May 31, 2005

After Downing Street - A Call to Action

Bush lied to us. The war in Iraq was in the works way before 9/11. And now many of our brave brothers and sisters have been killed fighting for this man's incompetency. How many more lives have been lost because of this? What can we do?

Impeach the mafaka. Start here. Thanks to Shakespeare's Sister for channeling our energies to fight the good fight against evil.

1. After Downing Street
is a Coalition of veterans' groups, peace groups, and political activist groups, which launched on May 26, 2005, a campaign to urge the U.S. Congress to begin a formal investigation into whether President Bush has committed impeachable offenses in connection with the Iraq war. The campaign focuses on evidence that recently emerged in a British memo containing minutes of a secret July 2002 meeting with British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his top national security officials.

2. The name is a reference to the Downing Street Memo, a British memo recently made public in the London Times, which contained the minutes of a secret July 2002 meeting between British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his top national security officials.

3. After Downing Street reports: In response to the release of the memo, “
John Bonifaz, a Boston attorney specializing in constitutional litigation, sent a memo to Congressman John Conyers of Michigan, the Ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, urging him to introduce a Resolution of Inquiry directing the House Judiciary Committee to launch a formal investigation into whether sufficient grounds exist for the House to impeach President Bush. Bonifaz's memo, made available today at, begins: ‘The recent release of the Downing Street Memo provides new and compelling evidence that the President of the United States has been actively engaged in a conspiracy to deceive and mislead the United States Congress and the American people about the basis for going to war against Iraq. If true, such conduct constitutes a High Crime under Article II, Section 4 of the United States Constitution.’"

4. Congressman Conyers is now seeking 100,000 signatures to sign a letter on the Downing Street Inquiry. Information available at Raw Story and dKos.

5. Sign the letter here. Write to your Congresspeople here.

Civic duties in full effect!

I have jury duty today. I know you're all jealous. Thankfully, they have internets access here, so I'm not going to go completely crazy. Yet. I've already been passed up for first-round jury assignments. I don't know if that's a good sign.

May 27, 2005

Sushi paper, anyone?

From today's edition of Specialty Food News:

[Chicago chef Homaru] Cantu's sushi platter routinely has no rice or fish — but instead holds squares of tuna-and-rice flavored paper. The Caesar salad has no lettuce — only a single spoonful of romaine-flavored ice cream. The printed menu sometimes is edible and can be crumbled into a bowl of gazpacho — turning it into alphabet soup.

All this is included in one of the nation's most expensive tasting menus: With paired wine, the 20-course meal costs $240 per person.

That's not counting the tip.

At a time when competition for diners is fierce, a small but growing number of chefs are blazing a strange new trail: creating a dining experience that mixes haute cuisine with extreme science.

Read more here.

$240. For a meal of fish-flavored paper, shrimp-flavored spray, and romaine lettuce-flavored ice cream. A "meal" that can last up to six hours. And people fly into Chicago from all places, just to eat here. Some people just have way too much money to spend.

No thanks, I can't eat another bite.

I'm sorry, I'd rather go to French Laundry and eat some real food. If I'm going to pay that much money, please believe that I'm there to dine, not snack on a "concept." And there better be a foodgasm involved. I'm just saying.

Have a great weekend, everybody.

May 25, 2005

That's hot! Not.

Okay. Please help me understand the reason for the furor over Paris Hilton's Carl's Jr. commercial. I saw it. She's washing a car in a bathing suit. Getting herself wet with the soapy water and sponge. Blah blah. No big whup. It's not like she is wearing anything MUCH DIFFERENT than what she usually wears when she goes out. And seriously, when has La Hilton ever WASHED a car herself? I SO can't wait for Paris' 15 minutes to end.

Give me a break. All those religious nutbags and parental groups calling her commercial akin to softcore porn need to really check out the Spice Channel or flip through the pages of Playboy or something. Because that's some real softcore, knowutimsayin? Aww yeah.

Ahem. I digress. Anyway, yeah, the commercial is racy, but a) it's not like it's all that erotic, and b) it's not like they show it in between segments of Blue's Clues or Dora the Explorer.

