Let me say publicly that DonBoy’s answer exudes a combination of intuitive genius and confidence that make me think DonBoy is going to do big things in his life. -- Steven D. Levitt (Freakonomics blog)
Thursday, March 29, 2007
Hey Arthur!

This one was worth seeing:

And it made me want to look up Scott Kim.

SYNCHRONISTIC UPDATE: My copy of the latest book by Douglas Hofstadter, which I ordered from Amazon in July 2006 and has been delayed twice, just shipped. (Hofstadter being the reason I know about Scott Kim, ya see.)
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
Too Stupid for Words

Richard Cohen has caught Barak Obama in an untruth!
In his memoir, "Dreams From My Father," he recounts a watershed moment of his own -- a "revelation," a "violent" awakening, an incident that "permanently altered" his "vision." Twice he tells how as a 9-year-old he went to the U.S. Embassy in Indonesia (a country where his mother had taken him to live) and came across a Life magazine article about a black man who had tried to whiten his skin through some sort of chemical process. The result was a disaster.

"I felt my face and neck get hot," Obama wrote. "My stomach knotted; the type began to blur on the page."

The child had, for the first time, confronted racism and its hideous consequences.

Only there is no such issue of Life magazine. So says the Chicago Tribune, which has gone through the Obama memoir with commendable thoroughness.
When the Tribune told Obama that Life magazine historians could find no such story, Obama suggested it might have been Ebony -- "or it might have been . . . who knows what it was?" (The Tribune says Ebony's archivists also could not come up with such an article.) Indeed, the memory of the event/non-event is so firmly planted in Obama's mind that it seems to have become an emotional truth for him, far more powerful than an intellectual truth.
See, it wasn't in Life or Ebony. So Obama must have made it up -- it's the only other possibility! Or, as Greg Sargent summarizes:

Glenn Greenwald takes The Washington Post's Richard Cohen to task today for blasting Obama over the most trivial of memory lapses possible -- the fact that he got the name of a magazine wrong that he'd read when he was nine years old. No, Obama didn't remember the name of a magazine he read roughly in 1970, the year the Beatles broke up and Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin died.

UPDATE: Every blogger should link to Washington Post articles, because their automatic trackback finder can't tell the big boys from the teeny little fish:

Monday, March 19, 2007
That's Journatainment

Relatedly, the Daily News has also decided to give Obama the rather awesome short-hand headline name of "Bam," as in "Al & Bam phone chat axes feud." I foresee a string of "Biff! Bam! Pow!" online ads, with maybe an occasional "Zowie!" thrown in for good measure. Some guys have all the luck.

The U.S. Copyright Office knows you want to know:
How do I protect my sighting of Elvis?
Copyright law does not protect sightings. However, copyright law will protect your photo (or other depiction) of your sighting of Elvis. Just send it to us with a Form VA application and the filing fee. No one can lawfully use your photo of your sighting, although someone else may file his own photo of his sighting. Copyright law protects the original photograph, not the subject of the photograph.

Sunday, March 11, 2007
Genetic Damage

Continuing my fascination with celebrities whose lives are intertwined:
[Uma] Thurman was born in Boston, Massachusetts. Her mother, Nena von Schlebrügge (b. 1941), was a Swedish fashion model, who was briefly married in 1964 to LSD guru Timothy Leary after the two were introduced by Salvador Dalí. She married Uma's father, Robert Thurman, in 1967.
If you're old enough, you'll remember that the scare story about LSD was that it caused chromosome damage and all your kids would be horrifying freaks. Let's speculate that someone married to Tim Leary in 1964, even for a few months, probably dropped acid.

Freaky nose, huh?

UPDATE: Coincidentally, Family Guy had an opposing viewpoint last night.
Monday, March 05, 2007
Now I Feel Really Stupid

For years I've been walking past this sign in Harvard Square (click to enlarge):

I figured, if there can be such a person as "Ima Hogg", there could be a law firm called "Dewey, Cheetham and Howe".

Wrong, you moron.
Saturday, March 03, 2007

According to my TiVo, here's what's on my PBS station right now:
Elvis Lives: The 25th Anniversary Concert

Music (2006) Modern technology reunites Presley with his band onstage at the Pyramid Arena in Memphis, Tenn.
ITYM necromancy.

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