Monthly Archives: December 2002

Historical typo?

This is from “The Illustrated Story of Copyright”, a present from rebekah, in a chapter discussing the formation and growth of the Library of Congress. Anyway, during the war of 1812, Canada and America had enormous fun sending drunks across the border to burn down each other's parliament buildings, including the big one at Queen and Bay in Toronto that many of you've probably seen (the antique sitting in front of the big curved one featured in Star Trek), as well as the White House and the original Library of Congress in the States.

But the quote really got me chuckling in a “Canadians still live in igloos, right?” kind of way — if I'm remembering correctly, what it meant to say is “…the Parliament Building in York, Upper Canada, now Toronto, Ontario”. I realize that one could argue that what they've written is correct, but it's very oddly worded if so, since it points out one name change (York to Toronto) but not the other.

Well, I thought it was funny…


According to Russia, North Korea is just blowing smoke. While they do admit their intelligence on the subject is ten years out of date, the quote is still kind of funny in it's “listen, you bunch of over-reacting idiots” simplicity:

North Korea does not have the capacity to put together nuclear weapons. A developed industry is needed for that.

Link: War Toys' Camouflage of National Character

Anyway, other than that I'm working away madly on the New Year's update. In the my-life-as-a-soap-opera division, my sister and Rachel are in Toronto. I guess my mother is worried that she's getting subverted, as I just got an email from her telling me what a disservice I'm doing to young people by running BME, and that I shouldn't be telling people that they have rights that they don't have… That I'd be doing the world a favor if I just shut down any editorial aspect to the site and “ran it like a real business”.

Some people just don't get what's important…

PS. I'm not an idiot. Don't think that you can send me a two page email telling me how what I believe in is destroying the world, and then follow it with a “but I accept you no matter what you choose” and have me believe it…


OK, so I measured the barn, and with his approval, Rob's Skate Barn could be functional soon. Basically it's two 9.5' vert ramps, a bit tighter than a standard half-pipe, with a mini-ramp running perpendicular to it, all fit inside a big old barn (yee-haw!). It's set up so that in the future a full bowl, or at least a quarter of one, could be built.

No, there's no way this thing will be built for New Year's, but it'll definitely be there for the next spring BBQ, so bring your board to that one. Thanks to everyone who's been offering me advice on this project!

Update: Being realistic, those will probably end up as 7' vert ramps, just because of size constraints in the barn.

I'm not MUCH of an inventor…

So in the pictures above you can see the contraption I made to pass sound to the outdoor speakers. Four speaker wires hook up to the stereo as normal, but then the negative lines merge (since they're just a ground basically). I pass those three lines into a standard female three-prong power plug (so the ground wire carries the negative foundation, and the left and right positive/negative terminals represent the two positive speaker connections), and then at the other end do the same in reverse but with a male plug.

As a result, I can use standard three-prong extension cord, rather than speaker cable, to pass the signal to the speakers out in the field. Not only that, but if I want more than one speaker pair, all I have to do is use a power bar or something to split the signal. Or if I want to I can even use a power bar with a breaker in it to protect the speakers from getting blown.

Meh, it's beautiful in its simplicity.

In other news, the US admits to using torture (more and more) as a means of obtaining information from potential witnesses and enemies of the state, ignoring the fact that they're Geneva Convention violations. Add to the big picture the 50% tax cut for the rich… The fall of the United States from first world independent and free nation to failing third world oppressive superpower is very sad to watch. Very sad.

At least Bush has now slipped back to 55% approval (according to CNN). He hasn't been that low since September 10, 2001 — seriously, I'm not making that date up — on September 11th, 2001 he jumped up to 86% (show me the logic there; allow your people to get sacrificed so you can get richer and they like you more). Anyway, the problem is that under the ultra-limited two-party right-wing political spectrum that the American people have to choose from, there isn't really much alternative provided at election time anyway…

Obligatory feel good story.

On the other hand, developments in Asia are increasingly disturbing. Lots of nuclear bombs (or maybe not) in North Korea… but what's interesting is that South Koreans don't particularly fear the North — they fear America, as to them, and most of the world, America has become a warmongering nation that bases its foreign policy on lies and extortion. Seriously, what a sad comment that a literally insane dictator with nuclear weaponry is considered more safe and sane than the US government.

I wonder… When did the people of Rome realize that Rome had fallen?

BBQ Shirts

Below are photos of the New Year's BBQ shirt (link to the BBQ above), as well as the misprint (weird colors) hoodies we'll be selling for (I think) $20 CDN (about $13 US) at the BBQ. Seriously: $20 for a high-quality hooded sweatshirt!

Also, Ryan has a pile of giveaways of various odd BME shirts that will be given to folks who buy BBQ shirts, and I have a stack of the temporary tattoos (take a bunch). In addition, he's got a stack of toques put aside… So it's goodie-o-rama!

PS. The Greyhound bus does go through Tweed since Tweed is on the short-cut to Ottawa. If people can get themselves to Tweed, I'm sure we can get them here. Post in the event forum if you want to do that.