Pop: ... go the weasels who run laps 'round that fabled mulberry bush. Why? They're thirsty for profits from new markets. I remember when Josta was the next big drink, and how quickly it went down the drain. Wonder if Busta Rhymes will be tapped to push this? And why am I not surprised that convenience stores and gas stations are where this stuff will be sold? John Singleton's "Poetic Justice" hipped viewers to the urban vs. rural retail beverage bait-and-switch a ways back.


Sunday papers: ... Inside Immaterial Incorporated � Issue Two, Andrea Codrington on beige. (Cabinet has this column called Colors "in which a guest writer is asked to respond to a specific color assigned by the editors of Cabinet." Codrington points out the obvious Hannah Arendt-John Mellencamp continuum, a Web site devoted to the color and riffs all high-crit on khaki uniforms and pre-iMac Apple 'puters.)

What else? In an interview at Junior's Restaurant in Brooklyn, N.Y., Colson Whitehead's a little full of himself, but Walter Mosley, as ever, is gracious and expansive. Thanks, Book magazine!

Vikter Duplaix in XLR8R recounts his impression of Berlin and vibing with Britain's "broken-beats crew."


Your Negro tour guide: ... I'm not and Kathy Y. Wilson is. Where has this column been? Or rather, why haven't I been reading it before now for the real Queen City skinny? Need that name explained? Here you go.
Epiphany: ... Mr. Pennant had the kind that makes me wanna say "I'll have what (s)he's having."
Critical Mass: The Chronicle has an article about yesterday, which I overheard people talking about in Cafe 1428 this morning.

I was in the office last night, getting ready to leave, when a coworker explained what all that noise down on Fourth Street was.

I looked out an east-facing window and down onto the intersection of Fourth and Mission and saw them surging along, cars stopped on both sides -- lots of yelling and stuff, seasoned with sirens and honking horns.

And it was really cool to watch them riding down toward Pac Bell Park, strength in numbers, support against roadway hogs and a reassertion of human-powered modes of travel.

The memory was just what I needed to put some perspective on the BART train backup I ran into minutes later while trying to get home.

I'd rather take the train, I'd rather bike, I'd rather walk than get behind a car and drive anywhere. I'm so grateful I can choose to do so whenever I feel like it.
Have you ever been fond of a font?: ... He has. And so have I.
Proverb of the week: ... "The tortoise knows how to make love to his wife."


Where do you want to go tomorrow?: ... or rather (*clears throat*) "Do you know where you're going to? Do you like the things that life is showing you? Where are you going to? Do you know?" No, I haven't entirely lost my mind. Context is here; noticed it over here; lyrics to "Theme from Mahogany" now playing in your head are right here.


Black skin, white skin: ... and all the skin in between, according to one Australian researcher's explanation.
After the day I just had: ... it sure feels good to lock "Beautiful Night" (7.3 MB) on repeat in the iBook currently known as Orange Moon, plunge down into Powell BART after a short skitter along the San Francisco streetscape and head home to my honey. And no, it's not a cover of "It's Gonna Be A Beautiful Night," that sublime live Prince track off his "Sign o' The Times" album.

Listen to it: six minutes and twenty-five seconds of hip-swaying high-as-hallelujah head-baked noodling, mellow as wine and mildly sensorily psychoactive. A crisp tabla, what sounds like thumb piano or tuned percussion, an amusingly oblique vocal sample, a floaty electric guitar riff, rounded bass, drums and trumpet: all those ingredients, and man do I love the taste. It's not un-post-rocky, un-Tortoise-like.

It's the last track on Ani DiFranco's new album "Revelling," the first of the two CDs that make up "Revelling/Reckoning," the Righteous Babe's latest project. Walked home from Lake Merritt BART listening to it last night; the next-to-last track, "Rock Paper Scissors," had ended just as my train pulled in. "Beautiful Night" made for a great soundtrack for walking home through the dusk along Madison Street, glancing west at intersections to see the fog like a high wall of surf frozen miles high by some celestial remote.

I do like my walking-home soundtracks, as you know. Maybe it's just that my barriers are down, and any ol' thing sounds good to me. But I loved it last night, and now that the fog is socking the city in and fading the skyline outside my window to grey, I can honestly say that it's all I want to hear. That is, until I get around to the other songs.


Survey says: ... That nasty stench of anti-China bias that's been going around didn't just magically appear. Three things that leaped out at me:
  • The survey found that more Americans were uncomfortable voting for an Asian-American to be president (24 percent of those surveyed) than for a candidate who was African American (15 percent), a woman (14 percent) or Jewish (11 percent).

  • The survey, done by interviewing 1,216 Americans at least 18 years old by telephone randomly across the country, found that many of the attitudes toward Chinese-Americans were applied to Asian-Americans generally because most non-Asian Americans did not differentiate between the two.

