December 2007

When I saw this story: Thick black smoke billowed from a fire Wednesday in Vice President Dick Cheney’s suite of offices in the historic Eisenhower Executive Office Building next to the White House. Cheney’s office was damaged by smoke and water from fire hoses, White House spokesman Scott Stanzel said. I’m sure I’m not the…

Read More Natural reaction

Back in the mid-1990s, I started reading a new online magazine called Salon.com. At that time it seemed that Salon and Slate were the only games in town, and I liked Salon’s (relatively) contrarian and feisty style. ((Slate seemed far too concerned with proving how cool and professional they were. Odd, that.)) I was enough…

Read More Farewell, Salon

From (ironically) the BBC NEWS: BBC Radio 1 has said it will stand by its ban on the word “faggot” from the Pogues’ 1987 Christmas hit Fairytale of New York to avoid offence. The word, sung by the late Kirsty MacColl as she trades insults with Shane MacGowan, has been dubbed out… Another line, where…

Read More They can't do that to my favourite Christmas song!

I’ve had my Kindle for just over three weeks now. I’ve really enjoyed using it: I’ve finished two full-length books (“The World Without Us” by Alan Weisman, and “Takeover” by Charlie Savage), I’ve downloaded and dipped into a couple of Project Gutenberg files (Milton’s poetry and Greek philosophy), I’ve sampled an enjoyably trashy novel ((No,…

Read More Getting serious about the Kindle

I just got back from watching the newly-released film adaptation of Ian McEwan’s novel Atonement. It was, quite simply, brilliant. I can’t remember when I saw a better film. Visually, it leaves everybody (including Merchant Ivory) in the dust: the scenes on the beach at Dunkirk were some of the most powerful depictions of war…

Read More "Atonement"

While scanning the evening’s RSS feeds, I noticed a story in El Reg about a security update for Quicktime. Naturally I ran Software Update… to see if the patch was ready to instal. ((“Install” in the US, “Instal” in the UK.)) It was, so I downloaded it, answered the relevant questions, and was surprised when…

Read More Nerve-wracking