As the ball prepares to drop, and the odometer clicks one year further into the twenty-first century, I find myself surrounded by family and relaxing.
I could be in someone's hot tub right now. I could be guzzling champagne. I could be dancing naked with a lampshade on my head. But right now I'd rather relax, since the first month or so of 2003 promises to be more of what the last two months of 2002 have been - my ass to the grindstone, making frequent course corrections and trying to see my way clear to 2004. Ultimately, the effort will be probably be worth it, but I've got some huge challlenges ahead.
So I'm glad for a little breather - halftime, if you will - before heading back to the arena. Tonight, I breathe easy. Tomorrow, I throw my back into it again.
And for now, my dear readers - my dear, few, persistent, better-than-I-deserve readers, blessings to you in this new year.
In the aftermath of Trent Lott's self-imposed downfall, Glenn Reynolds writes a column about the impact of weblogs.
2001 was the year that weblogs burst into the national consciousness in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks. But 2002 was the year in which weblogs became part of the mainstream, even while remaining outside it. And 2003 - well, to find out about that, you'll have to keep reading.
Glenn is optimistic about the future of weblogging; as the media matures and bandwidth prices drop, we'll start moving beyond text entries to Johnny-on-the-spot journalism as bloggers post pictures taken on their cell phones and "multimedia" - digital movies? - presentations du jour.
Welcome, friends, to the next century.
Former President Bill Clinton this week lifted his head out of Demi Moore's surgically enhanced cleavage long enough to condemn the GOP for what he called its racist past.
"How do you think they won a majority in the South?" asked the man who won every office prior to the Presidency by winning majorities in the South.
He then resumed work on advancing his radical feminist agenda.
I don't give out my office fax number and ordinarily turn my fax machine off when I'm not in the office, for a variety of reasons.
One is so I don't return to the office after a weekend to find that some cretin has exhausted my paper supply sending junk faxes.
Unfortunately, after almost a year, the junk-fax cretins have found me. Fortunately, the FCC is already on the case.
Of course, if they keep this up, I can sue them just like I would a rogue telemarketer. I just might.
Al Gore... mumble mumble... Trent Lott... mumble mumble... up to my eyebrows in litigation... mumble mumble...
How long before every Mac app has tabs? Or at least every open-source Mac app? Not long, I now think. Tabs sucked as a navigation scheme for Amazon, but they rock as a way to swap between windows in a Mac app.
Not my fault this time... blame the folks at Dreamhost.
Thanks to Jeff Lawson for posting a link to the fix.
I frequently wear brown leather and black leather at the same time.
Just tonight, I was having a discussion with some friends who regularly commute on Virginia's light rail system, about how easy it would be for those trains to offer wireless Internet access, either for free like many Starbucks do or for a fee like Wayport.
Connexion's service requires installing two antennas on the plane, one to transmit data to satellites and one to receive data. A server and routing system inside the plane relay signals to and from plug-in ports at the seats or wireless networking cards in passengers' laptops.
I guess that old line about interference with navigation systems was just a lie?
Sorry about the recent outage. My bad.
All better now.
Without additional comment, here are some pictures I took recently.
Who's the dumbest elected official in the land? It may well be Trent Lott.
Now, let me be clear: I don't think Lott is a racist, or at least I don't think he intended to embrace a pro-segregationist viewpoint. But to forget what then-Democrat Thurmond stood for in 1948, and the absolute poison that his run symbolized, is without a doubt the dumbest thing I have seen a politician do in Washington. Even Senator Byrd's recent use of the n-word wasn't as stupid, because modern Democrats are effectively bulletproof on charges of racism. Republicans are especially not.
Get gone, Trent.
But before you get an SUV just for defensive purposes, think again. Any safety gains that might accrue are cancelled out by the high risk of rollover deaths, which usually don't involve other cars.
If there's any industry in the worl with a clear interest in telling the truth about safety rates for SUV occupants, it's the insurance industry. If SUV's were more dangerous to their drivers, the insurance industry could and would charge higher rates to those owners. But as I have pointed out almost two years ago, the insurance industry statistics show that vehicle weight is a key correlator with occupant safety:
occupants of the smallest passenger cars are almost three times as likely to die as occupants of the heaviest SUV's - 249 deaths per million cars vs. just 90.
The most dangerous cars to be in are the tiny, fuel-sipping matchbox cars that the anti-SUV enviro crowd prefer. And that's true no matter what hits them.
Of course, all this is just another shot across the bow - environmental activists who loathe SUV's for their lower fuel efficiency (and I wonder, if there's not an aspect of economic envy there?) and who rightly know that SUV's on the road enhance the lethality of their own vehciles of choice want them banned. And if the truth stands in the way of "saving the planet," well, then, truth be damned.
Anecdotal fallacy aside, I was safer than those around me when I drove an SUV. Someday when I have a family of my own to protect, they'll be safer in an SUV than a smaller car. Is that selfish? I suppose so, but for that I will never apologize.
UPDATE: Bag and Baggage had its first blogday. Best wishes, Denise, and many happy returns!
I got this on an e-mail list today:
TODAY'S IMPORTANT OPINIONS U.S. District Court
A police officer violated a man's Fourth Amendment rights when the officer stopped the man on the George Washington Memorial Parkway for a cracked windshield, smelled marijuana when he approached the man, and then proceeded to conduct a body cavity search by the side of the roadway at the tail end of rush hour.
U.S. v. Ford (USDC-ED) (VLW 002-3-347)
A body cavity search by the roadside during rush-hour traffic? Yeah, I should hope that gets thrown out. I'd be willing to bet that the searchee files a § 1983 lawsuit (for violation of civil rights) pretty quickly.