  • According to the survey, 91 percent of Americans believe Chinese-Americans have strong family values, 77 percent said they were honest as business people and 67 percent said they placed a high value on education.

    Yet 24 percent of those surveyed said they would not approve of intermarriage with an Asian-American.

    Talkin' 'bout: ... my generation. X, that is. Y? Y not?
    A primer on homonics: ... Dean provideth.
    Get your freak on!: ... and no, sad to say, I don't mean that hot-to-death Missy Elliott track (RealPlayer audio / RealPlayer video). For those of you following along at home, it's bing, boing, bong, bang a-lang and boom. (Or just go here and study the posts with "freak" in the headline.)


    Into my hot little hands: ... this book fell today. I was just wishing I had a copy a couple of days ago.
    Europe founded by a few Africans: ... way back in the dizzay, and like Starmama says, it's worth further study.


    I'm going to Miami/Welcome to Miami: ... or maybe things have changed from what Will Smith said.
    "Back some years ago, we talked about white flight. Now I call it black flight ... There are going to be very few blacks in the city of Miami at the alarming rate they're losing them.''

    One Mississippi, two Mississippis: ... "Black people are so forgiving," she said, "and so willing to look for the good in people, that I think they just thought white people would [go to the polls] and do the right thing."

    Seventy-five years after the Civil War, novelist William Faulkner captured revisionism's powerful grip on the Southern mind. Colonel Sartoris, a character in several Faulkner novels and short stories, is asked why he fought for the Confederacy. Sartoris replies simply: "Damned if I ever did know."
    Jay Leno-ish news headline: ... over at Tastes Like Chicken.


    The new black: ... won't ever be white.
    QOTD: ... BOMB Magazine: OM PURI
    What you do in real life does reflect in your work. Whatever activity you do, and how you are as a person when you are not an actor, how you behave on the street, in a social gathering, if somebody needs help, what do you do? Simple, little things -- if you notice that some elderly person is struggling with his luggage, do you help? Those things create a lot of warmth in a person, and how he or she responds to things. You read a newspaper, something has happened somewhere, and though it does not immediately (sic) effect you, and it is not your responsibility, as a human being you can at least feel for them, somewhere that makes you richer inside. And that richness shows and reflects in your work.
    Cool mags to browse: ... for the next time you're in your favorite local bookstore or something.
    Your assignment this week: ... is to eat some edamame.


    Life in the wireless age: ... sounds like fun.
    QOTD: ... "Now it's the girl's family who pay the dowry to the boy's family ... But in 10 or 15 years, you'll see, it will be the boy's family paying the girl's family."
    Styling and profiling: ... Why doesn't this surprise me?
    All the (air) rage: R.E.M.'s Peter goes Buck wild.
    I vote: ... for neither, in Anil's case. If I could do the goatee thing (without it staying sparse or turning into one of those chinbeards), I would.


    Cops slow their roll, drop stops: ... So, uh, yeah, I've got stopped on the highway once. FTR: I was speeding, so I did stick out.
    The intent was to stop many different motorists in the hope of finding one that was actually carrying large amounts of drugs.

    "It's sheer numbers," a CHP supervisor said in a legal deposition taken for the ACLU suit. "You kiss a lot of frogs before you find a prince."

    But, Alexander countered, "the obvious problem is that most "frogs" the CHP is stopping are Latino and African American, leaving those minorities, who are forced to endure the loss of personal liberties because of their skin color, to shoulder the burdens of the program disproportionately."
    Yesterday's negrophiliacs: ... make for interesting reading.
    The term "negrophilia" itself describes the craze for black culture that was prevalent among avant-garde artists and bohemian types in 20s Paris, when to collect African art, to listen to black music and to dance with black people was a sign of being modern and fashionable. In the same way that, today, aspects of black culture such as hip hop, reggae, gangsta rap, locks and Afro hairstyles proliferate, in the 20s the craze was for dances such as the charleston, the lindy hop and the black bottom, for Bakerfix hair paste, and for wearing African-inspired clothes and accessories.
    Looking for Josephine Baker: ... I found this.
    Gandhi and globalization: ... As A20 arrives in Quebec City, consider novelist Pankaj Mishra's observations during a review of a recent biography of the Mahatma.
    Many of his more Westernized followers, like Nehru, despaired at his seemingly quixotic rejection of the Industrial Revolution, his partiality for small, self-sufficient villages, his distrust of overcentralized nation-states. ... he felt it important for a conquered people to look for fresh identity and dignity in its own traditions. India, he believed, must find its own way. To attempt to beat the West at its own game, as Japan was then doing, was already to admit defeat.

    ... Disappointingly, he doesn't go into the manifold ways Gandhi's distrust of modernity has found echoes among many political and environmental movements around the world. Gandhi's opposition to the railways seemed absurd in the early 20th century. But his argument that the railways encouraged grain owners to sell their wares in the dearest markets and thereby undermine local small-scale economies would make sense to the anti-globalization protesters of today.


