I Wholeheartedly Disagree

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Midland

“You have a Midland accent” is just another way of saying “you don’t have an accent.” You probably are from the Midland (Pennsylvania, southern Ohio, southern Indiana, southern Illinois, and Missouri) but then for all we know you could be from Florida or Charleston or one of those big southern cities like Atlanta or Dallas. You have a good voice for TV and radio.

North Central
The West
The Inland North
The South
Philadelphia
Boston
The Northeast
What American accent do you have?
Take More Quizzes

Midland?!

The Print Version: Casino Royale

Tuesday after class I swung past Borders and bought a copy of Ian Flemming’s Casino Royale, on sale there for $7.50. I’m about halfway through — I know, I know, but it’s a light read and I’ve been reading several chapters a night before bed. The more I read into it, the more I enjoy — in retrospect, yes — the recently released Bond film of the same name. Bond isn’t the super-super-agent he appears in the film series, he’s just a government operative who isn’t afraid to kill people. It’s a really fascinating read, given that most people’s knowledge of Bond comes from the movies. If you’ve never read any of the books but are a Bond fan, give it a try — you might just like it!

Thursday’s Riddle

From the same packet provided by Towson’s Dr. Paul Douglas on the Folklorist’s Aptitude Test, a series of riddles that I found interesting. You might find them easy, or not, I dunno. Answer will be posted tomorrow:

White bird featherless
Flew from paradise,
perched upon the castle wall
up came Lord John landless
took it up handless
and rode away horseless
to the king’s white hall.

What am I?

(No cheating!)

Thursday's Riddle

From the same packet provided by Towson’s Dr. Paul Douglas on the Folklorist’s Aptitude Test, a series of riddles that I found interesting. You might find them easy, or not, I dunno. Answer will be posted tomorrow:

White bird featherless
Flew from paradise,
perched upon the castle wall
up came Lord John landless
took it up handless
and rode away horseless
to the king’s white hall.

What am I?

(No cheating!)

The Last, Best Hope For Freedom

This is a very terrifying article, and of course, there are few people in Congress who give a shit about internet freedom, suffice to say, you’d do yourself — and all internet users — a disservice if you don’t follow this shit:

The Internet is the last true unregulated outpost of freedom of speech but moves are afoot to stifle, suffocate and control the world wide web. These threats are not hidden nor are they hard to deduce and yet a significant minority of truth seekers and activists remain naive as to their scope.

The RIAA’s argument is that defendant Tenise Barker downloaded music files and made them available for distribution by placing them in a shared folder. Though Barker paid for the files and downloaded them legally, and the files were not copied by anyone, the RIAA’s motion states that simply making the files available constitutes copyright infringement.

As Beckerman points out, the entire Internet is nothing more than a giant network of hyperlinks making files ‘available’ to other people. If we link to CNN.com, we are making the file that constitutes the CNN homepage ‘available’ to other users. We don’t own the copyright to any of CNN’s material therefore if the RIAA’s argument is accepted, by simply making that CNN file available from our website, even if no one clicks on the link, we are committing a breach of copyright.

This is hardly a stretch of the imagination, since numerous public services and functions of society are increasingly accessible only through providing some form of biometric identification. Credit passes for travel, ATM terminals and access to theme parks like Disneyland are just a few of the many services we use that are shifting towards mandatory biometric gatekeeping.

Furthermore, Pay By Touch Online and other companies have already developed and launched keyboard biometric finger scanning terminals that require users to submit their biometric print before they can access the Internet or buy online.

Piggybacking the net neutrality debate, Internet 2 is being shaped to replace the old Internet, which will be allowed to self-destruct as it labors under the pressures of being relegated to slower and slower pipes and users will simply desert a painstaking system.

“The nation’s largest telephone and cable companies are crafting an alarming set of strategies that would transform the free, open and nondiscriminatory Internet of today to a privately run and branded service that would charge a fee for virtually everything we do online.”

Gaaaaah!

Folklorist’s Aptitude Test

Stolen directly from class! Knock yourselves out:

1. man
board

2. /r/e/a/d/i/n/g/

3. r
r o a d
a
d

(Formatting on this one. Road should in both vertical and horizontal share that ‘o’)

4. cycle, cycle, cycle

5. 0
BA
MA
PhD

6. dice dice

7. ground
feet
feet
feet
feet
feet
feet

(Zenchick, I expect you of all people to get this one).

8. ecnalg

9. gi
cccccccccccccc

Folklorist's Aptitude Test

Stolen directly from class! Knock yourselves out:

1. man
board

2. /r/e/a/d/i/n/g/

3. r
r o a d
a
d

(Formatting on this one. Road should in both vertical and horizontal share that ‘o’)

4. cycle, cycle, cycle

5. 0
BA
MA
PhD

6. dice dice

7. ground
feet
feet
feet
feet
feet
feet

(Zenchick, I expect you of all people to get this one).

