Wednesday, December 28, 2011

mamacita is nothing if not practical.

brother bear and i are hanging out with mamacita when brother bear makes reference to this image:

me: "oh, mamacita, there's all these anti-piracy ads that say things like, 'you wouldn't download a car. why would you download a movie?'"

mamacita: "actually, i would download a car if i could."

if you say so.

"when you see an octopus change texture on a rock, that's LIFE CHANGING, bro!"

Friday, September 16, 2011

i dated this dude* once.

[serious, serious,] SRSLY, by tpick

"would you like to go for a bicycle ride?"
"uh, no, i'm going to be riding by myself, because i have to do particular stuff."

*not this dude in particular, but a dude who did go to bed at eight and who, when i brought him chocolate chip cookies i'd baked that afternoon, declined them because it was during road season. it didn't last long.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

my current earworm

i've continued to be freaked out by michelle bachmann's iowa straw poll win (i also keep imagining handfuls of actual straw being involved in this event.) bachmann freaks me out. even before i saw Bachmann-eyezed! but then i read what ed from gin and tacos wrote about it, and i started to feel a little bit better:

"The Ames (aka Iowa) Straw Poll is the dumbest event in politics by a country mile, even compared to legendary shitshows like CNN/YouTube debates, the Thanksgiving sparing of a turkey, and the national conventions.
The media have managed to turn this non-event – previously won by the likes of Pat Robertson – into a crucial barometer of candidate viability."

the whole thing is worth a read.

and when you're done with that (or before, if you prefer), please enjoy this video:

hot chip, "i feel better"

Sunday, August 14, 2011

remember tim dechristopher?

the university student who went to a BLM land aution and decided to bid on a bunch of properties to keep them out of the hands of oil and gas companies?

he's been sentenced to two years in federal prison and a $10,000 fine
. his entire sentencing statement is truly worth reading:

Mr Huber [the prosecutor] claims that the seriousness of my offense was that I “obstructed lawful government proceedings.” But the auction in question was not a lawful proceeding. I know you’ve heard another case about some of the irregularities for which the auction was overturned. But that case did not involve the BLM’s blatant violation of Secretarial Order 3226, which was a law that went into effect in 2001 and required the BLM to weigh the impacts on climate change for all its major decisions, particularly resource development. A federal judge in Montana ruled last year that the BLM was in constant violation of this law throughout the Bush administration. In all the proceedings and debates about this auction, no apologist for the government or the BLM has ever even tried to claim that the BLM followed this law. In both the December 2008 auction and the creation of the Resource Management Plan on which this auction was based, the BLM did not even attempt to follow this law.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

bachmann wins the iowa straw poll.

with paul and pawlenty in second and third. this freaks me out. in somewhat related news, now seems as good a time as any to share this video:

gay barbarian horde glitters bachmann clinic

i guess that's just what happens when marcus isn't there to discipline them. somebody has to vacuum.

Monday, August 01, 2011

"White dudes, Punjabi music, and is the result!"*

"how to dance when you're high on life"
(daler mehndi's tunak tunak tun)

*this was my friend's dad's explanation of this video. apparently funny runs in the family; see hers at a likely story.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

speaking of politicians and babies...

did you know that bob gunderson's running for mayor? i read that he promises not to kiss any babies.

learn more about his vision for san francisco here.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

you just tell 'em no, calmly but firmly, and they stop crying. apparently.

obama magically quiets an angry baby

check out michelle's face at the end.

update: this isn't the first time obama's been good with a baby.

dear dudes on the bus,



unless you feel like subletting part of my seat (i'm open to reasonable offers—$2/stop? $1/minute? a reasonable flat rate of $20?), then stay the hell over on your side.

i don't care if you'd rather sit with your legs all splayed out like a dog sunning the spot where his balls used to be, or if you prefer to drape your arm around the back of the seat beside you. i'm sorry if you're lonely or if you never developed basic social skills, but not sorry enough to want you to let you touch me or invade my space.


