Friday, August 31, 2007

looks like i picked the wrong week to quit smoking

okay, not really... today will be my seventh full day without cigarettes and i'm feeling good about that. but seriously, what a week!

alberto gonzales finally anounced his resignation. that's great, but he should've resigned months ago, so why now?

in another demonstration of what josh marshall calls the muck gap, republican idaho senator larry craig got arrested for soliciting gay bathroom sex, and may resign soon. craig was a typical gop hypocrite, publicly denouncing gays while privately cruising for dick, so i'm not sad to see him go. but i can't help but think that he didn't really do anything illegal in that minnesota airport bathroom, and that he was victimized by the local police.

in happier, better-adjusted lgbt news, an iowa court struck down the state's gay marriage ban. naturally, the ruling is being appealed.

we're finally almost done with our monthlong moving experience! the old lease ends at end-of-business today. then we get to move on to unpacking, which will probably take even longer but won't require as much physical labor.

i got identity thieved... for the second time this year! this time around i made sure not to use my debit card at too many disreputable web sites, but i guess i got a bit too free with it when using the drive-thru to buy all those breakfast sandwiches, and someone copied down my number and used it to order $90 worth of pizzas. so let this be a lesson to you: never use plastic at the drive-thru! if you must use plastic for your fast food, go inside and swipe the card yourself.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

i quit!

no, i'm not going to quit blogging. but it's high time i gave up cigarettes.

i never planned to still be smoking into my 30s. now that i'm 31, that means it's time to get serious about kicking the habit. i'd already done what i could to cut way back—for several weeks, i've been down to about 5 or 6 cigarettes a day—so last night i took the next step and bought a box of nicorette (chosen because i can control my dosage better than i could with, say, the nicotine patch). if things go well, i'll never smoke another cig again.

if you've never chewed nicotine gum before, it's a uniquely disgusting experience. it tastes pretty good when you first pop it in your mouth, but by the time you're done with it a half-hour later, your mouth is saturated with that dirty, mesquite-grilled, "just smoked a cigarette" mouthfeel. and you're not supposed to eat or drink anything while chewing (or 15 minutes before), so you can't suck down soda to eliminate the taste until you've spit it out. on the other hand, this grossness could be a good thing, as i certainly don't want to keep chewing this crap forever...

Thursday, August 23, 2007

another blog dies... who will be next?

it's true: expresso, the blog that brought us the latest multipage musings of rishawn biddle, is as good as dead. i noticed last month that expresso seemed to be in need of hospice care, with an embarrassingly dated varvel post about paris hilton stuck at the top for weeks on end. today, i discover that expresso is no longer linked from the indystar front page. in its place are links to first thoughts—a first amendment blog which is probably good but i can't bring myself to read it (and i care about first amendment issues!)—and coffee break—which is apparently about "community", judging by the cryptic job titles attributed to co-bloggers tim swarens and jane lichtenberg. or in other words, coffee break is expresso with half the caffeine.

(biddle fans, don't fret: you can still read his musings on the paper's editorial page, though as those are unsigned, you'll have to guess which are his.)

what will be the next blog to be put out of its misery?

will it be indiana blog review, which has been quiet for so long that there are no posts on the front page (only links to spam comments for pharmaceuticals)?

perhaps it will be circle city pundit aka "the scribe", who's been getting in a lot of hot water lately, inspiring indyundercover to publicly unmask him (surprise, he's a failed libertarian candidate) and gary welsh to threaten him with legal action?

will it be the scribe's only defender, kenn "gay watch" gividen, who seems to be deleting a lot of posts recently? (i can't find that "answers to gary" post in the google cache, so either he deleted it too quickly to be cached or he never actually wrote it. however, i did find the cache for this deleted post, titled "more bigotry from bilerico", which i would never have known about if the scribe hadn't eagerly linked to it. you see, the scribe knows firsthand that "disgusting hate and bigotry [...] is common" at bilerico, because—brace yourself—bilerico de-linked him a few days ago. [incidentally, i am proud to admit that i am the "reader" who suggested that bil browning might not want to link to a nut like the scribe.])

or perhaps it'll be me? after months of intermittent posting, will i finally pull the plug on stAllio!'s way? only time will tell, so get in your bets now!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

back in effect

i've been back online for a couple days now, but assorted editing, moving, and unpacking tasks conspire to keep me away from the blog.

however, i thought you might enjoy this cellphone snap of our local thai restaurant. their food is pretty decent, but they aren't entirely fluent in english.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

cell out

i got a new cellphone!

