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Ojai Orange | The Column of Lasting Insignificance | Books | Wait-A-Minute

May 12, 2007
John Wilcock - May 12, 2007

 

  The column of lasting insignificance
     


also posted:



2011
November 26 2011
November 19, 2011
November 12, 2011
November 5, 2011
October 29, 2011
October 22, 2011
October 15, 2011
October 8, 2011
October 1, 2011
September 24, 2011
September 17, 2011
September 10, 2011
September 4, 2011
August 27, 2011
August 20, 2011
August 13, 2011
August 6, 2011
July 30, 2011
July 23, 2011
July 16, 2011
July 9, 2011
July 2, 2011
June 25, 2011
June 18, 2011
June 11, 2011
June 4, 2011
May 28, 2011
May 21, 2011
May 14, 2011
May 7, 2011
April 30, 2011
April 23, 2011
April 16, 2011
April 9, 2011
April 2, 2011
March 26, 2011
March 19, 2011
March 12, 2011
March 5, 2011
February 26, 2011
February 19, 2011
February 12, 2011
February 5, 2011
February 5, 2011
January 29, 2011
January 22, 2011
January 15, 2011
January 6, 2011

2010
December 25, 2010
December 18, 2010
December 11, 2010
December 4, 2010
November 27, 2010
November 20, 2010
November 13, 2010
November 6, 2010
October 30, 2010
October 23, 2010
October 16, 2010
October 9, 2010
October 2, 2010
September 25, 2010
September 18, 2010
September 11, 2010
September 4, 2010
August 28, 2010
August 21, 2010
August 14, 2010
August 7, 2010
July 31, 2010
July 24, 2010
July 17, 2010
July 10, 2010
July 3, 2010
June 26, 2010
June 19, 2010
June 12, 2010
June 5, 2010
May 29, 2010
May 22, 2010
May 15, 2010
May 8, 2010
May 1, 2010
April 24, 2010
April 17, 2010
April 10, 2010
April 3, 2010
March 27, 2010
March 20, 2010
March 13, 2010
March 6, 2010
February 27, 2010
February 20, 2010
February 13, 2010
February 6, 2010
January 30, 2010
January 23, 2010
January 16, 2010
January 9, 2010
January 2, 2010

2009
December 26, 2009
December 19, 2009
December 12, 2009
December 5, 2009
November 28, 2009
November 21, 2009
November 14, 2009
November 7, 2009
October 31, 2009
October 24, 2009
October 17, 2009
October 10, 2009
October 3, 2009
September 26, 2009
September 19, 2009
September 12, 2009
September 5, 2009
August 29, 2009
August 22, 2009
August 15, 2009
August 8, 2009
August 1, 2009
July 25, 2009
July 18, 2009
July 11, 2009
July 4, 2009
June 27, 2009
June 20, 2009
June 13, 2009
June 6, 2009
May 30, 2009
May 23, 2009
May 16, 2009
May 9, 2009
May 2, 2009
April 25, 2009
April 18, 2009
April 11, 2009
April 4, 2009
March 28, 2009
March 21, 2009
March 14, 2009
March 7, 2009
February 28, 2009
February 21, 2009
February 14, 2009
February 7, 2009
January 31, 2009
January 24, 2009
January 17, 2009
January 3, 2009

2008
December 27, 2008
December 20, 2008
December 13, 2008
December 6, 2008
November 29, 2008
November 22, 2008
November 15, 2008
November 8, 2008
November 5, 2008
November 1, 2008
October 25, 2008
October 18, 2008
October 11, 2008
October 4, 2008
September 27, 2008
September 20, 2008
September 13, 2008
September 6, 2008
August 30, 2008
August 23, 2008
August 16, 2008
August 9, 2008
August 2, 2008
July 26, 2008
July 19, 2008
July 12, 2008
July 5, 2008
June 28, 2008
June 21, 2008
June 14, 2008
June 7, 2008
May 31, 2008
May 24, 2008
May 17, 2008
May 10, 2008
May 3, 2008
April 26, 2008
April 19, 2008
April 12, 2008
April 5, 2008
March 29, 2008
March 22, 2008
March 15, 2008
March 8, 2008
March 1, 2008
February 23, 2008
February 16, 2008
February 9, 2008
February 2, 2008
January 26, 2008
January 19, 2008
January 12, 2008
January 5, 2008