    Pele on the Technics?: ... Hmm...
    QOTDs: ... culled from hither, thither and yon.
    "You've got to walk a mile in someone's high heels before you know how they feel."

    "There is an ageist assumption that older people are no longer interested in intimacy, and this is simply not true."

    "Erotica is what other people frequently don't understand ... Self-publishing and effective marketing allow you to cultivate a devoted, unapologetic milieu of people who 'get it.'"

    "... You'll know your real female sex fiend because she'll want brief, rough sex - five minutes, mind you, not five seconds! - with none of the trimmings. Though she may well want it eight times a day, so you'd better be no older than 28. ...""... So sex and death are deeply connected, if not quite in the way the poets thought. ..."
    Search me!: ... *scratches nappy noggin in puzzlement* (via Atomz)
    There were 6 searches for the week ending 4/14/2001

    Here are the top phrases searched:

    - 1 for "baile funk"
    - 1 for "oxide and neutrino"
    - 1 for "oxide neutrino"
    - 1 for "picture"
    - 1 for "richard"
    Any comment, y'all?
    Will Shakespeare be irrelevant?: ... No, worse.


    Stick figures kick butt: ... no stones, bones breaking or name-calling over here. Simple, spare and clean. Or not; it'll be discussed to death at MeFi. (Flash, 1.3 MB; turn your volume down)
    Why don't I have more vocal-group music?: ... A nicely wrought series of words turned up when John shared news of his impending purchase of a Richard Shindell CD. A Google-sift revealed this review, an enjoyable series of words that limn Ida (a band I've read much about on Firefly, a mailing list I used to belong to) and an awareness that I don't read The War Against Silence as often as I should.
    No matter what words you fill them with, these songs are about human lives drifting inexorably together, about people who only come into focus as composite selves. These harmonies are the coalescence of my most tenuous and most optimistic theory about people, which is that loneliness and antagonism are intrinsically unstable states. I want to believe that this is what it sounds like when any two (or three, or ten) people sing together, that we hold ourselves apart from each other only by the most obtuse and concerted effort. Music doesn't bring us together, it pours out of everywhere we touch. These awesome, paralyzing songs are nothing more than the sound of us finally ceasing to struggle against the irresistible gravity of souls.
    A nonquotidian QOTD: ... 'It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen'.
    I'm George: ... but I'm not this George. Thank you. That is all. (via AIM via Cecily, via MeFi)
    The latest from James: ... Warm, sweet nights like these breed poems I guess -- whether you want them too or not. Well spoken, brother.


    Mark Twain paid reparations: ... Anil Dash grabs me by my nose and spins me around and points me at Rafe's to show me this.


    Hair's looking at me, kid: As promised.

    So, despite the backward march my follicles are starting to think about at my temples, there was about a good half-inch of natural growth (especially on the top, where the hair hasn't finished locking yet). Granted, I'd probably make better headway (ba-dum-bum-bum) on top if I did the whole routine where you take a Q-Tip and clean in between the little dreadlet buds with some tea-tree oil and water. But you know, I'm hardheaded like that. Shampoo's my best friend in the shower. It's been three months since I got my hair twisted, and that interval between things feels about right. The last time I did it, I was a mess: Stuff still didn't look right on me, even with it all wrapped up nights and tended to every three weeks or so. Now I just let go, let it grow and it's all good.
    Plenty of other nice, Red states: ... besides California for him to go and be humble and honored to visit anyway!
    Bush, who has traveled more extensively within the United States in his first weeks in office than any other recent president, visiting almost two dozen states, has also rarely misses an opportunity to humble himself.

    In Tennessee on Feb. 21: "I'm pinching myself everyday. ... It is an unimaginable honor to represent the great people of this country.''

    To a March 2 conference of state legislators: "I cannot tell you what an honor it is to be the president and to drive in those cars with the American flag flying and to see people lining the roads waving to the -- waving to the office.''

    To regional reporters at the White House: "It's such a humbling experience -- and most politicians need to be humbled, so it's a good start.''

    At a March 1 rally in Atlanta: "I haven't been your president for very long but I can report that it is a fantastic experience. I can't tell you what an honor it is.''

    On the same day at Lakewood Elementary School in Little Rock, Arkansas: "It's a big honor as I'm sure you can imagine. ... The White House is a majestic place. It's like a museum in many ways.''

    On March 8 in Fargo, North Dakota: "I'm so proud to be landing in Air Force One and getting off the airplane and driving into this hall and seeing people lining the streets, waving at the office of the president.''

    To visiting Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon at the White House on March 20: "You didn't think you were going to be the prime minister, and you probably darn sure didn't think I was going to be the president.''

