Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Years

Here's wishing everyone a healthy, happy, and exciting 2006. May it be better in all ways than 2005.

Hogmanay \hog-muh-NAY; HOG-muh-nay\, noun:
The name, in Scotland, for New Year's Eve, on which children
go about singing and asking for gifts; also, a gift, cake, or
treat given on New Year's Eve.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Rowling Ponders Last Harry Potter

From the New York Times:

J. K. Rowling is facing 2006 with trepidation. It is "the year when I write the final book in the Harry Potter series," she said in a posting on her Web site, "I contemplate the task with mingled feelings of excitement and dread, because I can’t wait to get started, to tell the final part of the story and at last to answer all the questions (will I ever answer all of the questions? Let’s aim for most of the questions); and yet it will all be over at last and I can’t quite imagine life without Harry." She said, "I have been fine-tuning the fine-tuned plan of seven during the past few weeks so that I can really set to work in January." No title or date of publication was given for the final installment of the adventures of the boy wizard, whose six volumes have sold more than 300 million copies worldwide.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Good Words to Live By

Admit nothing, deny everything, and make counter accusations.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Taxes Taxes Taxes

Estate taxes. Wealthy people who care about their heirs literally don't want to get caught dead in 2005. The rewards for surviving until 2006 arrives are handsome. First, the basic exclusion from the federal estate tax jumps to $2 million from $1.5 million for 2005. Next, the top federal rate declines to 46% from 47%.

Gift tax. For the first time since 2002, the annual gift-tax exclusion will increase -- an important point for wealthy people to consider as part of their estate-planning strategy. The exclusion will rise to $12,000 for 2006 from $11,000 this year. That means you can give away as much as $12,000 next year to anyone you wish -- and to as many people you wish -- without having to report it to the Internal Revenue Service. There is no limit on the total amount you can distribute.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Evolution, Theories, Laws, and Terrorists

For some reason, a popular discussion has evolved under the WSJ post of several days ago. It is one that I find quite interesting and have enjoyed reading over the past several days. Because it is under a post that has little relevancy to its own subject matter, many readers may not have noticed it. So that everyone may be able to read this ongoing exchange, I am re-posting the discussion, in its entirety, below. Enjoy.

sbs-304 said...

here's a cool thing, because all i do is bitch and moan:

21 Ways To Be A Good Liberal

1. You have to be against capital punishment, but support
abortion on demand.

2. You have to believe that businesses create oppression and
governments create prosperity.

3. You have to believe that guns in the hands of law-abiding
Americans are more of a threat than U.S. nuclear weapons technology in the
hands of Chinese and North Korean communists.

4. You have to believe that there was no art before Federal

5. You have to believe that global temperatures are less affected
by cyclical documented changes in the earth's climate and more affected by soccer moms driving SUV's.

6. You have to believe that gender roles are artificial but being
homosexual is natural.

[...and so, on...all the way up to 21 - You get the point]

Anonymous said...

These are good points but just as many hypocritical things are wrong with the republican party.
PLus democrats acknowledge science which republicans dont. LIke evolution. It may be 'just a theory' but so is gravity. ITs a fact that it exists. Republicans are just too narrow minded to realize it.
Merry Christmas!!!

Anonymous said...

Evolution= Theory
Gravity= Law

Open a science book.

The term "theory" still indicates significant scientific support of the idea. Infact, most "conservatives" wouldn't argue the theory of evolution. Being a theory however, there should be more than one side presented.

Don't confuse the the LAW of gravity with the THEORY of evolution. One is undeniable, the other has not been significantly proven false.

Republicans don't deny science. We know that it is a scientific fact that when a bomb is dropped on terrorists, they cease to terrorize.

How's that for science?

Anonymous said...

Its a matter of symantics. Since it is impossible to prove that the entire universe is subjected to the same "Law of gravity" it is impossible to prove it is a universal law.
Secondly, the only reson evolution is 'only a theory' is because it cannot be reproduced in a labratory situation since it takes millions of years to take place. I like listening to people like you. I have a friend who told me one time, "You know, Christian science is making huge strides in proving evolution to be a faulted theory." He cited the bible a couple of times and even gave a me a christian science magazine with a cover article about evolution. Inside a scientist examined fossils (none of which are more then 4000 years old of course) and discuses how dinosaur fossils were placed there by God to fool 'unbeleivers' (like me i guess).
I, personally, just think thats absurd. Now this of course is coming from a non practicing christian. I have absolutely no problem with people beleiving in Intelligent Design. My problem is how people want science classes to teach it, not because i am fundementally against it, but because it is simply not science. You seem to know what you're talking about so you'd have to agree. There is absolutely no scientific proof of itelligent design. There is no observable evidence. Simply put, there is no scientific basis for intelligent design.

And lastly, those terrorists who are bombed cease to terrorize, i doubt anybody even a flaming liberal (Even guy who is from Massachussets and probably gay) wouldn't disagree with that. However the terrorists children won't.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Some Christmas Cheer

Below is a fine recipe for delicious eggnog which may be enjoyed during this time of the year.

6 Large eggs
3/4 c Sugar
1 1/2 c Brandy
1/2 c Rum
4 c Milk
4 c Cream
1/2 c Icing sugar
Nutmeg to sprinkle

Separate the yolks from the whites of the eggs. Beat the yolks slowly while simultaneously adding the sugar; do this until the mixture is pale and golden. Now slowly add in the brandy and rum, then beat in the milk and half the cream.

Set aside until just before serving, then whisk the egg whites until stiff and fold them into the eggnog mixture. Whip the remaining cream and icing sugar until thick. Top each glass of eggnog with whipped cream and a shake of nutmeg. This yields eight servings.

- And here is a link a good friend just showed me, for some nice, spiced wine. He wanted me to make sure to include: add a sliced lemon and sliced orange, and a 1/4 cup of honey, simmer, and drink

WSJ Econoblog

In today's Wall Street Journal online edition, the econoblog features an all time favorite economics professor of mine, Dr. John-Charles Bradbury, discussing the market for relief pitchers in this year's off-season. Also joing in the blog is Dr. Raymond Sauer, a terrific economist from Clemson University, who I was lucky enough to hear at a lecture last year. Both men are very interested in economics applied to sports, and in this conversation, particularly baseball.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Yankees Add Damon to their Lineup

It seems that every off-season the Yanks pick up some huge name(s) - such as Gary Sheffield, Alex Rodriguez, Randy Johnson, just to name a few. So, it should be of relatively little surprise that they will be loading up again this year with Boston Red Sox star Johnny Damon, who reportedly will be paid $52 million, over four years.

To look at his salary a little closer, that is a $1 million a month, plus a million dollar bonus, each year. To break it down even further, assume he works 40 hours a week for 50 weeks in a year - he's making $6,500 an hour. Or how about this... for each game he plays (162 regular season games), he will earn $80,246.91.

So, the big question now is, with another enormous investment, are Steinbrenner's Yankees going to win the World Series in '06?

NYC Transit Strike

Let me begin my admitting, I don't know a whole lot about this, as I have never lived in New York, and only visited a couple times. That being said, this strike, strikes me as being rather ridiculous. (pardon the abundant alliteration) What TWU is asking for, in retirement benefits, seems unreasonable, and they are demonstrating an amazing inability to compromise. As a result, getting to work is incredibly difficult for people, and the city is losing hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue.

- Here is a Guide to Commuting, using Google Maps. (note: its through the New York Times, so a subsciption may be necessary)

- Also, this is a very cool site - another Google Maps application - that has live video of NYC using their traffic cameras. This is pretty neat.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Bush's Spy Deal

Below is a cartoon which I feel nicely sums up the whole Bush/NSA spy story.

