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Saturday, January 25, 2014

Beginnings of a Trend?

I've noticed several cable dramas have cast comic actors for dramatic roles.

Spotted:  Dana Gould and Simon Pegg on Mob City.

Spotted:  Dave Foley and Will Sasso on Justified.  (Last season had Mike O'Malley and Patton Oswalt.)

Those are just two examples, but I bet ten years ago, none of these guys would have even gotten auditions much less the part.

Things in TV have changed, man.

The Job

I bitch about the schedule (painful) and the poorly trained, poorly motivated people I have to deal with, but there are a few good things about my job.

For example:

On Tuesday, I wrapped up a 60 hour week that started last week.  Because of the timing, it turns out that on my timesheet, I would have one week that has 30 hours and another that has 60.  I wanted the overtime, but didn't necessarily want to use a vacation day to make up the missing time on the short week.

So I asked my boss how he thought I should put that down on my timesheet.  Do you know what he said?  I quote:

Which would get you more money?
It's almost like he didn't get the memo outlining how corporations are obligated to cheat their hourly employees out of their hard-earned compensation.  Don't you know, Boss, that you're supposed to figure out how to pay me less and here you are, trying to get me more money?

And you call yourself an American.....

Kiev

A contrast in styles.

American protestors:
Ukrainian protestors:

Here are a lot of other photos, showing just how medieval it's getting in Kiev.

The main difference, it seems to me, is that the American protestors are more than happy to sit there and let the cops mace them...and the Ukrainian protestors, well, aren't

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Globeville

Last week I took my nephew to a job interview at the National Western Complex down in Globeville.  I was going to bide my time at the library while he interviewed, but the library was actually closed.

So I drove around, wandering aimlessly.  It was a pretty cold, bleak day and the sights and smells of Globeville, along with a few other things worming through my head, ignited a flash of inspiration, which I'll get to in a moment.

First, a little about Globeville.  It's a neighborhood that's pretty bleak even on a sunny day.  Going back to the city's founding, it's mostly been an industrial area, with old smelting factories and food plants.  The smelting operations are gone, a toxic Superfund site left in its wake, but there remains many an industrial operation.

Over two generations ago, the U.S. highway system cut the neighborhood in half with a now-crumbling elevated viaduct.  Its shadow looms over the neighborhood, a symbol not just of its isolation but its invisibility. 

Not far from the National Western Complex, just north off Brighton Boulevard, lies Riverside Cemetery, a place haunted by neglect, half-forgotten and unused.  Not a blade of grass remains and the only visitors are geese, wandering amidst the headstones.
The day before, I had been reading a novel called Death of a Red Heroine by Qiu Xiaolong, a murder mystery set in 90s China.  I had also watched the first episode of the new HBO series True Detective, a murder mystery set in 90s Louisiana.

Subconsciously, you could say I had murder on my mind, and after spending a good hour wandering through this bleak, cold environment, I had concocted a murder mystery of my own.  I scribbled a couple pages of notes in my notebook and started writing.

I'm not sure I'll finish it, though.  I was thinking a little bit more about it the other day and it occurred to me that the "solution" that I had come up with for my mystery just wasn't that interesting.  But I do like the chunk I put down.

If you want to read it, click through the jump.

Monday, January 20, 2014

More Snowden

Oh, good....I'm not the only one who is skeptical of Edward Snowden's methods or intentions.  Here's a fairly long article on the subject in the New Republic:
Snowden, Greenwald, and Assange hardly subscribe to identical beliefs, and differ in their levels of sophistication. They have held, at one time or another, a crazy-quilt assortment of views, some of them blatantly contradictory. But from an incoherent swirl of ideas, a common outlook emerges. The outlook is neither a clear-cut doctrine nor a philosophy, but something closer to a political impulse that might be described, to borrow from the historian Richard Hofstadter, as paranoid libertarianism. Where liberals, let alone right-wingers, have portrayed the leakers as truth-telling comrades intent on protecting the state and the Constitution from authoritarian malefactors, that’s hardly their goal. In fact, the leakers despise the modern liberal state, and they want to wound it.
As they say, read the whole thing.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Super Bowl!

I worked all night last night, covering for a guy, and I gotta work all night tonight, too.  I tried to watch the game, but passed out.

When I woke up....I couldn't check scores fast enough.

AND THE BRONCOS ARE GOING TO THE SUPER BOWL! 

Cherokee Seeds - Not for White People

As soon as I saw the headline, I was interested:
Cherokee seed project sows respect for the past, hope for the future

As an avid gardener who has a thing for growing heirloom plants developed over the centuries by Native Americans, I instantly wanted some Cherokee seeds.

Alas, I was born into the wrong demographic:
The Cherokee Indians are preserving the roots of their heritage with a program that allows officially recognized members of the tribe to access seeds that are unique to the Cherokee Nation.
Okay, then.  Guess I'll stick with the seeds I can get from nativeseeds.org