In "Self-Help Hurts"

I love this article so much. I've read it multiple times in the last few days. Science and rational thinking score a (brief) victory!

In "Thomas Friedman Clogged My Toilet."

I have to admit, I'm a little disappointed that it's only an allegory. I despise Friedman - his random, uneducated enthusiasms, his wretched writing - so much that I was hoping for some real schadenfreude and/or gossip. For those who are out of the loop on the Friedman hatred: he's what would happen if Wired magazine had a baby with C*ry D*ctor*w, and it was adopted and raised to adulthood by the cast of your local morning television news breakfast show.

In "AND she's been photoshopped."

I'm probably going to piss off a lot of people with this. But I'm tetchy from a recently-broken wrist. So here goes. I find this sort of thing to be an amazing display of technical proficiency, but otherwise a complete waste of the artist's (renderer's) time. All it's doing is mimicking reality as precisely as possible. Photorealistic art misses the point of ART entirely. It's like a weird kind of artistic autism.

In "Are Men"

(But hey, what do I know? I'm just a girl.)

I LOL'd! Talk about bad science. First of all, the "researcher" (a psych prof at the U of Western Ontario) is up-front about his pre-existing bias:

"researcher John Philippe Rushton [...] says the finding could explain why so few women make it to the top in the workplace. He claims the 'glass ceiling' phenomenon is probably due to inferior intelligence, rather than discrimination or lack of opportunity."
We further learn that HE HIMSELF scrutinized all of those college applications to see if there was a gender-based difference in the scores. Confirmation bias, much? Unless someone can replicate these results in a double-blind study, I'm writing this off entirely. Let us not even discuss the fallacy of equating IQ scores with intelligence. The Mismeasure of Man should be required reading for everyone, everywhere, at least once a year.

In "Remarkable Religious Structures Reclaimed by Nature."

That's one down side to living in the Pacific Northwest. We have tons of old buildings being reclaimed by nature, but a huge mound of Himalayan blackberry vines just isn't that poetic.

In "Unique and beautiful tribute to Katrina: Houses made of human hair"

I can't bring myself to click through, because just the thought makes me want to retch a little. But do either of the articles go into the Southern fascination with human hair? A lot of creepy art (craft?) got made in the South in the 1800s from human hair. I would go find some links, but... I can't bear to.

In "Cat Yodeling"

The Engineers' videos are awesome, and I love them, and have a terrible crush on the one guy. But the Cat Bagpipes guy needs to be held upside down and crushed. One of my cats thinks so, too - hearing the video, he rushed downstairs from his afternoon nap with a crazed expression. I assume he thought I was crushing my other cat (his brother). (To be fair, I'm not sure if he ran down to protect his brother, or watch his torture with that deadpan look of mild fascination which cats employ so well.)

In "Curious George: Windows vs. Mac"

An entire Mac Vs Windows thread and no blood shed? I wuv you all! I was just going to pop in and say, regarding the keyboard issue: I think you'll find that once your fingers get accustomed to the slightly different layout, you'll be typing faster than you ever have. The thing about laptop keys is that they're low-profile, so you don't have to push them down as far to make a letter. The .02mm keypress difference may seem ridiculously small, but averaged across even 100 words it really adds up!

In "Curious George: Lyme disease advice?"


In "Curious George: Moving Day"

Are you on the road? Are you exhausted? Have you eaten more than one meal consisting of Doritos and bland sandwiches from a gas station cooler? UPDATES PLEASE!

In "One person's exhaustive attempt to gather into one website all the menstruation ads ever done."

On that last link - colorful is right! Someone is going to recommend the Diva Cup any minute now, I can just sense it. I applaud users of the Diva Cup (and the like) but I'd like to proactively point out that no single solution is going to suit everyone's needs.

In "Curious Gimpy George:"

ARGH OW. Personally, before I went and got a CyberKnee installed, I would get a second opinion. Not that I think your doc is wrong or bad or stupid or anything; just that it's a pretty big procedure. I would ask your boss how he thinks his sister would be feeling now if she HADN'T gotten the replacement. My guess is: a lot worse.

In "How is the web changing how we deal with "cognitive surplus?"

One of my all-time favorite internet quotes is, ^ "if you’re not using your free time to [build an exacting scale replica of Minis Tirith out of candy], what the hell else are you doing with it?" (Ooh, and I see that this year they did The Mines of Moria!)

In "Confessions of a Man Who Almost Went Postal."

Hmm good point on the state of psychiatric assistance in the late 60s, path! Retracted.

In "Electricity Pylons Inspired by Nature,"

Too pointy. Could they make the pylons look like deer all facing the same direction?

In "Confessions of a Man Who Almost Went Postal."

path, it's an interesting question. The cynic in me says that women don't go on shooting rampages because we're supposed to be used to feeling powerless. It doesn't seem as outrageous a situation to us as it does to men. Particularly men who have been raised to be Real Men What Fight And Be Boss. I'd tentatively say that women tend to collapse in upon themselves and turn to self-harm in situations where men tend to explode outwards. Or that men kill strangers, while women drown their children. But maybe that's too pat.

"A man can only take so much. Take note, America." A lot of black men were overtly discriminated against in the employment arena of 1968. Heck, a lot of black men are overtly discriminated against today. Most of them find solutions other than murderous rampages. I find it interesting that he blames "America" for his problems, rather than admitting that he is (was) not psychologically stable. Despite the rather harrowing account of a psychotic break, with which he closes the article. While his "Quit doggin' people" is certainly an admirable sentiment, I think "encourage unstable people to seek psychiatric assistance" might have been a more accurate conclusion.

In "Curious George: Moving Day"

If I were going to Seattle U, I'd look into something just the other side of the 520 bridge. Kirkland gets a bad rap for being Suburbs-Ville (and it is). But the suburbs have nice jogging trails, affordable apartments, and Park-N-Rides. You can still find some deals in the Eastlake neighborhood, which is the last neighborhood I lived in before I abandoned ship for Teh Woods. It's perfectly nice during the day, but it can be a little sketchy at night. Car prowls are very common (my car was broken into twice in the year I lived there).

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