“The TSA‘s response when asked about the decision in Europe was to point towards the rigorous testing the technology is subjected to, plus the fact 300 “dangerous and illegal items” have been detected by employing the body scanners. Such a response offers little reassurance when others have decided it causes a health risk. It also doesn’t help that the TSA was accused of covering up the fact significantly more TSA workers were developing cancer earlier this year from working around the scanners.”—Airport full-body X-ray scanners banned across Europe as unsafe – Tech Products & Geek News | Geek.com (via rafer)
I love how in Oakland, in Denver, in NYC, whenever the cops clear out an Occupy camp, they do it in the absolute middle of the night. I mean, doesn’t that just look dodgy as hell? If they really believe they’re doing it correctly and justly, then do it in the middle of the day, with cameras rolling. But doing it at night, in the dark, just makes them look like the criminals they are.
What’s really cool is that John is picking up and bringing books for us to read to him. He’ll find one of his books on the bookshelf, carry it to us, turn around and sit in our lap (if we’re sitting cross-legged on the floor), and have us read to him. And Saturday morning, he got out of bed before we did, and I saw him go over to his books, pull one out, and sit down and just flip through the pages on his own! I know kids develop at their own speeds, but I swear this kid will be reading crazy young…
Played a lot with the baby. Cleaned the house, and did three loads of laundry, including diapers. Did a small bit of digging in the garage-side garden. Moved a lot of old baby stuff to the garage. Went to music class with the kiddo, then had lunch with Rocky’s dad and brothers. Made some homemade graham crackers for healthy child snacks, and Rocky cooked three loaves of her zucchini bread. I hung some papel picado that we’ve had for ages on the patio, and it looks very festive. Did many errands and got lots of stuff for food and to make toys for the kid (I’m working on a set of blocks and a puzzle). Went for dim sum and then ice cream with my parents and cousin. Oh, and I finally melted and filtered all the beeswax that we’d collected from the hive last summer; it’s not a lot, but I hope to have enough to make a propolis ointment (beeswax, liquid oil [jojoba or liquid paraffin], and propolis) for cuts and also a beeswax preservative for wooden toys (beeswax and liquid oil). Finally, Sunday night we put together a cheapie dresser that we’ll use to hold kid clothes, and watched an episode of Firefly.
Denver’s Santacon is coming up December 17, which means it’s time to ramp up the toymaking! I love the toymaking part of Santacon best of all…art and creativity that’s portable, costs little, and you get to give away (here’s a photoset of some of the toys I made a couple years ago). I particularly like making little plastic toy mashups—bat wings attached to a lizard, or a clown with robot arms, or a Barbie head and arms on a tank—and giving them to random people on the street or leaving them hidden for people to find later—in a chink in a wall, tucked in a potted plant in a restaurant, or behind a curtain in a bar…
Below is text from a friend who’s running a toy-making workshop for Denver’s Santacon. The workshops are always fun, though I spend a lot more time than just the workshop working on my toys. It’s nice getting together with people, though, and sharing materials and ideas…
Going to the mecca of thrift stores in the afternoon: the Goodwill warehouse where everything goes to die or get shipped overseas.
2222 Williams St. 80205. North of hospitalland, west of City Park, east of Franklin.
Most useful: needle & thread, Sharpies in all colors, seam ripper, hacksaw, Dremel, glue gun and glue. Raw materials: stuffed toys, plastic toys, small items—googly eyes, for example.
And here are some of my suggestions to add to that, from an e-mail I sent to a friend who wanted to know about the workshop:
Barbies are good bases to work with; also, dinosaurs or other animals, and throw in some mecha-style toys (tanks, robots). Best if your raw materials are roughly the same size/scale; it’s easier to mix and match parts that way. Stuffed animals are awesome to modify (sewing penii onto teddy bears, etc.), but it takes a loooong time to do well, compared to hard-plastic toys, which you can cut up and glue-gun or superglue back together in an instant. Hard or semi-soft plastic is easier to work with than gummy plastic. I like getting things with wings/tentacles and adding those to other toys (a Matchbox car with butterfly wings, or a ballerina doll with face tentacles). Good stops are: thrift stores for most raw materials (tanks, cars, dolls, etc.); Hobby Lobby/Michaels for add-ons (googly eyes, doll hats, etc.). I like US Toy (way out in Centennial) for bulk animals/ballerinas/clowns/eyeballs. Also, while at the thrift store, pick up some cute, portable toys as well: it’s always good to have an additional bag of small un-modified toys to give to little kids we come across who wouldn’t necessarily appreciate getting a monstrously-endowed Grover or a recursive MetaBarbie™…
In addition to Ms. T’s list of tools, I’d add: wire cutter, craft knife (indispensable), and superglue.
Anyone interested in either Santacon or the workshop, message me!
“The individuals who linked arms and actively resisted, that in itself is an act of violence,” UC police Capt. Margo Bennett said. “I understand that many students may not think that, but linking arms in a human chain when ordered to step aside is not a nonviolent protest.
Following her logic…
“OPEN THE FUCKING SAFE RIGHT NOW OR WE’RE GOING TO LINK ARMS IN A HUMAN CHAIN, MOTHERFUCKER! SAY WHAT AGAIN! I DARE YOU! I DOUBLE DOG DARE YOU!”
“Police report that the battered woman, whose name is being withheld for her safety, was terrified that her husband would link arms in a human chain.”
“I am here today to stand up against bullying and violence in all its forms. Someone has to say ‘enough!’ Enough standing quietly in a line and linking arms.”