Sorry its so small - that's the best I could get. If you can't read the cartoon, it basically says that the Times waited to publish this story until a time when it could overshadow the news of Iraq's successful election.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

An Early UK Christmas Present

UK convincingly beat Louisville yesterday afternoon, and really brought back some optimisim to the Bluegrass.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Word of the Day

quidnunc \KWID-nuhngk\, noun:
One who is curious to know everything that passes; one who
knows or pretends to know all that is going on; a gossip; a

What a treasure-trove to these venerable quidnuncs, could
they have guessed the secret which Hepzibah and Clifford
were carrying along with them!
--Nathaniel Hawthorne, [1]The House of the Seven Gables

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Happy 10,000

Late Tuesday afternoon The Mint Julep recorded its 10,000th page load. While that is not really a whole lot compared to most of the other guys, 10,000 is quite a bit more than I ever envisioned landing here. So, hey, thanks to all who read this from time to time. I hope it gives you something fun to do, or at least helps waste a little time.

By the way, apologies are in order for not updating this more often. I have a lot on my plate this fall, and I've gotta stick to my priorities - which are unfortunately not making The Mint Julep as awesome as it could be.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Woman Robs Banks While on Her Cell Phone

This is the headline that I had the pleasure of seeing this lovely Friday morning. I suppose this post somehow follows upon my previous rant about cell-phone use; however, I don't even know what to make of this. I can't tell if this woman is incredibly arrogant, incredibly stupid, a little of both, or what. Of course this makes me mad, but I am still trying to comprehend this behavior. In fact, my unhappiness is probably derived from me not being able to understand this woman and her actions. Anyway, I am going to go eat breakfast and ruminate over this some more.

Happy Friday

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Good Value?

According to this site, The Mint Julep blog is worth $3,387.24. That seemed to be a surprisingly high price for this blog, that being the case, if there are any interested buyers, I would be willing to go as low as $3,000.00.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Sox Sweep

Tonight the Chicago White Sox won their first World Series since 1917 by sweeping the Houston Astros. It was a good series with tight games, but the Sox were clearly the better team. With the Red Sox winning last year, White Sox this year, perhaps the Cubs will be next in line to win that long sought after World Series.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Cindy Sheehan Being Ridiculous

According to this article from ABC news, Cindy Sheehan is going to tie herself to the fence of the White House and not come down until the occupation in Iraq concluded.

She said, "I'm going to go to Washington, D.C. and I'm going to give a speech at the White House, and after I do, I'm going to tie myself to the fence and refuse to leave until they agree to bring our troops home. And I'll probably get arrested, and when I get out, I'll go back and do the same thing."

This just smacks of idiocy to me and it is really frustrating that she and her PR outfit (led by True Majority, a non-profit set up by Ben Cohen -- of Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream fame) keep up with these stunts. Ben Cohen, speaking for True Majority had this to say: "People are willing to listen to her and we want to do as much as we can to make her voice heard."

I disagree. Her voice, her stunts, and her overall publicity are doing nothing productive nor supportive to ending our occupation in Iraq. I agree with them that the troops should probably leave. Its not our problem over there and there is little point in risking American lives for a bunch of ungrateful Iraqis. Furthermore, we would be much better off spending money on more pressing domestic issues such as for the poor citizens of Louisiana, Mississippi, and now Florida. I am sick of hearing about young men killed, one of which was a friend of mine. Enough is enough. However, pulling ridiculous stunts is certainly not the way to go about expressing your message.

Friday, October 21, 2005

"Sir, I would rather be right than President"

- Henry Clay

Thursday, October 20, 2005

UK Lands Stevenson

Per the Lexington Herald Leader:

Kentucky added a front court player to this year's recruiting haul yesterday when Perry Stevenson committed to the Cats.

Stevenson is a 6-foot-9, 194-pound forward from Lafayette, La. He chose UK over Texas Tech, Texas, Georgia Tech, Wake Forest and Miami.

The Prep Stars recruiting service rates Stevenson at No. 57 among the nation’s top high school seniors. He has a reputation as a defender and shot blocker who will need to further develop his offensive game.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Cell Phone Etiquette

Here's a nice little article from CNN about being polite with your cell phone, as well as the other wireless gadgets. Its nice to know I am not the only person who is offended by jerks yelling into their phones and disregarding others. Look at these people above in the about makes you sick to your stomach.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

The Adderall Advantage

Here's a rather long excerpt from something that always interests kids and amphetamines. This comes from the NY Times, and you can read it in its entirety here, if you have a subscription. If not, you can read below.

It was finals week at Columbia University and Angela needed a miracle. Like many of her classmates, Angela, a bleary-eyed junior, had already pulled a pair of all-nighters to get through a paper on "Finnegans Wake," a French test and an exam for her music humanities class. All that remained was a Latin American literature final, but as midnight approached, her stamina was beginning to fade. "This week is killing me," she said, taking a cigarette break in front of the school library. "At this point, I could use a little help."
Thanks to a friend, the tiny orange pill in her purse would provide the needed miracle. Angela, who asked that her last name not be published for fear of alarming her family and angering university officials, popped a 30-milligram tablet of Adderall into her mouth, washed it down with coffee and headed back to the library for another night of cramming. The next morning, she sailed through the exam confidently and scored an A. "I don't think I could keep a 3.9 average without this stuff," she said afterward.

At many colleges across the country, the ingredients for academic success now include a steady flow of analeptics, the class of prescription amphetamines that is used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

Since Ritalin abuse first hit the radar screen several years ago, the reliance on prescription stimulants to enhance performance has risen, becoming almost as commonplace as No-Doz, Red Bull and maybe even caffeine. As many as 20 percent of college students have used Ritalin or Adderall to study, write papers and take exams, according to recent surveys focused on individual campuses. A study released this month by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia found that the number of teenagers who admit to abusing prescription medications tripled from 1992 to 2003, while in the general population such abuse had doubled.

Dr. Robert A. Winfield, director of University Health Service at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, sees a growing number of students who falsely claim to be A.D.H.D. so they can get a prescription. At least once a week, a jittery, frightened, sleep-deprived student who has taken too many tablets for too many days shows up at his office. "Things have really gotten out of hand in the last four to five years," he said. "Students have become convinced that this will help them achieve academic success."

On campus, the drugs are either sold or given away by people with prescriptions, or they are procured by students who have learned to navigate the psychiatric exams offered by campus health centers, which usually provide the drugs at a discount. Unlike Ritalin, two newer members of the family of analeptics - Adderall and Concerta - come in time-release forms and can keep a patient medicated an entire day.

Much like performance-enhancing drugs in professional sports, the spread of analeptics among college students is raising issues of competitiveness and fairness. But interviews and e-mail exchanges with two dozen Columbia students suggest that the prevailing ethos is that Adderall, the drug of choice these days, is a legitimate and even hip way to get through the rigors of a hectic academic and social life. "The culture here actually encourages people to use stimulants," said Barak Ben-Ezer, a computer science and economics major who prefers Red Bull, a caffeinated beverage, and cigarettes over prescription drugs. But pure recreational use of the drugs, which sometimes includes crushing and snorting a tablet, is generally frowned on, he and others said.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

How About This One

You Kennedy lovers will surely hate this joke, but it really does ring true.

"What the American people have seen is this incredible disparity in which those people who had cars and money got out and those people who were impoverished died."
- Ted Kennedy on Hurricane Katrina

- Mary Jo Kopechne

Monday, September 12, 2005

I came across this joke somewhere on the internet and found it amusing. It is always good to be able to laugh at one's self.

How many Sewanee students does it take to change a lightbulb?

