Friday, May 06, 2005

I'm a Flappy Bird!

Okay, so the whining and begging....maybe not my finest moment.

But, I'm a flappy bird.

Flying is fun. I think I can see your house from here.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

This Explains a Lot, Actually

KGrease was never what you might call "handsome."

Fat, confused, hair-like-a-rat's-nest, that sort of thing. But not handsome.

And, when I was 18 months old, my mother had twin daughters. Dressed them alike. They were so freakin' CUTE! I couldn't stand it. No one wanted to play with me.

So, parental disdain for my Calabanity led DIRECTLY to my career as a professional wrestler, putting other big sweaty men into submission holds and throwing folding chairs at women whose bodies are composed mostly of silicone.

Now, there is proof that this is a general phenomenon: Parents don't like ugly kids!
At least, not as much.

Check this excerpt:
Researchers at the University of Alberta carefully observed how parents treated their children during trips to the supermarket. They found that physical attractiveness made a big difference.

The researchers noted if the parents belted their youngsters into the grocery cart seat, how often the parents' attention lapsed and the number of times the children were allowed to engage in potentially dangerous activities like standing up in the shopping cart. They also rated each child's physical attractiveness on a 10-point scale.

The findings, not yet published, were presented at the Warren E. Kalbach Population Conference in Edmonton, Alberta.

When it came to buckling up, pretty and ugly children were treated in starkly different ways, with seat belt use increasing in direct proportion to attractiveness. When a woman was in charge, 4 percent of the homeliest children were strapped in compared with 13.3 percent of the most attractive children. The difference was even more acute when fathers led the shopping expedition - in those cases, none of the least attractive children were secured with seat belts, while 12.5 percent of the prettiest children were.

Homely children were also more often out of sight of their parents, and they were more often allowed to wander more than 10 feet away.

Age - of parent and child - also played a role. Younger adults were more likely to buckle their children into the seat, and younger children were more often buckled in. Older adults, in contrast, were inclined to let children wander out of sight and more likely to allow them to engage in physically dangerous activities.

And, apparently Michael Jackson was a confounding factor in the experiments:
Although the researchers were unsure why, good-looking boys were usually kept in closer proximity to the adults taking care of them than were pretty girls.

Why might this be? (The difference in treatment, not the Michael Jackson thing).
Dr. W. Andrew Harrell, executive director of the Population Research Laboratory at the University of Alberta and the leader of the research team, sees an evolutionary reason for the findings: pretty children, he says, represent the best genetic legacy, and therefore they get more care.
...Dr. Harrell said the importance of physical attractiveness "cuts across social class, income and education."

"Like lots of animals, we tend to parcel out our resources on the basis of value," he said. "Maybe we can't always articulate that, but in fact we do it. There are a lot of things that make a person more valuable, and physical attractiveness may be one of them."

(Nod to JP, who is butter)

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

PETA-baiting, Down Under

I had missed it, but Yobbo wrote a piece a while back on "Kill an animal and eat it!" day, March 15.

I had written a little thing, too.

But check the Yobbo post, and the comments. He has vegetarians volunteering to eat meat if it means the aliens from the planet PETA get roasted, too.

On a more serious note, here is (IMHO) an honest assessment of PETA's real danger as an organization of vicious terrorists. Specifically, for example, this post.

Thanks to Coturnix for that last link, some time ago. I should have said.

I can't believe I'm groveling like this

But...I need a couple of mercy links.

No, really, I'm not talking about a want.

A need. That's what this is.

See, I've been a slithering snake for months. (#4639) Okay, fair enough, an accurate description.

But I want to be a flabby bird. (sorry, flappy bird. The first description is more accurate, so I left it).

I only need two links, from some soul who pities broken down turnbuckle artists.

And, in terms of daily visits, I am way up the evolutionary ladder. (#1727!)

So...yes....I'm beggin' ya.

Blogroll me like my back ain't got no bones. I will provide the immediate reach-around. NO, no, I mean it.

(Lord, I feel so cheap)

Greenhouse gas

Oh, good lord.

The NYTimes now prints all the news that's fit to slant.

A Wall-Mart screed, by Steven Greenhouse.


Frances Browning, for example, once earned $15 a hour, but now at Wal-Mart, where she is a cashier in Roswell, Ga., she is paid $9.43. She says she is happy to have the job.

"I was unemployed for two and a half years before I found my job at Wal-Mart," Ms. Browning, 57, said. "Like everybody else I'd love to make a lot more, but I have to be realistic."

But Jason Mrkwa, 27, a high school graduate who stocks frozen food at a Wal-Mart in Independence, Kan., maintains that he is underpaid. "I make $8.53, even though every one of my evaluations has been above standard," Mr. Mrkwa (pronounced MARK-wah) said. "You can't really live on this."

Labor groups and their allies are focusing on Wal-Mart because they say that the campaign will not just benefit its workers but also reduce the existing pressure on unionized competitors to reduce their own wages and benefits.

"Wal-Mart should pay people at a minimum enough to go above the U.S. poverty line," said Andrew Grossman, executive director of Wal-Mart Watch, the coalition of community, environmental and labor groups running the series of ads criticizing Wal-Mart. "A company this big and this wealthy has the ability to pay higher wages."

