So here goes:
:: They are just obstacles or tools to her. She is too practical and selfish to care one way or another, except in how they cause her trouble or are useful to her. (This is in reference to Scarlett O'Hara. Lance Mannion's been talking about Gone With the Wind a bit lately -- see also here -- and I note that I've never been bothered by the film's racism. Sure, I've noticed it, because it's so obvious, but I've always been fairly good at looking past the attitudes of earlier times. I just don't like the movie because of what Lance says right here: Scarlett O'Hara is such a spoiled little brat. Seriously, I can't stand her, and it always galls me that it takes three hours for Rhett Butler to realize that he doesn't give a damn when I stopped giving a damn within five minutes of meeting Miss Scarlett.)
:: As discussed at length elsewhere, I still very much enjoy the oft-maligned current and past few seasons of ER. (Though I've given up on ER, as I noted back when, I'm still more well-versed on ER than I want to be, since The Wife still watches the show and I still end up catching bits of it while I'm trying to read or blog or do whatever while the show is on. John cites the Neela/Gallant union as a high point of recent ER seasons, and I'm inclined to agree, even if the show has had few high points recently, as far as I'm concerned. It amazes me that the obvious thing to do -- have Gallant die in action in Iraq -- hasn't happened yet, and that is, admittedly, to the credit of the writers. Though they could still do it, and the show is still a shell of what it once was.)
:: Do orchestras play well enough? (That's actually a header to a fascinating post. And read the follow-up here, in which Mr. Sandow gives a specific example of what he means about orchestras not playing well enough.
:: Q: What is the definition of an optimist? (Yes, you're gonna groan when you click through and find out. But do it anyway.)
:: I'm all for economic development -- even given gambling's potential downside. But if it requires that New York citizens to give up their property by government edict, the game's over. (For me, the game was over a long time ago. I just don't see the economic upside to a Seneca casino, and to me the idea of taking yet more developable land off the tax rolls forever in downtown Buffalo makes about as much sense as building a new University out on some swampland in a distant suburb. But then, we already did that, so....)
:: Until I complete the work on my magic crystal ball `o truth, I'm going to have to oppose the death penalty, coupled with real life w/o parole reforms. (That about sums it up with me: you never know if you've got the right guy, and you can let the wrong guy out, but you can't resuscitate the wrong guy once you've killed him. I wouldn't cut them totally off from the outside world, though -- I'd at least let them read books and newspapers, and maybe a TV if they can get any signal via rabbit ears. But that's it. If I don't get cable, neither do the convicted murderers. And broadband Internet? No way!)
:: You will be safe behind Rush's rippling pecs. (My eyes! My eyes!)
:: Meanwhile Roger L. Simon thinks that cute-as-a-button Reese Witherspoon is "flat-out, hands-down the finest actress in American commercial cinema today" which I take to mean that Roger has been blowing some of that VC money on the good shit. (Ms. Witherspoon's a fine actress, certainly. But the "finest in American commercial cinema today"?! Wow.)
:: Anyway, for those who are following along at home, The Thing in question is this one, also mentioned here and here but it is not this one and it's definitely not that other one that I guess I forgot to write up. (Huh?!)
:: John Derbyshire: gay sex is a crime against nature, but if your girlfriend can drink legally, she's past her prime. All righty then. (Yup, the Derb said it, all right: "It follows that we are at ease with the fact that the human female is visually attractive to the human male at, or shortly after, puberty, and for only a few brief years thereafter." That guy is just flat-out loony. What a bizarre thing to believe. My own wife is more beautiful to me now than she was ten years ago, and she's well past what The Derb seems to think is "attractive". And come to think of it, of all the beautiful women in my life, not only are each and every one of them past 25, many of them are even past 30. And as a bonus, here's another dumb thing I read by The Derb this week:
To my kids I should like to say: I am sorry to have brought you into this mess. There were no bells ringing, no bands playing, at either of your births, and it would have been a travesty if there had been. Even the wisest of us — people like your Dad, I mean — live in part by instinct, and there is no instinct stronger than the one that prompts us to continue the species; so here you are. I am sorry, sorry. There was the Greatest Generation. Then there was ours, the Luckiest. Yours will be the Saddest. Quite possibly — so far as this civilization is concerned, at any rate — it will be the Last. I shall continue to do my best for you as long as I can, but... après moi le Deluge.
Shorter Derb: "Boy, now that we've pissed in the pool, it sure does suck that our kids are gonna have to swim through that icky shade of yellow. Oh well. Good luck with that."
Suck it, Derb.)
:: Not only is it quicker than trying to launch a brand-new operation, but it also offers an effective way to hurdle such entry barriers as acquiring technological know-how, establishing supplier relationships, becoming big enough to match rivals' efficiency and unit costs, having to spend large sums on introductory advertising and promotions, and securing adequate distribution. (Make it stop!)
OK, that's enough for this week. Some of these, by the way, come from blogs of folks who dropped by to offer their condolences and well-wishes in the comments here over the last week. I've bookmarked them all (I think, anyway -- there were a lot of them) and I'm enjoying looking through them all.