Friday, June 17, 2011

hey bigots! y'all don't make any sense!

kyra phillips and noted social theorist child development expert accomplished clinical psychologist former NFL player david tyree discuss same-sex marriage.

kyra is tenaciously logical, and it is awesome to watch.

Friday, June 10, 2011

hit-and-run kills 25 year old cyclist in santa cruz

this is horrible.

from KSBW: Zachary Parke, who is not a UCSC student, was returning home at midnight from the campus after hanging out with friends, his mother April Parke said.
Another bicyclist found Zachary Parke's body at 8:05 a.m. on Wednesday and called 911.
police are seeking a burgundy/maroon infiniti or nissan with front end damage and a missing side-view mirror; call (831) 622-0511 or (831) 796-2160.

and please, please, please, be careful out there. drive slower. look where you're going. don't drive if you're intoxicated or if you're really tired.

ALSO: if you ever hit someone, STOP. STOP AND CALL FOR HELP. we'll never know what could have happened, but there were eight hours between the likely time of the accident and when another cyclist called 911. if you've hit someone, the very least you can do is make sure they're being attended to. i can't believe it's even necessary to spell that out.

parke leaves behind a mother, a sister, and a lot of friends. these people's lives will never be the same, and it didn't have to be this way. parke's boss remembers him. to those people: i'm so sorry this happened.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

the single best commentary on the end of the world:

"it's just the kind of thing you want to hear about on a 'family radio'
'kids, lets listen to how you'll never have a future'
told by Randy the Rapture Demon"

thanks, danger!

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

this is not a post about osama bin laden.

this is a post about a bull terrier, two baby goats, and milk pants.

Raw Milk Pants

i had forgotten that baby goats wag their tails when they're happy, but the little guy closest to the camera sure did help me remember about that.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Friday, April 29, 2011

great news!

wondering exactly how awful what atlas shrugged, the movie, is really like? ed from gin and tacos has watched the movie for you! so now you don't have to.

the whole review is really worth reading. here's a just a sample:

Ayn Rand may be your favorite philosopher, but she is an appalling writer. Her novels call into question whether she ever met another human being let alone spoke with one. With absolutely no understanding of how narrative, plot, character development, or exposition work, Rand produces fiction that sounds like it was written in Urdu and translated into English with the least reliable free online translator available.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

i fail to see what the problem is.

girl on the bus, talking on the phone: "he doesn't go to school, he doesn't have any hobbies, he just rides his bike all day."

Thursday, March 24, 2011

heroism everywhere

the dad: "tonight i went for a walk. you know how they have that wild mustang rescue?"

me: "yeah...?"

the dad: "well, i did some earthworm rescue of my own. i saved 'em from being squashed and i took 'em home for my compost bin. i'd imagine pretty soon we'll become a 501(c)(3) and start soliciting donations for our work."

Saturday, March 12, 2011

options to help japan

with links to charity navigator pages for each organization so that you can read about how they spend money.

americares (four star charity navigator rating)

doctors without borders (four star charity navigator rating)

save the children (four star charity navigator rating)

world vision (four star charity navigator rating)

global giving (three star charity navigator rating)

the international medical corps (three star charity navigator rating)

operation usa
(three star charity navigator rating)

(three star charity navigator rating)

peace winds japan
(affiliated with mercy corps [three star charity navigator rating]; not evaluated by charity navigator itself; here is the organization's own financial statement)

the red cross (three star charity navigator rating)

second harvest japan
(no charity navigator rating)

(three star charity navigator rating)

also of interest:

google's personfinder tool
google's crisis response page

with love to japan.

equal marriage rights: not just an abstract question

courage campaign institute: ed watson and derence kernek on the importance of lifting the prop. 8 stay

california's prop 8, which took away the right of gay people to get married in the state of california, was a crushing political defeat for people who believe in equal rights. the california state supreme court is considering a challenge to prop 8, but not until after they take a six month summer vacation—sorry, for judges it's apparently called a summer recess—and in that time, some people have gotten the idea that the ban on marriages while the court case is being settled should be lifted.

and here's one example of why. ed and derence have been together for forty years, but ed has alzheimer's disease and it's progressing quickly. he and derence want to get married before ed's health deteriorates further. note that this video might make you cry.

but i think it's really important to consider that forbidding gay marriages is impacting the lives of real people. it's not just a fascinating legal matter with vast social and political implications. depriving people of equal rights harms them and our society. and it's categorically the wrong thing to do.

more stories and the opportunity to submit your own here.

