Boundary Layer

The best way to find a line is to cross it

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Rag Doll

This is just wierd. (via Metafilter)

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Out for Jumbalaya

Meeting a celebrity is always a strange experience. One of the things that makes it so strange is that they don't always look like they do on TV or in movies.

The other day a friend saw Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie at the premiere for whatever lame movie that they're in together that everyone is sick of hearing about. Apparently he was short and she was really skinny. This is in contrast to what an old roommate of mine that crashed the Oscars the year she came with her father, Jon Voight, saw. He ended up sharing an elevator with her and was quite impressed.

All of this is to put in context seeing Steven Seagal the other night at a pricey Creole restaurant in the valley. We were at a table on the other side of the restaurant from the VIP room where one of us thought he saw him enter. Several times during the night an Asian woman with an outfit right out of a period Zhang Yimou movie walked over to the restroom and back.

But it wasn't until closing time when we left and he and his entourage were waiting near the exit that we got a good look at him. He had a posse with him but I could not tell you how many were in it because I was shocked to see Steven Segal eating at the same restaurant I was, on a Thursday, in the valley. And he was huge. He had to be at least 6'8". He also had evidently gained some weight. I gave him a nod on our way out and he returned the favor.

By the time we reached the corner we realized all the women in our group where back at the front of the restaurant taking pictures with the giant martial arts expert. We circled back and he seemed to be pleased with all the attention. When they were done we said our goodbyes and thanks and walked back to our cars.

Throughout this time I hadn't heard him say a single thing but apparently he did ask two questions in his trademark low whisper of an Asian girl in our group:

"Are you Chinese?"
"Where do you live?"

I'm not quite sure what to make of those questions but the fact remains, nobody throws scumbags through a plate glass window like Steven Segal. Nobody.

Friday, June 17, 2005

The biggest bubble in history?

The Economist sees a worldwide housing bubble. If there was a way to short real-estate (and there probably is such a complicated derivative that I don't know about) then I would be tempted to start putting some of my money there. (via Robotwisdom)

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

This or That

Which is more unlikely? Pink Floyd reuniting or Phil Jackson coaching the Lakers again?

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Eye of the Tiger

Training for a boxing match anywhere you can. (via hork)

Friday, June 10, 2005

Corporate Slavewatch

The Carpetbagger Report summarizes the scandals involving the Bush Regime just from this week alone:
* The Bush White House let a former lobbyist for the American Petroleum Institute re-write a government report on global warming, editing out scientific conclusions he didn't like.

* Bush's Interior Department offered to overpay a wealthy Republican donor for oil and gas rights on Everglades land that the government apparently already owns, overruling the advice of career officials.

* The Pentagon's inspector general released a report on a lucrative Air Force contract for Boeing that cost too much for planes the military didn't want. Bush, who has enjoyed generous campaign contributions from Boeing, was involved with the contract, personally asking White House aides to work out the deal and dispatching Chief of Staff Andrew Card to participate in the contract negotiations. When the inspector general's report came out, 45 sections were deleted by the White House counsel's office to obscure what several sources described as references to the Bush gang's involvement in the lease negotiations and its interaction with Boeing.

* Documents from the U.S. State Department published this week show that the president backed away from the Kyoto global warming treaty after being pressured by ExxonMobil, the world's most powerful oil company, and other industries.

* Bush officials at the Justice Department inexplicably decided to reduce its settle request with the tobacco industry from $130 billion to $10 billion, and urged government witnesses to soften their recommendations about sanctions.

Cat Fight

Kittenwar vs Stuff On My Cat. (via Metafilter)

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Four Signs of a Real Estate Bubble

  1. Actors in Hollywood are buying and rapidly selling homes to turn a profit.
  2. The network admin guy at your company quits to pursue a career in real estate.
  3. Warren Buffet mentions it.
  4. Greenspan sees no housing bubble but he does see some localized 'froth'.

Here is a more quantitative view that sees a bubble in the San Francisco market but not in the Los Angeles Market based on the ratio of the median home price to the rents.


Flowers of the Santa Monica Mountains and what's blooming now.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Sgt. Gruuuuuummbles

Perry Bible Fellowship comic archive. The navigation sucks but so what.

Eye Tricks

A set of powerful visual illusions. (via Metafilter)

The Wind's Wrath

As close to a tornado as you will ever want to get. (via Metafilter)

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Leeroy Jenkins

A well-planned raid in World of Warcraft goes wrong, terribly wrong. Here is the video. Here is the meme propagation center.

A Robert Smigel Cartoon

The president is in danger and only one man can save him and that man is Divertor. (via David Corn who apparently makes a brief appearence in the cartoon)

Not So Special Effects

Starwars Episode III: A steaming pile of Sith. (NSFW)

Soldiers for Life

A group calling themselves 4th25 are providing the soundtrack to the war live from Baghdad. They have a NSFW video as well. You can check out their album here.

A Splendid War

Newsweek's outgoing Baghdad bureau chief essentially declares the war in Iraq to be lost but doesn't believe in pulling out American troops. (via Eschaton)
The four-square-mile Green Zone, the one place in Baghdad where foreigners are reasonably safe, could be a showcase of American values and abilities. Instead the American enclave is a trash-strewn wasteland of Mad Max-style fortifications. The traffic lights don't work because no one has bothered to fix them. The garbage rarely gets collected. Some of the worst ambassadors in U.S. history are the GIs at the Green Zone's checkpoints. They've repeatedly punched Iraqi ministers, accidentally shot at visiting dignitaries and behave (even on good days) with all the courtesy of nightclub bouncers—to Americans and Iraqis alike. Not that U.S. soldiers in Iraq have much to smile about. They're overworked, much ignored on the home front and widely despised in Iraq, with little to look forward to but the distant end of their tours—and in most cases, another tour soon to follow. Many are reservists who, when they get home, often face the wreckage of careers and family.

Eleven Days on Mars

Animated gif of the Opportunity Rover trying to get out of the dirt. (via Metafilter)

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Harness the Power of the Lord

The Way of the Master.


The universe on a log scale. (via Robotwisdom)

Matchstick Rocket

This immediately went on my todo list.

Find Cheap Gas

Google maps + gasbuddy = Cheapgas.


Creative amusement. (via Robotwisdom)

Project X-Ray

World War II spawned some pretty imaginative ideas like the Japanese balloon bombs. But I hadn't heard about the plan by the US Army to deploy thousands of bats carrying incendiary bombs. (via A Joshua Tree in Every Pot)
Dr. Adams pondered how the US could fight back. In a 1948 interview with the Bulletin of the National Speleological Society, Dr. Adams recalled: "I had just been to Carlsbad Caverns, N. M., and had been tremendously impressed by the bat flight. . . . Couldn't those millions of bats be fitted with incendiary bombs and dropped from planes? What could be more devastating than such a firebomb attack?"