Hacking Democracy

Apparently, Comcast understands how to crudely exercise political manipulation by blocking out dissenting views with the "sleeping dwarves" strategy. Political hacking is pretty common (we call it "forum control" in rhetoric), but this is a pretty transparent and crude form.


The Re-vision of Experience

The Mississippi's mighty, but it starts in Minnesota
At a place that you could walk across with five steps down

From "Ghost," by Indigo Girls

I've recently walked across these headwaters at Lake Itasca. To be honest, I am more impressed with the concept than the experience. What impresses me even more than the almost-Zeno's-paradox of striding over the mighty Mississippi in "five steps down" is the experience of finding new meaning in familiar words and lyrics with the addition of experience. This constant destruction and re-constitution of life's details is what I always imagined infuriated a too literal Bishop Berkeley. Life seems haunted with these re-creative acts of perception.


Fun with Science!

What ELSE do you do on the coldest day of the year?

You boil water and throw it in the air to see it freeze before it hits the ground.

Negative thirty degrees can be deadly AND fun!


Proper Ice Nosh

What does one do when the temperature is headed for negative 35 degrees F with a 50-below windchill?

Why, make laid-back tacos for dinner, of course. You might call them "nachos," but when blue-corn tortilla chips meet refried beans, smoked cheddar, New Mexico red AND green chile, that's now what WE would call them.


Climbing Out of the Cave

When I moved to Fargo, a friend of mine (who would know all about the area) called it a "cold, dark place." While I don't agree with the overall assessment, getting from solstice to happy can be a slow slog. My last few posts reflect the anticipation and ennui that accompany this trudge to the surface. Although I'm not really that sad, it has been gratifying to have friends and family reassure me with calls to ingest the magic pill.

What is this pill, you ask?

Green chile.

Well, I've been partaking of this magical substance. Yes, it must be grown in New Mexico. Yes, it should be roasted to an even char on the outside and peeled. And, yes, it is best ingested in an almost-pure form in a stew:

or as part of breakfast:

Check, check, and double check.

Much better, thanks!


econopolitical confrontation?

Can anyone tell me why this doesn't fall under the heading of "terrorism"? I realize that it isn't politically correct to say that about a young white male American wannabe entrepreneur, but threats and violence to create maximum political effect is a textbook definition.


The Shame of North Dakota

I have heard the sobs of soldiers who lost comrades in Iraq. We have ALL lost friends and fellow Americans in that war.

This makes me ill.


The Blahs of February

Right now, things are looking a little dark.

On the surface, things should be fine. I just got an article accepted to one of the premiere journals in my field, which should help cement my growing tenure case (that is, if my other articles and chapters in the pipeline ever come out, and my special issue doesn't fall victim to some unforeseen calamity). Sport and I are getting out quite a bit as well. Yesterday, I got to shoot some hoops, do some pullups and ride the bike. Today? We did our long run.

Success and getting around doesn't seem to cut through the blahs some days. What makes it doubly difficult is that success can actually cause some of these darker moods. It's not like I live for the finish line, but it stinks when when the sight of the finish line depresses me.