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Sunday, February 27, 2011

quiz time!

sometimes the internet gives us mysterious gifts. like this picture. or this quiz. i don't know who made this, but i like their grasp on current events.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

what a fun sixth birthday!

angry birds birthday cake

how did you get in here?

it’s always interesting to see the search results that lead people to c.w.a.j.a.?., and when i remember, i take a look. the overwhelming winner of this particular popularity contest, every single time, is a post about pincurls that i dashed off nearly five years ago that the internet seems to love. so there are lots of pincurl-related searches, like “bobby pin curls,” “how to sleep in pin curls,” “pincurls for long hair,” “pincurls long hair,” “pincurling long hair,” and “pin curls with curling hair” (and about a million other permutations of this search.)

but sometimes they’re way funnier. like “Don’t worry The internet is here,” which has come up more than once, “Land Before Time porn,” which makes me feel kind of weird, “all kinds of bears,” which i would also like to see, and “grafting paw paws techinique,” which i know i’m totally unqualified to comment upon. oh, and “don’t like that.” i understand. sometimes i don’t like that either.

dan deacon show=summer camp for grownups

last night i went to a dan deacon show. i was tired. i am tired. lately, i have been tired. last night was no exception. there were some openers, so by the time it was dan's turn i was pretty tired and also tired of being stepped on and pushed by people way taller than me.

but then his set started, and it was i've been to a lot of shows in my life, i think, and i like live music, but rarely have i had so much fun at a concert. a nice time, a good time, even a great time, but a fun time?

every now and then he'd give us directions (creating, for example, a dance contest where my side of the room had to "dance like jurassic park" and the opposite side was to "dance like what you wish the movie avatar was actually about.") and just about everyone enthusiastically went along with it (even when the activities involved kneeling on the beer-soaked floor.)

it was during the song where everyone was supposed to dance under the bridge made by the arms of a few volunteers, then emerge from the other side to add their own arms to the bridge that i really noticed it. i was outside, watching strangers dance beneath me when i had the strong urge to compliment them. and just as i was feeling pretty amused by that, someone said, "great job! thank you for being so strong for me!"

and all the dancing and activities and silliness really made me think of summer camp, and the many times that i've seen junior highers or high school kids who were too cool for everything forget about that and just have uncomplicated, unself-conscious fun.

it was great.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

you know what i like?

liberated billboards.

oh freecycle, you make me so curious sometimes.

"I need some mesh bags, the kind used for onions and oranges. Color unimportant. The larger the better. Can pick up."

"We are looking for a small porcelaine dol, not more than 10 inches toll."

"OFFER: Eb Helicon.
This Eb Helicon needs bracing work, and spring work in the second valve."

Monday, January 31, 2011


while there have long been people who don't think that they should have to pay taxes and who believe that there is too much government interference in the life of most americans, i am profoundly frustrated at the way that this sentiment is gaining popularity.

at least in part because of the continued presence of the teabaggers tea party in american political life, i keep reading about (and talking to) people who insist that "the government" meddles too much in their affairs and takes too much of their money.

recently i was talking to someone who had spent the last few years on unemployment, and whose spouse retired early from a federal job, receiving a substantial severance package. also, the federal retiree had always held the insurance for the entire family (they raised several children.) however, despite what seemed to me like several dramatic examples of interaction with the government being the only thing standing between them and total financial ruination, this person vehemently announced to me that the government had "no business" besides national defense, and expressed strong wishes toward a total cessation of all government activity not directly related to national defense.

and it has really gotten me thinking about this whole "no taxes, government bad" approach to policy. while few people actually enjoy paying taxes, rational grownups should be able to see that taxes are not, in fact, the result of a power-mad, bullying government stealing money from defenseless citizens, but actually a reasonable way to pay for things we want and need. markers of civilization, actually, which sounds hyperbolic at first but really isn't.