i'd been dreaming of getting a new phone for a while, since my old account with the company that can't decide whether to call itself at&t or cingular wasn't in my name. (it was in my sister's name, because we lived together at the time, but no longer do.) i stepped up my search for a new phone when it appeared that my phone battery was slowly dying. and then when virago decided that she wanted to get a cellphone and eliminate her landline after we move, that was the impetus we needed.

i decided to go with t-mobile because i'd heard they had the best customer satisfaction ratings. i was planning to just go to the local t-mobile store, but my sister suggested we should go to costco instead, so we did. costco has a smaller selection of phones than the t-mobile store has, but the phones they do have are heavily discounted. i got a motorola razr v3t for $20 with contract (instead of $100 from at the t-mobile store) and virago scored a nokia 5300 for $10 (instead of $80). virago is completely enamored with her new phone; i have been trying to focus my new-phone excitement toward creating bad taste mp3 ringtones.

speaking of moving to the new apartment, our big move day is scheduled for sunday. so between packing, moving, fidgeting with my phone, and trying to meet editing deadlines, i haven't had much time for blogging... nor will i probably until next week. in fact, starting sometime this weekend and running until we get our internet connection set up at the new place (hopefully monday), i might not be online much at all... though i'll still be accessible via email if you need me. and of course, i'll have my phone: my number is the same, so if you had it before, you still do.

quitting time

'tis the week to be quittin' your job!

karl rove is resigning!

tommy thompson dropped out of the presidential race!

former speaker of the house dennis hastert is going to resign after this term rather than run for reelection.

fort wayne mayoral candidate matt kelty probably should drop out of the race now that he's been indicted for nine felonies, but will he?

and city county councillor patrice abduallah is resigning after investigative reporting by blogger gary welsh revealed that abduallah does not in fact live in his district. (of course, if a similar investigation had been done by a democrat like wilson allen, gary and his commenters would be up in arms calling it "dumpster diving" and declaring that the researcher was going to hell. but that's neither here nor there.)

Friday, August 10, 2007

why i'm going to buy the new kanye record the day it comes out

imagine a world without 50 cent. it's easy if you try.
Both 50 Cent and West have albums due out Sept. 11. 50 Cent, who has sold better than West, has been riled by forecasts that sales of West's "Graduation" could rival those for his "Curtis" CD.

"Let's raise the stakes," the 31-year-old rapper told hip-hop Web site SOHH.com in an interview posted Friday. "If Kanye West sells more records than 50 Cent on September 11, I'll no longer write music. I'll write music and work with my other artists, but I won't put out anymore solo albums."

not that i would actually count on 50 to keep his word if he loses that wager.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

let me tell you 'bout voodoo

when election time rolls around, the normally reserved and rational gary welsh at advance indiana starts getting hot under the collar. i spent a lot of time last year analyzing the outlandish things he said regarding the carson-dickerson race, among others, but probably won't spend nearly so much time on that this year (in part because, if you take my writings from last year and do some basic search-and-replace, such as replacing "julia carson" with "bart peterson" and "congress" with "mayor", a bunch of it would probably still apply).

until last night, this comment from june was probably my favorite gary quote of all time:

You've earned a place in hell, Wilson, for the character assassination you engaged in last year against both Dickerson and Kris Kiser, two people who never did anything to bring harm to you. How could a person set out to cause such harm to two individuals with whom you had no prior connection? Is it political victory at any cost for you and your dear lady?

telling one of your commenters that they've "earned a place in hell" is pretty over-the-top. in fact, it sounds like the kind of thing that one of those right-wing homobigots would say (the ones gary says are ruining the GOP). but far from apologizing or expressing remorse, gary actually repeated the claim a couple weeks later.

but as great as those quotes are, they were written in comments, where many readers will never see them. so i think they might have been bumped out of first place by this quote, which currently appears right on the front page:

A well-respected, long-time journalist in town once told me that she had it on good authority that Carson also practiced voodoo. I suppose if she's reading the stars to make important office decisions, almost anything is possible.

now, i understand that some might find it newsworthy that julia carson dabbles with astrology, like millions of americans. but to jump from that to seriously suggesting that our congresswoman practices voodoo? that's... amazing. and of course, gary's commenters eat it up like candy.

update: come to think of it, the "carson practices voodoo" meme mixes quite nicely with that old myth about the thousands of dead black folks who republicans believe rise from their graves in order to vote democratic every november...