    On a whim, to a couple of dozen children in the White House State dining room last week: "Want to go see my office? Come on, let's do it.''
    Recently rented: ... Robert Altman's "The Player" and Wong Kar-Wai's "Fallen Angels," but we did see "In The Mood For Love" in the theater about a month ago.
    At the end of Wong Kar-wai's Fallen Angels, we find (QuickTime; ~9MB) two lovers on a motorbike, racing through an underground tunnel. Suddenly everything hits slow-motion and we sense that something is up ahead. What is it? Are they about to break out into the open country? No, the lovers break out into a financial district with a crop of corporate headquarters rising hazily up into the morning twilight. What is significant about this scene is that the city vs. country binary order and its related formations (evil/good, closed/open, dirty/ clean) are rejected, and as a consequence, Hong Kong (unlike the New York of Taxi Driver) is never questioned, doubted, viewed as a problem that must be corrected.
    No California love: ... for George W.
    "They're scared of the place," said an outside adviser who knows Mr. Bush well. "They're snake bitten. They put $22 million into the state and Gore spent zero. And they lost by 13 points."
    Well, that settles it: ... I need an AirPort base station and card, like, yesterday.


    Alt.blacksoul memories at the beauty parlor: ... It's Saturday afternoon. I'm at Nappy or Not over on East 16th Street, 'round the lake from our apartment, waiting to get my hair done. No appointment of course, only vague promises of getting my tenderheaded scalp in if other appointments fall through. (Pictures will be posted later.) I can see the Parkway Theater sign from the green couch I've had my keister planted in for the last two hours. I listen to about half of Musiq SoulChild's "Aijuswannaseing," all of India.Arie's new one, "Acoustic Soul," and Erykah Badu's "Mama's Gun" ("Penitentiary Philosophy" is interrupted by a car alarm for about a minute).

    Seems like I've been listening to the same song for the last 15 years, I swear. Watching Terence Trent D'Arby on "Saturday Night Live" during Valentine's Day weekend in 1988. Going out and buying an acoustic guitar about fifteen minutes after seeing Tracy Chapman's televised performance at a Nelson Mandela benefit at Wembley Stadium. Having two girls I thought was cute write in my yearbook: "Yellow is the color of sunrays!" Ultimately deciding against buying Me Phi Me's album because of the one-single rule: If the single's any good, the album won't be worth the money you spend (and is this the calculus that makes these artists one-hit wonders more often than not?). Absentmindedly trainspotting for hours on WHFS to hear if they were going to play Tasmin Archer's "Sleeping Satellite." Dubbing a cassette copy of a vinyl record of "Innervisions" at the D.C. Main Public Library. Going to the first concert I ever attended on my own: Arrested Development at D.C.'s original 9:30 Club on F Street, wearing out "Tennessee" and "Fishing For Religion" (opening act: the Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy, with Rono Tse throwing up sparks with his industrial racket-making devices and Michael Franti and Charlie Hunter closing with "Music And Politics" and "Positive"). Playing Chapman's "Mountains O' Things" at a freshman talent show at Bowie State University. When did Me'Shell N'dege'ocello come into the picture, after "Plantation Lullabies" came out? Feeling the top of my head come off when I bought Cassandra Wilson's "Blue Light Til Dawn." Remembering when Erykah Badu was just a headwrap chick, as the writer in a cover story in this spring's issue of The Fader describes her. Not quite feeling Eric Benet's "What If We Wuz Cool," despite it making my toes tap when I heard it. Plunking cash down for Sweetback's debut 'cause that Groove Theory singer, Amel Larrieux, was cool (not that she was any kind of Sade, y'understand, but digging it anyway). Buying "Maxwell's Urban Hang Suite" the week it came out (I'm the only guy I know who went to see him in concert, once at S.F.'s Bimbo's 365 -- his version of NIN's "Closer" was way better than on record -- and once at Detroit's Fox Theater -- he turned the audience out by singing Ready for the World's "Let Me Love You Down" in Spanish). Liking Les Nubians, but having my wife like them more.


    Karaoke at the OK Corral: ... Fluffy Battle Kitten, you are correct.
    Oh man, there are very few things funnier than hearing Muskrat Love as done by two drunk cowboys.
    What I'll be listening to this weekend: ... Mr. Gibson's "Neuromancer."
    Speaking of ION: ... Boo-yah.


    Happy birthday: ... Sudama!
    Why community matters: ... Follow Me Here's nattering about OtherSide (ah, the things I miss when I phase out MeFi for a day or two) led me to Digital Swirlee and thus this post.
    Right now, the "voice of the people" is assumed to be the news media. American media is corporate -- that is, all major organs of media are corporations, without exception. Corporations, as seen above, will always privilege capital over all else, since it is the only way they can continue to exist. Therefore, media is in fact not the voice of the people at all, but the voice of corporate reality. Corporate media speaks to you, not for you, and cannot be trusted to reflect the views of humans. Instead, it is the organ with which corporations will continue to recreate the reality that allows them to exist at our expense.

