Archive for August, 2008
If you haven’t already, definitely check out Josh Marshall’s recently [re?]posted interview with Joe Biden from summer ’04. Fascinating. A snippet, from when Biden describes meeting Qaddafi shortly after the announcement of the dismantlement deal:
I said, “Yeah, why, why the change of heart?” And he says, “The real question is” — through an interpreter — “The real question is, why did we get off this way, why did you sanction me in the first place?”
I looked at him and said, “That’s easy. You’re a terrorist.” I didn’t mince, I said, “You are a terrorist.” I said, you know I leaned to him and said, “You’ve engaged in supporting terrorists. Matter of fact, you blew up 35 of the kids who went to my alma mater along with another hundred or so people. You’re a terrorist, that’s why.”
He sits there and he goes like this, he goes, “That’s logical.” (laughs) I mean the guy was great! And I said, “So, Okay. Tell me why.” And he went, Well — I’m paraphrasing — “Nuclear weapons didn’t help you very much in Vietnam, they didn’t help you in Iraq and if I ever used them you’d blow me away.”
Here’s the setup:
- You’re one of 20 or so cars driving around in a perfect circle.
- No seriously, it’s a perfect circle.
- So your only job is to follow the car in front of you.
- And keep your speed at around 20 miles per hour.
The result? You guessed it: traffic jams!
Check out the video evidence.
And apparently this experiment corresponds to real-world observation in at least one important way: In both cases, the “shockwave” of slow-down propagates back through cars at around 12 miles per hour. It’s pretty mesmerizing to watch.
Thanks, Mathematical Society of Traffic Flow!
Check out this fun, cut-and-paste-y music video. Give it a bit to warm up; it gets exponentially better as it goes.
I love the bats.
The song is from a group called Octopus Project — sort of Ratatat times Pinback minus vocals. Actually, never mind, that makes no sense. I’m going to stop trying to describe music.
Bonus: Behind-the-scenes stills! Oh man that looks fun.
(Via Ted R.)
Richard Just’s lengthy explanation of why Darfur is still engulfed in genocide five years after it caught the world’s attention is the most spellbinding, heartrending thing I’ve read in quite a bit. A surprising brew of circumstances have paralyzed us from stopping this tragedy, departing from the Problem from Hell template in a few key particulars. Do take a look.
The Walker Art Center recently concluded a spectacular exhibit called “Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes” (they’ve helpfully catalogued the whole exhibit in a wiki; oh Walker, how I love you). Among the highlights of the exhibit was this photo collection by Paho Mann, images of former Circle K convenience stores that have been transformed into other types of businesses — tattoo parlors, Mexican restaurants, tuxedo rental places — all taken from the same distance in similar light, all bearing the Circle K’s suprisingly distinct form. (Also available as a Google Maps mashup, natch.)
I mentioned this to an architect friend, and he pointed me to the delightful NotFoolingAnybody.com: “a chronicle of bad conversions and storefronts past” — photos of former chain restaurants lightly altered to house new businesses. (Such as “China Hut,” the bastard offspring of — what else? — Pizza Hut.)
OMG I love the Web sometimes.
Q: You like sex? You are a person who likes the sex acts that we are currently engaged in?
A: Yes! I am! I like sex!
Q: You like sex! In fact, you are a person who likes sex as much as a prostitute likes sex!
A: YES I LIKE SEXY SEX AS IF IT WERE MY PROFESSION!! TELL ME MORE ABOUT IT
Q: YOU ENJOY THIS ACT YOU SEXY SEX PERSON etc.
On vacation in Michigan for the next five day. You know what I’m gonna do? Not blog.
I hear there’s another guy who hangs around here… maybe you can lure him out in the comments.
See you on Monday!