And while we're on the subject of pop culture, can I just say that the whole Tom Cruise/Katie Holmes lovefest on Oprah the other day was just ... weird? Is it just me? Not the fact that she's 16 years his junior (Jah knows I've dated men much older than I), but the fact that Tom Cruise had to CHASE HER AROUND BACKSTAGE to get her to come out in front of everyone. We're talking steadycam shot, Tom running around backstage, no hurky-jerky handheld-cam shots anywhere - you know ... it was all so extemporaneous and off the cuff! (Smell the sarcasm?)

I mean, am I the only one who thinks the whole thing is trite? Banal? Suspiciously close to both of their movies that open next month?

Please tell me I'm dreaming.

Democrats clear way for Senate vote on Bolton

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democrats agreed on Tuesday to clear the way for the Senate to vote on the controversial nomination of John Bolton as the next U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, which was expected to pass mainly on party lines.

The Senate is to open debate on Wednesday on Bolton, the top U.S. diplomat for arms control and outspoken critic of the United Nations, who has been described by President Bush as the right man to press for reforms at the world body.

Okay. I understand the Democrats are going to allow the confirmation to go to a vote. And maybe I'm not understanding something here. But basically, and I've said before, that Bolton's going to get the job. I'm still hoping the opposite will happen, but really - will it?


May 24, 2005

Filibuster, schmilibuster.

Okay. This whole filibuster thing was sort of anticlimactic for me. But I guess that's because I didn't really pay too much attention. Quite frankly, I'm feeling a bit disillusioned and despondent and some other d-word that I can't even think of right now when it comes to American politics.

But I did come across this post today on the Rude Pundit's page. Which, in some way, helped me understand the whole thing. Sort of. Is this a bad thing, that I respond well to analogies involving gay sex and manwhores? I didn't think so either.

Either way, I still feel like we're fucked.

Strike a pose

So I've mentioned before that I've restarted my Bikram yoga practice. And because of the copious amounts of sweat produced during the 90-minute session, I've often wondered what it would be like to practice in Ye Olde Birthday Suit.

Well, seems like a group in SF has started doing just that. Every Sunday morning at the One Taste Urban Retreat Center, a group of folks get together to get their yoga on - and their clothes off.

One of the things yoga has taught me is to be more accepting of my environment and how to deal with various emotions that might run into my head at any given time. It also taught me to accept my body's limitations and work within them - but also to know when to push my body and take it to the edge.

But nekkid yoga ain't my edge. I mean yeah, I've thought about it, but I'm way too self conscious to take it all off and bust out into a standing bow. Heh heh.

May 23, 2005

Chee. Kim Chee.

One of my favorite things to eat is instant ramen and kim chee. For those of you heathens not familiar with what kim chee is, it's basically spicy, fermented Napa cabbage. It's the best with some Korean kal bi (gotta have it with steamed, hot, sticky rice) or jap chae. I loves me some Korean food.

So I'm browsing through the latest issue of the Village Voice, and I came across this article about the writer's quest for good kim chee in New York.

Maybe I should start my own quest ...

May 20, 2005

Get your tickets now!

I thought this was a joke, but Pop Tarts* - our favorite toaster pastry - is sponsoring the American Idol tour, the biggest bunch of tarted-up pop wannabes ever. Heh heh.

Have a great weekend, everybody.

* I love the frosted strawberry flavor so much, I would marry it. Or sit on its face.

May 17, 2005

Handle your truth? Handle THIS!

I'm watching the Britney train wreck, aka her new "reality" show with her new hubby, Kevin Federline. This is probably the most terrible thing I've seen in a long time.

Today, Britney is talking about "marriage and commitment." Maybe with every episode she's going to have a new topic or something. In the second half of the show, she asks people what their favorite sex position is. The only impression I'm getting is that pre-Kevin, she was super horny and desperate for a date.

Actual quote: "I'm not all about sex, y'all."

Obviously, she's trying to set us up for their whirlwind courtship.

