September 14, 2006
Blaster Master from the past
Writing for 1up.com, longtime reader Shawn Struck interviews best-selling author Seth Godin. You've probably never heard that name, because if like me you're a 20-something who loved video games as a kid you knew him as F.X. Nine, the creator of the "Worlds of Power" book series that produced entire novel-length stories out of Nintendo games.
Most interesting fact about the interview: the pen name was chosen because "Nine" would appear right next to "Nintendo" on bookshelves. The most embarassing thing about the interview: I rememeber exact passages quoted from the Blaster Master book. I'm pretty sure when I was eight that was the greatest piece of literature I ever put my hands on.
September 13, 2006
According to my co-workers upstairs, Air America is declaring bankruptcy.
Apple 0wnZ m3
Apple announced its latest batch of shiny things yesterday, including a $50 price drop on the 30GB iPod, (oh so now you do it, assholes), a new version of the Shuffle that's about the size of a zygote, full-length downloadable movies you can store on a hard drive and watch directly on your televison, oh, and Tetris.
Yep. Tetris on an iPod.
As I joked about in the strip over a year ago, if I didn't surrender and buy an iPod in January I'd be at the Apple store right now from the Tetris thing. It's just a Pavlovian reaction. As for the newer models, I'm betting they'll be fancy and awesome as well and I'm sure we'll have a report on all the features within the next month or so when Chris is instinctively forced to buy all of them.
September 12, 2006
Golly, how surprising
Kevin Drum notes that the Republican drive to create ID-check laws for voting (that just happen to hinder groups that vote Democratic) in the name of "preventing fraud" has yet to provide any evidence of, well, major fraud.
This is a complete surprise, as Republicans are usually on the ball with ignoring meaningless legislation that attacks straw men for partisan agendas in favor of responsibly addressing the crucial and immediate problems facing the country, such as rampant flag burning, hatred of Christmas, decade-long coma victims, subversive Communist college professors, dead millionaires paying too much tax, and the covert homosexual agenda.
An amazing photo essay of Afghanistan post-9/11.
September 11, 2006
As many other blogs have been reporting, in fact with some blogs to a degree that makes me question if they've temporarily gone psychotic, ABC went ahead for the most part with their well-orchestrated attempt to blame Bill Clinton for 9/11. The key victory for people who care about the truth was actually the part that's been the least reported on the news: that outrage and common sense motivated Scholastic to remove their support of thousands of "teacher's guides" that we going to be distributed for students across the country.
That's where I have actually the most disturbed. The main controversy, albiet incredibly necessary to raise, overshadows that other major problem in that for a very significant period of time people were suggesting using a movie as a teaching aid in public schools about current events that are being discussed on the news. Somewhere, a few teachers lost their understanding of what "primary source" means.
This isn't like screeing Roots or a Ken Burns documentary, for goodness' sakes. 9/11 was five years ago. Yes, many high-schoolers were pre-teen at the time, but it's not like 99% of them had parents who were too young to remember it. Many of them probably watched it happen, or saved the newspapers about it. The news is still talking about it. Christ, CNN is running the actual footage of the events on their website. An even semi-fictional movie about this is not necessary; it's arguably the most-documented true event in the history of this generation. If a student doesn't remember 9/11, they don't need a four-hour "special movie event;" they need to spend four hours in the goddamn library.
That PBS and Discovery have made several facts-only documentaries about Bin Laden, 9/11, and the War on Terrorism in the last few years and none of these are being considered as legitimate educational viewing materials as opposed to a commercially-produced miniseries from the Disney Corporation isn't as much a testament to right-wing media influence as it is corporate media influence in general. To quote our fearless leader: rarely, ABC has proven, is the question asked "is our children learning."
In addition to buying some crap, a secondary request: My family called me this weekend to tell me that our family cat passed away in the night. We got Stormy as a stray kitten in 1989. She was just shy of 17 years old. To put this in perspective, I'm 25. Until this weekend, Stormy existed in my life only six years less than my brother did. I really didn't want to mention it on the site because I really, really don't want letters of sympathy or to start discussion about it. But I think it would be worth it to realize that there was absolutely no way on earth Stormy would have made it 17 wonderful years without having a home to take care of her. Please, if you ever consider owning a pet, please don't contribute to the violent and horrific practice of breeding mills for the sake of having a "cool" breed of cat or dog or whatever. Adopt one of the millions of strays out there who need a home, and love it for as long as you both live. I know I did.