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Roundup: Sunday Potluck Edition

May 6th, 2007 · 9 Comments · Activism, Blogs, Comics, Culture, Education, Film, Foreign Policy, Hate Crimes, Health, LGBT, Lit, Music, News, Peace, Pet Food, Pets, Poetry, Politics, Tea

covered dishSunday was always potluck day where I grew up, so I hereby present to you this glorious covered casserole of links I didn’t get around to posting this week. With a few fresh ones stirred in, just to keep you guessing.

  • Retired general compares Bush to a deserter: “By vetoing this bill and failing to initiate an immediate and phased withdrawal, the President has effectively gone AWOL, deserting his duty post, leaving American forces with an impossible mission, suffering wholly unnecessary casualties,” argues retired Lt. Gen. William E. Odom.
  • TeacherKen had an excellent diary on DKos about how No Child Left Behind destroys the joy of learning, and is damaging a generation of schoolchildren.
  • The pet food recall has widened again now that evidence of cross-contamination has surfaced. In English, that means contaminated wheat gluten getting into food that’s not even supposed to contain wheat gluten, most likely because equipment wasn’t cleaned properly. Meanwhile, “The FDA has expanded its investigation to include livestock feed that contained tainted pet food and made its way to some 6,000 hogs and as many as 3.1 million chickens.” Me, I’m liking the countryside here in beautiful Vegetaria especially well at the moment.
  • Revenge of the laid-off Circuit City employees: Turns out not having competent, well-informed salespeople on hand can cause a major drop in sales.
  • House passes Hate Crimes bill. Bush says he’ll veto it.
  • This is brilliant: Erin Davies’ “fagbug” campaign. Her VW bug got vandalized with homophobic graffiti, so she’s going to drive it across country with the graffiti intact as an awareness campaign. Click through for photos.
  • Tea drinkers may have a lower risk of certain skin cancers, according to a new study. “In a study of nearly 2,200 adults, researchers found that tea drinkers had a lower risk of developing squamous cell or basal cell carcinoma, the two most common forms of skin cancer. Men and women who had ever been regular tea drinkers — having one or more cups a day — were 20 percent to 30 percent less likely to develop the cancers than those who didn’t drink tea.”
  • No idea if there’s any truth to these persistent rumors or not, but I agree that if there were they would certainly be newsworthy. And they sure are persistent.
  • The Mittster reveals his favorite novel: Battlefield Earth by L. Ron Hubbard. For real. Don’t tell the dark lord Xenu. Wait, maybe Mitt Romney is the dark lord Xenu!
    (h/t Norm Sloan.)
  • Hey! Before you amputate that foot, try spreading a little honey on it.
  • New Fantastic Four/Silver Surfer trailer.
  • Used CD merchants worried about draconic new laws, including a Florida law that would require stores to thumb-print customers selling used CDs.
  • Patti Smith’s new covers album Twelve is out. Interview here, with a preview of her tour and an interesting anecdote about a little boy named “Mikey” Stipe.
  • New Zealand-based author, NZBC blogger, and friend of Ocelopotamus Chris Bell has relaunched his Web site — with more than 30 of his thoroughly unpredictable and unclassifiable short stories available for reading, as well as poems and other writing. He even provides a recommended soundtrack of music to read his work by. And his “radical, free content approach” to the site includes an offer to mail a free PDF copy of his stories and poems to anyone who wants to print them out for reading on the train or other unplugged locations. Stop by and partake of his generosity.


9 Comments so far ↓

  • Chris Bell

    Thanks for the link, Dave. In a kind of neat feedback loop, that sweet nugget about spreading honey on a diabetic ulcer takes my mind over here:


    (my poem about “Mellified Man”) and back again.

  • Aaron

    I noticed that it didn’t say the tea protects against melanoma, which is the worst of the skin cancers…so people probably shouldn’t go rubbing olive oil on themselves and sunbathing just yet…

    I’ve heard those President Bush drinking rumors for about a year now…according to one of the rumors, he called Laura a c**t and she started checking into the Mayflower hotel when he’d go on benders.

    The thing is, he acts drunk all the time, so it’s impossible to prove…

  • Ocelopotamus

    Aaron said: “I noticed that it didn’t say the tea protects against melanoma, which is the worst of the skin cancers…so people probably shouldn’t go rubbing olive oil on themselves and sunbathing just yet…”

    Yes, the article definitely says this is not an excuse to forget one’s sunscreen. But it is a reason to feel good about drinking tea.

  • Ocelopotamus

    Chris, the “Mellified Man” poem is lovely.

    For others who read it and would like a study aid, I found the backstory here.

  • amyc

    Perhaps us tea drinkers don’t get skin cancer because we’re indoors sensibly drinking delicious tea instead of outside getting sunburns. That’s my theory.

  • Ocelopotamus

    I like that theory!

    Also, when we tea drinkers do venture into the out-of-doors, we generally carry an elegant parasol and/or wear a large-brimmed, gaily decorated hat.

    It’s a fact.

  • Aaron

    Oh, bollocks! I drink as much tea as anyone, and I always wear a babushka when I go out, not some hoity-toity hat…

    A babushka and a gorilla suit. That’s the only sun protection I need.

  • Dave Lucas

    I’m thinking FAGBUG will be a hot topic NATIONWIDE over the next few months. I’ve blogged about Erin also — I am curious (after receiving a comment to the effect that) Does anyone think Erin may have done the spray-painting herself in a “planned” PR stunt? Personally, I don’t believe she’d do that. What do YOU think?

  • Ocelopotamus

    Hi Dave, thanks for stopping by.

    No, personally I don’t think the idea that she did it herself is plausible. Just on an instinctive level, she strikes me as sincere. But also, I think you have to apply Occam’s Razor here: the idea of her doing it herself is much more far-fetched than the idea of her getting vandalized, since similar incidents of vandalism are all too common and have been documented many times. Vandalism is the much simpler and more likely scenario.

    And also: I think the campaign she came up with is the kind of thing you come up with in a moment of anger, a trying to make lemonade out of lemons sort of thing. It’s not so much the sort of thing you think up when you’re cool and collected — it’s a creative response to a problem (like when people donate money to gay causes every time the Fred Phelps clan shows up to picket somewhere).

    That’s my take on it, anyway!