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Friday, September 29, 2006

 
[#] [2]
hey, you can buy hp lovecraft film fest tix online this year!

Thursday, September 28, 2006

 
[#] [0]
wow! did you know you can listen to portland's police scanner online?

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

 
[#] [2]
it's not a coincidence that the highest profile school shootings are in colorado. repressive regimes produce dangerous people.

 
[#] [0]
crap.

the house passed the "child interstate abortion act" yesterday, a bill that would make it a federal crime for anyone other than a parent to help a young woman cross state lines to get abortion services. the senate passed a similar bill in july. with only a few days left in this legislative session, it’s unlikely the house & the senate will manage to pass identical versions of the bill (which has to happen to get it to the president's desk), but it just means we'll have to fight this again in the next session, and despair in the meantime.

what would the world look like if women had the freedom to choose what was right for themselves? i'm beginning to forget. if it comes down to it, i'm volunteering to organize an underground abortion shuttle service.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

 
[#] [0]
the "student & teacher safety act" is just obedience training for future citizens: getting kids used to random, warrantless searches will make them more compliant and less resistant to future abuses. but it's not how to educate citizens about living in a free country.

although given the developing legislation against sites like myspace or any web2.0 site which contains a profile, plus parental consent laws, it looks to me we're returning to an era where "children" are supposed to be invisible and servile.

Friday, September 22, 2006

 
[#] [0]
i'm trying to renew my lipitor prescription online. the walgreen's HIPPA "notice of privacy practices" has a line that includes
Fundraising. We may contact you as part of a fundraising effort.
what?

walgreen's is something i may need to boycott, anyway: target & walgreens allow its pharmacists to refuse to dispense medications on moral grounds (like, say, plan b). grrrrr.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

 
[#] [6]
celeste's backup partition was the same size as eliot's had been: 20gb, even though celeste has a much bigger drive. last night i discovered celeste has outgrown that partition, so tonight i repartioned the backup drives -- forgetting that the leftover chunk is where we keep all the music (all 60gb of it).

so.... does anyone know of a free data recovery tool or partion-undoer or unix magic for mac os x? i haven't touched the disk since i repartioned it, so i know all that data is still there, invisible. how do i get it back?

Monday, September 18, 2006

 
[#] [0]
the senate is deciding whether to pardon bush for illegally wiretapping us. are you going to let him get away with that? (the correct answer is um, no.)

Sunday, September 17, 2006

 
[#] [0]
today i went for an "edible forest" walk at the tryon creek state park where we began a half hour late and unfortunately didn't really eat anything except fruit, nuts & mushrooms from trader joe's. but i had never been to tryon creek, so it was a nice sunday walk in the woods.

things we ate:
* indian plum: leaves that taste like cucumbers
* faux solomon's seal: tasty red translucent berries
* waterleaf
* snowberries: just one (in large quantities, it's used as a laxative)

and things that were pointed to but that we did not eat:
* nettles (but our guide was not about to touch them)
* licorice fern (the roots)
* red huckleberries
* fiddleheads, specifically from ladyferns
* oregon grape
* thimbleberries: the fruits are edible; the leaves are soft and large enough to use as "woodsman's toilet paper"
* elderberries: poisonous, but the fruits can be cooked to remove the toxin

Saturday, September 16, 2006

 
[#] [1]
ooo, we finally have faster dsl service! now we're speedin' along at 1.5mps! (thanks, sven!)

so this is a great time to mention that the ted blog has a video from eve ensler, the creator of the vagina monologues.

now, i've written about the vagina monologues before, and while i can't say that i would see it again, it's a worthwhile cause to support. eve speaks compellingly about how it became a movement and how its creation saves lives. two things, in particular, at the end, stood out for me:

1. when she was a child in an abusive household, she created an imaginary character named "mr. alligator" whom she would call for help. "mr. alligator? would you come pick me up, please?" and she would pack her bag and wait for him. mr. alligator never did come, but the hope that he -would- kept her alive. and i cried and cried and cried when i heard that, because i understand it. i didn't have a mr. alligator, but believing you will be able to leave someday -is- the only thing that keeps you sane when you aren't safe. all abused children who live to tell the tale keep hope inside them like a secret pearl. we are optomists, even if we are small and scared, even if we are angry and mean. we know eventually we can find the way out. we can find our own way home.

2. not long after that story she says, "when we give in the world what we want the most, we heal the broken part inside each of us." which feels very like what i'm trying to do with the studio events. and it rings true for me in the same way ghandi's "you must be the change you wish to see in the world" does. so yes, we each had variously traumatic childhoods, but what are you doing about it NOW? trying to do the right thing -matters-. other people -matter-. your voice -matters-. when you're free to make your own choices, you only get what you give.

Friday, September 15, 2006

 
[#] [1]
i sent my grandmother a check on her 80th birthday to repay her for some money she lent me in college after i had an auto accident & had to hire a lawyer. she didn't know what to do with it: she called my parents to ask if she should cash it, then called me and asked if i had really meant to send it and if i needed the money. i told her she should use it on her next trip to scotland. this has been something i've wanted to repay for years, and is the very last debt i owed anyone, anywhere. hooray!

except the check bounced. *winces* i forgot to transfer the money from my savings account, and the overdraft didn't kick in for whatever reason. i have NEVER, ever bounced a check before, so to do it now is just horrifying. i am so very embarassed. nothing to do now but to send her another check (after triple-checking the funds are, indeed, in the account this time *sigh*).