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

the human alarm clock

from the comments, syntax sez:

please tell me you've been following the glenn murphy story...

dude, you would have to be passed out drunk in a bunk bed to miss a story like this, which began at tdw but has quickly spread all over the blogosphere like so much spilled grey goose seeping into the carpet. but in case you somehow missed it... if, for example, you mistakenly rely on the indy star to give you all your indiana news...

glenn murphy jr was head of the clark county gop here in indiana, and just a few weeks back had been elected chair of the young republican national foundation (at the young, young age of 33). in other words, he was an up-and-comer on a hot streak in the republican party. as gary notes:

Last fall, I had a conversation with another fellow Republican who shared my concern that several GOP candidates and officeholders in Indiana appeared to be taken in by the up-and-coming Murphy. This concerned both of us because Murphy was urging the candidates he advised to use divisive social wedge issues like the gay marriage debate to pummel Democratic candidates.

you can probably guess the twist by this point: it turns out that murphy loves teh cock. but this wasn't your everyday story of a prominent republican offering to blow a cop in a bathroom... no, murph apparently likes to give blowjobs to men while they're sleeping. on two occasions—once in '98 and once last weekend—police reports were filed by young men who'd passed out at parties only to awaken to murphy's mouth on their knob. (the police reports are here.) and if police got involved twice, it's almost certain that there were many other similar encounters that didn't get reported.

needless to say, murphy has resigned both his party posts, sending out a fishy letter that claims he's resigning because his company received some magical massive contract that precludes him from holding any political positions. the odds of murphy receiving such a life-changingly wonderful contract mere days after his latest sexual assault victim files a police report against him are, i must say, fairly slim.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

birthday weekend

sunday was my 31st birthday. these days, myspace reminds all your friends about your birthday, so i received a flood of tidings, including a databent birthday cake photo from syntax (who unfortunately deleted his blog last month, harumph). as far as presents go, i asked for and received a new electric griddle and hand blender... i'm becoming so domesticated. virago got me a copy of alan moore's massive lost girls and the first season of upright citizens brigade on dvd, so i didn't only get kitchen stuff.

friday night we went down to mass ave to check out the visualfringe opening, getting there a bit later than i would've liked. we went first to the loudermilk gallery, and there was my art right in front, as soon as you come in the door (visible from outside if the gallery happens to be closed). however, while i'd been told that all three of my pieces had been accepted, only two were actually hanging. apparently, while they'd initially thought they had enough room for everything, when it came time to actually hang the art, the curator decided there wasn't quite enough space for all three of my pieces where he'd wanted them. so my third piece is in storage at the beilouny; i'm going to go pick it up in an hour or so. (ironically, the piece that didn't get hung was my first selection, which was supposed to be the only one that was guaranteed to get in the show. on the other hand, it kind of works out, because virago loves that one and wants to hang it in our new apartment.)

so that was disappointing, but it did prompt me to talk to gallery owner mike loudermilk (which i probably wouldn't have done had all my pictures been hanging properly), who apparently loves my stuff and wants to get together in the future to do a photo shoot. so hey, even if none of my art sells, i'm still getting something cool out of participating in visualfringe, so it all works out.

(speaking of buying my art, i didn't have time to get to all the galleries, but of what i did see, my pictures were the only ones i saw that were priced under $100. mine are priced at $50. you can judge for yourself whether this says more about me [perhaps under-pricing my work because of my inability to sell records and shirts even at low prices], or about the other artists in the show. also, i wonder whether my shockingly low prices will make the work more or less likely to sell.)

beyond that, what i saw of the show was great. i highly recommend getting down to mass ave sometime this month to check it out.

saturday night we went to thai house to try it out, as it is the closest thai restaurant to our new apartment. the decor was nothing to write a blog entry about, nor was the service. but the food was perfectly acceptable. so it's not quite sawasdee (our current closest thai place, until we move later this month), but it should be a decent option for takeout.

sunday, my actual birthday, was pretty low-key. virago & i spent much of the day in front of the computer, playing civ iv: bts, and went to my parents' house for dinner. but that's all i really wanted. now the question is whether we'll actually get to see girl talk on thursday. (he's not supposed to go on until midnight, and virago needs to work in the morning.)

Friday, August 03, 2007

visualfringe opens tonight

visualfringe, the visual-art component of this year's indyfringe festival, opens tonight and runs throughout august in several massachusetts avenue galleries.

i submitted three databent photos to the festival and all three were accepted. i'm told my work is on display at the loudermilk gallery (aka loudermilk photography) at 882 massachusetts avenue.

you can get a quick taste of some of the art here. based on those preview images, and on what i saw when i dropped off my work a couple weeks ago, it should be a great show with lots of cool work.

i guess the official opening/reception is at the earth house, at lockerbie central united methodist church at 237 n. east street. there might also be other stuff going on at the individual galleries; i don't know.

so come on out and buy some art!