Friday, July 19, 2002

Only In America

I'd like to suggest to every citizen that we spam the TIPS program. Call in everything. "My neighbor's dog looks at me funny, it must be a terrorist." "My apartment got trashed, it must have been terrorists". And the ever-popular "He/She looks Middle Eastern, they must be a terrorist."

'Cause that's really what it's all about, kids. Irrational fear, especially of things we don't understand, like cultures whose immigrants resist assimilation while still striving for the American dream. Oh, the horror.

Let's just get it over with and illustrate the sheer stupidity and logistic impossibility of a program encouraging half the nation to snitch on the other half.

This is America, dammit, the land of the free and home of the brave. Show some frickin' backbone.

You want to do something to make the world a better place? Safer for you, your family, your community? Join the Peace Corps. Join Habitat for Humanity. Work to end hunger, educate and improve the lives of others. Strive for racial equality. Stop terrorism from even starting by easing the burdens that lead so many to hate. Add hope to the world, and that hope will be delivered back to you tenfold.

Thursday, July 18, 2002


A short story by yours truly will be appearing in issue 16 of Peridot Books, an online magazine. Weeeee!

Wednesday, July 17, 2002

Talk About eXtreme Sports

Rock climbing? Tap dancing with piranhas? Jumping out of airplanes with or without parachute? Chicken squat.

You want a sport? I'll give you a sport.


Yes, the latest in a long line of Geek Sports ™, SpamAssassin-baiting encourages you to think fast, push the envelope of spamlike content, all while writing something a human being would be willing to sit still and read.


The goal: to write a human-readable email that makes something resembling sense, while garnering the highest possible SpamAssassin score you can achieve.

Bonus points for: how funny you can be doing it.

[Tweaking SpamAssassin in your favor is frowned on, so don't do it.]

Kudos to Senor Dollmont, parent and patron of the fine art, sport, and alternative lifestyle of SpamAssassin-baiting.
The Reverend Sidra Vitale

I received my official ordination documents today from the Universal Church Triumphant of the Apathetic Agnostic. I'm so pleased, proud and honored.

For more information about the Church......

Tuesday, July 16, 2002

Ordered Moss

NASA Science News for July 16, 2002

Samples of fire moss that travel onboard the space shuttle do something odd: they spiral. Scientists say its a clue to the fundamental inner workings of plant cells.

18 Years Later

My folks have decided to get married[*]. I think this is terribly cool, and extremely cute. Not many kids get to stand up with the 'rents when they tie the knot.

Yes, this is mostly a matter of Papers Governments Find Important -- namely tax returns and health care -- which is one of the reasons they hadn't married before -- but who cares. I'll get all weepy during the ceremony no matter what.

[*] Why, yes, if you do the math you may note that I and my twin are either:

a) not related to both parents in question -- were we left on the doorstep at the age of 13 by Kurdish yak traders? Or was it a Mongol horde? Details are fuzzy.
b) illegitimate -- a concept that eludes me as a rule, it's not like we're purebred puppies, so what gives?
c) some other option not springing immediately to my mind -- feel free to be imaginative!

Pick the one you like most (or least).