8. ecnalg

9. gi
cccccccccccccc

The Calm Before The Storm

I can’t remember the last time I felt, in general, this relaxed. I mean, on the horizon, I’ve got an extra-credit paper for Folklore due before the end of the semester, a paper on a book about Elvis — Last Train to Memphis, I think — due for Rock & Roll on the 7th, a project for CompSci due on the day of the final, a take-home final for that same class, and a take-home essay for Folklore to be turned in as part of the final.

After today, I have one week left before classes are over. Finals begin the following week. Fortunatly, most of my finals I’m not worried about. I’m not saying I don’t need to study for them, I’m just saying I’m not worried about them — Impact of Computerization on Society? Oh, please. As long as I demonstrate that I know what a luddite is, and that I know a blog is not a discussion bulletin board, I’ll get an A. It’s the common sense stuff, y’know?

I am worried about Chaucer, and will be devoting most of my study time to that final: studying the works we’ve covered since the midterm — that is, the end of the Canterbury Tales as well as Troilus and Criseyde. I’m meeting with a study group the Monday before the final at Cook Library. I have a feeling we will be, to quote Lt. Commander Data (because I need a random TNG reference), “Burning the midnight oil.” (Or am I quoting Chief O’Brien…?)

Anyway, I’m taking most of the week off from work to accomodate finals. I’ll be working my usual Friday all-dayer at the Indy, then I’m off Saturday and Sunday: albeit, I’m going to a dinner party in Delaware Saturday night, and possibly driving to Silver Spring on Sunday to see my friend Russ for the first time in five or six years. However, I won’t again be working until the following Friday (aside for a BS 11-3 Monday at the Franchise), so I’ll have plenty of time for my assorted studyings — and that Thursday, the 14th, is currently on the calendar as a celebratory trip to the gun-range. Three of my finals — oh joy — are on Tuesday the 12th. Once again, that will be an all day love-affair with campus, although two will be over by twelve, and the third — at 7:30 — is the take-home with the in-class presentation.

One of the very nice side benefits of the last few weeks has been the very relaxing nights I’ve spent sleeping. Usually, I’m unable to fall asleep until one or two in the morning, I spend half the night tossing-and-turning, and usually wake up in the middle of the night and am unable to fall asleep for another hour or so. Lately, however, I’ve been crawling into bed — exhausted — no later than midnight. I bury myself under the covers and sleep soundly until my alarm goes off. I did, truth, wake up suddenly Monday night when one of the cats knocked something over in the living room and it made a loud thump! noise, but after determining that nothing was broken, I was back asleep.

I hope the nights continue like this. I enjoy a full eight hours of sleep every night, and would like for it to continue.

Texted Advice

I do believe I am now off Probation Before Judgement regarding my speeding ticket last year. I got the ticket on Friday, November 25th, 2005 (iirc), and as I understand it, PBJ runs from the date of the ticket, not the court-date, which was sometime in January.

Zebulon, who recieved two speeding tickets from the same cop in a week period a few months ago, is going to court tomorrow. I text-messaged him some advice:

1. Don’t dress up in your buccaneer/final fantasy costume. They won’t like the big sword at the security gate.
2. Address the judge as “sir” or “your honor.”
3. Wear a tie.
4. Don’t mumble, and if you do mumble, mumble in English. Don’t mumble in Japanese.
5. For Christ’s sake, don’t park in the judge’s parking spot.
6. If the judge is a woman, don’t address her as ‘sir.’ This isn’t Star Trek II.

He hasn’t responded, but if he does, I fully expect his response to consist of some variation of the words “fuck” and “you.”

UPDATE:

Just got his text reply. “Thanks for the info, appreciate it.” He probably read this post and was like, “Well, shit, now I can’t text him to go fuck himself!” Bastard.

8th DUI Punishment

From The Boston Herald:

His driver’s license was revoked for life two years ago, but cops say Robert Marapoti, 46, of Sandwich was behind the wheel and drunk when he was arrested Saturday for the eighth time.

Plymouth police say Marapoti rammed the back of his daughter’s car while following her home in a 1990 Mercedes with a dealer’s license plate.

The daughter, 21, whose name is being withheld by police, arranged to meet her father at a convenience store, but found him drunk and passed out at the wheel, police said, and decided to leave him there. Marapoti woke up, drove after his daughter and rear-ended her car as she made a turn, police said.

“The daughter drove home with a neck injury and requested an ambulance from there,” said Capt. Michael Botieri.

Police found Marapoti parked at a nearby Shaw’s supermarket. He was charged for failure to use care in stopping, driving without a license, and his eighth OUI. Marapoti had been sentenced to prison twice for a total of four and a half years, and his license was permanently revoked in 2004.

Judge Snay say: “Why not just chop off his hands? Not only can he not drive without his hands, but his drinking habits will be impaired, too! Woo!”

HT: Carpundit.

A Real Life Munich!

By which I mean the movie, Munich, not the actual, y’know, city. Of course I’m talking about the very mysterious death — er, assassination — of former KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko (yeah, like Moscow isn’t behind it my fat ass). Anyway, looks like whoever offed him — y’know, Moscow — endangered a lot of people in the process.

Hopefully, the publicity Litvinenko’s death has recieved will force Russia, and President Putin, to drop the repressive techniques of the not-quite-dead Soviet Union once and for all.