Most of the "cinematography" in this show is done by Britney and Kevin themselves, so there's lots of shaky, hand-held shots and camera-up-the-nose angles. Bad idea. Even Jessica and Nick had their own camera crew.

These are some of the things we learn about La Britney:
  1. Her Southern drawl is super thick.
  2. Kevin is good in bed.
  3. Kevin kisses real good.
  4. Performing makes her feel like it's her birthday. Every day.
  5. They love them some Britney in the UK.
  6. Never ask her to be in charge of the videocamera.
  7. She likes to make up dirty words to songs.
  8. JC Chasez likes sex too, but he doesn't like to talk about it.
  9. Britney won't tell us what her favorite position is, but I suspect she likes it from behind.
I will admit, I used to think that Britney was like, 40% hot. But this show just makes her look ... vapid. And trite. And what the hell is she trying to prove with this long, drawn-out PR piece masquerading as a tv show? Okay. I have a headache now. This show is SO trying to be "Truth or Dare" but ... different.

Girl, please.

May 16, 2005

Free Baran

My friend, Daniel Alexander, is currently working on a documentary featuring the story of Bernie Baran, a 39-year-old Pittsfield, Mass. native who many feel was wrongfully imprisoned for something he didn't do - an innocent victim of a homophobic witchhunt. There are so many inconsistencies and fishy circumstances that demand that Baran's case be rexamined.

For example, Katha Politt wrote in The Nation back in 2000, the following:
  • The children first denied being molested, and produced accusations under parental coaching (one girl [...] told a therapist after the trial that her mother had told her to say Baran had molested her so they could get toys and money.)
  • Key medical evidence has since been scientifically discredited. [One child] tested positive for gonorrhea of the throat - Baran tested negative. The test used on the child had a 50% error rate. A follow-up test on the child was never ordered.
  • In court, the children were unforthcoming, wildly contradictory, glad to see their supposed molester [... ] and denied that anything bad happened to them.

Enough people need to know about this story so that Bernie can get his life back. He doesn't have the luxury of having a huge legal defense fund to take care of all of the expenses related to his case; he's not a household name; he didn't zoom across a Southern California freeway in a white Bronco. It's time to stand up for the little guy. It's time for justice to be served.

In this current environment of closed-door, cognitively dissonant, let's-change-the-rules-because-we-can political landscape of ours, no one is safe. Bernie's story could just as easily be yours.

It's Jonsey!

One of my favoritest* people in the world just started a blog. His name is Mike, a dear friend of mine from grad school. Check it out and show him some blogosphere love.

*technical term, not commonly used among laymen

May 14, 2005

What's Your Plan B?

Dr. W. David Hager, an evangelical doctor who prescribes prayer for PMS, may have had undue influence over the Food and Drug Administration's decision on over-the-counter status for the emergency contraceptive Plan B.

Religious fanatics who blatantly disregard their hippocratic oath in the name of their own personal faith shouldn't be deemed worthy of the title of "doctor." And this guy is a GYNECOLOGIST! This guy is supposed to be some kind of authority on women's health issues??? What a crock of shit.

A recent article in The Nation reveals some insight into his marriage to Linda Hager (now Davis), which was not exactly "holy" in and of itself. This guy is one crazy mysogynistic fucker.

"Even though I was trained as a medical specialist," Hager explained in the preface to As Jesus Cared for Women, "it wasn't until I began to see how Jesus treated women that I understood how I, as a doctor, should treat them." To underscore this revelation, Hager recounted case after case in which he acted as confidant, spiritual adviser and even father figure to his grateful patients. As laid out in his writings, Hager's worldview is not informed by a sense of inherent equality between men and women. Instead, men are expected to act as benevolent authority figures for the women in their lives.

Check out this snippet of marital bliss:

Sometimes Hager would blithely shift from vaginal to anal sex. Davis protested. "He would say, 'Oh, I didn't mean to have anal sex with you; I can't feel the difference,'" Davis recalls incredulously. "And I would say, 'Well then, you're in the wrong business.'"

This is yet another example in the long, exhaustive list of examples, of the kinds of scumbuckets the Bush Administration consorts with in matters of public policy. This needs to stop. The Feminist Majority is encouraging concerned folks to bombard the FDA mailboxes with letters of outrage at their delay in giving over-the-counter status to Plan B. Do your part here.

