Monday, June 18, 2007

Around the World Wide Web 6

1. Great opinion piece by a Democrat on the religious pandering of the Democrat candidates. It’s another sign of the ominous rise of religion in America.

2. Elsewhere on the Politico, we get a taste of the wisdom of actor Richard Dreyfuss.

Williams asks Dreyfuss about his battles with drug addiction and alcoholism. "What we call addiction is also a desperate desire to experience the eternal," Dreyfuss says.

"We have just spent six years escaping the bullet of bullshit," says Dreyfuss, the man concerned with raising political discourse. "I'm glad Bush is young and healthy, because he will spend more time in deposition than any president in history."

He finishes with praise for Eugene V. Debs and eternal damnation for Thomas Jefferson, "the worst person in American history. All he did was defend slavery."
Wow. It’s sad when a celebrity is a moron. He embarrasses himself before the whole world.

3. Here’s a time-lapse photography movie of a volcano on Io, a moon of Jupiter. You didn’t want to go through life without seeing a volcano on a moon of Jupiter, did you?

4. The Lakers – groan. Kobe wants to be traded. A few years ago they had Shaq and Kobe and were a great team. Then Shaq and Kobe couldn’t get along and when the Lakers indicated that Kobe is the future, Shaq felt unappreciated and demanded a trade. That was the start of the Lakers’ woes: what do you get in return for one of the greatest centers in NBA history? Well, you get screwed is what you get. You get Lamar Odom and Brian Grant and some other guys, nothing that comes near to filling the hole in the center left by Shaq’s absence. The Lakers ended up owing Brian Grant some unbelievable amount of money that left them unable to get the star players they needed. The O’Neill trade was a disaster forced on them by the petulant superstar, a disaster of which they are still feeling the effects.

So the team tried to reform around Kobe and has so far been unable to get past round one of the playoffs. In three years they have achieved mediocrity. Phil Jackson was brought back to coach and expected to perform miracles based on his amazing record. But he inherited one of the youngest teams in basketball, and shouldn’t a young team be running the legs off older teams? Instead, they were finding their positions in the triangle, a complicated offense that takes awhile to learn, and passing.

What they are doing is not working and it doesn’t look like any radical change is in the works. Now Kobe says he wants to be traded. That’s fine with me if it will help the Lakers. I want the purple and gold to win, whatever player has to be traded. Let’s just hope that this time they get someone great in return for trading Kobe.

5. And in baseball, Barry Bonds closes in on Hank Aaron’s home run record of 755. The steroids question casts a shadow on what should be Bonds’ pinnacle of glory. But if we disdain Bonds for steroids, we should also spew opprobrium at Mark McGuire, Sammy Sosa and every other baseball player that looks like a middle linebacker with pads on, because they all used steroids.

What should baseball do? Let the players take what drugs they want. Let the players replace their bones with aluminum alloys, let them take take drugs that increase their reflexes, let computer chips be implanted in their brains and let teflon cords replace their muscles. Let them turn into cyborgs technologically enhanced to play baseball. Maybe it will make the game less boring.

6. What would you get if you combined a teenager and one of these? Probably a dead teenager.

7. Revenge of the cats?
Lloyd Webber, 59, was working on the score [of a sequel to "Phantom of the Opera"] at his computerised grand piano when his six-month-old kitten Otto clambered into its frame and managed to delete everything he had written so far.

The digital Clavinova piano has an inbuilt computer and the ability to play back thousands of songs from its memory.

But Lloyd Webber was unable to recover his work from the high-tech instrument after Otto, a rare-breed Turkish Van, had done his worst.

Says the composer: “I was trying to write some new music; Otto got into the grand piano, jumped onto the computer and destroyed the entire score for the new Phantom in one fell swoop.”

No comments: