Monday, February 26, 2007

San Francisco Urban Iditarod

It's almost that time again:

This year's race is Saturday, March 10.

More on the original doggie race, here.

And a shout-out to the people who look out for those who can't look out for themselves - the dogs in the real dog race:

Dogs die every year in the Iditarod. At least four died in the 2006 race, and in 2005, at least three died, from causes including hypothermia, gastric ulcers, or “sled dog myopathy”—literally being run to death.

Just send 'em your $25/yr or whatever it is and try not to think about where that chicken sandwich comes from. Maybe eat a veggie burger once in a while. And do the Urban Iditarod, of course. I can tell, this race is shut down this year (2007). MySpace page is down. Odd, that. Sorry. can see the cached MySpace profile here. And going to the blog gets you this msg:

This user's profile has been temporarily disabled for special maintenance. The profile will be available again shortly.
Sorry for the inconvenience. 3/10/2007

Special maintenance on the blog. Going to the regular myspace page gives you the following error:

Sorry! an unexpected error has occurred.

This error has been forwarded to MySpace's technical group.

The whole thing is odd. If the event is canceled, why would MySpace take the page down?

Google Docs & Spreadsheets Still Sucks

Not trying to re-state the obvious, but it still sucks. I tried it a few months ago and it sucked. I tried it again just now, thinking they'd have had time to fix a few thousands bugs, and they did, but that's still a few thousand bugs short.

This 'product' - and that's really a stretch to call it that - still sucks. Like, really sucks. I can't even get to the point where we can talk about a Word vs. GoogleDocsSucks comparison - that'd be like a fight between with a broadsword-armed Jet Li and a hot fudge sundae.

Let me mention just one bug for posterity's sake - once you use the 'center' formatting option, it'll never go away, ever, no matter how hard you try, no matter how many times you delete the formatted text and areas, no matter anything. Just stop. Don't do battle with Google Docs & Spreadsheets. It's like when you drown - you'll only sink quicker if you fight it.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Sorority Girls Stick Up for the Underdog

Sorority Evictions Raise Issue of Looks and Bias

Not a headline one might expect to read about sorority girls:

The 23 members included every woman who was overweight. They also included the only black, Korean and Vietnamese members. The dozen students allowed to stay were slender and popular with fraternity men — conventionally pretty women the sorority hoped could attract new recruits. Six of the 12 were so infuriated they quit.

Good for them six who quit.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Cops after Good Samaritan

Listen, the guy already helped prevent some lady from getting her ass kicked/robbed/worse - why not leave him the fuck alone now?

The Palo Alto Police Department made public on Friday its hunt for an anonymous citizen who recently helped defend a woman during an attack.

On Jan. 21 around 7:45 p.m. a Palo Alto resident in her 40s was walking her dog on the 4200 block of Wilkie Way when a man attacked her. When she tried to fight back, a passerby rushed to her aid and scared off the suspect, police Sgt. Sandra Brown said.
The police department requests that anyone with information about the case or the identity of the good Samaritan contact Detective Agent Zach Perron at 650-329-2307.

People don't want to be terrorized by the cops - obviously - so don't terrorize the dude. Is that so difficult to understand? If he's wanted for 'Suspicion of Being a Good Samaritan', then say so, but the obvious answer here is to leave him alone.

If the cops continue to terrorize Good Samaritans, we won't have anyone willing to step up when the time comes for fear of getting harassed and terrorized by the police when the event is over. I mean, Good Samaritans are already taking on a big risk by sticking up for their fellow man. Is it really necessary to hunt this guy down just because he went out of his way to help protect this lady?

Don't worry, coppers - I'm sure the lesson has already come through for him loud and clear already - don't go trying to be a good citizen, thereby encroaching on police turf - stick to what you were doing - don't interfere. Or else.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Gil Mantera's Party Dream at Baeble Music

UPDATE: I stopped using Baeble Music. They suck ass. When I bought a couple of videos, they published my real full name on the website. And they'd deleted at least one of my comments on two different occasions - at least once was, I suspect, because I remarked that a broken video was their fault (as opposed to part of the show, or that was what users should expect from all videos on the site) and they needed to fix it. Remarkably, pointing out to users of the site, and at least one anonymous commenter, that the video actually had a glitch was what got the comments deleted (anonymous commenter tried to tell me the video wasn't broken - at which point the video was removed from Baeble's search index - because it was broken, of course - because i'm usually right). The whole situation reminds me of those clowns at MyBlogFogDog who banned ShoeMoney for pointing out bugs in their crappy software.

-- old post below --

Best damn music site, period, fools.

Get some!

Listen - don't even fuck around. This is where it's at.

...previous Party Dream coverage.

...can't leave my boys out. Oxford Collapse. These guys rock, too:

Saw Oxford Collapse play the Hotel Utah a few short months ago - had never heard of them - and they were insane. And the lame-ass hipster SF crowd sucked it, as usual, but it didn't stop me from rockin out.

...some more love for Oxford Collapse. Sick song. Sick video:

...bought the downloadable versions of both Party Dream and Oxford Collapse's videos. Tellin ya - the Party Dream. It's just un#*#*#*#&&#&@believable. It's manic, drug-fueled mayhem. It's perfect.

And Oxford Collapse's video is very strong, too. They kick the shit out of it. Can't wait to see both these bands again.

Baeble Music is the greatest thing to happen to music since the iPod.

