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The Public Blogging of Pomosexuality, Homotextuality, Homophobiaphilia, and Drear Theory (aka Career Theory) [aka Gay4Pay]. We also read the Corner and OpJournal so the right buttock will be punished as well. All comments subject to publication. Or dismissal. Or Both.


Your Disciplinarians: Glenda Benda (Philapa), Amber Waves (Kansaster), Polly Morpheus (Dreamsville), Tess Tosterone (D'Urbervilles)



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Agenda Bender
Saturday, April 17, 2004  

Slightly Muscled Princes of Today: The William RF04

I link this 7/8ths naked picture of Prince William as a public service. And as google bait. William isn't my type, though he does have nice legs, what we can see of them. You just know his dad has some chicken legs on him, so William beat the genetic odds there. Mug-wise he's been an obvious winner for years.

What I really like about this picture is the information revealed in the caption. The annual Celtic Nations tournament includes a water polo competition.

Cuchulainn could really fill a pair of speedos. No Celtic curse there.

Update: Drudge, the swim team mananger, linked this full body shot of P. W. I'm less impressed with the legs as a result, but barefoot stances usually make for cruel pictures (which is why the tabloids love them so, all those flabby kneed celebs on the breach). This one isn't cruel, just ordinary.

6:45 PM


Muscle Cars of Tomorrow: The Sedna VB12

Sedna, our newest possible planet, and future probable car name (it's already a first order anagram of sedan), is rotating slowly, for no apparent reason. No satellite appears to be a exerting a pull, there is no drag moon on Sedna's horizon. Was there once one? Is a huge, dark moon lurking, unseen by us? Or a tiny super-massive one?

...The rotation of Sedna, officially named 2003 VB12, was determined by noting changes in brightness from its surface during repeated ground-based observations over about 3 months

...There's a small chance that during the Hubble observations, the suspected satellite of Sedna was hidden, lurking either directly behind or directly in front of Sedna. Or a satellite might have throttled Sedna's rotation long ago, then been destroyed in a collision or lost in a gravitational interaction with a planet.

Or, Sedna might rotate every 25 hours instead of 24 days, a setup that could fool astronomers into drawing their present conclusion. This latter possibility can be confirmed or ruled out with more observations.

All these scenarios are seen as unlikely...

...Yale University researcher David Rabinowitz, has a slightly different opinion of the results.

The Hubble observations "rule out a large moon," Rabinowitz said. If there is something there, he said, it is 10 times smaller than Sedna and it's not clear it could have slowed Sedna's rotation rate.

I wish they'd explained that might rotate every 25 hour loophole a little more thoroughly, which is to say, even a little bit at all.

Dennis Flanagan reminds us, in his informative survey of twentieth century science, Flanagan's Version, that:

... most things in the universe rotate, and rotational momentum is conserved.

Mr. Flanagan says this just before mentioning a fact I hadn't previously known, but which I felt I should have. I feel strongly that you should know it as well:

The sun rotates at the equator only once every twenty-five days.

Reminds me of my time in the Solar Service. I was posted on the big boy for two tours, 3 years each. Drove a lot of buggers mad--not me, something about the place agreed with me. Those long, sultry, equatorial days. The nights were pretty long and sultry too, not much escape from the heat then either, I'm afraid.

6:27 PM

Thursday, April 15, 2004

From My Outbox

To the Secretariat,
The Rolex Awards for Enterprise are a good idea, but having followed a link from Andrew Sullivan's page I found the story of Mohammed Bah Abba nearly impossible to read. Small, black typeface on a brown background? Your web designer must be high.

Fire him or her and get someone interested in promoting your organization's mission, not their own ill-conceived design whims. If they seem upset by this, tell them that those volcanic clay pots that erupt in vegetables when you attempt to scroll down Mohammed's story should have earned them the death sentence, so they should be grateful for your mercy.

PS: I surfed deeper into your pages and found that this flaw is consistent and deep. The content is obscured everywhere by notice-me-now designer tricks. Your site is one of the most annoying I've ever encountered, a true Flash-casualty. Please endow the opposite of a Rolex Award, then give it to the monkey responsible for all the sliding words, blinking pics and incidental cursor mayhem.

8:42 PM

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

The President Needs A Haircut

The president needs a haircut.

