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[links] Link salad wonders if it should have been born a Cancer instead of a Gemini

Don’t forget to enter the new Endurance caption contest: [ | LiveJournal ] — I’ll probably be closing it this evening and constructing the voting poll.

A reader reacts to Mainspring — Much with the liking.

METAtropolis reviewed in Romanian — Not so much with the liking of my novella, “In the Forests of the Night”.

Fantasy Literature reviews Green — Not so much with the liking here either, I am afraid.

Scientists predict rare ‘hibernation’ of sunspots — (Thanks to [info]lillypond.)

How to Have Fun Like Monkeys, Whales and Foxes — I’ve been on dates like that.

How to Switch Off Friction In NanomachinesA new technique could reduce friction with the mere flick of a switch, say physicists. I’ve been on dates like that. Also, I have to ask, what is a “one dimensional surface”?

Deep sewer diving under New York — Wow… (Thanks to [info]danjite.)

Are All Gay Girls Secretly Men? — Julia Rios blogs at The Outer Alliance on this difficult and disturbing story of appropriation.

Tea Party Summer Camp: The Experience of a Lifetime — Freaky. (Thanks to [info]shsilver.)

Five myths about the American flag — Ah, reality. If this were a Wikipedia article, Palinites would be editing it right now to remove those biased facts in favor of conservative “truths”.

Why Do Republicans Hate Clean Water? — The EPA does a lot of really good things for every American, regardless of political affiliation. And free market corporate self-regulation didn’t exactly keep our rivers and air clean. In fact, forming the EPA was one of Richard Nixon’s better moves.

The New Religion of Global Warming — Conservative ideological resistance to reality is observably hardening. As I’ve said before, no one comes to global warming denial on the merits of the data. They start there for ideological reasons, then look for data to support their beliefs. It’s a lot like Christian apologia.

The G.O.P. DebateEventually, the winner of the Republican nomination will move away from the Tea Party’s anger to try to appeal to a broader electorate that has higher priorities than interfering with laws on same-sex marriage and upending Congress’s decision to welcome openly gay and lesbian soldiers. I know! Let’s put the GOP back in power to fix the economy they ruined in the last decade!

?otD: What do you get if you multiply your blood type by your zodiacal sign?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (Dad time instead)
Body movement: 30-minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 6.5 hours (solid)
Weight: 234.4
Currently (re)reading: A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin

[links] Link salad hears the music

Don’t forget to enter the new Endurance caption contest: [ | LiveJournal ]

Steampunk Fiction Donated — Clemson University with a steampunk reading list, including a couple of books I’m not familiar with. Cool!

Asimov’s Vesta and Ours — A little bit of SF history intersects contemporary space science.

Mapping Bloomsday

Cracking the F&#%ing Humor Code

‘You Look Great’ and Other Lies — What to say to someone who is very ill. I don’t agree with everything in this piece, but it’s still pretty good.

The Incredible Shrinking Man — Roger Ebert on eldering.

Rare, Aggressive Fungus Strikes Joplin Tornado Victims

A Russian A.T.M. With an Ear for the Truth — Weird. (Thanks to Dad.)

Radio School: 1920 — Ah, the golden age of wireless. Tubepunk, you might say.

For Franciscan Twins, Simple Lives Had Depth — I think this piece is supposed to be inspirational, but I mostly found it saddening.

Delay rule bumps up flight cancellations

Port of Philadelphia: c. 1936 — A WPA poster. I love this kind of art.

Bald eagles attack post office at Alaska port — Oh, the irony.

The Federalist Papers — Ta-Nehisi Coates on politics, race and identity. This is a really good one.

Reason Seen More as Weapon Than Path to Truth — This says a lot about political discourse. (Via [info]scarlettina.)

?otD: When is the last train to Clarksville, anyway?

