Archive for October 3rd, 2003

The Eve of Destruction


There is alot going on in my life these days, and my dreams
have been especially jumbled. Last night I dreamt I was in a parking lot
when, on the horizon I saw the city skyline ripped apart by a nuclear explosion.

I was a kid (in the sixties) I used to have this dream quite frequently,
and it stayed with me occasionally through my twenties. I suspect that
many of my generation suffered through the same phenomena, and wonder
how many of them are still having these dreams and with what frequency.

Anyway, I haven’t had the doomsday dream in almost 20 years and wonder
what brought it on. It was different this time; I was trying to decide what
would be the safest place to ride out the storm, and even as the howling
holocast rushed closer I felt no panic or fear. The really weird thing
is that I told this disconcerting dream, in some detail, to my students
this morning. I guess I was still groggy from a rough night and jabbering
from pre-conference jitters. Lord knows what the poor dears think of me
now. I know they’ve found my blog and I imagine they are nervously trying
to decipher how my madness may affect their lives and careers.

Of course, things in dreams are rarely what them seem at first glance. It could symbolize a GOOD kind of nuclear destruction.
Although sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. As I prepare to head into
Cambridge for the BloggerCon Gear-up Ho-down I can’t help wondering what
I’ve gotten myself in for. It promises to be Nuke-U-Lar weekend.

The Rule of Links


The list
of amazing essays
going up in anticipation of BloggerCon has
grown again with the addition of Dave Winer’s The
Rule of Links
and The
Rule of Win-Win
. The ideas therein are important and well-presented,
although personally, as soon as I hear a "Rule" formally proposed
or established I start thinking of creative ways to break it. But hey,
that’s just me.

I especially like the "Rule
of Links
". In a very real sense links are at the heart of
weblogging, and the weblog phenomena itself can be seen as an inevitable
extension of the propagation of hyper-text. I think I am starting to get
the hang of it myself, although it is sometimes tricky knowing what needs
to be linked, and to what.

But I question whether linking is an obligatory feature of anything that
can be called a weblog. What about the short, sweet and intensely insightful
postings of a wizened widowed grandmother tending an herb patch in Nova
Socia and reflecting on her storied past as a Be-Bop xylophonist in the
40’s, the specific shade of blue in the early morning sky over Prince Edward
Island, and a childrens’ story she is writing for her grandchildren? She
posts everyday, early in the morning, as she waits for her herbal tea to
steep, and includes nary a link outside her own self-contained world. Is
she not a blogger? In some ways is she not the quintissential blogger?

Are links really essential in EVERY blog?

He Must Have Been on Drugs…


Rush Limbaugh is really taking heat for, well, just for being Rush,
I guess.
Frankly, it couldn’t be happening to a nicer guy.

First, on the football front, it took the guy all of three weeks
to put his foot so firmly in his mouth that ESPN and parent Disney
the plug on his "NFL Sunday Countdown". Hey, even Dennis Miller lasted
a whole season on Monday Night Football. He stunk, but he hung in there
a full season.

That is no surprise, given that Limbaugh has dropped such gems on the American
public as once telling a black listener to take a bone out of his nose
and declaring that a Mexican won the New York Marathon because an immigration
agent chased him for the last 10 miles.

Derrick Jackson in the Boston Globe

A possible explanation is offered by that bastion of American journalistic
integrity, The National Enquirer, also written up in today’s

For its story about the drug investigation, the Enquirer had interviewed
Wilma Cline, who said she became Limbaugh’s drug connection after working
as his maid. She said he had abused OxyContin and other painkillers. Ed
Shohat, a Miami lawyer for Cline and her husband, said yesterday, ”The
Clines stand by the story."

Rush Limbaugh a pill-popping pain-killer junkie? Who knew? I am forced
to begrudgingly admit that there is finally something to respect him for.

Lieberman, Burdened by Gore-y Past, Lacks Traction


from the Boston Globe
Surveys show Lieberman trailing John Edwards of North
Carolina in South Carolina. Interviews with Democratic leaders in Feb.
3 states revealed deep doubts about Lieberman’s chances, with party activists
saying Democrats are more captivated by Howard
Dean’s surge and General Wesley K. Clark’s emergence.

Whipped, Weary and Wary


God, I am so tired the fillings in my teeth ache, and BloggerCon doesn’t even start until tomorrow night. I know I will somehow make it through the next 72 hours, although it all seems somewhat dubious right now.

I am scheduled to operate a boom mike for all four sessions Saturday, following Dave’s subtle signals as to where and when to stick the thing, keeping a firm grip at all times (“People WILL try to grab the mike from you”), and then deliver my Beginners Session tutorial three times myself on Sunday. I sure hope I can hold up, especially with all the drinking and schmoozing between sessions and the coming and going each day, because I know Dave and the gang are counting on me, and I don’t want to miss any of the fun.

We even had the first hint of controversy at the final Thursday night planning session tonight. The discussion grew quite heated and two people actually walked out. In 25 years of going to English teachers conferences I’ve NEVER seen anybody walk out. And this was just a planning session! If this is a taste of what blogger or gearhead conferences are like (neither of which I have ever experienced before) it should be quite a show!

The Wonderful Wendy K. even solved my biggest problem – finding a computer to use during my presentations. She is incredible.

Gotta get some sleep. Might not have too many chances in the next few days.