2007
December 29, 2007
December 22, 2007
December 15, 2007
December 8, 2007
December 1, 2007
November 24, 2007
November 17, 2007
November 10, 2007
November 3, 2007
October 27, 2007
October 20, 2007
October 13, 2007
October 6, 2007
September 29, 2007
September 22, 2007
September 15, 2007
September 8, 2007
September 1, 2007
August 25, 2007
August 18, 2007
August 11, 2007
August 4, 2007
July 28, 2007
July 21, 2007
July 14, 2007
July 7, 2007
June 30, 2007
June 23, 2007
June 16, 2007
June 9, 2007
June 2, 2007
May 19, 2007
May 12, 2007
May 5, 2007
April 28, 2007
April 21, 2007
April 14, 2007
April 7, 2007
March 31, 2007
March 24, 2007
March 17, 2007
March 10, 2007
March 3, 2007
February 24, 2007
February 17, 2007
February 10, 2007
February 3, 2007
January 20, 2007
January 13, 2007
January 6, 2007

2006
December 30, 2006
December 23, 2006
December 16, 2006
December 9, 2006
December 2, 2006
November 25, 2006
November 18, 2006
November 11, 2006
November 4, 2006
October 28, 2006
October 21, 2006
October 14, 2006
October 7, 2006
September 30, 2006
September 23, 2006
September 16, 2006
September 9, 2006
September 2, 2006
August 26, 2006
August 19, 2006
August 12, 2006
August 5, 2006
July 29, 2006
July 22, 2006
July 15, 2006

 

 


May 12, 2007

     “We aren’t built to be happy. Rather, we are built to survive and reproduce. We wouldn’t be here today if our ancestors didn’t struggle mightily to protect and feed their families. The promise of happiness meanwhile, is just a trick to jolly us along”—Jonathan Clements in the Wall Street Journal

THE NEWEST LITHIN-ION batteries, stronger and longer-lasting than earlier storage cells, are already the hottest thing in electronics and now auto-makers are hoping they might suit a new wave of electric cars and trucks (of which there at present 700,000 on the roads). The problem, which has long been trying to equip vehicles with less-clunky, huge batteries, now shifts to how to make lithin-ion batteries--commonly used in cell phones and laptops--big enough and durable enough to service automobiles. “The standard for what is acceptable (in electronic devices) is completely different” says GM vp Bob Lutz, “but I think it can be done”.

IN THIS YEAR, the 70th anniversary of Margaret Mitchell winning the Pulitzer Prize for Gone With the Wind, Hutchison has announced the future publication by Donald Spoto of a “biography” of the book (which still sells 250,000  copies a year) and film and all those associated with it. Spoto, the author of biographies about Hitchcock, Olivier and Hepburn, describes GWTW as “a great work that straddles the fence of entertainment and great literature” and says his own book, Tomorrow Is Another Day, will cover the years between Mitchell’s birth in 1900 and the film’s premiere 40 years later.

IF THE SUBJECT of religion is always good for an argument, consider the possibilities when Michel Onfrey’s book is published next month. It’s called In Defense of Atheism: the case against Christianity, Judaism and Islam and is described by publishers Serpents Tail as “an explosive critique of the monotheistic religions….. which asserts that Christianity, Islam and Judaism exhibit the same hatred of women, reason, the body, passions”.