Writing time yesterday: 1.75 hours (Kalimpura revisions, WRPA)
Body movement: 30-minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 7.5 hours (solid)
Weight: 233.4
Currently (re)reading: A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin

[links] Link salad is cool as a cucumber

Don’t forget to enter the new Endurance caption contest: [ | LiveJournal ]

Outer Alliance Spotlight #80: Feminism

Androcentrism: It’s Okay To Be a Boy, But Being a Girl…

Industrial Photography With Soul — Yum! This photo feature from Dark Roasted Blend will put a little punk in your steam.

Dragon Inn: 1909 — You have to click through the larger view of the photo to see the dragon, but it is pretty cool.

The Terrifying Truth About New TechnologyDo robots and Twitter make you nervous? Growing old is what you’re really afraid of. In other words, “Hey, you kids, get off my digital lawn. Oh, and buy my book.”

Lasers Made from Human Cells — Headline of the month. Bwahahahahaha. One million dollars!!!!

I.B.M. Researchers Create High-Speed Graphene Circuits

Shadow Internet Story Fishy — Hmm…

When It Comes to Scandal, Girls Won’t Be Boys — Women, men and political sex scandals.

Badass Quote of the Day — Ed Brayton quoting Amanda Marcotte on conservatives and history, with respect to Sarah Palin’s hotly-defended fantasies about Paul Revere. (I’m still laughing over the alleged “gotcha” question that elicited her glossolaliac ramble into Revolutionary pseudohistory.)

Gingrich blames staff exodus on ‘strategic differences’ — He’s as nuts as Palin and Bachmann, albeit in a different way. Sadly for the nation, “nuts” does not equal “unelectable” in the weird, proudly non-reality-based community of Republican primaries.

?otD: What’s your favorite vegetable?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (hours of tech follies)
Body movement: 30-minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 6.25 hours (solid)
Weight: 234.6
Currently (re)reading: A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin

[links] Link salad awakens puzzled but not airborne

Don’t forget to enter the new Endurance caption contest: [ | LiveJournal ]

Genre Bashing Dumbassery — Jim Hines is funny. (Via Steve Buchheit.)

The Blohm & Voss Ha 139 — Man, what an airplane.

In search of the world’s best pizza — Mmm.

Increasing Cultural Acceptance Of Gay And Lesbian Rights

Political Comic Book Covers — This is hilarious. (Snurced from Dispatches From the Culture Wars.)

Guns, Terrorism and Political ExpediencyCan you even imagine what the Republicans would do with this if the tables were turned, if the Democrats voted against a bill to keep weapons out of the hands of terrorists? They’d to apeshit, calling the Democrats terrorist sympathizers who actually wanted to destroy America.

Release of Sarah Palin emails angers US conservatives — You mean that documenting her petty corruption and vendettas is a bad thing?

The Reluctant Mormon — A profile of unlikely GOP candiate John Huntsman. (He’s far too sane and nuanced for the Republican base. Admittedly this would also be true of Hulk Hogan.)

God Caught Backing Multiple GOP Candidates for PresidentAfter a thorough investigation, Daily Intel has discovered that God is separately backing at least three different contenders for the Republican presidential nomination. Over the course of the past few months and even years, God has sent signs and direct messages to each of these candidates encouraging them to run, presumably without telling them that he supports other candidates as well. Hahahahahaha. (Thanks to [info]shsilver.)

?otD: Can you fly without a plane?

Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (aborted chemo session followed by intense fatigue)
Body movement: 60 minute suburban walk to come
Hours slept: 7.0 hours (solid)
Weight: 234.2
Currently (re)reading: A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin

[links] Link salad heads back to the infusion center again

Don’t forget to enter the new Endurance caption contest: [ | LiveJournal ]

The Five Worst (Hard) Science Fiction Movies Ever

Low Cost and Hi-Fi: Building a Player — Hacking music. (Thanks to Dad.)

More on how to see the aurora borealis — (Via Julianna Hinckley.)

The Earth Is Full

Thoughts on the eternal headache that is nuclear power – part 1 of 6 — Some smart thinking from [info]happyinmotion. (Thanks to [info]danjite.)

