Megnut

The mystery is solved

Regarding the earlier anonymous email and "page not found" message: some URL hacking has led to this article, Foetuses 'may be conscious long before abortion limit'. Ah, it makes sense now, especially the anonymous email. Most correspondence I get from people who oppose legal abortion is anonymous. I don't expect us all to agree, but it would be nice if people had the courage to stand by their beliefs, and put a name alongside their convictions.

HBO idea

HBO has done a fantastic job of distinguishing itself from other cable movie stations like Showtime by developing high-quality original programming like Six Feet Under, The Sopranos, and Sex in the City. They've got their brand associated with quality, here's a plan to strengthen it. Push the low-end, re-run movies out to HBO2 and other HBO channels. Then fill the remaining slots (those that don't have original programming or sports) with superb films and documentaries. Show things like No Man's Land, and Sundance/Cannes picks. Make it so that every time I turn on HBO, there's something worth watching.

A response to a reader

Dear anonymous megnut reader,

First off, thanks so much for taking the time to write! I love getting mail from readers, it's one of the things I most enjoy about doing this site. Hearing others' thoughts and checking out the links they send is enlightening. So it was with relish that I opened your message.

You write,

how does this figure into your pro-death perspective? http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?
xml=/news/2003/03/10/nfoet10.xml=
/news/2003/03/10/ixhome.html

Since I hadn't realized I possessed a "pro-death perspective," I was keen to read the link you sent. Imagine my dismay when the URL returned the message, "Sorry, the page you have requested is not available." And then, consider my consternation when I realized the return address of your missive was "reader@megnut.com". Why, there was no way I could even respond to your kind note for any sort of clarification! We seem to be at an impasse.

Still trying to figure,

-megnut

Chinatown buses, another view

You may have heard a lot about the great Chinatown buses that will zip you to Boston or DC for ridiculously low rates. The Morning News' Clay Risen reports on what it's really like to take a trip. If you're looking for cheap transport up and down the east coast, his article will help you figure out if the Chinatown bus is the transportation solution for you.

Early hip-hop photos

Dheeraj reports that Punch Gallery in San Francisco has an exhibit, "Yes Yes Y'all" running March 6 - 31st, 2003. It's 70+ photos documenting the birth of hip-hop from Charlie Ahorn, the director of Wild Style, including "pictures of kool herc, furious 5, busy bee, lots of nyc subway train graffiti, etc..." He also says that Mr. Ahorn will be at the gallery this Saturday for a Q & A session.

Welcome Australians!

The Age (from Australia) mentions megnut in this week's Blogon column. If you're coming to the site after reading the article, welcome! For those interested in seeing the article in its orignal form, here's a scan of it [172k] nicely sent in by Ben H. Thanks Ben!

Today's news, a poem

Composed entirely from this morning's My Yahoo! headlines

Dow Drops
Unemployment Rate Rises
Record Gas Prices in April

Stocks Slump
War Fears
Seize Chunk of Gaza Strip

Weak Jobs Data
Payrolls Plunged
Shares Fall
Inflation Pressures
Fourth-Quarter Loss

Iraq Must Be Dealt with Now
Prospect of Imminent War

Losing our stupidity

Doc and Dave have produced World of Ends: What the Internet Is and How to Stop Mistaking It for Something Else. It is an excellent attempt to explain what the Internet really is, why it works, and what it means for our behavior. They summarize the World of Ends very nicely with 10 points, ending with "Some mistakes we can stop making already." Amen, brothers.

Wild Style in SF

For everyone in San Francisco: Wild Style, the pioneering 1982 movie about hip hop, graffiti, and break dancing, will be showing March 7 & 8 at the Red Vic Movie House on Haight. The director, Charlie Ahearn, will be in attendance at the evening screenings.

Not to get too old school on you, but I saw this movie in 1983. I loved it and a week of breakdancing mania followed, wherein I tried to procure a giant piece of cardboard (no luck), tried backspins on the kitchen floor (no luck), and attempted to moonwalk where ever I went (absolutely, positively, no luck). Check out the movie if you're into early hip hop culture, it's fantastic. And then grab your cardboard and bust your moves.

Make your cat unuseless!

Matt from Frownland.com, reading about my (recently disclosed) penchant for odd Japanese products, sends a pointer to 101 Unuseless Japanese Inventions: The Art of Chindogu. What a book! These duster slippers for cats are the best thing I've ever seen. I'm putting my kitty to work as soon as I get home.