Thursday, September 14, 2006

 
[#] [0]
the rains have begun. but at least they've brought thunder & lightning with them today.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

 
[#] [0]
yes. i'm still. sick. my lungs are making little creaking noises now. i went to the doctor yesterday who sent me home with prescriptions for an antibiotic, a cough suppressant & a cough syrup w/ codeine. none of this seems to affected the cold, but i took the cough syrup before i went to sleep and it knocked me out.

michaelmas is sick, too. :(

and the scarlet letters blog is sick, too: we got over 920 spams last night, wave upon wave of different notes saying "nice site!" that didn't even link to anything legitimate. fortunately, that seems to have passed now, though my mail is still molasses.

we'll see sven's parents tomorrow, and i worry i just don't have enough energy for it.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

 
[#] [2]
so volunteering at the "no on 43" table was not as horrible as i feared. i was really scared to do this, in part because i hate being accosted in public places by petitioners, and in part because i wasn't sure i could talk about this issue in a cogent manner, so i might actually convince someone to vote yes, which would horrify me. but as it turned out, most people, even when they didn't agree with you, were fairly polite about it, and after the first couple of times, i didn't come off sounding like a complete idiot.

the booth was tucked in an odd corner which meant most of the traffic swooped around it instead of past it, and i had trouble finding it at first because the neighboring "ANKLETS" sign obscured the "no on 43" banner. also, there was no signage for planned parenthood or naral, the two groups who staffed this booth.

of course, you know something's up when -i'm- the most gregarious person there. i was certainly the youngest person there by at least 20 years. i had hoped to be able to observe a couple of seasoned professionals who had spoken about no on 43 before so i could get a feel for it before trying it myself. but only one of us had ever tabled before, and he hadn't done it for this measure, so we were all starting from scratch. after a brief self-orientation to the materials, i realized nobody else was going to start talking to people, so i took a deep breath and began.

it was always surpising to discover who was willing to oppose parental notification. in the course of my 4-hour shift, i spoke to:
* a man who said, " if a girl is pregnant that young, then something's already wrong with the relationship with the parents."
* a burly guy who immediately signed almost without comment, until i asked him afterwards what his story was. he said he didn't really have a story, "but i have a problem with parents believing their kids are THEIR kids."
* a thoughtful man w/ a teenage son who thought he was signing FOR parental notification, but then proceeded to have a compassionate discussion with me and left wanting to "think about it." he even thanked me for talking to him! he said, "when you believe in something, this is what you should be doing, going to places and talking to people about it."
* a woman with 4 children who was about ready to argue with us until she realized we were NO on 43, at which point she immediately grabbed a clipboard and emphatically said, "i think i can be pro-choice and pro-family at the same time. i don't see that as a contradiction." she said she was an RN who sees the effects firsthand, and she desperately wants to see this measure fail.
* a young woman who was there with her boyfriend, and while the boyfriend talked to a another booth worker, she hung back until i talked to her. turns out she wants to volunteer!
* a woman who is very much in favour of parental notification, even though her husband had molested her children.
a group of younger teens came to ask if we knew where the palm reader was, and after discovering what our goal was, left loudly exclaiming, "oh, no, we are SO against abortion!" some of the booth workers dismissed anyone under 18 because "they can't vote anyway" -- whereas i think that they may be 18 by november AND probably have friends that are 18 and 19, the age that is most likely to vote for the rights of their peers. and of course, they're the target of this legislation and they can't even vote against it, so they should at least have the opportunity to talk about it and talk to others about it.

the package i received prior to the state fair gave us a sample script which included grabbing people by asking, "are you pro choice? support a woman's right to choose?" which i just didn't think i could say without feeling like i was immediately placing them in a defensive position. by the end of our shift, each of us ended up developing our own form of outreach. mine was something like this:

"are you familiar with measure 43? measure 43 will require parental notification when a young woman needs an abortion. though it seems simple, it is a dangerous bill that does more harm than good. it doesn't allow for exceptions in cases of rape or incest and it doesn't protect young women in violent homes."

the funny thing is that the other side has a similar slogan: protect our teen daughters. i want to protect the teens that might be further abused or even killed, the teens that might try to induce miscarriage, the teens that might run away, the teens that might commit suicide, the teens that might carry to term only to commit infanticide or abandonment. i guess they want to protect... parents who might be disappointed? teens who might feel regretful?

i don't want to trivialize it, but i really am having trouble understanding what problem we're trying to solve in a state where the medical age of consent is 15 (which means nobody has to be notified if a doctor treats a teen for an ectopic pregnancy or drug addiction). most young women know better than their parents whether they want to be a mother. and if a teen isn't old enough to make her own medical decisions, what does that say about entrusting her to the care of a new baby & those medical decisions? why does the state have an interest in requiring notice for abortions but not for births?

i'm not usually big on "slippery slope" arguments, but don't fool yourself: a "yes" on 43 will mean we have to fight later about parental consent. and then about all abortions. and later still about all contraception. (find me a pro-life group that supports the use of contraception.) if you think this measure sounds reasonable because -you- are a good parent and -you- would want to know, please, please, please, i beg you, vote not for yourself; vote instead for the safety & value of all women, now and in the future, by voting AGAINST 43.

Friday, September 01, 2006

 
[#] [0]
argh. still. sick. and comcast and dreamhost aren't playing nice: comcast is calling dreamhost a spammy-pants, and dreamhost is taking its toys and going home. in essence, this means that dreamhost is disabling email forwards to all comcast addresses -- which is every address we happen to forward from the Portland Society for Calligraphy site. argh.

on the bright side, i helped michaelmas proofread his associate professor promotion portfolio today. wish him luck! and i'm slowly making progress on artist's way promotion.