A Short History of Political SuicideAnthony Weiner’s Twitter disaster may well cost him his seat in Congress. Washington has seen many other sordid meltdowns

?otD: Tired Much?

Writing time yesterday: 1.25 hours (short fiction, interviews and other WRPA)
Body movement: 30 minute suburban wak
Hours slept: 9.5 hours (interrupted)
Weight: 233.0
Currently (re)reading: A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin

[contests] Endurance caption contest

Advance Reading Copies copies of Endurance (a/k/a Green book 2) have arrived. We all know what that means — a giveaway via caption contest! So I hereby declare another one of those suckers, based on a recent moment of zen photo as suggested by [info]garyomaha. Your challenge is to write a caption that answers the question “What the heck is behind this door, and why is it so very locked?”

First prize will be a personalized, signed copy of the Endurance ARC, as well as the Green trade paperback. Additional prizes to be awarded at my discretion. Usual rules apply. I’ll collect captions in comments here (at both and until I get bored with it, then build a voting poll. Please try to limit the length of your entries or they may become truncated in the poll code.


Very locked door, Bonspur, WA. © 2007, 2011, Joseph E. Lake, Jr.

Creative Commons License

This work by Joseph E. Lake, Jr. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

[photos] People at play last Sunday

Last Sunday, I told people to go play and take a photo [ | LiveJournal ]. Quite a set of images resulted.

I still haven’t picked my favorites, but they’re too cool not share. Here, reproduced with (I hope) permission from the photographers, are the photos I received. All rights reserved, of course, and images © 2011 by their respective creators.


[personal|photos] It’s Sunday, go play

It’s Sunday. Go play. That’s what I’m going to do. That, and work on Sunspin.

However, when you go play, take photos. Post a photo here of something fun and interesting from today, Sunday, January 30th. The one(s) I like the best — funny, striking, cool, artistic, whatever — I’ll use in my daily moment of zen series, plus I’ll send you a free book or two.

Not exactly a contest. More like group art. Grab your camera. Go. Stop reading this. Bye.

ETA: For those longitudinally-based chrononauts on the far side of the world or whatever, I shan’t be strict about the date thing. I just mean now-ish as opposed to a-while-ago-ish.

[contests] The Sky That Wraps caption contest winner

The Sky That Wraps by Jay Lake

A month or so ago I held a caption contest for The Sky That Wraps. Unfortunately, real life intervened and I was unable to process the poll in a timely manner. For this, I apologize. Herewith is the winning caption.


Jay laughing, Martinborough, NZ. © 2010, Shannon Page.

Creative Commons License

This work by Shannon Page is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

Alex J. Kane – If you’re going to do that, sir, the law prefers that you do so in the center of the city street with one hand on the arse of your horse, for the sake of balance.

Alex, please contact me to arrange shipping your prize, a personalized copy of The Sky That Wraps. I want to thank everyone else for playing.

[links] Link salad rises early in the morning

Don’t forget the latest caption contest voting poll — I will be closing this out shortly.

Secretariat was not a Christian — Roger Ebert on another critic on the new movie. Weird. Just weird. And especially odd in light of this article mocking conservative messages in movies, highlighting the same film. (That last via markbourne.)

Heavy Lifting: 1908 — I do loves me some big, clanky engineering.

Get the anti-science bent out of politics — Michael Mann, subject of the Virginia AG’s anti-science witch hunt, responds. We have lived through the pseudo-science that questioned the link between smoking cigarettes and lung cancer, and the false claims questioning the science of acid rain and the hole in the ozone layer. The same dynamics and many of the same players are still hard at work, questioning the reality of climate change. The basic physics and chemistry of how carbon dioxide and other human-produced greenhouse gases trap heat in the lower atmosphere have been understood for nearly two centuries. The deliberate, aggressive know-nothingism of the modern GOP, purely for political purposes, will be one of the things history judges this era’s GOP most harshly for.