May 13, 2005

Yeah, but I still want a Blackberry.

Today's Morford column discusses the recent HP study that says we're lowering our IQs while we use more and more technology that is supposed to make us smarter and more efficient. So much so that we're slaughtering brain cells "like Karl Rove murders joy." According to the study, this IQ level drop-off is even more pronounced than someone smokin' the Ganj.

I can see the point. In mean, we're human beings; we're not cyborgs. Technology does help us maximize our potential to manage data, get in contact with people at any time of day or night, or create works of art. What have you. On the other hand, a saturation point exists in which the returns we get from these supposed benefits of technology diminish over time. According to Morford, we're already there.

So pass the spliff. And have a great weekend.

May 12, 2005

Deep Thoughts

Courtesy of the infamous Lily. Discuss.

"Never laugh at live dragons." J.R.R. Tolkien, from The Hobbit.

This is a version of Shakespeare's famous 'Discretion is the better part of valor." It's not a good idea to dare forces that are stronger than you are - especially if those forces don't have anything holding them back. In other words, don't play chicken with a universe that doesn't have your best interests at heart. Don't dance in front of the onrushing train; you might get caught on the tracks. I use this wise and hilarious line when it's better to be quiet than confrontational.

May 11, 2005

If only it were Karl Rove in this mess

Mark Morford, my fantasy writer/columnist boyfriend and hypothetical owner of one of my ovaries, discusses in his column today the fact that the mayor of Spokane, Jim West, allegedly solicited consensual sex on with some 18-year-old gay dude. (No criminal charges have been filed as of yet.)

Rumor has it West is a closeted gay Republican, who also voted for the Defense of Marriage act in 1998 and propsed to criminalize any sort of sexual contact – not just intercourse – among teens.

I guess the MSM in the Pacific Northwest is all up in arms about the fact that this guy was looking for gay sex on the Internet (who DOES that?), but Morford hits the nail on the head – as he usually does – as to the real scandal here:

Here's what does it. Here's what makes West and people like him rife with potential for, well, some of the nastiest and most dishonest and dangerous abuses humans are capable of.

It's the ability to ignore the incredible hypocrisy of your own life, the staggering amount of self-loathing, the pathetic insincerity. It's the ability to join a political party that not only openly loathes, but actually violently condemns, your choice in sexual partners, a sexually ignorant platform that claims to have some sort of direct line to a gay-hating war-loving God, and then, in the middle of who knows how many gay affairs, to feel no shame as you step right up and endorse that exact same hateful agenda as public policy.

Georgia On My Mind

Grenade found near site where Bush spoke

May 11, 2005 |
TBILISI, Georgia (AP) -- Georgia's security chief said Wednesday that an inactive grenade was found near the site where President Bush made a speech in Tbilisi.

"In any case there was no danger whatsoever for the presidents," he said, referring to Bush and Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili.

Bezhuashvili said the grenade was found in "inactive mode." He described it as an "engineering grenade" - one that is used for demolition or to simulate the effect of an artillery shell. Such grenades' blast-effect can be fatal at close range, but unlike offensive grenades, they are not designed to spread shrapnel.

"I am not an expert, but it was not possible to detonate it there," Bezhuashvili said.


Aww, shucks.

May 10, 2005

Fasten Your Beergoggles

I wonder, are these the same guys who slip roofies into chicks' drinks? Heh heh.

Alcohol, sex in a memorable relationship Study shows certain men aroused with suggestion of booze
New York TimesTuesday
May 10, 2005

Men who associate alcohol with sexual desire can become sexually stimulated just by being unconsciously exposed to words related to drinking, researchers say.

Writing in the journal Addiction, researchers said the findings offer more evidence about the power of memory when it comes to alcohol. Other studies have found that people who wrongly believe they have been given alcohol can exhibit the effects of drinking.

For this study, Dr. Ronald Friedman of the University of Missouri-Columbia and his colleagues surveyed about 150 male undergraduates about their alcohol use and their views on alcohol and sex.