Seven – The five-person Honor Council to decide if it is against the Honor Code to change lightbulbs, one to find a reference in Faulkner to lightbulb changing, and one to pray for the repose of the soul of the deceased bulb

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Chris' Guest Post

One of the most structurally unsound dining establishments in the state of Tennessee rests at the intersection of Highway 41-A and University Ave. Blue with brown trim and a slight (34 degree) lean to the right, Shenanigans restaurant serves an extensive selection of grilled goodies, from the "Skinny Bob's Meat Melt" to the classic fried mushrooms. Sober or intoxicated, the gastronomic options of Shenanigans calm the stomach with egrigous servings of grease. Other items to be considered for consumption include the reasonable, inexpensive pitchers of beer. A pitcher of Miller Lite or Budweiser will run you $5.74, while microbrews and imports such as Blue Moon cost $7.55, which still beats the heck out of bar prices for a beer. The front porch, which faces the highway, provides a great view for those who don't mind the stiff wrought iron furniture, but that's where the memories are made (wow, that sounded gay). One time last spring, after the English oral comps, a number of us parked ourselves on the front porch to consume a few celebratory pitchers, when out of nowhere, the sky unleashed a blanket of hail on the area. While the sky was still coral pink and vanilla during the hail, this unforseen weather pattern surprised us, and made us realize just how unique Sewanee is, not only in its biospherical oddities but in its opportunities for fellowship, inebriation, and admiration for the natural and simple parts of life.

Friday, September 09, 2005

A Few Things

Being it Friday, and now officially the weekend, the word of the day is QUAFF.

quaff \KWOFF; KWAFF\, transitive verb:
To drink with relish; to drink copiously of; to swallow in
large draughts.

intransitive verb:
To drink largely or luxuriously.

Additionally, the song of the evening will be Blinded by the Light, by Bruce Springsteen. Most people believe that this song is done by Electric Light Orchestra (ELO); however, that version is really Manfred Mann and the Earth Band. Springsteen is the one who originally wrote and performed this song.

Here are the lyrics of the first little bit. Enjoy the music while quaffing a stein on this pleasant Friday evening.

Madman drummers bummers and Indians in the summer with a teenage diplomat
In the dumps with the mumps as the adolescent pumps his way into his hat
With a boulder on my shoulder, feelin' kinda older, I tripped the merry-go-round
With this very unpleasing sneezing and wheezing, the calliope crashed to the ground

Some Hope After All?

Alright, here we go - The most liberal place in the whole nation, booing Kanye West for his anti-Bush rhetoric, concerning the Katrina response. As a friend of mine put it, its "nice to know even the flaming liberals in Boston can smell bulls**t...guess there's still hope for the country."

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

The Double Cheeseburger Conundrum

A customer can walk into a McDonalds and purchase a double cheeseburger for $0.99, while a regular cheeseburger costs $1.05. This incongruity in pricing has always attracted my attention, and I have often wondered why any rational customer would ever purchase a regular cheeseburger. If anyone has any thoughts regarding this question, I would love to hear them.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Katrina Info Map

Here is a remarkable website that is set up wiki-style, in that individual users can post comments about the effects of Katrina at different geographic locations. There are thousands of entries. Here is an article about the website, which some more background a explanation.

A side question - Would the rescue efforts of the refugees in New Orleans have been quicker and better organized if the refugees were not poor and black?

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Here is another blog that includes a list of all the damage that New Orleans has experienced. This disaster is mind-blowing.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Looters in New Orleans

I was reading this article about the looters who are stealing clothes, jewelry and food from stores all over downtown New Orleans. In this article there was the following quote regarding the looting:

"To be honest with you, people who are oppressed all their lives, man, it's an opportunity to get back at society."

What?? How did society ever oppress someone such that it makes it right to steal other people's belongings? So this man may have had a tough life, but to blame it on society...give me a break. These people think it is everyone else's fault for their plight in life. I honestly can't believe somebody said this. Here, there are tens if not hundreds of people dying, billions of dollars in damages, and this guy thinks it is an opportunity to "get back" and the institution, by stealing other people's possessions. Simply unbelievable.

- Here is the blog to read about Hurricane Katrina.

Friday, August 19, 2005

A little Thought

I was just thinking at lunch today that when Tara Lipinski won the gold medal in ice skating several years ago, she was only 15 years old. I always knew this, but never really thought about how incredible it was. To put it into context, Lipinski was the best ice skater in the whole world when she was 15. How many professions are mastered by people who are only in their teens? I can't think of any other. Other athletes usually peak in their mid-twenties or sometimes even later, and otherwise "normal" jobs such as lawyers and doctors don't reach excellence until their 40s, 50s, or 60s. However, ice skaters peak in their mid-teens. I feel quite confidant that excellence in a field cannot be gained in any other profession at so young an age. How remarkable.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Word of the Day

tryst \TRIST; TRYST\, noun:
An appointment (as between lovers) to meet; also, an appointed
place or time of meeting.

And it bothers me that I begin to worry if she's planning a
tryst with my handsome neighbour.
--Anita Nair, [1]The Better Man

Friday, August 12, 2005

Would you like Frys with your McMansion?

Here's a nice little article I found over at concerning the evolution of the McMansion. Apparently the big home building companies have been changing the plans of their largest houses to include extra bathrooms, closet space, mudrooms, etc. Everyone needs a good bathroom, but these designs call for two different toilets in the master bath suite - a "his" toilet and a "her" toilet. Unbelievable. The article is good. Below is the introductory paragraph.

Even as economists debate whether discounts on some high-end homes signal a broader softening in the housing market, one indicator continues to rise: The biggest homes in suburbia are getting even bigger. The nation's largest builders of luxury homes say their top-selling designs lately have expanded to include more bathrooms, giant master-suite closets and extra rooms designated as teen dens, hobby rooms or even "bonus" rooms. Toll Brothers, of Horsham, Pa., says its best-selling plan this year has a base size of 4,800 square feet -- 1,600 bigger than its top seller of five years ago. WCI Communities, of Bonita Springs, Fla., says the most popular plan in its Mid-Atlantic region measures 5,425 square feet, up 250 square feet from its 2000 bestseller.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Freakonomics authors Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool? What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common? Why do drug dealers still live with their moms? How much do parents really matter? What kind of impact did Roe v. Wade have on violent crime?

These two guys have done a great deal to popularize economics and generate some interest in the field. The stuff they study is fascinating. Note, I have a link to their blog (and website) under my "Other Sweet Blogs" section. Check it out. You will learn.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Back in Action

I'm back from the sweet trip and on to more adventures. I'll keep writing about things that interest me. Last night I went to the Cheesecake Factory and as delicious as the cheesecake was, I found the dining experience a little bit disturbing. I had been before, and this recent trip made me think a little about our culture. Everything was so damn enormous, from the building itself, to the size of the entrees. It was almost sickening. The place was so "American," in that it pandered to the masses who thing that bigger is inevitably better. I mean, who wants to go and order a meal that could feed a small African family? What ever happened to subtlety and understated elegance. Those days are long gone, and have sadly been replaced with the biggest masses of food that can be fit onto a platter.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Heading Southbound

Bright and early tomorrow morning I am heading down to the deep south - southern Georgia - for a couple weeks. It will be a nice relaxing break from the farm work and everything else here in town. I'll be posting some more of the cool stuff when I get back...Check back then.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Tour de Lance

Well, Lance Armstrong has been able to maintain and lengthen his lead in the Tour de France over the past two weeks. It’s beginning to seem like an impossibility that he will be caught by his rivals, with the closest being more than 2:41 behind. Today the cyclists finished their 16 stage which reached from Pau to Revel and totaled a 239.5km ride. To the average person this seems like a terribly long and grueling feet, but Armstrong and a few rivals were able to enjoy conversations with each other as well as with a few cameramen. Also, two of Armstrong’s teammates, George Hincapie and Paolo Savoldelli, have won stages individually, and team Discovery has won a team time trial. So far Armstrong has had nothing but good fortune throughout his 7th tour, and he has just 3 days of racing left until his retirement.