...Ultimate Donny, the lead singer for Gil Mantera's Party Dream, has an incredible voice. You would never know it if you read all the 'serious' reviews of their music, but I thought I heard it when I first saw them live in SF, and now I'm certain. At 31:25 of the Baeble video - the show at The Knitting Factory in NYC - they launch into this song called 'Tigers (Live Style Remix)'. First, the song is just damn awesome - the music, the lyrics, the heights and troughs - everything. But a special note is reserved for Ultimate Donny's voice - he goes off in this Bruce Springsteen-like roar, but more intense, during the early part of the song and all of a sudden, if you weren't yet a believer, you're convinced. There's no more hesitation. And you're pissed that we live in a time when it's possible for a band like this to exist for years before you ever heard of them. You will now be telling all your friends about this incredible band - or life experience/philosophical outlook/etc.

And a word on having confidence in your own musical taste. If you dig it, say so. Don't throw in a million disclaimers about keyboards and dress and all that nonsense - be brave. In other words, don't be like all the people who get paid to tell you what music you can and can't like. You won't find a paid review now, and you probably never will, that will just outright praise the Party Dream - because that would require actual bravery and independence on the part of that paid-for reviewer. If Gil's keyboard sounds originate in the 1980s or the 1880s, they're good enough for me. If Donny oversings or Gil uses a vocoder, then that's the way I want it. Let the haters hate, but don't lose your nerve because some hipster refuses to drop their air of superiority.

...found lyrics to the 'Tigers' song mentioned above. I've reproduced here, with corrections of typos, as well as concert-specific lyrics - as best I could make them out. You should check out the original copy because it looks like the concert version left out a whole stanza. I haven't heard the actual recording.

everybody knows
i heard it from michael
now everybody knows
i heard it from gina
now everyone knows
i heard it from gina
and all them crazy dudes they been fuckin' you
in the craziest spots available

but i can't compare to no rainbow no more
now baby
we ain't gonna find a pot o' gold
and no goddamn leprechaun gonna leave it for me
and so i'm stuck
and so you're there
and so i'm here
and so i need, i need some kind of resolution
that i can fit into

'cause broads come and go
but your family they is better than gold
because blood is thicker than water
and baby i'm hotter than you could ever, ever know

...than you ever, ever, ever...


don't laugh at the tigers. show them your diamond heart (x4)

i can see how you don't want me (x7)

i see...

That song is just too much. wow.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Time to pay the piper, you fucks

I would not expect a conviction, but nonetheless, it'll be nice having these criminals hauled into court a couple of times:

Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard will seek criminal charges, including felony murder, against three Atlanta narcotics officers involved in a botched drug raid that resulted in the shooting death of an elderly woman, according to a proposed indictment.

The proposed indictment drawn up by the prosecutor's office names officers Gregg Junnier, Jason R. Smith and Arthur Tesler. Howard accuses them of felony murder, aggravated assault, false imprisonment, burglary, making false statements and violation of oath.

Straight-up terrorists.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Fucked up

Fuck with national security, and you're out of the slammer in no time, but fuck with a terrorist, and you're in for the long haul:

Those attending the demonstration held up signs with the words "Free Josh," and speakers were insistent on the unfairness of his imprisonment. Ross Mirkarimi, a San Francisco supervisor, said he was "angry as hell about this" and called for a "serious outcry, and not just only by us." In a statement, California state Assemblyman Mark Leno, who did not attend the rally, called Wolf's plight a "travesty of justice."


Orange rocket launchers

So, the U.S. knocks off a Brit, then covers it up:

Precautions have since been taken - orange panels were fitted to allied vehicles to alert pilots during the 2003 invasion. The pilots on the tape can be heard concluding the panels were "orange rocket launchers" before opening fire.

If I was a member of the resistance, that is exactly the tack I would take. I'd paint my rocket launchers orange so the invasion forces could see me clearly. Yep.

And that, my friends, is how U.S. forces offed a 'friendly'. Makes you wonder what the U.S. does to the unfriendly. Oh wait, we already know.

U.S. Kidnappers

Wish I could say I was surprised that the U.S. government wants to be able to continue to legally kidnap us...

UN divided over 'disappearances'
Arbour urged the US to sign the treaty [AP]

Fifty-seven countries signed a treaty on Tuesday banning forced disappearances but the US, Britain, Germany, Spain and Italy were notably absent among the signatories.

France introduced the convention, which bars governments from holding people in secret detention, at the UN General Assembly in November and it was adopted in December.

Philippe Douste-Blazy, the French foreign minister, told reporters after the signing at his ministry in Paris: "Our American friends were naturally invited to this ceremony, unfortunately, they weren't able to join us."

Forced disappearances. If that ain't democracy, I don't know what is.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

It's OK to be a guy today...

...because today is the Super Bowl:

With a little recognition of the evils of capitalism, for good measure:

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Jim Gray Missing: Help find him by searching satellite imagery

Interesting use of Amazon's Mechanical Turk.

I looked through three sets of images, and it seems like it'd be almost impossible to see anything in them. But, I figured I'd try at least a little bit.

About the name, 'Mechanical Turk'.

Hope they/we find him alive and well.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Terrorists Strike in Kansas City, Missouri!

Officers suspended in case of woman who miscarried -

No tapes were available of Salva's time in the jail, but she contends in the lawsuit that her continued pleas for help were ignored. The department said videotapes from that period had been recycled before it became aware of Salva's claims.

Oh, it's just another case of police terrorism. Nothing to see here. Move along.