“Tonight, we have horrifying footage of police standing in a line and linking arms around motorist Rodney King…”
If there was any justice in the world, this woman would have already been fired for having such a profoundly twisted concept of violence, non-violence, and protesting. She is unworthy of the public trust.
I find it ironic that Republicans have such disdain for the lazy, and yet their solution to everything is do nothing. Their answer to wealth inequality? Do nothing. Healthcare? Do nothing. Climate change? Nothing. Racism? Doesn’t exist. For a group of people so head over heels in love with self-reliance, they sure do recommend a lot of sitting on (one’s) ass.
If A Christmas Carol was performed by the Tea Party Dramatic Society, it would be a cautionary tale about how the hero, Scrooge — a blameless job creator — is turned into a socialist through the corrupting influence of Tiny Tim. And the play would end with a simple, plaintive question from Mr. Scrooge: ‘Just how much of my wealth does Mr. Tim think he’s entitled to?’
And that is the great Republican fallacy of this election: that our economic problem are due not to Wall Street’s gambling, but because too many Americans are lazy. But there are 16 million unemployed, and we only created 80,000 jobs last month. The problem isn’t laziness — it’s math.
This is where the Republican Party is now: in favor of people dying because they don’t have health insurance. In favor of letting people go unfed if they won’t work. And if they wanna work, but are Mexicans, in favor of putting up a fence that electrocutes them.
“An extraterrestrial being, newly arrived on Earth—scrutinizing what we mainly present to our children in television, radio, movies, newspapers, magazines, the comics, and many books—might easily conclude that we are intent on teaching them murder, rape, cruelty, superstition, credulity, and consumerism. We keep at it, and through constant repetition many of them finally get it.”—Carl Sagan (via redheadintexas)
Half-nude hiker rescued, pal arrested, bite alleged.
Boulder County sheriff’s deputies rescued a half-naked man Friday from a trail leading to the First Flatiron.
Deputies joined Boulder Parks and Open Space rangers, the Rocky Mountain Rescue Group, and Pridemark Paramedics about 12:35 p.m., after a caller said a friend was “not acting right.”
The 25-year-old man who was rescued was transported to a hospital and has since been treated and released. The caller, also a 25-year-old man, was arrested when deputies allegedly found him in possession of psylocybin mushrooms.
Investigators are still trying to verify whether an unidentified citizen was bitten during the rescue.
When I was traveling in Britain, I loved learning the slang/nicknames for people from different regions:
Brummies (people from Birmingham; from Bromwichham, a historical variant of Birmingham)
Scousers (people from Liverpool; long etymology, look it up on Wiki)
Geordies (people from Newcastle/Tyneside; etymology unclear)
Weegies (people from Glasgow, from Glaswegian)
Chuchter (people from north of Glasgow)
There must be tons more that I didn’t hear used.
I guess we have some of these in the USA (“Okie,” “Hoosier,” “Cheesehead”), but I don’t think to the degree they do in the UK (of course, they’ve had hundreds of years to come up with these kinds of regional differences…). There’s no specific nickname I know of for someone from Denver, or Seattle, or Santa Fe, for example.
A funny story: when I was in Britain, I was asking a Glaswegian about these regional nicknames. Me: “So someone from Glasgow is called a Weegie?” Him: “Yup.” Me: “And what’s the name for someone from Edinburgh?” Him (without even a pause): “Asshole.”
The kilt is made of eight yards of fabric, with 27 pleats, all handsewn. The edge of the kilt is never hemmed; it’s the natural woven end of the fabric. The kilt should be worn about an inch above the knees. The origin was the filleadh mhor, where you laid a belt down, pleated the fabric on top of it, laid down and folded the fabric over you, belted the belt, then swung excess fabric over your shoulder. The filleadh beag is the version without the shoulder part. The kilt pin should only go through the top layer, never both, as it would ruin the hang of the kilt. The skene dhu (small knife that gets tucked into the top of the stocking) is a utility knife; the (now ornamental) teeth on one side of the blade were originally used as a fish scaler. Skene (or sgian, Gaelic) means “knife”; dhu (or dubh, Gaelic) means “black,” since originally the handles were made from bog oak. The dirk (worn on the hip belt) is the more ornamental knife; it traditionally included a fork and a knife in the scabbard, while jewels in the handle served as transportable wealth. Wear a black sporran with silver trim, or a brown one if your trim is gold/bronze. A good source of information is the book So You’re Going to Wear the Kilt.
I thought I’d missed it, but it’s actually on November 30. I had thought it was Nov. 4—getting it mixed up with election day, I guess. Anyway. Have to wear my kilt that day! (Always fun, wearing a kilt in late November in Colorado. Particularly on the bike ride in!)
Stopped by the Lowe’s near us Sunday and got some more stuff for the coop build: weatherproofing oil, some hinges for the door, galvanized nails, construction adhesive, etc… The store is going out of business on the 13th, so everything is 50% off, so I figure this would be the time to stock up on stuff. I also got what I hope is a lifetime supply of sandpaper and sanding blocks in all different grits, and some plywood to make a toy for Babby, and some plant stakes for next year’s garden, and some river rocks for a section along the house’s back wall.
I would have liked to buy some of those long-life, super-low-energy LED lightbulbs (regularly about $30, but at half off…!), but they were all sold out. I wish I were better prepared with a shopping list—I could get more of the lumber and roofing materials I need for the coop, plus stuff to make shelves in the pantry, gardening soil/compost, and stock up on various nails and screws and stuff so I’ll have a supply of sizes and everything for future projects. But I’m just not that organized…