    This, finally, is why community matters. The only potential way out of this mousetrap we've created for ourselves is to actually speak directly to each other. Town meetings, open hearings, internet communities, places where people may actually speak as human individuals to other human individuals; these are the only places that we may examine what we have decided will be our reality, and the only places we may possibly decide to change that reality.
    A wireless-enabled camera: ... Evhead links to this. Damn. Metricom needs to drop their prices, or something. I'm going to have to get an AirPort card to cadge high-speed wireless access off networks around me in The City. Sprint's ION service ain't comin' correct in full effect in the 94612. Off topic: I used to work with the story's author, a real mensch who helped me make deadline on the second story I ever wrote for the Oakland Tribune as an intern in 1994.
    Hey! ... I like Tortoise's "Standards" and The Sea And Cake's "Oui"! monosyllabic and I agree: Jefferson Chase is a hack. Still, I haven't listened to enough post-rock to challenge Mr. Mirov on other bands in the genre.


    Superhero: ... James passes along a job opening.
    And speaking of sleep: ... That's a fly-ass picture.
    How do you fall asleep?: The question makes me think of "Night Vision," a favorite song of several (including "Ironbound/Fancy Poultry," "In The Eye," "Language" and the title track off Suzanne Vega's "Solitude Standing." I don't feel taken by darkness, swallowed up by languor and lassitude. I'm more often focused on filtering out the intrusion of light and sound from the outside world: the high-pitched, high-volume squeaks of abandon one of our neighbors has been drawing out of a lover (twice in the last week, and the overhearing of it's been less titillating than you'd think); the bright light from the apartment across the atrium; the sound of diesel engines inside AC Transit buses as they pick up speed along 12th and 14th streets; the pale orange of streetlamps hanging over the roadway outside our building. Falling asleep is the process of editing these elements from awareness, not always in the same sequence, until awareness itself dissolves and dreams arrive.
    Four ways of looking at a black playwright: The New Yorker considers August Wilson.


    Crush without eyeliner: ... sorry for the false alarm, but no REM content. Nice link, courtesy of a recent entry from Girl in Black.
    Assorted flavors: ... So I got a latte (ah, caffeine, caffeine) and stopped into Virgin Mega. Shuggie Otis sings "Strawberry Letter 23," and the song sounds like Neil Young trying to channel the Isley Brothers covering Crosby Stills and Nash. (Wow, trippy.) Blasphemy, I'm sure, but I prefer the Brothers Johnson cover. Came back and slapped on Finley Quaye's "Maverick A Strike." I'm feeling "Ride On And Turn The People On" when Quaye opens up with: "My bassman is a ghost, and my ghost is a newscarrier. Newscarrier, back me up, man!" And this line: "This is the future/I ain't gonna shoot ya."
    Daft Punk: ... So, like, over at Web Geeks Unite!, there's links to lots of good stuff, including the first two Daft Punk videos off "Discovery," their latest CD, at The Raft. The videos, "Aerodynamic" and "One More Time" (QuickTime; high bandwidth alert) use alien-abduction anime TV cartoons, which works for me by referencing all those "Star Blazers" shows I soaked up in the early 1980s (and other things).
    But most people from my postboom generation knew immediately that the game was Japanese. We, of course, were raised with fears about economic war with Japan, having figured out that Russian nukes were more likely to fall in movies than in real life. So the military conflict of AYBABTU is in the eye of the beholder: it sparks dark hilarity about some random "hostile foreign force" that has it in for us. ...
    New look: ... and that's all I can think of right now.


    11 years and a day ago: ... ABC aired the first episode of "Twin Peaks."
    Elvis Schmiedekamp: ... needs to be culture jammed.


    How to E-Mail Like a CEO: ... Depressing.
    You can call him Daryl Mac: ... or you can call him DMC.

    McDaniels, who like his partners is 36 and married with children, said he was frustrated that he wasn't allowed to showcase his personal and musical evolution on the album, released this week. For example, instead of boasting about his rap skills, he'd rather talk about his life as a parent. And he'd rather rap to music that sounds like Bob Dylan than DMX.

    Right now I'm in a more mellow mode,'' he said. "And wherever you are at in life, especially if you are a musician or an artist, those things must be reflected in the music, and some of the things I wanted to say on the album, it was like, 'D., you can't say that.'''


    Been a while since I did one of these: ... not that I'm opposed to them in principle.

    They just serve as trivial distraction, or list of objects and attitudes that glide around (but ultimately elude) me. (From Regret Nothing, Disavow When Needed.)

