Archive for February, 2006


Ten on Tuesday

February 28, 2006

Ten things I want but don’t need:

  1. A new cell phone with Bluetooth headset, calendar syncing and web capability.
  2. A Mini Cooper S. Convertible. “Chili red.”
  3. A suit of Paul Chen reproduction Oda Nobunaga samurai armor.
  4. A 20″ iMac.
  5. A MacBook Pro.
  6. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Wikipedia on my iPod. (It won’t install on my Nano yet. Hopefully soon.)
  7. A nice set of cappuccino cups.
  8. The collector’s edition The Hobbit.
  9. A tattoo. (“Tae kwon do” in hangul. Or a large asian dragon or tiger. Or a replica of Smaug as drawn by Tolkien himself. Or some combination of these.)
  10. A fast 70-300mm zoom lens.
  11. An original Boris Vallejo or Frank Frazetta. (I’m a nerd, shut up.)
  12. A new Xserve for

The Broader Arc of the Story

February 28, 2006

They [the Bush administration] don’t care about people who read the New York Times, for instance. I use that as a shorthand. They don’t care about people concerned with facts. They care about the broader arc of the story. We sit here constantly citing facts — that they’ve broken this or that law, that what they originally said turns out not to be true. None of this particularly interests them.

I have no real idea who “journalist Mark Danner” is, but this passage from a very interesting interview of him at Salon reminded me of something I myself wrote a while back. The idea that people don’t shape their behavior out of a dispassionate weighing of available facts, but rather choose a story that seems good to them and assemble the facts which support it afterward, is compelling.

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The MySpace Witch Hunt of 06

February 27, 2006

Novelty makes news and new technologies tend to pick up and draw new attention to old problems that never went away.

It’s in our nature to demonize new technologies even as we embrace them. Today’s monster?, a web-based social networking application that has recently become popular among young people. Are they revealing too much about themselves? Are they exposing themselves as bait for lurking predators? Are they saying nasty things about you?

Take a deep breath. It’s not as bad as you think. There was an interesting discussion about this over at Lifehacker a few days ago, too.

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Zelda Turns 20

February 25, 2006

I haven’t spent a lot of time playing video games lately, but I have in the past. And I think I could still get sucked in if I had the right game in front of me. Nintendo’s Legend of Zelda games have always been just those kind of games. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the series.

I have played several of the Zelda games. Two that I remember with particular fondness are and A Link To The Past for SNES and Ocarina of Time for the N64. In fact, I maintain that Ocarina is the best video game I have ever played, on any hardware at any time. (A close runner up is Blizzard’s Warcraft II.)

For those not familiar with the franchise, the Zelda games usually follow the same story: a princess named Zelda and the kingdom of Hyrule are in danger from an evil sorcerer named Ganon. A young hero named Link (you) must go on a lengthy adventure to save the day. The games are known for their enormous environments, myriad choices, fascinating sub-plots and addictive mini-games within the larger game. One supposes, however, that it isn’t any of these things which make Zelda the best game of all time; it is surely the care and genius with which each of them is created. The craftsmanship is palpable throughout, and ost credit Shigeru Miyamoto of Nintendo for this magic ingredient.

So taken have I been with the Zelda games that I have often thought of utilizing the likeness of Link, the hero, in the design of my blog. As you can see, I have refrained – but only just.

Although I have to admit that I never quite finished the last Zelda game, The Wind Waker, I am currently drooling at the prospect of playing the upcoming Zelda game, Twilight Princess.

Happy 20th to Zelda, Link and the rest of the Legend of Zelda characters.

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DL Tonight

February 22, 2006

As seen on TV… (and no, we will not get tired of saying that!)

Tonight, February 22, from 7 pm onward, please join us at Club Garibaldi in Bay View (at Superior and Russell) for the latest installment of Drinking Liberally!

Ample street parking, good beer, and chicken wings that are grilled, and come with celery, so you can convince yourself they’re healthy (right?)…what more could you want? Oh, a room full of informed, articulate and like-minded liberals (who, I should add, are darn good looking, too).

See you there!

Stacie, Jason, Scott and the rest of the Milwaukee Drinking Liberally crew


J. K. Lee Raises $50,000 to Fight Children’s Cancer

February 18, 2006

At J. K. Lee Black Belt Academy you don’t just learn to fight; you pledge to make the world better. Our students take this oath very seriously and today they proved it. Our Board Break-A-Thon raised over $50,000 for the cancer research program at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin.

The break-a-thon was held in the center court at Mayfair mall, where patrons were treated to quite a spectacle. Our students broke stacks and stacks of boards. There were gasps; there was applause; there were showers of splinters; there were jumps, spins, kicks, chops, punches and loud yells. We invited the shoppers themselves to break boards, too, if they donated – and lots of them did. Plus, there were special demonstrations every hour from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.. Me? I spent the day handing out t-shirts, helping little ones find where they needed to be, and taking lots of pictures. Did I break any boards? Of course! I was in the 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. demonstrations.

If you didn’t get a chance to donate, don’t worry! We are accepting donations until the end of March. drop me a line if you want to help. Meanwhile, check out some of the pictures!

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IE Users: Sorry For The Ugliness

February 17, 2006

It was brought to my attention recently that many visitors are not seeing my site properly. At first I dismissed it. I thought these unlucky souls must simply have hit the site at a moment when I was working on it, that it didn’t render properly as a result of it, and that subsequent problematic views were caused by the initial misfire having been cached in the visitors browser. It’s happened before. But I was wrong.

First clue: reports of stark ugliness were only reported by Windows users who were using Internet Explorer. Second clue: testing shows that visits in using Windows/Firefox are fine, but visits with Windows/IE are not. Even simultaneous visits on the same machine and after emptying all caches.

Time to view source. In Firefox I see

link rel=stylesheet type="text/css" href=""

while in IE I see

link rel=stylesheet type="text/css" href=""

Hmm. Perhaps there is a problem with the file “style-ie.css”. When I go to look the problem turns out to be that it doesn’t exist. How’d that happen?

cp style.css style-ie.css

Problem solved.

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