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From Froborr on My Little Po-MO:

The other night, I was rereading Terry Pratchett's Night Watch, and I wondered: would Ferguson be as bad as it is if all cops were required to read the Watch books?

And the answer is, of course, yes, because the human ability to compartmentalize and justify via special pleading is infinite, but still, I can't help but think that things might be slightly better if the prevailing cultural image of cop-as-hero was more Vimes and less Dirty Harry.
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The following passage comes from page 138 of Proofiness: How You're Being Fooled By the Numbers by Charles Seife. The source is an anonymous statistician, the context is a discussion of disputed elections, and the formatting is my own.

Humans counting things:
I don't care what the things are--
They're going to be off.
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News of a pregnancy is automatically the cue for interminable gossip, speculation, and unsolicited advice; when you're the Duchess of Cambridge in the age of Twitter, the globe is your Old Wife Pool(1).

I'd like to take the opportunity to address one old saw that I keep hearing relentlessly repeated in the media coverage: no matter how hard you folks may be longing for a little princess to squee over, GUT-WRENCHING PROJECTILE MORNING SICKNESS IS NO GUARANTEE OF A FEMALE CHILD.

(Disclaimer: I am neither a certified Old Wife nor a mother--but I know one whom I'm pretty sure I can cite with absolute confidence.)

(1) Particularly when your father-in-law happens to be an alternative health-care buff who no doubt has the cream of Britain's Old Wives on call.
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...And I'd long since decided how I was going to observe the occasion.

I picked up a sushi box lunch--they're now available with spring roll wrappers in lieu of rice--and bunkered down at home for a back-to-back showing of Tsui Hark's Zu Warriors movies, luxuriating in the spectacle of epic wuxia fantasy done right.

Following that, I settled in to reread Barry Hughart's Bridge of Birds, and immerse myself in the adventures of yet more people whom the Powers that Be at Paramount have decided are beneath their notice (as well as mine.)

(I intend--eventually--to catch The Lost Failbender, when the public library acquires it on DVD; I trust that I can count on the company of [livejournal.com profile] kosaginolegion, and perhaps Roaring Tiger and Squalling Dragon, for an evening of Nerfbending, MSTing, and playing "How many things can you see wrong with this picture?")
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A black President;
Digital television; 
Now, where's my jetpack?

Thanks.

Nov. 11th, 2008 04:21 pm
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Ganked and adapted from [livejournal.com profile] ratmmjess  :

To the Paternal Unit (U.S. Navy, Korean War era):  Thank you.

To the Babbit's Paternal Unit: (U.S. Army, Vietnam War): Thank you.

To my landlord (U.S. Navy, WWII): Thank you.

To William Tenn, ne' Phil Klass (U.S. Army, WWII): Thank you.
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...Well, I didn't.

In a scenario that someone out there needs to enact in an MMORPG and post on Youtube, [livejournal.com profile] somehedgehog portrays the 2008 U.S. Presidential campaign as a Dungeons and Dragons game: 

somehedgehog.livejournal.com/245807.html


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