  • I see. . . Two empty mugs (Millennium Mint tea and hot cocoa with whipped cream, an empty carryout box of chocolate-chip cookies, two cups of water and copies of Honey, Vibe, Adbusters, Harper's, the New Yorker and Forbes).
  • I need. . . to do my state taxes, to twist my hair, haul a bunch of books to donate to the library.
  • I find. . . myself needing to write, file and spend time doing personal stuff.
  • I want. . . To be a mentor, especially after reading this week's New Yorker.
  • I have. . . a feeling of gratitude for the presence of a lot of people in my life.
  • I love. . . My partner, wife, lover, best friend, economic advisor and cultural critic.
  • I miss. . . My friends, when I don't spend time with them.
  • I fear. . . boredom.
  • I feel. . . like I got enough sleep last night for the first time in about a week of trying.
  • I hear . . . People around me in the cafe putting on jackets and grabbing keys, ready to leave.
  • I smell. . . Coffee, tea, the clean clothes I'm wearing, the paper of the magazines I've flipped through.
  • I crave. . . ownership of a second Web site that handles some of the other projects that have flitted through my head.
  • I wonder. . . if it's possible to do the "simplicity" thing without feeling just plain simple?
  • I regret. . . my latest article for Salon.

    When was the last time you. . .

  • Smiled? When the cafe manager saw me sitting in the corner of the cafe minding my business, and hollered out my name so everyone in line turned to see me.
  • Laughed? Ten or fifteen minutes ago.
  • Cried? About five days ago. It shouldn't count, 'cause it was more of a welling-up. I remembered my honeymoon almost a year ago: the drive north from Weed, Calif., and into southern Oregon, and the music we listened to and the scenery we saw.
  • Bought something? A refill on tea.
  • Danced? Probably at the company party in December.
  • Were sarcastic? Had to have been recently; probably a post or two ago, knowing me.
  • Kissed someone? She-who-must-be-obeyed, at the Rockridge Deli.
  • Talked to an ex? A couple of months ago outside my local cafe.
  • Watched your favorite movie? Man, it's been a while.
  • Had a nightmare? Woke up from one this morning, a three-parter: taking a hour-long standardized test administered by my editors, w/o markup sheet or question booklet (a crazy thing, 'cause I grew up loving tests like that); visiting with a much-feared English teacher from high school (I never took his class); and arguing with a ex-co-worker whose rejoinder trailed off into my awakening from sleep.

    Do You. . .

  • Smoke? No.
  • Do drugs? No.
  • Have sex? Yes.
  • Sleep with stuffed animals? Only when seduced. (That's a joke.)
  • Live in the moment? Less often than I'd prefer.
  • Have a boyfriend/girlfriend? No.
  • Have a dream that keeps coming back? Not anymore.
  • Play an instrument? Keys, guitar, bass, harmonica, assorted percussion.
  • Believe there is life on other planets? Yes.
  • Remember your first love? Yes.
  • Still love him/her? No.
  • Read the newspaper? Yes.
  • Have any gay or lesbian friends? Yes.
  • Believe in miracles? Yes, but calling them that is hard.
  • Believe it's possible to remain faithful forever? Yes.
  • Consider yourself tolerant of others? No, not as much as I could be.
  • Consider love a mistake? Never.
  • Like the taste of alcohol? No, with exceptions: Guinness Stout, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and maybe a Johannesburg Riesling.
  • Have a favorite candy? Probably peppermints.
  • Believe in Astrology? Yes (not daily 'scopes: birth charts are interesting as diagrams of personality traits and character quirks -- read mine and see!)
  • Believe in magic? No.
  • Believe in G-d? Yes.
  • Pray? Yes. Go to church? No.
  • Have any secrets? That's classified.
  • Have any pets? No. A dog's in my future, though.
  • Talk to strangers who instant message you? If they behave.
  • Wear hats? Yes.
  • Have any piercings? No. Mom told me I had enough holes in my head.
  • Have any tattoos? No.
  • Hate yourself? Does sporadic self-loathing count?
  • Have an obsession? A few.
  • Collect anything? Yes. *sticks tongues out*
  • Have a best friend? Yes.
  • Wish on stars? No.
  • Like your handwriting? Pretty happy with it.
  • Have any bad habits? Yes.
  • Care about looks? Mine? Yes, especially changes related to aging and general health. Others? Not as concerned, really.
  • Believe in witches? Believe that they exist? No. Wiccans, sure.
  • Believe in Satan? Believe that he exists? No.
  • Believe in ghosts? Not as ghosts, per se.
  • Believe in Santa? No.
  • Believe in the Easter Bunny? No.
  • Believe in the Tooth Fairy? No.
  • Have a second family? 'Sides in-laws?
  • Trust others easily? No.
  • Like noise? Noise is always interesting and occasionally attractive. But I prefer signal.
  • Take walks in the rain? Out of necessity, not desire.
  • Kiss with your eyes closed? Please. I don't kiss and tell.
  • Sing in the shower? Yes. Oldies, but not too loud. Don't want to treat the neighbor with my rendition of Lou Rawls' "Groovy People" too often, yunno.
  • Own handcuffs? No.
  • Have any scars? Yes.
  • 2001/04/06