A Few Funny Things

A toilet broke today in a bathroom of ours and the water is now shut off to the house. I am about to go over to our country club to use their facilities to bathe and clean up. This strikes me as being almost as hilarious as the picture I posted yesterday.

Speaking of hilarity, I was at McCarthy's Bar downtown and this fat Irishman began singing Irish folksongs in the middle of the establishment. After a little while, he broke into a spirited rendition of "American Pie" by Don McLean, and before long the whole bar was joining him in the chorus.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

I can't explain exactly why, but I find this picture to be absolutely hilarious. Especially the guy in the top left corner.

Word of the Day

propinquity \pruh-PING-kwih-tee\, noun:
1. Nearness in place; proximity.
2. Nearness in time.
3. Nearness of relation; kinship.

Following the race he took umbrage at Stewart's rough
driving so early in the day, and the propinquity of the two
drivers' haulers allowed the Kid to express his displeasure
up close and personal.
--Mark Bechtel, "Getting Hot," [1]Sports Illustrated,
December 6, 2000

Monday, July 18, 2005

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

This book is selling at astounding rates - 250,000 sales per hour, and reportedly earning JK Rowling $36 million in one day. I admit, I actually went out yesterday and bought the book; albeit, not for myself. Rather it was a gift, but I did still feel like a member of the millions of other people that were clambering over this Potter Madness. When I first walked in to the Barnes and Noble Bookstore, I was confronted by an enormous pyramid created with hundreds of Harry Potter books. I luckily did not have to take part in the midnight mania, which apparently included costumes and characters, face painting, readings from the book, and other activities. The Harry Potter phenomenon really is intriguing. My favorite part is the fact that 7 years ago JK Rowling was a poor, single mother. She is now one of the wealthiest members of our society, and she achieved this based on her own brilliant ideas, hard work, and determination. In my humble opinion, JK Rowling is the living embodiment of the American Dream.

- Here is what the wait to Potter Midnight Madness was like at Joseph-Beth, here in Lexington, KY.

- These are a few knicknacks concerning the release of the newest Harry Potter.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Roald Dahl's Writing Hut

This article in The New Yorker, describes Roald Dahl in depth, and takes you into his world of exciting and bizarre children's stories. Included below is a small excerpt from this terrific critique of Dahle and his writing.

Roald Dahl, the British author of children’s books, wrote in a tiny cottage at the end of a trellised pathway canopied with twisting linden trees. He called it the “writing hut,” and, since Dahl was nearly six feet six, he must have inhabited it like a giant in an elf’s house. Dahl died in 1990, at the age of seventy-four, but one day a year his widow, Felicity, invites children to the estate where he lived, in Great Missenden, Buckinghamshire, and local families swarm in like guests at Willy
Wonka’s Chocolate Factory.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Word of the Day

fealty \FEE-uhl-tee\, noun:
1. Fidelity to one's lord; the feudal obligation by which the
tenant or vassal was bound to be faithful to his lord.
2. The oath by which this obligation was assumed.
3. Fidelity; allegiance; faithfulness.

He was re-elected Governor in 1855, and his administration
of the State affairs, both in that and the preceding term
of office, was marked by a regard for the public interest
rather than party fealty.
--"Andrew Johnson Dead," [1]New York Times, August 1, 1875

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

In UK news...Randolph Morris now wants to come back to Kentucky, and Chuck Hayes states that sex was consensual.

Word of the Day

temerarious \tem-uh-RAIR-ee-uhs\, adjective:
Recklessly or presumptuously daring; rash.

Becket's slayers insist that the king had indeed authorized
or directed murder, an interpretation fortified by Henry's
known enmity toward the temerarious priest for protesting
the subordination of ecclesiastical to secular authority.
--Bruce Fein, "Free speech or call to violence?"
[1]Washington Times, April 10, 2001

Saturday, July 09, 2005

This clip of Rajon Rondo faking out a Florida player is sweetness.
Be assured he will be a big time player for us next year.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Interesting Items of Note

- Non-dieters are more successful at boosting their health than those ardent dieters, this study finds.

- The greates thinkers of the world - not Marx or Sartre, but perhaps...David Hume.

- Below is a funny little comment from Political Wire
Many Democratic fans of the Washington Nationals are buying baseball capswith an alternate "DC" logo instead of the more common cursive "W" because it reminds them of the current occupant of the White House, according to the Washington Post.

"During the design process, a baseball spokeswoman said, nobody made the connection to a certain political figure, for whom the same 23rd letter of the alphabet is a down-home nickname."

Word of the Day

somnolent \SOM-nuh-luhnt\, adjective:
1. Sleepy; drowsy; inclined to sleep.
2. Tending to cause sleepiness or drowsiness.

[I]n his case, restrained ultimately meant boring, as the
audience was lulled into a somnolent state.
--Teresa Wiltz, "The Hip, the Flip, the Flop,"
[1]Washington Post, March 3, 2000

Thursday, July 07, 2005

This is one of the weirdest things I have ever seen.
- Terrorist attacks in London one day following their pick to host the 2012 Olympics, as well as the first day of the G8 Summit in Gleneagles, Scotland.

- Kentucky head coach Tubby Smith plans to speak with wayword Randolph Morris. The Morris debacle has helped fellow Cat, Rajon Rondo, learn much about the process.

- A Robot tossed out the first pitch in Nationals-Mets game last night.

Word of the Day

ameliorate\uh-MEEL-yuh-rayt\, transitive verb:
To make better; to improve.

intransitive verb:
To grow better.

Among the pressures provoking these distresses were a
father's financial inadequacy and a growing awareness that,
by finding employment himself, he could ameliorate the
family's exiguous circumstances.
--Terence Brown, [1]The Life of W. B. Yeats: A Critical

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Judith Miller, reporter for the New York Times, was sent to jail today for failing to reveal her source, concerning the blown identity of CIA operative Valerie Plame. Because the link is to the Times which is a subscription site, I have included a brief excerpt below.

WASHINGTON, July 6 - A federal judge today ordered Judith Miller of The New York Times to be jailed immediately after she again refused to cooperate with a grand jury investigating the disclosure of the identity of a covert C.I.A. operative.

Another reporter who had been facing jail time on the same matter, Matthew Cooper of Time magazine, agreed today to testify to a grand jury about his confidential source on the same matter, thus avoiding jail. Mr. Cooper said he had decided to do so only because his source specifically released him from promises of confidentiality just before today's hearing.

Good stuff from Drudge on Democrat's "going to war" over Supreme Court.

Oil surged to $61.28 a barrel amid concerns that tropical storms may limit supply.
50 Fun Things to do With Your iPod (besides listen to music with those white earbuds)

Noteworthy News

- In Singapore today the IOC awarded London the 2012 Olympic Games. Moscow, New York, and Madrid were all eliminated in the first round, and London beat Paris in the final round. The reaction is dismay in New York, and shock in Paris.

- Former UK basketball player Chuck Hayes agreed to be interviewed by the Lexington Police following the revival of an unfortunate rape allegation. The Mint Julep's thoughts go out to Chuck Hayes as he deals with this situation.

- 6 time Tour de France Winner Lance Armstrong started the 5th stage of this year's 2005 Tour de France in the lead. However, out of respect for a fellow rider who endured a terrifying wreck, Armstrong decided not to don the leader's traditional yellow jersey.

