Wednesday, June 29, 2005

End of June Random Sports Predicitons

Cubbies will make the playoffs.

Chris Paul will be the NBA's rookie of the year for 2005-06. Of the top prospects, he is the most ready to play at the pro level. Also, the Hornets were so bad last year that they have a chance to exhibit more improvement than most teams.

Unusually optimistic predictions for this site. Something must be wrong with the template.

Last Night's Monkey Show

Juan Cole provides adequate smackdown.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005


Here's Tom Tomorrow on the Future Chickenhawks of America.
And there you have the crux of it. These are the elite, the future leaders. That whole messy fighting and dying business--that would be for other people.
Pretty Much.

Gambit Site Redesign

God I hate change.

He Was The Prettiest

Hey Y'all
Put up your nickels and dimes, so we can pour some out for Big Chief Tootie.


Bio here

Saturday, June 25, 2005

D.C. Dick

I got a good chuckle out of this when Cursor pointed to it the other day. Go take a look and come back and tell me why anyone takes Dick Cheney seriously anymore. I know he's got that big mean scowl on his face which, for some reason, endows one with "gravitas" or whatever. And I know that we can usually expect politicians to be less than trutful, but Jesus at what point does this man get held accountable for the improbable amount of crap that flows out of him as though he were an industrial hog farm? Here's what he said yesterday about the, now openly acknowledged, U.S. torture operation at GITMO.
Mr. Cheney dismissed calls to close the facility, which holds terrorism suspects. "They got a brand new facility down at Guantánamo," Mr. Cheney said in an interview with CNN. "We spent a lot of money to build it. They're very well treated down there."

"They're living in the tropics," he added. "They're well fed. They've got everything they could possibly want. There isn't any other nation in the world that would treat people who were determined to kill Americans the way we're treating these people."
Now, see that's not so bad is it? Can you think of a better way to spend your summer vacation? Have you seen the flyer?

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Soooo tired

Of reading this paragraph.
Your application has been received, processed and forwarded to the Graduate Advisor in your program for review. We are awaiting a decision from that office. You must contact the Graduate Advisor in your program directly if you have additional questions about the status of your application.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Quote of the Day

"That's my argument. I know it's fuzzy, but I'm fuzzy on this amendment."
--Rep. Roy Quezaire during the recently completed LA legislative session.

More from John Maginnis.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Actual emails from actual persons

Out of the blue, Daisy sends me this:

"Did you know that Rachid Koraichi , an Algerian artist, paints giraffes that look like skyscrapers but they wear purple and pink go-go boots?"

What's worse, it might even be true.

Update: Ha ha! Daisy now informs me that, no, it's not true. The actual artist she meant to describe was Zahir Abid.

Currently Playing in Consuela's Room

Poison's greatest hits.

Currently playing in the living room:
Wagon Train: The Skooks Compilation

Yet another milestone

Our current military adventure is now more expensive than the entire Korean War. In the selfless interest of promoting public information, I have drunkenly managed to stumble upon this site which contains a table of the most financially costly US wars (as of 2001).
is the DOD's table of major American wars and their human cost.
This one
will tell you how much each state and selected cities and counties have spent in Iraq. I expect a complete and thoughtful analysis of this data from you on my desk in the morning.


Judging by what we see around the library, you'd think that Winn-Dixie was expanding in this market. Apparently this is not the case.

Welcome back to Lib Chron

Home of "the perfect New Orleans tour guide." Yeah, Becky, I know I talk a lot.

Overheard at Walgreens

Middle aged female customer in line behind me: (To cashier. I am assuming they are friends) Oh looka here J-Lo is pregnant!

Cashier: I know. I'm so happy.

Customer: (singing) J-Lo is Pregnant J-Lo is pregnant! (speaking now.. in a measured thoughtful voice) You know, I think that is something that every woman should experience.

Cashier: Girl, maybe not everyone. The way some of these people be acting in here.

