May 29, 2010 archive

Late Night Karaoke


The New Lion Cubs at the Bronx Zoo

Sort of cross-posted at DKos as Friday Evening Photo Blogging: Lion Cubs Today!

I took a little trip to the African veldt today.

Oh okay, I never made it out of the Bronx. Today I went to see the three new lion cubs that were born on January 27th and made their public début this week. So give a roaring welcome to Nala, Adamma and Shani as they get used to their new digs. Their big sister Moxie is a very good baby sitter for these 25 pound kittens.  

Random Japan


Nineteen Seibu Railway employees were caught cheating the system out of more than ¥1.5 million in scams involving commuter passes.

A 44-year-old woman and her male friend in Iwate were detained for fraudulently pretending to be doctors when they tried to get jobs at a local hospital.

After golfer Yuko Mitsuka was penalized two strokes and fined ¥2 million for slow play at the World Ladies Championship in Ibaraki, she quit the tournament in a huff and then pulled out of her next 11 scheduled events.

A survey ship from Taiwan was warned by the Coast Guard after sailing over 300km inside Japan’s exclusive economic zone in the waters off Kagoshima Prefecture.

Nagano Prefecture’s Matsumoto Juvenile Prison is selling T-shirts designed by the inmates that feature a pair of hands gripping the bars of a jail cell.

A new book revealed that a former SDF officer was given hush money by the Japanese government because he had inside knowledge of the 1973 kidnapping of future South Korean president Kim Dae Jung by Korean agents in Tokyo.

Police in Tokyo asked website operators around the country to delete sites that refer users to child porn on the web.

For Your Consideration: Afghanistan, America’s Longest War

This being Memorial Day Weekend, while we are all celebrating, we need a reminder of what this “holiday” is really about.

Grim statistic: 1000th American Military Death in Afghanistan. Blessed Be.

US death toll in Afghanistan reaches 1000 as Americans weary of war

Arlington NAtional Cemetary,  Afghanistan War Dead

   The toll of American soldiers killed in Afghanistan reached 1,000 on Friday, a grim milestone that came as Americans back home prepared to commemorate their war dead.

   News that the body count had ticked into four figures came with the death in a roadside bombing of an American serviceman, yet to be named, who was the 32nd US soldier to die in the past month. He is the 430th to be killed in Afghanistan since President Obama took office in January 2009.

Reflections of war

The Vietnam War’s length can be measured in many ways. The formal beginning of U.S. involvement often is dated to Aug. 7, 1964, when Congress passed the Tonkin Gulf Resolution, giving the president a virtual carte blanche to wage war. By the time the last U.S. ground combat troops were withdrawn in March 1973, the war had lasted 103 months.

U.S. forces attacked Afghanistan on Oct. 7, 2001. On June 7, the war will complete its 104th month. President Obama on Thursday reaffirmed his commitment to the war, saying “it is absolutely critical that we dismantle that network of extremists that are willing to attack us.”

This longest war is far from America’s bloodiest. It has drifted in and out of focus and, for much of its life, been obscured by another war, in Iraq.

When will we ever learn?

h/t Jim White at FDL

“I don’t need sex!” (Update)

And All The Fish That Lay in Dirty Water Dying…

I can’t get this out of my mind.

And yesterday I saw you standing by the river,

And weren’t those tears that filled your eyes?

And all the fish that lay in dirty water dying,

Had they got you hypnotized?

And yesterday I saw you kissing tiny flowers,

But all that lives is born to die.

And so I say to you that nothing really matters,

And all you do is stand and cry.

I don’t know what to say about it,

When all your ears are turned away,

But now’s the time to look and look again at what you see,

Is that the way it ought to stay?


DSCN0129Another week, another few million gallons of oil.

I`m posting these images tonight to get me away from

watching  more videos of spewing black death.


I set up three identical cameras in exactly the same way.

I gave one to each of my  granddaughters, kept one for myself & we went on walkabout.

I explained aperture & shutter speed to them.

Here are some of the shots.

I haven`t downloaded all of them, so there are more of Chloe`s (8 years old) than Jackie`s. (10 years old)

It was a great way to have fun with the girls.

I`ll start with Chloe`s shots, then one of Jackie`s.

Then it`s off to Indian Territory, & then, the races.

Original v. Cover — #27 in a Series

Nature Boy Pictures, Images and Photos

This week’s selection is a hauntingly beautiful number written in 1947 by eden ahbez, an American songwriter and recording artist from the 1940s to the 1960s, whose California lifestyle greatly influenced the hippie movement. Beginning in the 1940s or earlier, ahbez wore sandals, white robes, shoulder-length hair and a beard, uncommon choices in those days. He camped out below the “L” of the Hollywood sign above Los Angeles, studied Oriental mysticism, claimed to survive on three dollars per week, slept outdoors with his family and subsisted on vegetables, fruits and nuts.  He passed away in 1995, just shy of his 87th birthday.

The song was recorded by Nat “King” Cole, remained a #1 hit for eight weeks in 1948, and subsequently became a pop and jazz standard.  The lyrics describe a fantasy of a “strange enchanted boy…who wandered very far” only to learn that “the greatest thing…was just to love and be loved in return.”  The first two measures of the song’s melody are similar to that of Antonin Dvorak’s 1887 “Piano Quintet No. 2 in A, Op. 81.”  It was not known if ahbez was familiar with Dvorak’s work.  The title of the song was derived from a Los Angeles-based group of which ahbez was a member.  

May ’70: 19. How To Build A Movement Center

In an earlier May ’70 post, I described how, the day after the Kent State massacre, NYU students seized a government-funded computer and demanded the school put up bail for one of the Panther 21, political prisoners eventually exonerated.

The Courant Institute wasn’t the only NYU Downtown turf occupied by rebel forces during the student strike. This piece is about the basement of Kimball Hall, a dormitory there. This was an occupation that I played a small role in and that my old ‘rade Lee, with whom I consulted before writing this, was central to.

BP: Bringing People Together

Friday Philosophy: Let My People Pee

Quite a few transwomen, if not all, have encountered the fear of other women when they transitioned.  Women-born women don’t feel safe with us using their restroom facilities.  At least the fear that is voiced is that somehow we are rapists or pedophiles, hunting victims in women’s bathrooms.

The reality is that nobody has ever provided an example of that ever happening.  And the reality is more along these lines:

On April 15, Colle Carpenter, a female-to-male transman, post chest-reconstruction surgery, who also happens to be a person with a disability and a graduate student at Cal State Long Beach, chose to use a men’s restroom at the university and encountered someone transphobic, who pulled Colle’s tshirt over his head and carved the word “IT” on Colle’s chest with an X-Acto knife.

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