    Regrets, we have a few: ... Da da da da, da da daaa dum. (Yes, it's self-linkage. But if I can't do it here, where can I?)
    How folks segregate in the Bay Area: So props to J.G. for the link. Also of interest: an archive of charts and stories, including a regional breakdown of whites and non-whites (that's blacks, Hispanics and Asian-Americans -- leaving out Native Americans, despite their historic presence here).
    No surprises: ... about the disqualification rate of ballots in certain Florida precincts.
    Remind me: ... not to shoplift in Detroit or fight fires in Washington, D.C., m'kay?
    Media vs. media: ... Film at eleven.
    In what the media termed a "healthy display of detached introspection," the media today accused the media of unfairly convicting the media in the media, according to a widely covered media report critical of the media's self-absorbed coverage of itself.
    Black and blue: ... Y'heard?
    Ron Davis, a captain in the Oakland, Calif., Police Department, told reporters that studies are beginning to show that minority police officers are likely to profile just as much as non-minorities.

    It's part of a larger problem,'' he said. "The challenge is to blindfold people who administer justice.''

    Didion vs. spambot: ... Seven rounds of humor heaven.


    When I want advice: ... I used to go to Savage Love to read about other people's foibles. Well, now I guess I'll be going to Dreama's new site. I've high hopes she won't turn into Dr. Laura.
    ICQ: ... When AIM went down for just under an hour today, I wound up acquiring an ICQ number. Use sparingly for best results: I know I will.
    Best cover tunes of the Nineties: ... as listed by Flak Magazine.
    How "typical" are you?: The running results in the two-question survey with this story are what's tripping me out.
    Among other findings:
  • The "typical white" lives in a neighborhood that is 80 percent white and 7 percent black, while the "typical black" lives in a neighborhood that is 51 percent black and 33 percent white.
  • The "typical Hispanic" lives in a neighborhood that is 46 percent Hispanic, 36 percent white and 11 percent black.
  • The "typical Asian" lives in a neighborhood that is 18 percent Asian and 54 percent white.
    Memo to the KKK, Re: Your lowdown trashy ways ... : For future reference, you have to do what you say you're going to do in the Show-Me State.
    ST. LOUIS (Reuters) -- A month after the U.S. Supreme Court said Missouri must allow the Ku Klux Klan to take part in an "Adopt-A-Highway" cleanup program, the state has kicked out the group, citing its failure to collect roadside litter.

    Groups are required to pick up litter four times a year in this program, and our records indicated that the Klan had not fulfilled their adoption agreement,'' said Missouri Department of Transportation spokeswoman Megan Casalone on Thursday. "They have never picked up anything off the highway."


    Bruce Springsteen: ... drops a double live album on us, including his song "American Skin."
    "I think that it deals very directly with race, and that's a subject that pushes a lot of buttons in America,'' Springsteen said, recalling sharp reaction to the song. "It was asking some questions that are hanging very heavy in the air right now ... (about) people of color in the United States who are viewed through a veil of criminality, who (are) used to having their full citizenship, their full Americanship, denied. It's one of the issues America is going to face in the next century."
    Culture jam: ... well, not quite.
    As if on cue, the room chanted, "Even white boys got to shout, baby got back," in a weird, multilayered moment that was practically a textbook case of racial appropriation.


    Perfect sound forever: ... The site does Miles Davis: The Electric Years and Eno in the '70s. (BTW, "A Year With Swollen Appendices" is great, Cecily!)
    Grocery baggage: I wish I'd seen the Washington Post article about Fresh Fields' P Street store before randomWalks. But that's why I read 'em. A week later, and I'm still muttering "Pocket Calls" and smiling to myself.
    What a tangled Web we trace: ... when dealing with Census forms and race. (Thanks to my partner for sending that to me.)
    A pretty boy, an ugly law: ... and a game where umps don't have the balls to throw out called strikes. *cues Main Source's "Just A Friendly Game of Baseball"*
    In Corey Moore's four trials -- a rare window on repeated strategies used in the same case -- precise numbers are impossible to correlate because the court does not record the racial composition of juror panels. But an analysis of available data shows that in four trials spread over four years, prosecutors struck 41 blacks or minorities and six whites. The defense, looking at the same juror panels, struck 29 whites and 13 blacks.

    Translation: The prosecution targeted blacks or minorities with about 87 percent of its strikes, though they composed about 67 percent of the juror panels. The defense targeted whites at a rate of 69 percent, more than double their representation.

    The trend is buttressed by looking at gender, also protected by Supreme Court rulings. Moore allegedly bragged that he would never be convicted because female jurors would like his looks. His attorneys and prosecutors apparently agreed. The government used 70 percent of its strikes against women and 30 percent against men; the defense used 67 percent of its strikes against men and 33 percent against women.