Customer: I'm just so happy for J-Lo. I really like her. I want her to be pregnated. (and then more singing) Pregnated pregnated pregnated.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Return of the Nicknames of the Dead

Today's T-P. Note: Two of today's honorees carry multiple nicknames.
  • "Porgy"
  • "Shakey" "Mr. C" "King"
  • "Tute"
  • "Jay" "Droopy" "Powder"
  • "Jack"
  • "Ike"
  • "Wayne"
  • "Ann"

No surprise here

All loyal "disassemblers" will be well taken care of.


I mean like, on the real! Meanwhile, our a/c struggles continue. When we first visited with the Slumlord's Lackey regarding this issue, Lackey's solution was a rudimentary instruction to us regarding the operation of the thermostat. We usually leave it set between 70 and 75 during the day. Lackey's theory was that this was not a low enough setting to induce cooling. Having found this explanation rather strange, I pointed out that the actual temperature in the room was well above 80 and that, yes, I understood how a thermostat works. Lackey cut me off with a curt, "I'm the technician here!" Having received the implication that the only alternative at this point would involve fisticuffs, I decided to try his suggestion. We set the thermostat to 65.

A week later, the place had not begun to cool. The only new development was that the coils were beginning to ice up. Lackey agreed to summon an a/c professional who managed to relieve us of the icing.... but not the hot.

So this morning, after a particularly intolerable night's sleep, I summoned the energy to phone Slumlord once again. Before I left for work, I made sure the thermostat was set to 65 in order to ward off any complaints. (We still usually keep it at 70.) A moment ago, I called Consuella at home to see if anything had been done. She reports that she was out when Lackey came by to check on things, but he did leave us a note. It says:

"Unit needs to be kept at 70 for 24 hours. If still not cooling call Lackey."


The Great Louisiana Smoke Out

No cig tax for LA.

I, more or less, agree with Oyster. That is, I agree that this is a reflection of the Governor's relative political weakness. Somehow I don't expect that this will be the last major reverse for her. For a while, I had almost convinced myself that she had only appeared to be treading so lightly because she was waiting to see if she was going to get that extra year in office before deciding she could afford to start making enemies. Now it's beginning to look like she's just a lightweight.

As for the failure of the tax itself? It's a mixed bag.
Teacher pay raise: Would have been a good thing.
$1.00 sales tax paid mostly by the working poor: Would not have been such a good thing.

Has the Queen Bee entirely lost momentum? Well maybe not entirely. On the other hand, she's not exactly the most dynamic personality ever to occupy the governor's chair. Is she sure she still wants that extra year?

Nutty People

Imagine a person with the ability to, without stopping to breathe:

1)Tell you about how her auntie was found dead at home in Mississippi yesterday.
2)Familiarize you with the difficulties of her menstural cycle.
3)Request three gospel cds and one book about "different kinds of balls that I can read to a child."

Monday, June 13, 2005

What is up

...with the entire city of New Orleans visiting the library this week in order to apply online to work at Winn-Dixie? And why do so many of them insist on letting their 8-year-old children fill out the application for them?

Long Day

We started this morning with a trip down to traffic court where we waited two hours for Consuela to pay her fine. Not fun. Once we reached the front of the line we felt like we had been standing for so long that we had shrunk two inches. Plus there was the pleasure derived from overhearing everyone else's misery as they interacted with the clerks. One woman was disputing a contempt of court charge for failure to appear on the not unreasonable grounds that she was in prison at the time. She was told that, in order to dispute this charge, she must first pay the fine and then petition the judge to have the charge removed. She asked the clerk if she would get her money back when the charge was dropped. The answer, of course, was no. Also, when Consuela was finally admitted to the priviledge of forking over her cash, the cashier short changed her. This took some figuring but was thankfully resolved without violence.

Having wasted more of my morning than I had planned at traffic court happy land, I had to scramble back home to get to work on time. Last week I suspended a pair of inlfatable sharks from the ceiling in the children's room as part of our Splish Splash Read summer decorating theme. When I arrived, I discovered that one of the inflatable sharks had become unbalanced and instead of floating gracefully above us was now dangling by his tail with his head facing straight down as though he were diving towards the carpet. Several children were smacking him in the face as though he were a punching bag. I told them that, yes, that does seem to be the conventional wisdom regarding how one fends off a shark attack and then I righted the poor fish before the young pugilists could do any more damage.