BUDDHIST MONKS ON Malaysia’s Penang Island are having a bad time with the stinging fire ants that have overrun their Hong Hock See Temple. Forbidden to kill any living creatures by their religion, they unsuccessfully tried to relocate the pests outside by means of a vacuum cleaner. So if anybody has a solution, says Bro. Boon Keng, please call him at 60/04-338-0503.

BECAUSE ENGLAND HAS been seen as a “divorce-friendly” jurisdiction for women, estranged wives have been flocking there to sunder their relationships. ”While other European countries expect women to return to work and support themselves after the breakdown of a marriage…it has become normal (in England) for women to lay claim to all the assets their husbands have brought to the marriage and even future earnings, as well as being supported by them for the rest of their lives”. But this may be about to change when the European Commission discusses ways to seek common ground over what has been referred to as the “divorce minefield”. British minister Harriet Harman will attend EC meetings in Brussels. “It is important that family justice works across different countries” she has declared.

IN AN ERA WHEN a haircut can cost $800 (which is what some New York stylists charge) it’s probably no surprise that “a new wave of itinerant hairdressers” have emerged, says the New York Observer. Some operate on an outcall basis, others work out of their basements or kitchens. “We can drink beers and watch reality TV while I cut” says Shannon Detrow. “It might take a little longer but it’s way more intimate”. And the cost? “I always say, ‘give me what you want’.

FOUR OF THE WORLD’s greatest rivers—the Yangtze, Fellow, Mekong and Salween—all begin in the northernmost glaciers around Tibet, which were well-nigh inaccessible until opened up to recent development, all of which makes China the ultimate source of fresh water for almost half the world’s population.  Understandably, this makes China’s downstream neighbors--Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and Thailand—extremely nervous about the future, especially now that work has begun in Yunnan province on Xiaowan dam, the fourth of ten projected barrages. “Environmental groups say it will be a disaster; it will change the whole ecological balance of the river” reports the Guardian, “as the world’s fastest-growing economy dams, pollutes and exploits like never before, with consequences that are increasingly felt beyond its borders”.

THE OLDEST OF marketing techniques has become a new favorite of such companies as Nestle, Sony, Philips and Nintendo which have all launched “word-of-mouth” campaigns in recent months says the Economist. A Boston ad agency, BzzAgent, operates a network of volunteer “agents” who are sent free samples and expected to spread the word about the product as widely as possible. “No form of advertising carries as much weight as an endorsement from a friend” says the mag.

THE WILCOCK WEB: Hey suckers! The New York Mint (in Edna, MN) is offering the first of the new presidential dollar coins for a mere $8.98! (plus s&h)….“You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make thee mad as hell” opined Aldous Huxley….The Stray Shopping Carts of North America: A Guide to Field Education was the winner in the Bookseller's oddest title category this year….. KFC wrote to ask Pope Benedict XVI if he would be kind enough to bestow his blessing on their new 99c Fish Snacker …. If the U.S. really believes in a separation of church and state, why does it approve a Catholic-dominated Supreme Court to be the final arbiter of contentious issues?….German doctors have discovered that when antibiotics don’t work on infected wounds, applying honey can be an affective substitute….Pizza Patrón, the Dallas-based franchise that caused an uproar by accepting pesos, reports its sale have increased by 34.5%….New York and London both are planning to cut back on the escalating number of pedicabs which are creating ever-bigger traffic jams (and aggravating their rivals who drive taxis)….Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated….”Perhaps the worst tough-guy-private-eye movie ever made….so bad it’s good” is how Blackmail (1947) is described in the catalog for Palm Springs’ seventh annual FilmNoir Festival, May 31-June 3 …..British Airways, Europe’s worst baggage handler, admits it lost one million pieces of luggage last year….“Classical music is like sex” says Rainer Hersch “You never know how it will last and it’s embarrassing if you clap in the wrong place” …..Who invented the statute of limitations and who decides when it should expire—and why? ….“Madness is a rare thing in individuals, but in groups, parties, peoples and ages it is the rule”—Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900)

MAY 5/07

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