    Neither side challenged the other's strikes. None of the judges intervened.


    Dig if you will, a picture: ... in lieu of a thousand words, from Preston Davis (who I guess I can't, in all good conscience, call "P. Diddy" anymore -- not that I called him that; just that, well, his initials and ... uh ... well ... nevermind).
    New era for race relations: ... Britain gets with the program.
    April Fools', y'all: ... for every entry I made today (especially that Condi Rice hubba-hubba). Not a lot turned my head sideways today, but Eddie so had me going!
    End special treatment for blacks! ... My former co-worker Tyler Porter, a sharp-eyed photographer and rabid No Doubt fan, passed along this astute commentary on privileges and quotas for African-Americans. I couldn't agree more.
    Even more amazing, did you know that hundreds of thousands of African-American men enjoy free housing -- with free meals to boot? That's right. Your federal, state and local taxes go to fund the ultimate pork-barrel giveaway just so that blacks, for whom slavery ended 136 years ago, can live for free, in many cases without even working! As with their special schools and their special jobs, a much, much higher percentage of blacks are admitted to these programs than their proportion in the general population. And this free government housing is incredibly safe -- it's so safe, in fact, that not only can no one break in, but the residents themselves can't leave! As a white person, I demand that this despicable practice be stopped at once!

    Last but hardly least, the same government agencies that run the disgusting free-housing-for-blacks boondoggle provide the ultimate in free health care -- a privilege enjoyed by only a few whites! Yes, as usual, blacks get this ultimate solution to all health problems -- all in a single, painless shot -- administered absolutely free, and special quotas ensure that a far higher percentage of them than they deserve will continue to receive it.

    Last thoughts: ... before dropping off to sleep ...
  • I've lived in Blue territory for too long. Why have I ruled out living in so many areas of the country up to now? I have to say there are areas of West Texas I remember quite fondly from the comfort of my three-day Greyhound bus trip from coast to coast. Gorgeous spots this time of year all over the heartland!
  • Condi Rice. Oooh baby! You're sweeter and tastier than Uncle Tom's any day of the week ending in "y." Woman, you make me want to get ahold of you, along with some red beans, a stove and a pot!
  • There seems to be an utter lot of rubbish afoot. I wish people would just behave properly. Maybe losing an hour of sleep to the "spring forward" bit of Daylight Savings Time is making me a little grumpy.
    Here's a Times more to my liking: ... right (and I do mean "right") here. This was overheard at a meeting of black Republicans with our nation's top GOP'er ...
    He's different," said Roy Innis, national chairman of the Congress of Racial Equality, after the meeting broke up. "I don't think it's just rhetoric. I think he understands more than other presidents that you have to demonstrate the empathy you have, but at the same time he will not patronize people and play to their prejudices the way Bill Clinton did."
    Columnists? More like "Communists"!: ... Anthony Lewis could use a sedative right about now.
    The Bush motto, a Washington quip has it, is "Do it my way or no way." That catches the willful quality of these first months. But there is more to the story than that.

    This is the most radical administration in living American memory. I use the word deliberately. Today's right calls itself "conservative," but it is not that. Conservatives want to conserve. That is why Teddy Roosevelt started the national parks and the conservation movement. George W. Bush and his people are driven by right-wing ideology to an extent not remotely touched by even the Reagan administration.

    And we haven't seen the half of it. As Mr. Dombeck said of opening the national forests to road-building, the decisions "will have implications that will last many generations."

    All this from a man who ran as a "compassionate conservative," concealing his hard-edged ideology, and who could not get half the voters to vote for him even in that guise.

    ... and whoo, don't get me started on Maureen Dowd.
    Being witty about poisoned drinking water isn't easy. It requires a certain obtuse savoir-faire.

    Our president gave it a go Thursday night at a press dinner here.

    "As you know, we're studying safe levels for arsenic in drinking water," he told the crowd of radio and TV correspondents at the Washington Hilton. "To base our decision on sound science, the scientists told us we needed to test the water glasses of about 3,000 people.

    Thank you for participating."

    I guess a guy who can yuk it up about a woman he has executed in Texas can yuk it up about anything.

    But it was a creepy moment.

    It worked for Erin Brockovich to joke about the carcinogens in the water enviro-villains were sipping because she wanted to get the poison out. W. wants to keep the poison in � to help the enviro-villains who contributed to his campaign.

    Where were you 20 years ago the other day? ... Ah, Ronald Reagan was a good man and a better leader of our country -- but President George W. Bush could catch up! Hurry up with that $10 bill, would ya? And get a second opinion on Mount Rushmore while you're at it!
    August and nothing after? ... Not to be a counting crow or anything, but Metaphorage hits me with the news about Ricochet's prospects. Caw, caw!
    One reason to admire our president: ... is his keen sense of humor. Liberals could take a lesson in public speaking from our commander in chief.


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