Where Mother Saw Best. “Alice Friedman’s Women and the Making of the Modern House and Colin Davies’s Key Houses of the Twentieth Century probe aspects of the complex relationship between modernism— the dominant architectural style of the 20th century—and domesticity.”
Authors Debate Ethics of Writing Private for Public. Annie Proulx, Uzodinma Iweala, and Michael Ondaatje.
NY Times Opinion:
“The next president and Congress will have to work very hard to uncover all the ways Mr. Bush has twisted or evaded the law, and then set things right.”
NY Times Business:
Good news, though ... As Gas Costs Soar, Buyers Flock to Small Cars. The Fit’s a particularly practical car (room + economy).
NY Times Home & Garden:
In Wyoming, the Dark Side of America’s Thirst for Energy. “Teton County has a huge carbon footprint with heated driveways, roofs and huge houses heated all winter long with no one in them. [snip] I don’t see this as something the roughnecks or the oil companies or the administration alone is doing. It’s something we’re all doing.”
This is a flavor of what awaits SF County. The Grand Teton area is a place that has no equivalent for sheer beauty IMHO; even Kauai’s Na Pali coast - gorgeous as it was - couldn’t stir my heart like the Tetons. To think of oil and gas drilling going on in proximity ... the media’s silence over the desecration of the Wind River range ...
NY Times Business:
Fed Takes Steps to Add Liquidity. Still, banks need to loosen the purse strings before anything recovers.
NY Times Movie Review:
They admire Iron Man. When the campiness of Batman peaked in the ‘60’s, many of us klunky kids found refuge in Tony Stark. Spiderman and Superman never appealed the same way ... they were not self-made superheroes.
SF New Mexican:
Governor appears in anti-DWI spots. To go off on a tangent, does anyone else think it is totally bizarre for a state to *announce* when they’re doing DWI checks? Even to the point of placing signs with flashing messages on major thoroughfares? It amazes me that they catch anyone ... yet there’s always a few dozen. I suppose preannouncing has a certain deterrent effect ... but how many more habitual drink-and-drivers would be caught and taken off the roads if the blitzes weren’t announced?
Planes slow down to save fuel. I wonder if there’s a comprehensive mpg list for aircraft?
Later: AskMeFi had a thread on efficiency of commercial airliners.
Our winds have calmed quite a bit. The birds are venturing out from the center of the junipers and piñons ... the white-winged doves are about, the scaled quail are doing their morning constitutionals, curve-bill thrashers are fixing their violently red eyes on delicious bugs, the piñon jay is taking a long, dramatic drink ... and the spotted towhee is yelling at the entire crew, in his bob-head manner.
has completely changed their “Ideas” section. Very nice.
U.S. Offers 0% for First Time on Inflation-Linked Savings Bonds. Our government needs to be on the receiving end of a ‘no confidence’ vote.
Dr. Dobbs Portal:
“Languages without automated garbage collection are getting out of fashion. The chance of running into all kinds of memory problems is gradually outweighing the performance penalty you have to pay for garbage collection. Another language that has had its day is Perl ...”
Clipping, Scrimping, Saving. Yeah, we’re all doing it. It’s about time the media mentioned it.
Global warming may ‘stop’, scientists predict. “Researchers studying long-term changes in sea temperatures said they now expect a “lull” for up to a decade while natural variations in climate cancel out the increases caused by man-made greenhouse gas emissions.” So, warming may happen in fits and starts?
Times Literary Supplement.UK:
Turning over an old leaf. Just don’t be fooled that reading online is more ‘green’ than a paper book. Trees can be grown renewably and sustainably; power generation ain’t there yet.
“We train female children to be manipulative and to exploit their sex. From the time she is tiny, a girl in our society is taught to flirt. She is usually dressed like a mini-whore in pink and tinsel, short skirt, matching knickers, baby-doll pyjamas, long hair falling over her face ...” Nothing like a Brit to rip a hole in sanctimoniously sticky US tabloid ‘outrage.’
SF New Mexican:
Council OKs Railyard parking plan. The major point is, one doesn’t have to pay to park at REI in Albuquerque, nor does one have to pay to park at Borders over on Zafarano.
SF New Mexican/AP:
Reno, Nevada is being rocked and rolled by an increasing frequency of earthquakes. “What they can’t say [scientists] is whether the hundreds of temblors that have rattled the area for two months — the largest a magnitude 4.7 Friday night — are subsiding or a prelude to bigger things to come.”
Chronicle of Higher Ed:
America’s Most Overrated Product: the Bachelor’s Degree. “A 2006 study supported by the Pew Charitable Trusts found that 50 percent of college seniors scored below ‘proficient’ levels on a test that required them to do such basic tasks as understand the arguments of newspaper editorials or compare credit-card offers. Almost 20 percent of seniors had only basic quantitative skills. The students could not estimate if their car had enough gas to get to the gas station.” The value of college degree is entrenched in the national psyche, in spite of the lack of substance we’ve all been seeing over the past couple of decades. It’s about time we questioned the quality of graduates - and through them, the quality of education. The entire 1912 class of Princeton University became millionaires. Any recent such precedents? Didn’t think so. Two other random observations from the scattered lumber-room of my mind: A) Though Bill Gates and Steve Jobs have no degrees, you don’t generally get jobs at their companies without one. It’s okay for them, just not for you. B) When the military started requiring degrees for pilots, they lost the best stick-and-rudder aviators - men who lived and breathed airplanes. You don’t train reflexes through books.
Apprenticeships should be revived, IMHO, in many fields.
De Beers Finds Shipwreck, Treasure From Columbus Era. Off Namibia. Brings thoughts of Prince Henry the Navigator to mind.
Is the personal Web site a thing of the past? Contrast this with WDES’s Too Much Suckage. Tough queries to answer. Causes a certain amount of navel-analysis, for an old-school weblogger like myself. Particularly: “What actual value do I add to the already overcrowded metacosm, and is it worth the time I spend?” I’ve concluded my ‘human aggregator’ bit is woefully tired, passé. Such newsreading incrementalism is counterproductive to health, happiness and living a compelling life [unless you can do it in some gorgeous exotic location and get paid gobs of cash for it]. It’s devolved into automatic habit, rather than an eagerness to jump upon the issues of the day. Splitting hairs daily, only to find them pulled out whole later on - making such effort worse than useless. The old Taoist Chuang-tzu would say I’m just adding noise to the already-cacaphonous world; to do so is inauspicious, unwise, and fruitless. Perhaps I should drop to the one-comprehensive-post-a-day model, and see how that fares. I’ve talked about it multiple times, but having encountered these posts, I think I may undertake a sea-change this weekend.
NY Times Opinion:
Mr. Obama and Rev. Wright. George Bush must be happy as a clam to inherit such a reprieve from acerbic election-season critique of his policies. He’s gotten off easy, to this date.