The students were asked questions like whether having a few drinks would increase their sexual arousal or enjoyment. Then, a month later, they were placed in front of computers, shown a series of letters and asked to say whether they formed words.

What the students did not know was that words like "beer," "keg" and "drunk" were being flashed quickly on the screen and then "masked" with other letters. "You might know you saw something," said a co-author of the study, Dr. Denis McCarthy. But the words were too fleeting to be read consciously.

The students were then asked to look at photographs of 21 young women and rate them for attractiveness.

The researchers found that those students who had earlier expressed a connection between alcohol and arousal were more likely to say a woman was attractive than those men who did not hold similar feelings about alcohol.

What is going on is unclear, the researchers said, but it appears, they wrote, that "the effects of alcohol expectancies on behavior are remarkably subtle and far-reaching."

May 6, 2005

Friday Morning Shout Out

I don't watch MTV's "The Real World" anymore because the antics that go on these days end up pissing me off - a sure sign that I'm getting old and WAY out of the MTV demographic.

But I loved, loved, LOVED Melissa Howard, the half black/half filipino girl on the Real World New Orleans. I was so happy that MTV had a real filipino up on that show, and one that was funny and just acted just like how my cousins and I act when we get together. Yes, I identified with her. I loved her. Melissa's the shit.

And she has a blog. Well, I don't know if it can be considered a "blog" per se, it's more of a website with blog. Okay, so I guess it's a blog. Whatever.

Anyway, so Melissa recently updated it (she's very busy, you know) with an entry in which she talks about the Paula Abdul/Corey Whats-his-face "scandal," which then morphs into a whole soliloquy about how she just moved to Lawn Guyland to live with her boyfriend who's in a band but I don't know who he is.

She's funny as hell. Check out her website. And have a great weekend.

May 5, 2005


From Fox News (don't start with me):

Production of the popular Comedy Central series "Chappelle's Show" has been suspended and its third season's premiere indefinitely delayed.

Comedy Central issued a statement Wednesday, saying: "All parties are optimistic that production will resume in the near future."

The season will not start May 31 as originally scheduled, the statement added.

Neither Comedy Central publicist Tony Fox nor Dave Chappelle's spokesman, Matt Labov, would discuss what caused the halt in production or how long it might last.

I need to go to my happy place.

Thursday Diva Bunny Blogging

Bunny background here, here, here and here.

Posted by Hello

May 4, 2005

"Celebrities are human beings too."

Are you watching this? This Dr. Phil/Pat O'Brien Behind The Headlines "special" (read shameless PR piece) is just so painful to watch. I can't even explain how horrible this is. I mean, I know Dr. Phil isn't a journalist. But seriously - what the hell? Isn't Dr. Phil supposed to be in your face? Abrasive? I'm just waiting for Dr. Phil to get on his knees and let the fellating commence.

Pat, stop referring to yourself as your son's "Daddy." First of all, your son's like, a teenager. And after hearing those voicemails of yours, hearing you say "I'm your daddy" takes on a whole new meaning.

Lenny speaks the truth

So I have the iPod on shuffle, right? And this cool song I hadn't heard in a while comes on. Thought in light of what's going on in the world lately, the lyrics are especially profound.

Sing it, Lenny:

The government’s the devil’s hands
It’s a lie and it’s a scam
They wind us up, put us down, and watch us go
And if you close your eyes
There’s a big surprise

What the f*** are we saying ?
Do we feel what we dream about ?
We’ve got to keep on praying
And one day we’ll see the light

I’ve been lost in the name of love
And we kill our brothers daily in the name of God
We’d better chill before we take on some tribulation
And if we realized
Then we’d make a little love now sing

What the f*** are we saying ?

"What the F*** Are We Saying?"
Lenny Kravitz, Mama Said


So is she off the hook, or what?

FORT HOOD, Texas (AP) - A military judge on Wednesday threw out Lynndie England's guilty plea to prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib, saying that he was not convinced that she knew that her actions were wrong at the time she committed them.