It's busy today and I'm not even halfway through it. After this I have to help Dad move. I'll be up until the wee hours.

They're taking away the parking meters

Now what am I going to chain my bike to?

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Superfluous (but fun) Post

Just in case some of you don't already read The Poor Man or Atrios or anyone else linking to this today: WWWA

Getting nervous?

According to today's WaPo, Congressional Democrats are in position to win in an effort to stop CAFTA. The only question at this point is, how will they blow this one?

Brilliant in its simplicity

The T-P creates an NFL fan loyalty index by dividing total attendance by total number of wins. Guess who comes in first.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Here's what goes on while I have to work

The world outside parties. The Tomato Festival is one of the really great nearly free things to do in New Orleans and I seem to miss it every year lately. I hope someone out there is enjoying hisself today.

Tourists Suck Saturday

As I've stated many many times before, the tourist trade in New Orleans is ruining everything. Today's atrocities.

1) You would think that a Chalmatian could tell you what a Yat is. You would be wrong.

2) Looking for an "authentic" New Orleans experience? Just check in to the International House Hotel where, for 250 bucks, you can book a voodoo wedding ceremony conducted by a voodoo priestess called Sallie Ann Glassman.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Officer Friendly

NOPD chief Eddie Compass wants to change the way the department relates to the public.
As part of a new initiative developed by Compass and his command staff, current crime-fighting techniques they say have resulted in more headaches for citizens than hard time for criminals soon will be history.

"We've been in arrest mode for 10 years, and the murder rate hasn't changed," Compass said Thursday. There have been 13 more murders so far this year than in the same time period in 2004.

"We're changing the whole mantra of the Police Department," he said. "Service will now be our top priority."

The move, Compass said, is as much of about the quality of life for the city's residents as it is about utilizing the force's resources.

Under the initiative, police will no longer routinely enforce roadblocks, wear military-style fatigues, or focus on trying to write municipal tickets. The police roadblocks, which needed 12 to 14 officers to man, would net a few arrests but caused unnecessary frustration and inconvenience to the law-abiding residents stopped, Compass said.
While this sounds very nice, something tells me we shouldn't expect to see NOPD selling Girl Scout Cookies on the corner any time soon. But, if Compass really does want to take a step in the right direction, he can start by removing the ridiculous Orwellian surveillance cameras from my neighborhood.


Anyone seeking evidence of the total incompetence of Congressional Democrats needs look no further than the fallout over the recent filibuster capitulation. In exchange for their reserving the right to maybe, and from a much weaker position, think about filibustering a future intolerable Bush Supreme Court nominee, the Dems have allowed Priscilla Owen, who believes labor unions should be treated as criminal conspirators, Janice Rogers Brown, who believes your former employers should be allowed to sue you if you say bad things about them in your email, and William Pryor, who opposes the Voting Rights Act, to assume lifetime appeals court posts. Some deal. Way to go, guys.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Hard Times

Yesterday I woke up to find the ceiling leaking again. I don't understand why Slumlord is so cavalier about resolving this issue. It may be that he has every legal right to be.
In the first year, if you’ve registered (and only if you’ve registered) your lease at City Hall, you are pretty much guaranteed a place to live with repairs and maintenance supplied by the landlord at a specific price (your rent.) After that, all bets are off. This is the state that most of us are in. It only takes five to ten days to get you out after that. You are now at the mercy of the landlord – the kindness of strangers, so to speak.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

LA Bloging in the News

Some old friends of this site are making headlines (of a sort). Must be that high-powered publicity machine. And check this out:
In a way, Schott was a victim of his own success. Before calling it quits this year, he was dedicating about six hours a day, seven days a week, working on the site.
We weren't kidding about that grant, Governor.

Ministry of Information

Hey, big surprise, a Bush Administration official has been editing government reports in order to lie about climate change. Meanwhile, as the gov't sets other priorities Louisiana becomes more and more imperiled. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Fat Bottom Girls

Big hips = Healthy heart?

Eat something, bitches!

New Running Shoes

Knees feel a lot better. The blisters are a bitch though

Rock Show

Tonight at One Eyed Jack's: Rotary Downs, R. Scully, Testaverde. You weren't doing anything tonight anyway, right?

