Saturday, July 4, 2015

Un-American Chronicles now available

Hey, y'all!

I'd like to draw your attention to fellow blog Arion's Archaic Art where you can find that blogger's comic Un-American Chronicles available via ComiXology. This looks amazing! And apparently there is a sweepstakes that will allow you to win other comics.

Hey, Arion! If you see this, tell us what the comic is about in the comments section.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Currently Reading

In 1979 Robert Penn Warren returned to his native Todd Country, Kentucky, to attend ceremonies in honor of another native son, Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederacy, whose United States citizenship had just been restored, ninety years after his death, by a special act of Congress. From that nostalgic journey grew this reflective essay on the tragic career of Jefferson Davis -- "not a modern man in any sense of the word but a conservative called to manage what was, in one sense, a revolution." "Jefferson Davis Gets His Citizenship Back" is also a meditation by one of our most respected men of letters on the ironies of American history and the paradoxes of the modern South.

With "The South" being so much in the news lately, I (re) picked up this book (I'd read it several years ago and don't remember much of it.). This is actually the only book by Warren that I've ever read but I know enough about him - Kentucky author, Todd County is just south of my own Muhlenberg, poet - that I think I trust his view of the world and the world he comes from.

Someone that I respect went on a "the Confederate flag is a matter of heritage" tirade on Facebook, so I "unfollowed" him, but I understand where the tirade comes from. You really have to get away from the world that reared you to see the falseness of some of the things that are held dear. It's a matter of perspective. So in this instance I'm turning (as I typically turn to Mark Twain and H.L. Mencken) to Robert Penn Warren for perspective.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Tony's 1981

While looking for something else in the June 1981 Lexington Leader I found this picture from that year's Tony Awards.

From left: Kevin Kline, Jane Lapotaire, Lauren Bacall, and hot as fuck Ian McKellan.

Source: The Lexington Leader, 8 June 1981.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

I've been away

Hey, boys and girls.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Ahhh. Is this the wee beastie?

Via Telegraph: Has Google Found the Loch Ness Monster?

Toni Morrison on NPR

Image and quote via NPR

"When I'm not creating or focusing on something I can imagine or invent, I think I go back over my life — I don't recommend this, by the way — and you pick up, 'Oh, what did you do that for? Why didn't you understand this?' Not just with children, as a parent, but with other people, with friends. ... It's not profound regret; it's just a wiping up of tiny little messes that you didn't recognize as mess when they were going on."

I love today's Google Doodle

As a kid, the 001 and 133 sections of the card catalog were my favorite: vampires, UFOs, Atlantis, Bigfoot and Nessie were some of my favorite reads.

In maturing, I've upgraded to the 398 section: fairy tales and folklore.

Or haven't. Depending on your perspective.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

And the spoiler shall come upon every city...

Via Slate's You're not afraid of spoilers; you're afraid of the future

Game of Thrones presents a particularly striking example of the complicated interplay between time and spoilers. Because the television series has hewn unusually closely to the books on which it’s based (though that may be changing), those who’ve read its source material come to each episode with a great deal of knowledge about what to expect. This threatens to layer spoilers on top of spoilers in discussions of the show, as readers gleefully anticipate events that mere viewers could never predict. Before long, that situation will be reversed, as the show will surpass the plot of the novels. Because the show’s creators claim they’ll be working from George R.R. Martin’s plot outlines, this means those who prefer the books may have the subsequent volumes spoiled years before they have the opportunity to read them. Their less well-read siblings, however, will be safer than ever before, finally watching the story as it unfolds.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Tove Jansson is the Best Person Ever

Via A Different Stripe where you can also read the 2015 PEN Literary Awards Longlist

Oyster Review: 100 Best Books of the Decade...

...so far.

The Trolls of the Hugo Awards

So apparently a bunch of straight, white, conservative guys came up out of their parents' basements and decided to take over the Hugo Awards.

Read about it via Slate - also that's where the image comes from too.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Conservatives in the Stacks

Image via Brick Row Book Shop

Via American Libraries

If we would stop condemning conservatives and begin talking to them, I am confident that we can convince them that libraries fit very nicely into their political agenda:

  • Conservatives say they are into self improvement—the great American pastime of pulling oneself up by one’s bootstraps. The library is probably the number one self-help institution in America. It’s where immigrants go to learn how to assimilate and succeed.
  • Conservatives say they believe strongly in family values. What institution in America does more to serve families than libraries? We cater to the needs of everyone in the extended family from infants to great-grandparents. Go to any (open) public library on a Saturday morning, and you will see that it is filled with families.
  • Conservatives say that they believe in fiscal responsibility. What American institution does more with less than the library? What government agency serves more people? What city department gives you more bang for the buck?
  • Conservatives say they believe in the Bill of Rights and in particular the protection of their religious liberties afforded by the First Amendment. What profession does more to protect First Amendment rights than the library profession? Our profession’s First Amendment emphasis may differ from the conservative movement’s emphasis, but here at least is a place to start a constructive give and take of views.
  • Conservatives say they believe strongly in the importance of religion. What institution does more to provide a wide range of information about all the world’s religions than the library?

In related news, this is what so-called conservatives aren't happy about when it comes to Kentucky libraries: KY Appeals Court: Library Taxes Legal

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

After such a long day of such serious blogging...

...I'll leave this right here.

Younger's Nico Tortorella via Buzzfeed

If you click over, just skip all the questions and go for the gifs.

So, Trevor Noah is gorgeous

Image via The Times

So this should be interesting.

Pedal backwards faster, PEDAL BACKWARDS FASTER

Image of Mike Pence doing a crossword puzzle poorly from The Daily Beast

Facing a national uproar over a religious freedom law, Gov. Mike Pence of Indiana said Tuesday that he wanted the measure changed by week’s end, even as he stepped up a vigorous defense of the law, rejecting claims that it would allow business to deny services to gays and lesbians.

“I’ve come to the conclusion that it would be helpful to move legislation this week that makes it clear that this law does not give businesses the right to discriminate against anyone,” Mr. Pence, a Republican, said at a news conference in Indianapolis.

He acknowledged that the law, called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, had become a threat to the state’s reputation and economy, with companies and organizations signaling that they would avoid Indiana in response to it. Mr. Pence said he had been on the phone with business leaders from around the country, adding, “We want to make it clear that Indiana’s open for business.”

But the governor, clearly exasperated and sighing audibly in response to questions, seemed concerned mostly with defending the law and the intent behind it, saying, “We’ve got a perception problem,” not one of substance. He referred to “gross mischaracterizations,” “reckless reporting by some in the media,” “completely false and baseless” accounts of the law, and “the smear that’s been leveled against this law and against the people of Indiana.”

“Don’t leave us. Stay with us until we get past this thing.”

Via the New York Times

More than 80 people [in a community of about 4200] in Scott County have tested positive for H.I.V. since December, mostly in the last few weeks. They range in age from 20 to 56, and health officials say almost all of them live in Austin, which sits along Interstate 65 about 80 miles south of Indianapolis, surrounded by rural space. The outbreak, the worst in Indiana’s history, stems largely from the intravenous use of the prescription painkiller Opana, which everyone from the police to pastors to the owner of the city’s sole grocery recognizes as a plague on one ragged neighborhood in particular.

Trickle to Torrent

Via the New York Times: Gay Marriage State by State: a trickle became a torrent

Rand Paul is only a libertarian when HE benefits

Image and quote from Buzzfeed

"Lifestyle"? Really? What is this 1994?

Sen. Rand Paul said he doesn’t buy into the concept of gay rights because they are defined by a gay person’s lifestyle.

“I don’t think I’ve ever used the word gay rights, because I don’t really believe in rights based on your behavior,” the Kentucky Republican told reporters in a videotaped interview that has received little attention since it was recorded in 2013.

But it’s unclear how far — and to whom — Paul extends the argument that rights cannot be defined by behavior.

Practicing religion, for example, is a behavior enshrined as a primary American right. Free speech is behavior protected by the Bill of Rights. Likewise, a person’s right to be free from discrimination for his or her nation of origin — which entails the behavior of moving from one country to the United States — is embedded in America’s civil rights laws and broader code of values.

Does Paul believe those behaviors are protected rights?

Eleanor May, a spokesperson for Paul’s 2016 reelection campaign to the U.S. Senate, said the rights that count are those in the country’s founding charter. “What he is saying in this video is that he does not classify rights based on behavior, but rather recognizes rights for all, as our Constitution defines it,” May told BuzzFeed News.

“Sen. Paul is the biggest proponent for protecting the Bill of Rights, which, as you know, protects the rights of all Americans as stated in our Constitution,” May said.

The campaign did not reply to BuzzFeed News’ question seeking clarification on gay people’s rights not associated with their behavior.

Reports have shown gay people are the victims of persistent discrimination — perhaps most notably, in the workplace, as this Williams Institute report found — not because of any behavior they have engaged in, but for being gay or being perceived as gay. Of the 5,928 hate crimes reported by the FBI in December 2014, 20.8% were against people for their their sexual orientation, overwhelmingly in public places including streets, sidewalks, stores, schools, and public transit where victims are unlikely to be engaged in homosexual behavior.

This is not the only time Paul has commented on gay rights — not that he would call them that. Earlier in March, he said same-sex marriage “offends myself and a lot of people.” And last week, Paul argued same-sex marriage results from a “moral crisis” that will require “another Great Awakening with tent revivals of thousands of people saying, ‘reform or see what’s going to happen if we don’t reform.’”