- As the G8 heads to Scotland this week, protestors, activists, anti-capitalists, anarchists and environmentalists have all converged in an attempt to express their own dissatisfactions with the world's problems.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

For all the Right Reasons

Sandra Day O'Connor's decision to step down from the Supreme Court was one that was in large part propelled by her desire to spend more time with her husband John, who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease. It is obvious that O'Connor has a clear understanding of her priorities. All too often people sacrifice family relationships and personal life for career advancement. While O'Connor certainly has reached the zenith of all legal careers, she still could have continued to serve. One year shy of her 25th year on the bench, O'Connor did just the opposite, so that she could focus on her private life.

I agree with the decision and applaud it, and not at all because I get tired of her swing voting tendencies. Although, she did vote the right way in the recent Kelo v. City of New London case, which is a complete bastadization of the Fifth Amendment. However, that is another post for another time. In any case, I salute O'Connor's service to America and wish that Congress and the President could work together to put another judge of O'Connor's quality on the bench.

Word of the Day

garrulous \GAIR-uh-lus; GAIR-yuh-\, adjective:
1. Talking much, especially about commonplace or trivial
things; talkative.
2. Wordy.

Without saying a single word she managed to radiate
disapproval ... the air seemed to grow heavy with it and
the most garrulous talker would wilt and fall silent.
--Mark Amory, [1]Lord Berners: The Last Eccentric

Monday, July 04, 2005

Happy 4th of July

is a short history of Independence Day. We are extraordinarily lucky to live in America and have the freedoms which we so often take for granted. Happy 4th, everybody!

Saturday, June 25, 2005

House for Rent

I just bought a house here in Lexington, KY that I am looking to rent. If you or anyone you know might be interested, leave a message on the message part of this blog post. The house is 2-story, 4 bedroom, and perfect for, but certainly not restricted to, UK students, both undergrad and grad.

Time to cool down

According to the Weather it is 92 degrees. This is right now at 6:35 in the evening. So, to counterbalance this hot weather, I am going to post a nice, cool, poem:

Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
by Robert Lee Frost

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it's queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there's some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005


Due to an active schedule, I have let The Mint Julep somewhat languish. It is my hope that I will be able to contribute on a more regular schedule.

Friday, May 06, 2005

The Quintessential Mint Julep

Tomorrow being Derby Day, I feel it absolutely imperative to post this website which I ran across. It is dedicated to the Mint Julep. Included is a letter from a Lieutenant in World War II to a fellow Major General, in which he is explaining the beautiful process of creating this fine beverage. Included bellow is a short excerpt.

The preparation of the quintessence of gentlemanly beverages can be described only in like terms. A mint julep is not a product of a formula. It is a ceremony and must be performed by a gentleman possessing a true sense of the artistic, a deep reverence for the ingredients and a proper appreciation of the occasion. It is a rite that must not be entrusted to a novice, a statistician nor a Yankee. It is a heritage of the Old South, and emblem of hospitality, and a vehicle in which noble minds can travel together upon the flower-strewn paths of a happy and congenial thought.


When all is ready, assemble your guests on the porch or in the garden where the aroma of the juleps will rise heavenward and make the birds sing. Propose a worthy toast, raise the goblets to your lips, bury your nose in the mint, inhale a deep breath of its fragrance and sip the nectar of the gods.

Pot Lollipops

This idea is most ridiculous. Kinda funny at first, but it really does make you mad. Making candy like drugs is messed up. By the way, you should click on the movie link and watch the film. Its plain hilarious.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Joke Time

A New York woman was depressed and decided to end her life by throwing herself into the ocean. But just before she could throw herself from the docks, a handsome young sailor stopped her.
"You have so much to live for," said the sailor. "Look, I'm off to Europe and I can stow you away on my ship. I'll take care of you, bring you food every day, and keep you happy."
Having nothing, the woman accepted. The sailor brought her aboard and hid her in a lifeboat. From then on, every night he would bring her sandwiches and make love to her until dawn.
Three weeks later she was discovered by the captain.
"What are you doing here?" asked the captain.
"I have an arrangement with one of the sailors, he brings me food and I get a free trip to Europe. Plus he's screwing me."
"He certainly is," replied the captain. "This is the Staten Island Ferry."

Sunday, May 01, 2005


Due to an incredibly busy schedule, my entries will be few and far between. This will last until mid-May, when perhaps my blogging will pick back up in frequency.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Quarterlife Crisis Hits Many in Late 20s

This is the title of an article a good friend of mine wrote for ABC News. The article takes on a topic that I first remember reading about in Time Magazine several months ago - that of the Twixter. These are twenty-something year olds who find themselves unhappy in their chosen profession, as the reality that "the real world" is not really as glamorous as it is made out to be. Not being out of college yet, I cannot really relate. However, I do realize that I am living the fun days right now. After graduation, it is time to get serious - and quite possibly on a job that is not especially fun. Chances are, I will not look forward to my job, and will not be thrilled to stroll into work each morning. Otherwise work would not be called work, but rather fun time. I will work so I can earn money, and that's about as simple as it gets. Chances are, in my mid to late twenties I will harbor some very unpleasant emotions about my work, but then I will simply remind myself that work is a necessary part of our life - and then I will (in the words of Happy Gilmore) get back to work. So, these are my feelings on a Twixter, or Quarterlife Crisis, or just not enjoying one's work.

A Nice Liberal Arts Joke

Being at a Liberal Arts institution, I can appreciate the humor of this joke. I can also recognize how freakishly accurate it really may be.

The graduate with a Science degree asks, "Why does it work?"
The graduate with an Engineering degree asks, "How does it work?"
The graduate with an Accounting degree Asks, "How much will it cost?"
The graduate with a Liberal Arts degree asks, "Do you want fries with that?"

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Our Society Is Deplorable

This is according to Fox News.

Detectives on Friday alerted searchers for a possible key piece of evidence: a bottle of Budweiser or Bud Lite that had allegedly been taken from the girl's home by a registered sex offender around the time she disappeared.

The people out there are pretty sick. I hear of these missing girl cases so often that the newest occurrence does not even draw an emotional response from me. Of course I find it horrible and everything, but it seems like a fairly normal incident in this day and time. Same goes for school shootings. They happen so often I hardly raise an eyebrow when I hear of the latest insanity. What a world we all live in.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Prisoner Wants Prison Reform

This guy is currently the subject of an intense manhunt in South Carolina for rape and murder charges. The funny thing is, this guy has a very long history of jail time, including serving 8 ½ years of a 10-year sentence on assault and battery, kidnapping and fraud charges. The part that makes me mad is this:

Since his release, Stanko had become an advocate to reform the prison system and has co-authored a book with criminal justice professors at Middle Tennessee State University called "Living in Prison: A History of the Correctional System With an Insider's View."

I just don't think I can come to appreciate this man's views. Perhaps if he does not like the living conditions inside of prison, he should stop committing crimes.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

iPod Update

A friend of mine sent me this article entitled "iPod Therefore iAm." It is a direct response to the Andrew Sullivan "ipod World: The End of Society?" article I posted up here several weeks ago. While I don't necessary agree with this new article, I find that it does have some good points. Also, I am a fan of putting all arguments on the table. I don't want to bias my site, but rather provide a medium where all ideas can be discussed. This being the case, check out the article and tell me what you think.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Adam Smith Revisited

I found this article on the Arts and Letters Daily. It is about Adam Smith, and the author tries to tell us that Smith was not as capitalistic and free-market as we have been led to believe. Here's a short excerpt.

Smith never wrote a word about "capitalism", yet he is hailed as the "high priest of capitalism". He is the "father of modern economics" though he would find much in today’s economics unrecognisable as his progeny . He is alleged to be an advocate of "Laissez Faire" though he never used these words and claims that he used English equivalents are tenuous. He did not believe it advisable to leave merchants and manufacturers alone, because they were likely to form monopolies, restrict supply and raise prices.