5:31 AM


Wonder Names of The Near Midwest

I'm reading the new collected letters of James Thurber to get that Queer Street taste (a mix of dessert cocktails, standing rainwater, black strap molasses, Sudafed and mattress stuffing) out of my mouth and Queer Street itself off my mental map. Thurber wrote clearly, smartly and wittily from the start. And he's getting clearer, smarter, and wittier, the farther along I read. The book is a 700 page glass of cool, sparkling water. You couldn't see through a glass of Queer Street with a super trooper aimed right at it.

You need to know, I've decided, that the most sought after co-ed at Ohio State University circa 1917 was named Charme Seeds. (Blogger doesn't do the accent aigu, so it looks a little less magnificent here than on Thurber's pages).

In the same letter that we meet Charme (she had stopped by the American Embassy in Paris where Thurber was working in the year after WWI), Thurber mentions he had just received a letter himself from another prodigy of American nomenclature, one Martha Pbetz.

5:23 AM

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

We're Coming To Your Town

Fallujah, Fellatio...Sadr, Satyr...Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Husaini Sistani, Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Husaini Funk Railroad.--I'm not there so I don't have a clue (though I do have a marked preference in all but one of the pairs I just created). What gets my attention is the battling spellers of yanglo-journalism. Who are we fighting, al Qaeda or al Qaida*? I believe that al Qaeda was our first enemy, in the months immediately following 9/11. In the last year I have sensed a shift to al Qaida. A shift which a search of Google news verifies. It currently lists 22,000 stories containing al Qaeda and 36,000 with al Qaida. Interestingly, the Google news search function is caught in an algorithmic time warp of its own devise. It still harbors a machine mind preference for al Qaeda, since that is how it was first taught. A search for al Qaeda gets you your 22,000 results, while a search for al Qaida gets you 50% more than that plus some unsolicited, passive-aggressive advice. At the top of the 36,000 results for al Qaida you're asked, Did you mean Al Qaeda?

A new and bloodier front is opening in the war over terrorism orthography. I was perplexed last week when I read a story the consistently referred to the Qadea, until I realized the writer was upping the hipster ante in a brilliant way. The al Qaeda is of course a bilingual redundancy, dropping the al in a phrase that already contains the English definite article is tactical genius. His gambit is still fresh, if you join his side now you will be way ahead of the pack, and his ploy is so powerful it allows him to use the older Qaeda spelling and still appear avant guerre. Which might have been his motive all along. A forward-thrusting-fallback, an offensive mind-fogging defense of the Qaeda forces being overrun by the al Qaida hordes.

*When and why the hyphen, as in al-qaeda, is beyond our scope here.

5:37 PM

Sunday, April 11, 2004

My Home in 2020: Books, Records and Broken Robots

Certainly the story of the day:

Robots Seen As Companions for Elderly

...In one of a budding series of robot-therapy sessions at Japanese hospitals and senior citizens' homes, the elderly patients suffer from severe dementia, but their faces light up when they see the dog-shaped robot, swaddled in soft clothing, waddle around the hospital floor. Some clap; others break into feeble smiles.

...The patients with dementia at the hospital in Ohbu, central Japan, suffer from significant memory lapses. They can't remember their names, faces of family, everyday things such as the difference between food and dirt. Some are prone to wandering at night.

...Tamura also found that introducing a stuffed animal shaped like a dog got almost the same effect from patients.

But a stuffed animal can't be programmed to, for example, help an Alzheimer's patient remember the names of their visiting children. Neither, of course, can real animals.

Tamura and other proponents of robot therapy say it makes more sense to use machines: They are more sanitary. They don't bite or cause allergies. There's no need to feed them anything more than power.

...John Jordan, a principal at consulting company Cap Gemini who has studied how technology shapes human expectations, believes it's inevitable that robots will provoke in people the same strong feelings that video games, movies and cars elicit.

...Japan, with its tradition of seeing spirits in inanimate things from rocks to yes, robots, so far has shrugged off ethical questions about substituting human contact with machines.

...NEC's talking robot on wheels was once lent to a family for research. When the robot had to be taken away for an upgrade, the elementary school-aged child cried so much that the family refused to take the machine again.

"People aren't going to be able to throw away robots even when they break," Toki said. "These are major issues that researchers must keep in the back of our minds."

The greatest paragraph, from a story full of memorable ones:

"So far it appears that most companies are just slapping together whatever technology they have," said Takanori Shibata, creator of Paro, a furry robot that looks like a baby seal and is especially designed for therapy.

My contribution to our robo-care future is this term of art for the kindly, graying, slower-moving simulacras especially suited for pre-school and children's hospital settings: Grandroids.

2:03 AM