Some new words

Fauxdunk: a small town whose original 5 & 10, feed store, and greasy spoon have been replaced by art galleries, antique shops, and Starbuck's.

Meat Village: the overlap of Manhattan's West Village and the Meatpacking district, where cobblestone streets lead to warehouses.

Google ripoff

2002: Mom's Google cooking.

2003: Google hack Cookin' With Google.

Update: My mom posts that in fact, it isn't a ripoff and that Tara Calishain of Research Buzz contacted her for permission. And that my mom will be credited for Google cooking in the upcoming
Google Hacks
book. Might I add that it would clear up confusion if she were also credited on the site?

Andrea's Photo Blog

There are photo blogs, and then there's Andrea's Photo Blog. A recent perusal of posts and accompanying photos will treat you to: Japanese joke pants, strange men's underwear where the male unit is replaced/covered (?) with a banana; a scientific experiment determining whether, "wrinkled clothing hung in a hot steamy shower room become less wrinkled"; the world's smallest pancake; and Japanese toilet seat warmers in action (and by action I mean...well...you'll see). It's a daily reminder that blogging can be fun and silly, and that Japan leads the world in strange consumer products.

Best take yet

I don't know how I missed this until now, but Stewart's blurb about the Google/Pyra deal is great.

Kitchen tips

In theory this list of how to do all sorts of kitchen things is great. In reality, it's not quite great. The pictures accompanying some of the instructions look like they were taken with the Danger Hiptop camera attachment (small, grainy, bad, etc.). And they frame the content they point to. Still, there's some useful information there.

A personal opinion

I've noticed that both Ev and Jason Shellen, following Google's acquisition of Pyra, now have disclaimers on their websites stating that everything written there is their personal opinion and not the views of their employer. I wonder if you see them in person if they have a similar message tattooed on their foreheads?

Update: This post isn't about Ev and Jason, for those who seem to have misconstrued it. It's about the fact that neither of them had disclaimers on their sites before the Google acquisition, and now they do. That seems odd to me and I wonder whether Google asked/forced/encouraged them to do it.

Further update: Matt points out that Nelson doesn't have a disclaimer. So maybe Google didn't have anything to do with it. Maybe Ev and Jason did it because they thought it was a good idea, in which case I wouldn't have written the post, because my point really was that I don't like the idea of companies telling employees what to do on their personal sites, or during their personal time, etc. And I know that running Blogger at Google, and in general using the web at work, blurs that line and makes it fuzzy and we haven't figured out what the balance is yet. But corporate disclaimers, at least when corporations demand them, make me feel icky. And that was the thought behind this post.

Return of the classics

As an English major, this is a book club I can get behind! Oprah's bringing back her book club and Yahoo! reports she's, Sticking to Classics. She'll make three to five selections a year from authors like Shakespeare, Faulkner, Hemingway, and others. Hopefully she won't go dead-white-men overboard. You know what I hope she picks? The Awakening by Kate Chopin. It's so amazingly good and underrated.

Lessons from the shuttle

Maciej's got a great essay in response to a Washington Post article about the technology of the space shuttle. In it he touches on important guidelines for the development of any technological project or system: the more complicated the system, the harder it will be to maintain; newer is not necessarily better; and one should use technology appropriate for the job at hand. Good things to keep in mind when embarking on that next project, whether it's a Mars-bound space ship or a Web application.

Those tricky cell phone headsets

In San Francisco it's hard to tell, when you spot someone talking as they walk alone down the street, whether they're using a headset for their cell phone or they're an unstable homeless person talking to themselves. In New York the problem is whether they're on the phone, or simply talking to their dog. You be the judge, person-to-person or person-to-dog?

"You're a prince. Yes you are. You're my little prince. Yes, yes. You're my little prince."

"How many times have I told you? Do I have to tell you again? You never listen to me."

Godspeed little doodle

CNN reports that Pioneer 10, the first space craft to venture out of our solar system and the one that sent back all of the wonderful photos of Jupiter, has sent its last signal. It is more than 7.6 billion miles from Earth and its 21-month mission has continued for almost 31 years. Pioneer 10 has always held a special place in my heart because it was launched only a few months after my birth. [via Boing Boing]

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