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Well it looks like our summer reading list is finally ready

Conservative mag, Human Events has released a list of the 10 Most Harmful Books of the 19th and 20th Centuries. And they're not kidding either. While we ordinarily expect to see the phrase "harmful books" used in an admittedly stupid but ironic Xtreme marketing sense, these people actually mean harmful books. Some of the "harmful" titles
  • The Kinsey Report
  • The Feminine Mystique
  • General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money
  • Silent Spring
  • Origin of the Species
Well, you get the idea.

Via: The whole internet, practically. This has made the rounds and most of the world has seen it already.

Apparently, I am Crisp Lamb Brains with Truffle Sauce

You are Marisol. You are eclectic, innovative, and
a little dangerous, but not quite as crazy as
people tend to think -- you have strong
principles and a solid grounding in culinary
tradition. You do exactly what you believe in
and don't give a good goddamn what anybody
thinks. Some people resent you for that, but
you really have no choice in the matter; you're
incapable of compromise.

What Famous New Orleans Restaurant Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla


Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Quote of the Day

"The use of federal dollars to destroy life is something I simply do not support"

Read Ivins

A troubling sight this movie was for me as well

Maddox on Star Wars. Go read now.

There are no shortcuts to quality

… In snowballs or chain letters, I guess. I’m (fashionably, of course) late responding to this chain music survey oyster threw at me for a few reasons. First, I’m a lazy sonofabitch who takes forever to do anything. Second, the survey pisses me off to no end because: (a) Three of the questions serve mostly to demonstrate just how much of the last five years worth of conspicuous consumption I have not participated in. Or, to put it another way, they make clear exactly how fucking broke I am. I shall elaborate on this below. (b) My standard answer to anyone who inquires about my taste in music is I hate everything. Pop culture is so full of bloated decadent nonsense that it’s hard to defend any of it while maintaining any semblance of dignity. Why even bother? What I like I like mostly for what it’s not instead of for what it is. Or at least that’s what I tell myself to keep from feeling like a total tool for wasting my time with any of this crap in the first place. Actually, looking at my answers, you might get the idea that my taste is fairly conventional. And fuck you very much for saying so.

Total Size of Music Files on My Computer: Zero. Look, it’s like this. Someday I might be financially secure enough to pay my rent on time each month much less subscribe to cable TV or high speed internet service. Until then, it’s a crappy dial-up connection and no interest in wasting all my time downloading music files over the telephone.

The Last CD I Bought Was: Hmmm. I guess it was GBV’s Half Smiles of the Decomposed and that was over six months ago! Remember, kids, the key here is lack of disposable income. Each pay day I have to make a tough choice between one luxury item (a CD, a new shirt, a bag of Cheetoes) or one mildly disappointing night of boozing. The booze usually wins. And it wins big too quite often eating into the grocery budget. The upside here is that I’ve learned to survive for weeks at a time on peanut butter and water.

Song Playing Right Now on my iFruit: On my what? iFruit, iPod, blackberry, cybercherry, iartichoke give me a break, people, I don’t even own a cell phone. And, quite frankly, even if I could afford one of your stupid yuppie toys I don’t really see the point. Half of my record collection is on cassette for chissakes! Besides, recorded music belongs in three places: in the car where it drowns out the sound of a squealing belt, at home where it drowns out the sound of the neighbors having sex, and at the bar where, if I’m lucky enough to monopolize the jukebox, I can drown out the sound of innumerable assholes trying to tell me why what I played sucks. I suppose a portable digital music player might be good for jogging, but I thought that’s what talk radio was for.

Five Songs That Mean a Lot to Me (1 per artist): You know what? Fuck this question. Here, instead, are the five greatest rock albums of my lifetime and that will have to do.

