Thursday, December 28, 2006


Many women like taller guys. This sucks, but is true. I like taller guys too, you know why, because I'm tall. 6' tall to be exact. So today when I watched a little video on about height and it's affects in the work place, I thought I might find out about how height affects my life.

Video: Are you tall enough?* (I'm not sure if this link will work, I tried to e-mail it to myself.)

The tagline for the piece was an extra inch is worth $800. Which sounds like an interesting statistic. But the whole piece is ridiculously unscientific. The guy who wrote Blink is on it talking about how it is so unfair that tall guys have the edge. And I'm sure he had more valuable things to say about height than that.

But apparently that's not interesting enough. The piece de reisstance, they take some guys to a speed dating affair and "prove" it by finding that the chicks were more positive about the Tall Guys. They even say it is not scientific, so WHY do it, It's completely retarded. What if the short guys they picked just happened to be gomers, and that's why they got rated lower. And the stereotypes they put on the guys AH! Disgusting! Then they even go out of their way to make the girls feel bad about liking the tall guys more. They call this news?????? Come ON!

And then the piece ends and I'm thinking. So what about the women? Women can't be tall too? I mean we are on average shorter, but height affects our lives too! IF it doesn't matter if women are tall then they should say so. But that seems unlikely, considering the many times I have had people stand next to me and go "Wow, you're taaaaaaaallllll."

To me it seems like they are saying that the affects of height in the workplace and the dating scene ONLY matter to men. Well they matter to me! They only talk about its affects on men's salary, as if women don't have salaries to worry about, nor do women ever date or have to get things off of shelves apparently.

What the fuck CNN? Way to leave half the population out of your completely stupid news piece.

This is me, sticking to print from now on.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Eragon: The book, The film, The horror

There is nothing that fills me with the ranting outrage as much as the holidays, except perhaps, perfectly good books that are made into movies.

I read Eragon a number of years ago, and I was never quite shiny with it being shelved, constantly, in the Children's or Young Adult section. It's a good book, and it being written by a 15 year old doesn't make it any less complex. But publishers do as publishers will.

What I wish they HADN"T done was sign away the movie rights and turn a perfectly good book into whatever the hell THAT was. It was horrible beyond my wildest imaginings. I loved this book, LOVED, and I almost walked out of the movie, the only think that kept me there were the crying 5 year olds to my left and right.

The beginning of the movie was promising. I had hopes, it was pretty, the graphics were good. But I began to doubt when plot points were eradicated for no apparent reason. Alot of the early stuff wasn't like the book, but some of the changes were unnecessary. They sped up the dragon's ageing, totally understandable. But then they changed completely unrelated stuff and added in a whole schtick about people being forced to join the militia, to explain something, that was explained perfectly well in the book.

But after that they just started ommitting things. Some understandable, some not, whole sections of the plot gone. Cities that were described in breathtaking beauty and detail, replaced with some wooden sticks that look like something out of the swiss family robinson. Characters, that had actual character reduced to being just that guy standing there for five minutes. They removed all of this to make a book that's around 500 pages (I don't have my copy so forgive factual innaccuracy) fit into an hour and a half! That's right an hour and a half! And while they didn't have time for character development, actual sets, or plot, they DID have time for cheesy dialog and a romance that very markedly DOESN"T HAPPEN in the book. Ultimately I'm glad it was too short. I couldn't have stood another 5 minutes, much less another half hour

Which brings me to another point entirely, if you aren't going to do a good job, a la Lord of the Rings, then why bother to make the book into a movie at all? Most Americans are literate, and it would do them some good to read a good book instead of saying "oh I'll just watch the movie." My 17 year old cousin has never read Harry Potter because she can just whatch the movie. And no amount of talking is going to convince her that the book contains a world of detail that the movie cannot even imagine.

I'm not saying that books are a better media, or that no movies should be made from books. But why does EVERY good book have to be made into a movie? Some books are just better as books, and making them a movie is spoiling something amazing. So Hollywood, unless you're going to do a good job, STOP IT! You're ruining a people's chance for actual literacy.

Boxing Day

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas!!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Don't Chew on your Pencil

From Think Progress:

“The Bush administration is considering doing away with health standards that cut lead from gasoline, widely regarded as one of the nation’s biggest clean-air accomplishments,” the AP reports. “Battery makers, lead smelters, refiners all have lobbied the administration to do away with the Clean Air Act limits.”

It's hard for me to even begin to understand why we would do away with limits on lead in gasoline. Granted most cars these days only run on unleaded gasoline. But the potential damage from lead poisoning is severe.

From the EPA's own website:
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 1978 there were 13.5 million children in the United States with elevated blood lead levels (i.e., 10µg/dl). By 2002, that number had dropped to 310,000 kids.

Note that 1979 was the year the EPA standards forced lead out of gasoline.

It is also worthwhile to note that any exposure to lead, even small exposures has an effect on developing children:

Blood lead levels as low as 10 micrograms per deciliter can impair mental and physical development. EPA's Integrated Risk Information System profile on Lead and Lead Compounds The effects of lead exposure on fetuses and young children can be severe. They include delays in physical and mental development, lower IQ levels, shortened attention spans, and increased behavioral problems.

Now normally I'm not one to cry "the Children, the Children." But lead poisoning is a serious issue. And while the likelihood of people using leaded gasoline again seems slim, I have to wonder if this would also allow refiners, battery makers, and all those groups listed above to release more lead particles into the air as part of their manufacturing processes.

Or it could just be that the regulations are poorly formulated and ridiculous. But, we have no idea at this point. And that makes me a little suspicious.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


I will never, NEVER understand people who defend the use of torture. It is disgusting and abhorrent to human nature. Nor is it really that productive. To me it reeks of people who are both afraid and drunk with power simultaneously. (NOt that that makes any sense) Why the outburst, this.

Revolting. And I'm offended that acts like this are being carried out in the name of Americans. I would rather die in a terrorist attack than have to live knowing that any people innocent or guilty were subjected to torture in order to protect me. But honestly I don't think that torturing people really has any affect whatsoever on my chances of being killed by terrorists.