Col. James Pohl entered a plea of not guilty for England to a charge of conspiring with Pvt. Charles Graner Jr. to maltreat detainees at the Baghdad-area prison.

The action came after Graner testified at England's sentencing hearing that pictures he took of England holding a naked prisoner on a leash at Abu Ghraib were meant to be used as a legitimate training aid for other guards.

When England pleaded guilty Monday, she told the judge she knew at the time that the pictures were taken purely for the amusement of the guards.

Pohl said the two statements were unable to be reconciled.

"You can't have a one-person conspiracy," the judge said before he declared a mistrial and dismissed the jury of five men and one woman.

HUH? But ... but ... she said she knew the pictures were taken for shits and giggles. Head. Going. To. Explode.

Also, I love how she's carrying a Pepsi in the photo. I smell an endorsement deal when all is said and done. Move over, Britney! Here comes Lyndie!

Is your mutual fund a lemon?

I'm sure you all know to re-evaluate your mutal funds every year, right? Right?

Here's a list put out by Doug Fabian, an editor and investment adviser based out of Huntington Beach, that highlights mutual funds that have had "dismal" returns in the last five years.

Here's the list. If you want details, go here.

Fidelity Magellan

Fidelity Blue Chip Growth

AXP: New Dimensions

Oppenheimer Capital Appreciation

AIM: Premium Equity

Janus Worldwide

T. Rowe Price International Stock

Vanguard US Growth

Fidelity Aggressive Growth

Alliance Bernstein Large Cap Growth B

Putnam Voyager B

Fidelity Select Bio Tech

May 3, 2005

Tu ciudad, nuestro error

Courtesy of WorldNetDaily:

Citing "community feedback," the advertising company responsible for a Los Angeles area billboard that places L.A. in Mexico has announced it will revise the ad by Friday.

Check out the billboard here.

Am I just not getting it? Because I'm not offended by this. I can see gun-totin', God Bless America singin', Charlton Heston lovin' folk getting all enraged, but I get what the ad folks were trying to communicate: That they intimately know and understand their audience. That KCRA is the station to watch, because they are aware of issues that concern the Latino community in Los Angeles. They're not saying Los Angeles should secede. Whatever.

Anyway, so public outrage (not to mention a few choice words from the Governator) has prompted ClearChannel to revise the ad copy.

Thanks to Alberto for the link.

Poor baby.

I've always thought that guys will put up with anything as long as the chick they're with is hot. Yeah, yeah, you say - you're one of the few that doesn't think that way - I've heard it all before. My point is, ugly folk get no love. There are examples of it everywhere. Here's one.

This article in the NY Times illustrates shows how our bias toward attractiveness extends to babies. Cute babies vs. not-so-cute babies. Which is an oxymoron to me, because I have yet to come across an ugly baby. And still, even if the baby was not so cute, how could you hate on that little thing?

Dr. Robert Sternberg, professor of psychology at Yale, asserts that it's not a question of ugly vs. pretty, but more a matter of socioeconomic status, saying that wealthier parents can give better care because they have more resources.

But that doesn't explain how rich people who are ugly continue to exist. Whatever. I don't buy it.


Customer finds employee's finger in frozen custard

WILMINGTON, North Carolina (AP) -- A man who ordered a pint of frozen chocolate custard in a dessert shop got a nasty surprise inside -- a piece of severed finger lost by an employee in an accident.

Unlike a recent incident at a Wendy's restaurant in California, no questions of truth have been raised about the finger served up to go at Kohl's Frozen Custard and found later at home by Clarence Stowers.

What's up with people finding fingers in food these days? Gross.

May 2, 2005

... And all was right with the world.

The Geek Squad finally got things right and got me my laptop back. Those spyware problems from way back finally got the best of my trusty ol' HP.

Anyway. I really have no energy to write about anything. I'm just relieved that the laptop is back home. And yet I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed now, because I have to get my hands on a copy of MS Office, because those damn GS folks didn't put it back on. Got a new hard drive and everything, which means losing all my photos, all my writing samples, all versions of my resume and cover/networking letters.

Hope y'all had a great weekend. I did.