Now, I disagree with the "rich should pay more" progressive taxes bit, but at least it is not illogical.

The claim that Wal-Mart should pay higher wages because it is "rich", however, violates even the standard of logic you would expect from the bed-wetters and hand-wringers that do their partying at Wal-Mart Watch. The company got big, and rich, paying lower costs and providing high quality, low-price goods to consumers. One of those costs is labor.

Sure, lots of college profs think Wal-Mart workers are exploited, because they think that anyone who has to work is exploited. When you went to a private school, have daddy's trust fund, and have never met a minority who wasn't carrying a mop, how could you think anything else.

Maybe Pol Pot had it right. We need to send the intellectuals out to work camps, so they know what it is like to work. Instead of making up fake causes about highly successful companies exploiting workers by paying them higher wages than they can obtain in any other activity.

(nod to JP)

Oh, Yeah? Well... rate THIS.

I check now and then.

This is new, at least since my last check:
it's like if the dud from family guy taught your class. but smarter. he's hilarious AND smart. great professor.

I've never seen Family Guy. Have to watch, now. I showed my 15 year old son the description above, and he hacked up a lung, laughing. He agreed, though, except for the smart part. "You are the dud guy, dad."

The others range from:
This was one of the best classes I've ever taken. The reading list was daunting - thousands and thousands of pages - but I learned an incredible amount. I always looked forward to class discussions. The homework assignments were mind-expanding. I came to college for classes like this.

Blush. Oh, please. Please don't stop.

To this:
Unprepared most of the time, the lectures are off the cuff. Not ever sure he's read the stuff he's lecturing on! TAs are all that counts in this class. Skip the lectures.

That last one has me mystified. Pompous ass, sure. Arrogant, obviously. But hasn't "read the stuff." Ahem. I use my own book in the case of this class. "Off the cuff"? I use detailed PPT slides and lecture from them verbatm. Then, I post the slides on Blackboard. There are 30-40 per lecture, all written out in advance with pictures and sound. One could say that they suck, but....My theory? The kid was actually taking another class, and was too drugged to notice the difference. Maybe this class?

Monday, May 02, 2005

Blogging at Duke

For those of you who came to this site because of the Duke Chronicle article this morning, three things.

1. This blog has nothing whatsoever to do with Duke, the Political Science Department at Duke, or for that matter with anything else. It is irrelevant and useless.
2. If you are easy to offend, don't read anything here. Nothing. Go away. We retired professional wrestlers don't need lame candy asses like you cluttering up the servers.
3. But, I would like to compose a list of blogs written by people at Duke. If you are interested in being on the list, please send me an email with the following info.
a. your blog name
b. the category of blog (academic, political, satirical, humorous, sports, informational, whatever)
c. your wish for anonymity. I will absolutely NOT out anyone. But if you want to be identified, or if your blog profile identifies you, I can put your name on the list.

For example, here are three blogs I know of, and this is how my list might look:

Name of Blog // Identity // Type // Brendan Nyhan // Serious Political
Anticlimacus // Nick Troester // Academic--Personal Journal
Constrained Vision // Anonymous-"Katie" // Academic--Personal

I will maintain this list for a while, as a resource for anyone who wants to look at the range of blogging activity at Duke. PLEASE SEND ME AN EMAIL IF YOU BLOG.

Though, if you just have a pussweiler blog like this, and never post, just go read your new copy of the THE NATION and leave me alone.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Bush v. Wang

A pitcher's duel: Wang goes against Bush. And when these two come together, I think no one loses.

Interesting match-up. Bush can just stay down and away, use soft stuff, and curves, but Wang has to bring the hard stuff. Also, Wang simply has to come inside if he is to be effective. Wang was throwing on the side by himself earlier in the season, and just went off. Frankly, he often beats himself, rather than waiting and letting the play come to him.

I just hope that Wang can do the complete game. Embarrassing to have to call in a reliever.

On the other hand, Bush is hard to read, You think Bush is all done, but then it turns out Bush is ready for more after all.

I do understand that Wang has a pretty good spitter, so he may have to go to his mouth in the late innings if he is going to finish Bush off.

(nod to MWT)

Jacqueline is my love child?

Whoa. I didn't even know I had a daughter (that often happens to men, but still...)

Jacqueline Mackie Paisley Passey is apparently my love child.

And, what a proud papa I am!

But...usually "lovechild" denotes an offspring produced out of wedlock, from some fertile (though perhaps furtive) union.

So, unless the lovechild was (re)produced by budding, there has to be a momma.

Any volunteers? Who wants to be Jacqueline's mom? And, yes, that would make that person also my (ahem) consort, if only briefly. (at my age, VERY briefly, maybe 7 or 8 seconds, not counting the cigarette afterwards).

I am going to ask Tyler Cowen. Of course, I always ask Tyler, but he won't put out. He is SUCH a tight ass white boy.

But maybe now he'll see the wisdom of our coming together for a night of love. You can't have a motherless lovechild. And, if Tyler wants, HE can be the dad.