The fact is, Smith did write about making oneself better off by trading with others. This simplistic idea of free trade flourished into the "invisible hand", and gives us what we now call capitalism. So, maybe the author is trying to be cute by challenging that Adam Smith really isn't who we all know he is. Whatever the case, the article did not seem to have adequate support behind its suppositions.

Meet The Man

Mark Zuckerbeger is the man behind The Facebook. Here is an interview with him in a Newsweek subsidiary. Sounds like a pretty smart guy.

Friday, April 08, 2005

The Facebook

Well guys, The Facebook finally got in touch with things and put Sewanee on their thing. So, I joined the crowd and put my name on there. Its a pretty crazy thing, and to be honest, I wish I was the inventor. Maybe someday I will create something so popular. I don't know much about the features or whatever, but a bunch of people told me I should do I did.

Anyway, sorry I have posted much recently. This past week was killer, and culminated with a Ludacris concert last night in Atlanta. Its time to have a nice weekend.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Big Bad Bill Romanowski

This is one of the more incredible articles I have ever read. This is a Rick Reilly piece that came out in the September 8, 2003 Sports Illustrated. It details Romanowski's daily health routine. It is thoroughly insane to what depths Romanowski goes to keep his body healthy.

Friday, April 01, 2005

"The first of April is the day we remember what we are the other 364 days of the year."
~Mark Twain~

I hope everyone is having a fun time being merry pranksters. In case you are short on ideas this year, here is the Prank Institute, and here is the orgin of April Fool's Day.

Thursday, March 31, 2005

The Ultimate Father

Talking to a friend of mine this afternoon, I got this entertaining story. My friend is Peruvian and while we were discussing his family, he told me that his great, great grandfather sired 75 children in a small Peruvian village. This prolific individual bred offspring like Thunder Gulch (who sired 361 foals two years ago). This fertile father probably doubled the population of his Peruvian village. How amazing.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

A Liberal Lot

Here's something us conservatives have suspected all along...faculty really are all that liberal.

College faculties, long assumed to be a liberal bastion, lean further to the left than even the most conspiratorial conservatives might have imagined, a new study says.

Here's the whole article from the Washington Post.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Radio Call

Here is Tom Leach's radio call of Patrick Spark's incredible three that sent the game into overtime. It gives me goosebumps.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Nice Article - Thank you, Chuck.

I am way too depressed to talk about last night's game, but I just wanted to post this article. It is about Chuck Hayes and all that he brought to the Kentucky program. I am going to miss Chuck more than any other player I can remember. His intangibles are what separated him from the rest. His work ethic, attitude, leadership, and desire are unparalleled. He is the consummate Kentucky athlete, and a fine role model for all other student athletes to emulate. Kentucky was lucky to have Chuck Hayes with us for four successful years. Thank you, Chuck.

Saturday, March 26, 2005


This is the starting five. Has been since day one. However, UK is much more than these five guys. We played 13 different players versus Utah on Friday. Our deepness is a major advantage for us. As long as our bench steps up like we did, we can flat wear teams out. Morris got two fouls in the first 90 seconds and in standard Tubby style, didn't play anymore till the second half. But have no fear, Orbzut and Shagari stepped up huge. Aside from our depth, our leadership is what is carrying us on this journey. Chuck Hayes, Josh Carrier, and Kelenna Azubuike are our core leaders, and with their leadership we are achieving greatness. Make no mistake, the journey does not end with Michigan State. With our elevated intensity and passion, our tremendous veteran leadership, and our incomparable depth, UK shall find themselves in St. Louis next weekend. Go Cats!!!

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Tucker Max

Many of you may already know of Tucker Max. As for me, I just found out about this character recently. Anyway, he is a guy that makes his living by posting stories on his website of his drunken antics. The guy is well educated, University of Chicago undergrad and Duke Law, and writes fairly well; however, all he seems to do is get wasted and then write about it. His stories are rather insane and always entertaining. For a good read, check out Tucker Max.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Where are the Vices Going?

Check this article out. Entitled Vice in a Vise, it explores the dwindling of our vices. From smoking bans, to more dry campuses, to fast food chains turning healthy, the average American is increasingly left scrambling for ways to satiate himself. Being a free-market type myself, this trend is especially worrisome. Not that I necessarily espouse such unhealthy habits, but rather the idea that one should be able to do what he wants to his body.

Monday, March 21, 2005


This being March is the time where basketball is the single most important thing going on in most Kentuckian's lives - including mine. After experiencing a few lackadaisical performances, the Wildcats were able to play with heart, emotion, and passion versus Cincinnati. They were also able to rebound better, thanks in large part to the strong play of Randolph Morris. Another freshman, Rajon Rondo was instrumental in leading the Cats to victory. With the same amount of passion and will to win, I feel that a trip to the Final Four is quite possible.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Some of the Crazy

Well, the last several days have been insane, hence the lack of posts. Midterms and everything else. I just had a test worth 40% of my final grade this morning and now midterms are all over. Anyway, I am sorry I haven't posted so much recently. Tomorrow I am going to Atlanta for the SEC tournament and then deep south Georgia for the rest of the week. Its gonna be the greatest and I can't wait. Hopefully everyone else has a nice time, and I'll get back to you when its cool.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Dutch Boy Part II

Earlier this evening I came across this entertaining video clip. It is similiar to the Dutch Boy; however, this time it is a member of the U.S. Air Force Academy singing like crazy in his room.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Nice Quote

Non est ad astra mollis e terris via. ~ There is no easy way from the earth to the stars.

And by the way, the song of the night or whatever, is going to be Psycho Killer Qu'est-ce Que C'est by The Talking Heads

Everyone have a good one tonight, tomorrow, or whenever you happen to read this blog post.

Monday, February 28, 2005

University of the South Image Change

As I penned my last post, I wrote it with full knowledge that my alma mater was in fact undergoing a similar type of image transformation as Governor Dummer. While The University of the South has not yet taken the drastic steps carried out at Governor Dummer, our situation is relatively similar. A hired northern consulting firm's concern that our southern identity is somehow damaging, resulted in their recommendation that, "our research has revealed that the South can often raise negative associations before it sparks positive ones, so the weaker its connection with the University's name, the better." Needless to say, this consulting firm's recommendations have created quite a controversy among students and alumni who feel that it is vital to hold on to the school's heritage and storied academic traditions.

In an article written on February 13, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution wrote about our situation. Here is an excerpt:

Sewanee, Tenn. --- The recent convocation at Sewanee's All Saints' Chapel was a majestic display. University hierarchs in medieval garb spoke Latin, their words echoing throughout the nave. New honor students donned black robes, marking their entrance into the prestigious Order of Gownsmen. Everyone sang: "Alma Mater, Sewanee, My glorious Mother ever be."

To the outsider, nothing in the rites intimated any threat to this 148-year-old school's role as a champion of Southern aristocratic heritage. To traditionalists, however, there were treacherous modifications to Sewanee's old school way of doing things.

Flags of the Southern states had been removed from the chapel. The University Mace --- a ceremonial baton covered with Confederate symbols that is supposed to be carried by the Gownsmen president --- was gone.

And signs all over campus show the school's revamped marketing logo, which reads "Sewanee" in large letters. Smaller letters below spell out the school's official name, "the University of the South."

The article is a good summary of the situation that we face and I suggest reading it in its entirety. For more on this issue, I will advise you to visit Forever Meridiana. It is a website owned by an alum, aimed at preserving the revered traditions of The University of the South.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Governor Dummer No Longer

Governor Dummer, an esteemed boarding school in Newberry, MA. is going to change its name by removing the word Dummer. The name change is due, in large part, to jokes which are often told, playing on the word Dummer/dumber. The school was named for a Massachusetts governor, William Dummer, who donated the land upon which the school was built. Being the traditionalist that I am, this name change is upsetting to me, and I hope that an alma mater of mine never does anything like this.

