In any case, he came off looking like an asshole in his press conference. I still despise him and everything he stands for and am glad I voted against him in 2004. I hope that this boomerangs against both Kerry and the Democrats next Tuesday. Go ahead and offend veterans, you stupid dick! See how it pays off for you.
Hint: I suspect that on November 8th, Kerry is going to be as popular as a California arsonist during the Santa Ana season.
The bad news is that the would-be candidates for the 2008 presidential race are already starting to scuttle out of the woodwork. A congressman from California made his announcement of an "exploratory committee" yesterday. Ugh! Give us a few months, people! Have the decency to wait until 2007, at least! I think that when the 2008 Florida primary rolls around, I won't vote for anyone who announces his or her candidacy in 2006, just to make the point.
P.S. Happy Halloween!
"No charges are expected." Excuse me, Sheriff, but did you know that it is required by law in the state of Texas that all children under the age of 5 and 36 inches in height be buckled into an approved child safety seat when riding in a car? At the very least, the driver is guilty of breaking that law, as well as negligent homicide in the death of that little boy.Boy Killed in Crash on Sect's Land
ELDORADO, Texas - A 3-year-old boy was killed and another child was injured Thursday when a minivan they were riding in crashed on a ranch owned by polygamist sect led by Warren Jeffs.
Allen Rulon Jeffs was pronounced dead at a local hospital, and 3-year-old Richard Rulon Jeffs was in critical condition Thursday night. Isaac Steed Jeffs Jr., 3, and the driver, Barbara Joy Jessop, were treated and released, the San Angelo Standard-Times reported Friday.
It was unclear whether the victims were related to Warren Jeffs, who has been arrested on charges of forcing a teenage girl to enter a spiritual marriage with an older man. His attorney has said Jeffs believes the case is religious persecution.
A news release from the Schleicher County Sheriff's Department said the minivan hit a boulder while traveling on a gravel road in Eldorado, about 190 miles northwest of San Antonio.
The boys were not wearing seat belts, Sheriff David Doran said. No charges are expected, Sheriff David Doran said.
As I said, I'm a libertarian at heart, but not when it comes to wearing seat belts. Seat belts save lives. People who don't buckle up are stupid, and people who don't buckle their children up are stupid AND negligent. I'm sure that the woman's heart is broken, but the law is the law, and it should be enforced so that everyone knows that children have to be buckled up in the car, even if you're a religious cultist. If you have so many kids that you can't afford child safety seats, then get a horse-drawn buggy like the Amish.
Second, on the new 8 GB iPod Nano: This is the best thing since sliced bread. I've had it for a couple of weeks and it lets me carry an astounding amount of music around with me at work. With m0re than two thousand songs to choose from, I can't complain that there's nothing to listen to.
I'm also getting a chance to get re-acquainted with some parts of my CD collection that I haven't listened to in a long time, as well as finding the holes in it when I find that I don't have a certain song that I want to hear. Usually it turns out to be something that I had on cassette at one time or another.
Today, listening to some early Beatles albums (Beatles For Sale, Help!, Please Please Me), I was reminded of the sheer songwriting genius of John Lennon and Paul McCartney. Most of the best songs were theirs, and the ones that didn't hold up so well were the ones that others had written. There's some mediocre stuff on those albums, but the ratio of hits to mediocrity is very high. And these guys were putting out two albums a year, plus singles, in the early '60s. They were amazingly prolific.
However, due to certain current events that you might have heard about, I've decided to write about something else instead. One thing's certain: The subject of political discourse is about to change, from a really nothing sex scandal to a serious discussion of national security, missile defense (and those who would block it), and foreign policy mistakes.
For one of the biggest ones, see the archival picture. I really hope that in retrospect, it isn't remembered like the one of Neville Chamberlain getting off the airplane and telling the British people that Herr Hitler was someone that they could work with and that there would be "peace in our time."
Thanks, Madeleine. Thanks, Jimmy. Thanks, Bill. You gave away the farm for absolutely nothing. Way to go.
P.S. Given that the NorKs officially went nuclear on Columbus Day, by which holiday will the Japanese join the club as well? Easter? St. Patrick's Day? Presidents' Day? Martin Luther King Day? The other countries in Asia probably won't like it, but tough shiitake, as they say.
"Doukoku" Animatronics & Robots
It brings to mind Frau Farbissener from the Austin Powers movies, shrieking "Bring in the Fembots!" Except these Japanese "Actroids" don't shoot bullets from their jubblies. There's a little bit of Engrish on the page, but most of the sentences make sense. Note that the robots shown on that page appear to be the DER model, but the pictures on Chizumatic are of the new Actroid DER2 model. Here is another picture of the new DER2.
Definitely cuter than C-3PO or R2-D2.
1. "She May Call You Up Tonight" - Matthew Sweet & Susanna Hoffs - Under the Covers, Vol. 1 (2006) - This is one of three songs from that CD in my Top 25. The CD is a collection of fifteen covers of '60s songs, some well-known, some obscure. This one is one of the obscure ones, with the original performed by The Left Banke (whose big hit was "Walk Away Renee"). Needless to say, I really like the song.
2. "It's All Been Done" - Barenaked Ladies - Stunt (1998) - A great song with a storyline crammed into 3:26. Have we met before... and before... and before?
3. "And Your Bird Can Sing" - Matthew Sweet & Susanna Hoffs - Under the Covers, Vol. 1 (2006) - The original version was on the Beatles' Revolver album, which is also on the iPod. I also have a version of the song on the Beatles' Anthology set where John Lennon giggles his lyrics throughout the song.
4. "Monday, Monday" - Matthew Sweet & Susanna Hoffs - Under the Covers, Vol. 1 (2006) - The Mamas and the Papas were the original artists on this one. This version is in a slightly different key. It works for me; it might not work for you.