Scrivener’s Error on (among other things) the difference between liberalism and libertarianism — I will add that these days libertarianism seems to have become synonymous with being a Republican. Which is odd, because many of the Libertarian Party’s stated policies are very much anathema to conservatives. It’s all about the taxes, I guess, at least when it’s not all about the faux-Fox outrage du jour.

Energized GOP can thank the tea party[T]he interest and commitment among many tea party supporters still appear likely to be a big asset to GOP candidates as they seek to turn out a big vote. At some point this pretense of the independence of the Tea Party movement will collapse. Funded by Republicans, populated by Republicans, voting for Republicans.

Being Glenn Beck — A lengthy and interest profile of Glenn Beck from NYT. Seems to confirm what I’ve thought about him for a while — where Rush and O’Reilly seem to be rank opportunists who know exactly what damage they are doing (and don’t care so long as they profit by it), Beck actually believes in his own tripe.

[links] Link salad wonders about moist

Don’t forget the latest caption contest voting poll

You Call – We Respond — A firefighter comments on this past week’s news story about the house burndown in Tennessee.

The stigma geneBad Science on an interesting intersection between genetics, medicine and social perceptions of illness and disability.

See the Future with a SearchA Web startup demos a “predictive” search engine.

The End of the Tunnel — Paul Krugman on the cancellation of the NY-NJ tunnel project, and what that says about infrastructure, politics and vision.

Times Square bomber: Cause and effect in the War on Terror — It’s so much more comfortable not to think about this stuff, isn’t it? I’m looking at you, conservative America, but also the rest of us.

Why is This GOP House Candidate Dressed as a Nazi? — Godwin’s Law has apparently come to life. Waffen SS re-enactor running for Congress on GOP ticket.

?otD: What’s your least favorite word? (Or “cringe” word.)

Writing time yesterday: 1.25 hours
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 8.0 hours (briefly interrupted)
This morning’s weigh-in: 240.2
Yesterday’s chemo/post-op stress index: 3/10 (fatigue, peripheral neuropathy)
Currently (re)reading: The Exile Kiss by George Alec Effinger

[links] Link salad contemplates languages and lexemes

Don’t forget the latest caption contest voting poll

An in-depth review of (among other things) my short story “The Goat Cutter”

Mainspring is reviewed by a German an Austrian reader — In German.

Hadley Rille 5K – Commemorating 5 Years of Exceptional Publishing! — One of my publishers, and a terrific small press, is having an anniversary sale. Check it out, some great titles there. Also a Kindle 3G giveaway going on.

Undocumented language found hidden in India — I find this kind of story pretty darned cool.

tongodeon with an excellent post on trust and credibility

So that’s why Koch funded a major evolution exhibitBut, for instance, what they do is illustrate the temperature changes in a graph covering the last 10 million years, which makes it easy to hide the very abrupt and rapid rise in the last few centuries. They also elide over an obvious fact: we’d rather not experience natural selection. Climate change may have shaped our species, but it did so by killing us Ah, climate change denial. For when the facts are biased against you.

The global warming witch hunt continues — Being a petty-minded nutbar has long been an important qualification for public office as a Republican (Bachmann, DeMint, Bunning, etc.), but it seems to be nearly mandatory nowadays.

The Moonie Times on the Obama Muslim BandwagonA fundamentalist Christian takeover of government is infinitely more likely than a Muslim takeover. Anyone who thinks that Muslims are in the process of conquering America is either unbelievably stupid or paranoid to the point of being mentally ill. Um, yeah.

?otD: What’s your favorite word?

Writing time yesterday: 1 hour
Body movement: 50 minute suburban walk
Hours slept: 7.5 hours (solid)
This morning’s weigh-in: 238.8
Yesterday’s chemo/post-op stress index: 3/10 (fatigue, peripheral neuropathy)
Currently (re)reading: The Exile Kiss by George Alec Effinger