Friday, February 25, 2005

A Crazy Blog

Somehow my web browsing this afternoon took me to Cheating on Fernanda. This is some guy's private account of how he plans to cheat on his wife because she cheated on him earlier. I couldn't believe this stuff. Anyway, to keep up with this guy's cheating escapades, check out the site. The main desription of the site is:

Six months ago I found out that my wife, Fernanda, had slept with another man. Though I’ve forgiven her with words, I can’t bring myself to truly forgive her. After much thought, I’ve decided to cheat on her. This is the chronicle of my infidelity.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Society is dead, we have retreated into the iWorld

So says Andrew Sullivan of Times Online. Here is his take on the iPod-ization of Americans after a recent trip to New York. The thing is, he is dead on correct. I see people tuned into their own little world all the time, oblivious to everything outside of their headphones. I'd recommend reading the article - it is interesting, scary, and most importantly, thought provoking. By the way, many thanks to a good friend in Scotland who sent me this article. Anyway, here's a small preview:

There were little white wires hanging down from their ears, or tucked into pockets, purses or jackets. The eyes were a little vacant. Each was in his or her own musical world, walking to their soundtrack, stars in their own music video, almost oblivious to the world around them. These are the iPod people.

Even without the white wires you can tell who they are. They walk down the street in their own MP3 cocoon, bumping into others, deaf to small social cues, shutting out anyone not in their bubble.

Technology has given us a universe entirely for ourselves — where the serendipity of meeting a new stranger, hearing a piece of music we would never choose for ourselves or an opinion that might force us to change our mind about something are all effectively banished.

Ordering Pizza in 2008

This is a some kind of animation deal which parodies what might happen to our privacy in the future. I am certainly not promoting the ACLU here, but just found this to be interesting.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Ectasy Proscribed to American Soldiers

The military is giving soldiers MDMA, the main ingredient in ecstasy, to soldiers on a trial basis to treat post-traumatic stress disorder and to help free them of flashbacks and recurring nightmares. Here is an excerpt from

Scientists behind the trial in South Carolina think the feelings of emotional closeness reported by those taking the drug could help the soldiers talk about their experiences to therapists. Several victims of rape and sexual abuse with post-traumatic stress disorder, for whom existing treatments are ineffective, have been given MDMA since the research began last year.

More on Jeff Gannon

Those of you following the Gannon story will be interested to know that a senator, Minority Whip Richard Durbin (D-IL) has written a letter to President Bush calling for an investigation into how this "fake" news reporter got access to the president. He is trying to get as many other senators to sign the letter as possible. For a copy of the letter, click here.

Tom Wolfe Remembers Hunter S. Thompson

This is a very entertaining piece by Tom Wolfe in today's Wall Street Journal. Wolfe reminisces about some of the times he shared with Thompson. It is a fun read which shares some light on the character of Hunter S. Thompson. Below is a small sample.

The next time I saw Hunter was in June of 1976 at the Aspen Design Conference in Aspen, Colo. By now Hunter had bought a large farm near Aspen where he seemed to raise mainly vicious dogs and deadly weapons, such as the .357 magnum. He publicized them constantly as a warning to those, Hell's Angels presumably, who had been sending him death threats. I invited him to dinner at a swell restaurant in Aspen and a performance at the Big Tent, where the conference was held. My soon-to-be wife, Sheila, and I gave the waitress our dinner orders. Hunter ordered two banana daiquiris and two banana splits. Once he had finished them off, he summoned the waitress, looped his forefinger in the air and said, "Do it again." Without a moment's hesitation he downed his third and fourth banana daiquiris and his third and fourth banana splits, and departed with a glass of Wild Turkey bourbon in his hand.

When we reached the tent, the flap-keepers refused to let him enter with the whiskey. A loud argument broke out. I whispered to Hunter. "Just give me the glass and I'll hold under my jacket and give it back to you inside." That didn't interest him in the slightest. What I failed to realize was that it was not about getting into the tent or drinking whiskey. It was the grand finale of an event, a happening aimed at turning the conventional order of things upside down. By and by we were all ejected from the premises, and Hunter couldn't have been happier. The curtain came down for the evening.

More on Jeff Gannon

It appears as if this story is picking up some speed. I just saw a segment on Countdown with Keith Olbermann on MSNBC about Gannon and have read various articles on the internet. The MSNBC bit mentioned that Gannon may be thinking of filing suit for libel and slander; however, it is unclear exactly how suits work with bloggers, who were the ones that first linked him to the homosexual websites. Here is another article by Frank Rich of the New York Times. It gives a good account of everything that is going on - how Gannon was apparently hired by the White House to ask the easy "softball" questions, and so forth. Also, here is an excellent blog which gives as much information as possible into the secret identity of Gannon. As one of my readers mentioned on my first post about Gannon, it appears that he is in some way connected to the ousting of the CIA agent Valerie Plame. What a strange thing this all has become...and its not over yet.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Name That Caption

Can anybody explain to me what in the world happened here?

Sunday, February 20, 2005

What an Insane Commercial

One of my devoted readers brought this insane Honda Commercial to my attention. This is a two minute Rube Goldberg that is made completely from the parts of two Honda Accords. It took 606 takes before it worked perfectly. To view this ridiculous commercial, click here.

Gay Imposter in the White House Press

This a pretty crazy one. Here is an Op-Ed piece in the New York Times from last Thursday that one of my readers sent my way. Apparently this guy, Jeff Gannon, or really James Guckert, was a welcomed member of the White House Press corps as a conservative reporter for two political websites. The only thing is, the same guy is a contributor to homosexual escort websites, and even had naked pictures of himself posted on the internet. This is pretty weird in my opinion. In case you don't have a subscription to the Times, I'll include a fe paragraphs.

I am very impressed with James Guckert, a k a Jeff Gannon.

How often does an enterprising young man, heralded in press reports as both a reporter and a contributor to such sites as,,, and, get to question the president of the United States?

Who knew that a hotmilitarystud wanting to meetlocalmen could so easily get to be face2face with the commander in chief?

It's hard to believe the White House could hit rock bottom on credibility again, but it has, in a bizarre maelstrom that plays like a dark comedy. How does it credential a man with a double life and a secret past?

Friday, February 18, 2005

Georgia Tech Joke

I'm down here in Atlanta, visiting Georgia Tech for the weekend and I happened across this joke that you would only find at a school like Ga Tech, MIT, or Cal Tech. Let me share it:

A neutron walks into a bar and orders a beer...the bartender hands him his beer, and the neutron asks "How much?" The bartender replies, "For you, no charge."

Quote Time

To usher in the weekend, I am going to post one of my favorite quotes.

An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.

- Benjamin Franklin

Another McDonald's Followup

I have decided that because McDonald's only gives away one chicken finger per visit, it is not worth taking the time to drive all the way to the nearest McDonald's to get it. So, I am not going to get any more chicken selects from McDonald's this weekend. It was a pretty neat marketing idea though, and I am sure it brought a lot more customers to McDonalds than would normally come.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

McDonald's Chicken Update

A quick update for the chicken enthusiasts. I stopped in a McDonald's in Monteagle, TN this afternoon, and they had a whole table filled with Chicken Selects. The stipulation was you could only have one chicken finger, not a whole order. However, if you are surrepticious enough, I am sure you can grab two or three. The chicken itself was just fine. Nothing great, but pretty good for being free. Its still nothing to change me double cheeseburgers and dollar menu fry habit.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

McDonald's Chicken Giveaway

Starting tomorrow and going through the weekend, McDonalds will be giving away its Chicken Selects during the luncheon hours of 11:00a.m.-2:00p.m. The intent is to lure more chicken lovers to come to the hamburger joint. I plan to stop by as often as possible. I've never had the Chicken Selects...always go for a few double cheeseburgers and a dollar menu fry, but if they're giving away the chicken, I'll obviously have to eat several orders of it. I suggest you do the same.

