News, culture, and politics. Not necessarily in that order.

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Roundup: Magnum Opus Edition

June 4th, 2007 · No Comments · Apple, Books, Comics, Culture, Food, Heroes, iTunes, Language, LGBT, Lit, Media, Music, Nature, New Wave, News, Tech, TV, Vegetarian & Vegan


  • COMICS: For once I’m starting out with the comics section, in honor of the fact that Salon has added Opus by the mighty Berkeley Breathed (Bloom County, Outland) to their repertoire. Oh, happy day. Here’s the first installment. Along with my favorites This Modern World by Tom Tomorrow and Tom the Dancing Bug by Ruben Bolling, Salon really does have the best little cartoon reel of any major publication I can think of.
  • Salon also has an interview with Mr. Breathed, in honor of his debut there. Key quote, on how celebrities have invaded and overrun the kids’ book publishing field: “Everyone — and I mean everyone — who has a household name is lined up and booked on the Today show to promote their children’s book. I happen to know that Saddam Hussein had been approached before the noose tightened.” Via Crooks and Liars.
  • Also, an intimate comics-style portrait of Jerry Falwell in H-E-double-toothpicks. Yes, there is a Teletubby involved. And squirrels. Via Jason.
  • POLITICS: Check out the Democratic debate talk clock. Chris Dodd’s campaign adds up the airtime each candidate got and turns it into an amusing bar graph. The disparity between the media-popular candidates and the ones who are already considered also-rans is fairly dramatic. They’re probably lucky they were allowed to appear at all. It’s also interesting that Wolf Blitzer talked more than any of the Dem candidates except, of course, Hillary and Obama.
  • Wow. Giuliani supporters have been purged by the hardline conservatives at the Free Republic. (Via Atrios.) Meanwhile, Giuliani is about to get the Harriet Miers treatment from conservative group Fidelis. Is the extreme right getting ready to swat Rudy down like a not-sufficiently anti-abortion housefly?
  • TV (but still kinda Politics): Back at Salon, Juan Cole analyzes Heroes as a left-wing response to Sept. 11 and the problem of terrorism, as opposed to the right-wing perspective of the show it’s been beating in the ratings, 24.
  • A different piece on Salon says: “NBC has also announced a new series, Heroes: Origins, which will introduce a new crew and let the audience decide which one will graduate to the parent drama.”
  • THE PINK SECTION: Dallas could become the first big city in the US with an openly gay mayor.
  • Homophobic electrician in the UK physically assaults a group of people in costume for a screening of Rocky Horror.
  • THE GREEN SECTION: Nadi, one of the last northern white rhinoceroses in the world, has died — leaving only 13 of her species alive in the world. Via Towleroad.
  • UK vegetarians manage to convince Masterfoods (maker of Mars, Snickers, Twix, etc.) not to use animal products in their chocolate. You go, UK vegetarians.
  • TECH: A day in the life of an Apple Genius.
  • MUSIC: Olivia Harrison says it may be 2008 before the Beatles catalog is available through iTunes and other online services. “We just have a few things to work out elsewhere,” Harrison told Reuters. One of the potential delaying factors is that all of the Fabs CDs have been remastered, and new artwork is being prepared.
  • Some people aren’t thrilled that the new DRM-free “iTunes Plus” downloads come with your name and email information encoded into them.
  • You can hear three songs from Marc Almond’s forthcoming album, Stardom Road (his first since the motorcycle accident), on his MySpace page. He even does an early Al Stewart song called “Bedsitter Images.” It all sounds really good, IMHO.
  • Chaka Khan says she’s “trying to forget” performing at the 2000 Republican Convention where GWB was nominated. She says she did it to bring attention to her foundation for autism education, but that “it might have done more damage than good, for me anyway, for my spirit.”
  • THE SOCK DRAWER: This news report about the kid who brought the “special” brownies on a field trip is entertaining mainly because of the adults who can’t stop giggling.
  • McDonald’s wants the OED to change the dictionary definition of the word McJob. Yeah, well, people in heck want real food and decent wages. Via This Modern World.


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