here's something that taxes pay for:
1. paved roads. i read a horrible article about a 23 year old woman in alabama who ran over a pothole and dislodged a chunk of highway that went through the windshield of the truck behind her and killed the woman in the front seat, who was riding with her husband and their two small children. no one was doing anything wrong; the first driver was cleared of any wrongdoing. she hadn't been speeding, she was driving safely, they road simply hadn't been maintained. the state says they can't afford it. now the first driver is wracked with guilt, and the husband is a widower, a single dad with two small kids. because there wasn't money for highway repairs.

so "tea party patriots," are you ready to volunteer your time for road crews? or should someone set up toll booths all over the place to fund roadwork? (followup question: should that be the government? or a private company collecting money? if a private company, will there be any oversight? how do you propose to supervise this effort without government involvement? does the mention of tolls constitute a "tax" that will get you all worked up?)

to be continued.

lack of context leads to unintentional hilarity

frequently when i'm on the telephone with the nephews' mama, she says funny things. sometimes this is on purpose (she is a pretty funny lady, and we've known each other so long that we have plenty of inside jokes and references that wouldn't mean much to anyone else but that crack us up.)

and i like it when she makes me laugh intentionally, i really do.

sometimes much funnier, though, are the times when what she says is totally reasonable for the circumstances in which she finds herself (and the nephews), but totally hilarious to people (me) without the same context.

let me demonstrate:

"you guys can play baby all you want but you're not going to be in the fridge."

of course, since i'm a good friend, i try to support her parenting by not laughing loudly while she's disciplining the children.

sometimes i fail.

sometimes certain names work better in ad campaigns than others

photographed by the ever-patient captain awesome (who never seems to mind when we're on the way somewhere and then all of the sudden i really want him to take a picture of something), and who comments: "christian the worst kind."

dear flu,

great news! you can go now.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

never let anyone try to tell you that you won't learn about cartilaginous fish in astronomy class.

tutor nick, on hammerhead sharks: "those guys can calculate distances much better than we can do because the eyes are so much further away."

Friday, January 07, 2011

i have recently had an important revelation about the future.

flying cars are a terrible idea.

i know that they're supposed to represent the awesome inventions that science has in store for us and the triumph of technology and progress...but have you ever really stopped to think about it for a minute?

i did for the first time yesterday, when i was reflecting on how bad lots of people seem to be at driving their normal, non-flying cars. i've started riding my bike just about everywhere recently; i don't really drive much anymore (and when i do it's only a non-flying car) and riding the bus isn't usually much faster than riding my bike. and it costs money. and it doesn't burn calories. and it sometimes involves standing around outside for a long time.

all this time on my bike has given me a lot of chances to interact with drivers. and many of them are awful at driving. it's really helped me to appreciate the car-free parts of the city—i love the greenways and bike paths that make it possible for me to get places without much car traffic.

but it's also made me realize that we are far from ready for flying cars. can you imagine what it would be like? it's bad enough to have to deal with cars in the same plane as you when you're riding a bike—but from now on, when i have a close call with someone i'll remember: at least they didn't have the opportunity to crowd me from above!

science, i own you an apology. i'm sorry for being disappointed in you for all these years for your failure to produce flying cars. i think you really have our best interests at heart. please don't ever make flying cars happen, ever. teleportation devices, on the other hand, are long overdue.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

"heartbeats" by the knife, or covered by josé gonzález: both excellent. happy new year!

"heartbeats" the knife

"heartbeats" josé gonzález

i apologize for the inevitable ad for bp's youtube channel where you can watch lots of pr bs about how they're "making it right." do they really think we're that stupid?

free advice for bp: you "make it right" by actually making it right, not by spending millions of dollars on a media blitz in which you talk about making it right. thanks for ruining everyone's ocean.

bonus video because it is really fun and to avoid ending on a cranky note:

"heartbeats" josé gonzález and a lot of bouncy balls in san francisco.