Quick Roundup 282

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Jumpin' Geminids!

Doug Peltz has the scoop on an upcoming meteor shower:

Here in North America, the best time for viewing will be the evening of Thursday, December 13 (with the meteor rate increasing as the night goes on) and somewhat also the evening of Friday, December 14 (declining as the night goes on).
In an email to the OList, he also mentions that, "This year will be especially good since the Moon won't be around to drown out the fainter meteor streaks."

$150.00 (Cheap!)

As a kid, I enjoyed reading my parents' rather extensive Mad magazine collection. Via Arts and Letters Daily, I have learned that for the princely sum of 150 smackers, one can buy a two-volume set celebrating artist Don Martin's contributions to the magazine.

Holleran Pans Golden Compass

I enjoyed The Golden Compass. Qwertz "was neither disappointed nor blown away".

And Scott Holleran?
Loaded with intellectual ammunition, such as Lyra demanding to know why someone helps her, saving self first and a noble character refusing to live in shame, religionists are right to sense that The Golden Compass is not another Biblical fantasy, but directional signals are not a sense of direction, so neither is it a secular alternative.
I often agree with Holleran's interviews, but in this case, I think he's being a bit too hard on the movie.

Concentrated Nanny-State Imbecility

California is going to order a study of the effects of caffeine on pregnant women and their fetuses so it can label caffeine-containing soft drinks for their protection, and yet:
The label requirement would not cover coffee and tea, which have much higher caffeine levels, because the stimulant occurs naturally in those beverages. Proposition 65 only applies to chemicals that are added to foods or products.


The College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the March of Dimes, the Mayo Clinic and other health organizations have said that moderate amounts of caffeine -- about two cups of coffee a day or seven soft drinks a day -- are safe for pregnant women. [bold added]
Wow! You have man-made caffeine as evil and "natural" caffeine as good, a government-funded study as a prelude to new regulation, and only partial protection from negligible risk all rolled into one!

And we haven't even brought up the fact that concerned women could just take the simple expedient on their own of avoiding caffeine.

Who says that California doesn't waste public funds efficiently?

-- CAV


Adrian Hester said...

Yo, Gus, the guy claims to be a long-standing afficionado of Mad, but reread this sentence: "In those days an issue cost 25 cents (cheap!) and featured not only the smiling freckled face of Alfred E. Neuman, but also the double-crossing antics of Sergio Aragones' Spy vs. Spy, parodies in verse by the ingenious Frank Jacobs, and the ever-popular send-ups of current television shows and popular films." Sergio Aragones?!? Spy vs. Spy was by the great Antonio Prohias. (If you buy the Don Martins, you might also pick up this fine book--a mere bagatelle compared to that $150 price tag.)

Gus Van Horn said...

While we're making old pop-cultural references: D'oh!

But seriously: Good catch! I'll admit that I've made that mistake myself!

And thanks for the tip.

Anonymous said...

California... what a country!

Of course, the Brits are quick to remind us: it could be worse.


Gus Van Horn said...

Hmmm. I usually reserve the following for left-handed compliments but it seems appropriate here for the bad news:

Thanks, I guess!

Regulating the thickness of a slice of freakin' bread? Damn!