5. "I'm Down to My Last Cigarette" - k.d. lang - Shadowland (1988) - Yeah, I like country, too. I love her vocals...
6. "I Touch Myself" - Divinyls - Divinyls (1992) - Speaking of vocals, there's only one Christina Amphlett. You'll probably recognize the song if you saw the Austin Powers movies. Remember the scene when he made the Fembots heads' explode? Yeah, it's that song.
7. "Family Tradition" - Cracker - Countrysides (2003) - This comes off an album where Cracker went out and played honkytonks under the name of Ironic Mullet. This is their cover version of one of Hank Williams, Jr.'s signature songs. Sobriety strictly optional.
8. "Mr. Wrong" - Cracker - Cracker (1992) - An amusing song from Cracker's debut CD. I love these guys, so you'll see some more of them further on down the list.
9. "American Jesus" - Bad Religion - Recipe For Hate (1993) - Driving guitars and sardonic lyrics. Great song.
10. "The Metro" - Berlin - Best of Berlin 1979-1988 (1988) - Quintessential '80s synth-pop. The first time I heard it, I thought that it was Debbie Harry and Blondie, but it turned out that I was wrong.
11. "Teen Angst (What the World Needs Now)" - Cracker - Cracker (1992) - "What the world needs now is another folk singer, like I need a hole in my head."
12. "(Don't Go Back to) Rockville" - R.E.M. - Eponymous (1998) - I'm kind of surprised that I've played this one more than "It's the End of the World As We Know It," but there you go.
13. "True to You" - Ric Ocasek - This Side of Paradise (1986) - This was the Cars' lead singer's first solo album, and on this song, he has the entire Cars lineup except for drummer David Robinson backing him up. It has the Cars' sound in spades.
14. "Surrender" - Cheap Trick - Heaven Tonight (1978) - "Surrender, surrender, but don't give yourself awaaay-aaay-aaay-a-hey."
15. "Tonight the Bottle Let Me Down" - Cracker - Countrysides (2003) - This time, they do Merle Haggard. Again, sobriety strictly optional.
16. "Ain't Gonna Suck Itself" - Cracker - Countrysides (2003) - This was the only song on the CD that wasn't a cover. It's Cracker's way of kissing off their old label, Virgin Records. Rude and funny.
17. "Pictures of Matchstick Men" - Cracker - Hello, Cleveland! (Forever bonus disc) (2002) - "Hey, waitaminute! That's a Camper Van Beethoven song!" you say. And you're right. But David Lowery was in Camper Van Beethoven, which is why he's doing the song on this live disc. Love the wailing guitar chords that open this song.
18. "Used to Love Her" - Guns N' Roses - G N' R Lies (1988) - Yeah, it's misogynistic. Hey, it's a song. Get over it.
19. "Raspberry Beret" - Hindu Love Gods - Hindu Love Gods (1990) - This was Warren Zevon and all of R.E.M. except for Michael Stipe, getting together and jamming on a bunch of classic blues tunes, and this cover of the Prince song. Kicks ass!
20. "She's Vibrator Dependent" - Mojo Nixon & Skid Roper - Root, Hog or Die (1989) - Mojo's not for everyone, but most of his stuff is funny as hell, and this story about a man who's "been replaced by batteries" is one of his funniest.
21. "I've Done Everything For You" - Rick Springfield - Working Class Dog (1981) - Great '80s pop/rock song, written by Sammy Hagar. My favorite song by Springfield was "Bruce," where everyone gets him confused with Springsteen, including his own mother! Unfortunately, I don't have that one. Yet.
22. "Hanging On the Telephone" - Blondie - Parallel Lines (1978) - Unlike the Berlin song listed earlier, I always knew this one was done by Blondie.
23. "Banditos" - The Refreshments - Fizzy Fuzzy Big & Buzzy (1996) - Another story song, about a cross-border bank robbery, with the classic lyric "Everybody knows that the world is full of stupid people..."
24. "The Riverside" - Cracker - Greenland (2006) - This is my favorite track off their newest CD. It's got an uchronic feel to it, as well as a weird wailing hollow sound that reminds me of the cry of a lonely sea monster. Don't ask me why...
25. "Flagpole Sitta" - Harvey Danger - Where Have All the Merrymakers Gone? (1997) - "I'm not sick but I'm not well..." Great song.
So why fire Girardi? Because he had disagreements with the general manager and the owner, including one memorable case where the owner, Jeff Loria, was arguing with the umpire from his box and Girardi told Loria to knock it off because he wasn't helping. Needless to say, almost all sports team owners are self-absorbed egomaniacs to some degree (See Steinbrenner, George; Cuban, Mark; etc.), and Loria was no exception. How dare this, this hireling!, tell him to shut up! At that point, Girardi's fate was sealed, even if the team had managed to sneak into the playoffs and then win the World Series, as they did the last two times they won the wild card berth.
Let's be honest: Girardi did one helluva job getting the young Marlins to play as well as they did and to stay in contention in an admittedly weak National League for as long as they did. Will new manager Fredi Gonzalez be able to do as well? It remains to be seen. The Marlins' loss will be someone else's gain, however, and I expect that Girardi won't be unemployed for very long. He's a Chicago native, so don't be surprised if he ends up managing the Cubs next year.
The iPod itself is impressive. It's about the size of one of those Skor candy bars and now contains a sizeable chunk of my CD collection, more than 2000 songs total. It could play for about six days and not play the same selection twice. I can't say "not play the same song twice" because there are some redundancies where I have the same song on one CD and also on a greatest hits CD by the same artist. Don Henley's "Boys of Summer," for instance. I hate to prune the one off the regular CD because it would break up the flow of the disc. (I keep wanting to type "album," which dates me.) Decisions, decisions.