Ampersand - Amanda Palmer

Constant fixture in my head this week...

Science is our future

Lawrence M. Krauss published an opinion piece with the Los Angeles Times that addresses something that's been bothering me about the McCain/Palin ticket.

McCain's science earmark error

I find it interesting that there's so much focus on the "new energy economy," and yet both of these candidates have consistently made statements that belittle the importance of scientific research and education.

I want to know how McCain and Palin expect this new energy technology to come about, because I'm pretty sure that it's not going to create itself. Call me crazy, but I'm thinking that we're going to need scientists to research and innovate in order to create a "new energy economy."

I'd also like to know if McCain and Palin support scientific research only when it advances their own personal agenda, because that's another kind of ugliness all together.

The Great Pumpkin

I watched It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, as I try to do every year...mainly because Snoopy is just too cool as a World War I flying ace, and I have a certain fondness for Charles M. Schulz. His work is sweet and nostalgic. It reminds me of the better parts of childhood.

My own personal Halloween wishlist for that mythical orange squash-man (because I'm not into candy and the trick-or-treaters can keep their tooth-rot):

1. Brown & Persimmon Stripes from Sock Dreams. I'm a junkie for striped socks. I can admit it.

2. Jurassic Amber Soap by Amandalouise. How cool is that? Textured like amber, and it even comes with an insect.

3. Harvest Moon Perfume by Amandalouise. This just sounds lovely and not overly feminine or masculine which is right up my alley.

4. An evening with Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury, which may be the very best autumn/halloween story I can think of. I always return to it.

5. A pumpkin spice latte, not necessarily from Starbucks, but Starbucks will do. I probably lose some liberal points for that.

Andy Paiko Glass

This is only a small sampling of Andy Paiko's beautiful work. I'm especially taken by the bell jars and the object jars, but even more phenomenal are the functioning spinning wheel, seismograph, balances, etc.
Spine Jar
Absinthe Fountain
Spinning Wheel

The Secret History

The synopsis on the back of the book, because I have a difficult time reducing the plot of a novel into a slender paragraph without spoilers:

When Richard Papen arrives at Hampden College in New England, he is quickly seduced by the rhythms of campus life—and in particular by an elite group of five students, Greek scholars, worldly, self-assured, and, at first glance, highly unapproachable. Yet as Richard is accepted and drawn into their inner circle, he learns a terrifying secret that binds them to one another: a secret about an incident in the woods in the dead of night when an ancient rite was brought to life.

I read this book with manic fervor...not because it was filled with excitement at every turn or because I needed to know what was going to happen in the end. From the beginning, I had a fairly good idea about where things were headed (by the author's design), but the characters were so mysterious and morally ambiguous that I wanted to spend time with them as the events unfolded in their lives. I enjoyed every action and reaction, and I couldn't turn away from the dissection of human nature & societal structure. The allusions to Greek history, mythology, and literature made it all the more fascinating, and yet it wasn't presented with intellectual snobbery as it easily could have been. The story was well-written, beautiful, grotesque, haunting, moody...  One of my more memorable reads of this year.

The Messenger

Last night, C and I walked the dogs beneath the nearly full moon, and we were followed the entire time by a little red fox. It was beautiful, and I’ve not been in contact with such a bold and curious vulpine since my time living in the mountains.

The Fox in the Snow (1860)

Gustave Courbet

Kissed by an Autumn Morning

It's beautiful outside. The foliage is lush but has already been touched by autumn. Everything is vivid green and yellow with the ocassional touch of orange. The ground is coated in frost and glistening dew drops, and the air is thick with fog...and yet the sun is shining brightly and piercing through in soft and luminous rays. It's magical in a way that only nature can be.

Pamela Wyn Shannon - Netherworld

Autumnal music for the romantic, pastoral soul.

Google Goggles

I wish that someone would come up with something like this for telephones. Perhaps a breathalyzer on the handset that would disallow people from calling my number after having had a few drinks. It would make life much easier.


Don't drink and drive

Don't drink and e-mail

Don't drink and make phone calls

Don't drink and post on internet forums

And those are only a few of the things that one shouldn't do while intoxicated. The list is virtually endless.