Some Horrible Freak of Nature

According to this article, those German gay penguins won't go straight. This makes me very mad. If the penguins don't want to procreate, then no one should feel sorry when the race becomes extinct.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Not Just Alcohol...

According to this news report, a lady drinking listerine was 3 times over the legal limit (bac was .30). Apparently she had consumer 3 glasses of the stuff before rear ending a vehicle at a stop light.

The Craziest Optical Illusion

Here is this optical illusion I found. When you look at it at first glance, it looks like all the circles are spinning, but then try focusing your eyes on one specific circle. Its pretty crazy. Have fun, but don't stare at the thing all day.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Comparing Bush and Hitler's Policies

A high school kid in Rhode Island received an A on a project where he compared the U.S. invasion of Iraq to the German Blitzkrieg. Well, the intentions of the two actions are as completely opposite as humanly possible in my mind. Bush is trying to spread democracy to Iraq; whereas Hitler was trying to conquer Europe and spread fascism. The only way they are at all similar is that they are both military invasions of other countries. Any comparison between Bush and Hitler, or their policies is mind boggling to me. This is along the same lines of Ward Churchill's paper where he called those working in the World Trade Center "little Eichmans." In absolutely no way are the productive, hard working citizens of America "little Eichmans." I really am tired of people comparing all facets of American life to Nazi Germany. Give me a break.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Gay Penguin Protest

This is a very wierd article that one of my readers thought I may enjoy posting. So, for his thoughtfulness, I will put my two cents in on it. Read the following excerpt:

BERLIN (Reuters) - A plan by a German zoo to test the sexual appetites of a group of suspected homosexual penguins has sparked outrage among gay and lesbian groups, who fear zookeepers might force them to turn straight.

Alright, this is so weird. In the first place, why do people care what the sexual orientation of penguins are? Do people not have enough things to worry about in their lives that they have to be concerned if a gay penguin is being forced to procreate? On a second note, it is my opinion that homosexuality does not exist in the animal kingdom. I feel it is some strange mental illness of sorts - along the lines of schizofrenia or manic depression. I do not believe it is a gene, and therefore not applicable to other animals. Click on the link, read the article, and give me your take.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Bush's Huge Budget Proposal

I know this story is several days old, but it's obviously an ongoing and important issue. On Tuesday Bush sent his budget plan to congress for their approval. The highlights of this propsal are, first, the enormity of the budget. Bush's plan totals 2.7 trillion dollars. However, the proposal also eliminates many government programs, which makes me pretty happy. The less government spending the better. Feel free to tell me what you think.

Another Crazy Mother/Baby Headline

FORT MITCHELL, Ky. - A nine-months' pregnant woman fought off and killed a knife-wielding woman who may have been trying to steal the baby, police said Friday.

What is the deal with people these days? I really can't believe this stuff.

Baby Story a Hoax

If this isn't the most insane thing ever. It turns out the baby wasn't really tossed out of a moving car. Rather, some insane lady gave birth, then made up the story in hopes that she could turn the baby over to the authorities. At least the baby wasn't tossed out the car, but the actions of this lady still prove to be bordering on unfathomable.

Baby tossed out of Moving Car

Alright, folks, this one makes me very mad. Apparently a couple tossed their newborn baby out of their car, only hours after the little baby was born. He even still had his umbilical cord attached. This is one of the worst thing I've ever heard of in my life. It seems every morning I wake up and stumble across news stories that make me furious. What is wrong with people?

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Welcoming in the Weekend

With today being Thursday, I feel that it is appropriate to welcome in the start of the weekend with a quote from the ever humorous W.C. Fields.

"Back in my rummy days, I would tremble and shake for hours upon arising. It was the only exercise I got."

- W.C. Fields

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

'Anti-Racist' Message in Mass. Math Class

This is some ridiculous article that I stumbled over this morning. Apparently a public high school system in Newton, MA is using math class to teach other things besides your usual mathematic concepts. Rather anti-racist, political correctness has been indoctrinated into their curriculum. If this isn't about the most absurd thing. The top priority in the class is, not to teach the students math, but rather to teach the "students to 'live out the system-wide core value of 'respect for human differences' by demonstrating anti-racist/anti-bias behaviors" How ridiculous. Of course there is a place for teaching cultural awareness, but not in the poor children's math class. A parent complained that, "my children do not know Christopher Columbus, except that he was a racist who caused the death of many innocents or the founders of the nation. They have hardly heard of George Washington or Abraham Lincoln even though we live in the area that began it all. What they do know about is the wonders of Ghana, Mexico and China." Go ahead and read the article to have all the fun I had this morning.

UK Defeats Florida

Tonight's game between UK and Florida was a real thriller that was very difficult for me to endure. Down 13 in the first half and 7 at half, UK was able to use its patented defense to claw its way back to victory. ESPN had been touting the game as part of it much marketed "Rivalry Week," but as any Kentucky fan can tell you, there really is no rivalry at all between UK and UF. Including tonight, UK has won 10 of the last 11 games. Gimme a break ESPN.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Poem Time

by Percy Bysshe Shelley

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: `Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear --
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.'

Monday, February 07, 2005

Pats a Dynasty?

Well, earlier tonight the New England Patriots won their third Super Bowl in four years. The big question everybody from ESPN to SI is asking: does this win give the Pats the right to be called a dynasty? Well, I really am not quite sure. I guess you would call the Bulls run in the '90s a dynasty, although the two three-peats were with completely different teams, except for Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippin. Those two were the only constants. I really don't know if personnel has anything to do with a dynasty...I tend to doubt it does. Rather, consistency seems to be the real focus. The Patriots have been a dominating football team for the past four years, that is for certain. The real question is whether a team dominant for four years is dominant for long enough to be called a dynasty? I think four years is about the minimum time of dominance a team needs to achieve before being a certifiable dynasty. If they win next year, I no doubt will call the Pats a dynasty. Till then, I am going to rest on them having been a consistently good team for four years in a row.

Friday, February 04, 2005

A Bear on a Trampoline

The above graphic shows a bear falling onto a trampoline. A few of my friends have been arguing whether this is real or not. As for me, I doubt it, but feel free to give me your take.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Nancy Pelosi's Face and Other Random State of the Union Thoughts

These are some thoughts, comments, etc. that weren't exactly relevant to my last post, which was a more "academic" look at the President's speech. This is a collection of some of the odder things I noticed last night.

- First, Nancy Pelosi's face was remarkably static during her Democratic response. Every time she spoke, you could only see her mouth move. And how about her eyebrows...those things were going out of control.

- Did you see all the lawmakers with purple fingers, ties, and ladies suits last night. An interesting tribute to the success of the Iraqi election.

- As I mentioned below, last night was the first time I can remember members of the minority raising their voices in dissent of the president's policy. I can't decide if it was disrespectful, or to embrace it as our freedom of speech. Probably a little of both.

- To show how incredibly serious Bush is about his Social Security plan, he has embarked this morning on a 5 state, 3 day whirlwind tour, aimed at promoting his ideas for Social Security. This is something you would expect from a president who is running for reelection, not from one merely pushing his agenda.

- If the crowd hadn't interrupted the President more than 60 times with applause, I would have been able to watch a significantly larger amount of the Wake Forest - Duke game.