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

August 8, 2009
John Wilcock - January 5, 2008

 

  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

 

 



August 8, 2009

“The question we Muslims have to ask is this: what do we gain by asking our daughters, sisters and wives to carry the false burden of the hijab as if it were the flag of Islam?”
Tarek Fatah suggesting in Canada’s National Post that Muslims are ‘thumbing their noses” with a practice they know is offensive in western society.

A RACE TO THE BOTTOM might be a way to describe the current worldwide interest in exploring the deep, dark sea. Because of the intense pressure down there, only five manned submarines can dive to 15,000 feet but if we can extend that reach another 5,000 feet (one mile) most of the world’s oceans would be open to exploration. “The payoffs could be huge” says Popular Science, not only for marine biologists but for mining, gas and oil companies in search of new resources. Woods Hole’s Alvin, which explored the Titanic at 12,500 feet is being reconfigured so that it can reach 21,000 feet, the current maximum depth achieved by a Japanese sub, and China is reported at work on a model to reach 23,000 feet. Woods Hole also owns the unmanned submersible Nereus which has visited the deepest place in the ocean, the Marianas Trench (35,770 feet below the surface), just east of Guam in the Western Pacific. But it would be impossible to enable a human to survive at that depth.

JULY THE 30TH was the one-hundredth anniversary of the day that the Ohio-born brothers, Wilbur and Orville Wright sold the U.S. government its first airplane. It cost $31,250, was driven by a 25hp engine and could reach a top speed of 40mph. Three months later Wilbur demonstrated another plane by circling the Statue of Liberty and making a 33-minute flight up and down the Hudson River.

TALK ABOUT LESE MAJÈSTÉ! How could anybody question the veracity and sanctity of the I CHING, of all things? Charles Sullivan, a teacher at Portland Community College, that’s who. In the current issue of the Skeptical Inquirer he refers to the ancient Chinese oracle’s ambiguity, obscurity and synchronicity, concluding cheekily that “the book’s wisdom is  no more mysterious than randomly flipping through a book of proverbs for advice “. Like other forms of divination, he explains, the generality and obscurity of the I Ching’s answers allow multiple, ambiguous interpretations, invoking “the mysterious feeling that it somehow does seem to work”. Sullivan compares it to the so-called Barnum Effect where we “tend to notice things that confirm our beliefs but ignore or downplay those things that don’t”.

BECOMING TOO POPULAR is the major concern of the 2,200 citizens of the Colorado ski resort of Telluride which last weekend celebrated its annual Cajun Festival and next month welcomes guests to its 36th annual film festival. They even have a term for the growing renown—Aspenization, a reference to its ritzy neighbor, 100 miles to the northeast. “A cautionary tale” is how novelist Antonya Nelson describes Aspen, a town that “made deals with developers, forsook its roots in ranching and mining and sold its soul for a hefty check”. Aspen’s locals, she warned in the Smithsonian, “priced themselves out of their own homes”  and there are increasing signs that the former silvermine burg of Telluride is “following in the footsteps of a scary elder sibling”.

KNEELING DOWN  hasn’t been seen much, but women popping the question is apparently getting more common. “We get maybe 20  to 25 inquiries a week from women who want to propose” reports John Cordova who works for Robbins Brothers, a California store that specializes in engagement rings. But the owner of a wedding registry says we’re not likely to see many men boastfully showing off their engagement ring to their buddies. ‘The engagement band is just a sales tactic invented by jewelers to trick young couples into spending money”: he sniffs.

THE WILCOCK WEB:  There’ll never be enough money for universal health care until it’s clawed back from rip-off insurance companies…. Offered the choice between a tedious Letterman and the vapid O’Brien, it’s hardly surprising that so many late-night viewers have turned to ABC’s Nightline….MGM released The Wizard of Oz 70 years ago this month…. Does Bob Mankoff, the New Yorker’s cartoon editor, ask contributors to explain their cartoons before he prints them?…. Utah scientists have devised a battery that can store power from rooftop solar panels…Companies whose bottled water comes from the tap should be obliged to admit it on the label….And if water is H20, why can’t they produce it wherever it’s most needed, by combining hydrogen and oxygen?.…George W. Bush will presumably get millions for his recollections but what would really be worth the cover price would be to see the first version he wrote himself, without help…. Microsoft’s absurdly overrated Bing is so inferior to Google it’s ridiculous to even compare them….President of the Maldives Mohamed Nasheed has opened a fund “to pay for a new homeland” if climate change forces evacuation of the Indian Ocean islands (whose highest point is seven feet above sea level)…. The Oxford English Dictionary is about to publish a 600,000-word Thesaurus…. “Making predictions is difficult” mused Sam Goldwyn. “Especially about the future”:….We live oh-so-politely in what must certainly be the rudest era in recorded history” declares Todd Schwartz in a piece in Oregon Humanities magazine which points to the discrepancy between political correctness and the “slasher-movie mentality” and bad manners that envelop us…..Presumably the loathsome Glenn Beck, who thinks the president is a racist, hasn’t read any of Obama’s books…..Dolce & Gabbana is selling $275 T-shirts…. Replies to The Advocate which asked its gay readers what they were looking for when visiting New York’s Fire Island: love (4%); lust (9%); a tan (22%); all of the above (65%)…. “Television’s obsession with the youth market is 20 years out of date and it’s high time TV executives caught up” writes Mariella Frostrup in the Daily Mail….“There are still some fee-free ATMs all over the country and you can get a list of them at www.allpointnetwork.com …. ”Everyone thinks of changing the world but no one thinks of changing himself”—Leo Tolstoy (1928-1910

8/1/09

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