1) Guided By Voices: Alien Lanes. Greatest band ever. This fuzzy, underproduced, sneaky-big pop rock record came along at a time when I was beginning to think no one knew how to do this anymore. Robert Pollard, the ultimate rock geek, has an unparalleled capacity for drawing upon elements of British Invasion, punk, prog, arena rock, metal, and psychedelic rock to create an essentially cathartic sound that puts everything else on the planet to shame. This is what rock is supposed to do. It evokes disappointment but never defeat. It is heroic without being pompous. And if that doesn’t get you then the whole GBV mythology ought to. What’s not to like about a middle aged beer guzzling fourth grade math teacher finally getting his garage band noticed and going on to a second life as a rock god? At first listen, Alien Lanes sounds like an unfinished garage project. Hastily recorded hooks that could have been spun out into glossy pop rock songs are tossed away as soon as they’re introduced and then it’s on to the next one. This get in and out ethic became a trademark of early GBV. Here the pop mini-gems seem to run into one another over a unifying lo-fi hiss. The effect is something like a hazy dream about changing radio stations. Perfectly sequenced, Alien Lanes announces itself with a battle anthem when the first strains of A Salty Salute fade in above the fuzz, crescends to the winsome, heroic Motor Away and coasts out with the transcendental Alright. Did I mention I really like this record?

2) REM: Murmur. REM during the 80’s: Abstruse but earnest. Clean, jangly but dark.. in a sweet way. REM during the 90’s: Pretentious and bloated. Would the world have been all that worse off if we had somehow managed to get Michael Stipe and Bono to go down on the same plane in the spring of 1990? I’m just saying.

3) Radiohead: OK Computer. Hardcore Radiohead fans tend to see this record as a departure which announced the coming of their better work. Personally, I think they peaked with this one. The later stuff is a little too devoid of melody for my taste. Plus, there are just too many great songs here to ignore. I think Electioneering is a bit of a throwaway. Otherwise, this is close to a perfect record.

4) Nirvana: Nevermind. Fuck You. I know, I know. Don’t even start with your shit. This is a great record. If you can’t deal with that, fuck you.

5) Yo La Tengo: Electr-O-Pura. Consistently good band that has put out a really diverse body of work. Electr-O-Pura is probably their most cohesive album. Plus, it has Blue Line Swinger which is one of my all time favorite songs.

Fuck the rest of this survey. Here are some questions I threw in because I felt like it.

So the Pixies are Pretty Much the Most Overrated Band Ever. Whose Fault Was That? And I’m not trying to burst anyone’s bubble here. I like the Pixies. But I don’t get all these people who see them as some revolutionary influence on early nineties rock.. I mean what did they do that was so different? They played loud and usually had a hook. ‘Kay. Plus, I don’t think they put together a single album that wasn’t flawed somehow. Bossanova is probably the most consistent album, but only because the lows are not much at variance with the highs. (Also the linked reviewer disagrees with me.) What usually happens on a Pixies record, is we find playful punkish rhythms overlain with catchy hooks and a signature whiny guitar. All of which works fine until, at some point, it devolves into episodes of hipper-than-thou posing and stupid UFO fantasies. Also something is definitely wrong when some of your best songs are actually just well executed Jesus and Mary Chain and Neil Young covers. So whose fault was this? Kim Deal and Frank Black have each gone on to similarly inconsistent post-Pixies careers so it’s difficult to judge. Her best effort was probably Last Splash (although I kind of thought that Amps record has its moments) while his was Teenager of the Year (which is actually a pretty good record that could have been pared down a bit). What we can say for sure, judging from photos of their recent reunion tour, is that neither one of them has aged particularly gracefully. And that may be the saddest fact of all of this.

Beatles or Stones? I know, not particularly original, but still essential for this reason. Most fans will tell you that good rock music should be mostly about one of the following three things.
1) Exhalation of the human spirit or whatever the hell Beethoven was talking about.
2) Telling the world at large to fuck off.
3) Sex and drugs.
I don’t know what this says about me but my tastes have always run towards the first two items on this list while I find number three a bit tired, all said. I think this puts me on the Beatles end of the spectrum. I realize this is not a precise measuring tool.

Place the Following in Proper Order: The Dead Milkmen, Ween, Wesley Willis.

Who Is the Next to Suffer this Bullshit?
Daisy, because I had to do it.
Rudolph, because she doesn’t post anymore anyway.
Caroline, (can answer in comments) because I missed her when she visited NO and I feel just bad enough about that to inflict this on her.