. The airline does not require me to present a doctor's note. (Though I in fact have one for certain purposes, satisfying your suspicions not being one of those purposes.) You weren't in the gate area when I arrived by cart, which are hard to get unless you have a very good reason, so you didn't see that. You don't seem to understand there are disabilities which can make it hard for a healthy-seeming person to walk. You had no way of knowing I'd just flown across the Pacific, which would leave even a fully abled person pretty run down and worn out.

But you know what? Fuck you. Fuck you and your petty little suspicions and your glaring eyes and your privilege of health and premium traveler status. I'm sorry that one of the fringe benefits of terminal cancer is that I get to board your shiny, empty airplane before you. It's not like we get to pick seats based on our boarding order. My disability costs you absolutely nothing, lady, while it costs me my life. So if an otherwise largely indifferent air travel industry is willing to extend me the courtesy of not having to stand elbows deep in a slow-moving line on my aching, painful feet, I will take advantage of that courtesy.

You're dying too, lady. Just somewhat more slowly and obliviously than me. Next time, try to find a little more human compassion and little less suspicious judgment. Who knows, you might even have a better day for your trouble.

Much love,



[friends|photos] Went to the railroad locomotive and watched a wedding

On Monday, July 29th, we went to a wedding. One I was very honored to attend.

[info]garyomaha and [info]elusivem finally got married after almost two decades together. They did it while here in the Pacific Northwest for JayWake, tying the knot at the Columbia Gorge Interpretive Center in Stevenson, WA.

The ceremony was brief and lovely, held at the prow of a retired diesel locomotive (on my recommendation, I might proudly note). In addition to attending, I was one of the witnesses for the marriage license. The officiant and the other witness were another gay couple, long term friends of the grooms who came down from Seattle. Also in attendance were Lisa Costello and [info]the_child, as well as [info]scarlettina, and my dad and (step)mom. Afterwards, we all retired for a lovely lunch at Skamania Lodge.

I was so pleased to see two dear, long-time friends feeling free to take this momentous and emotional step in their lives. I wish them all happiness and as long together as is given to them.

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As usual, more at the Flickr set.

Photo © 2013, Joseph E. Lake, Jr. and B. Lake.

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This work by Joseph E. Lake, Jr. and B. Lake is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.