Archive for February 29th, 2004

Sanskrit Boy on the “Passion”


Ryan Overbey has a great review of
the “Passion” movie. We are trying to read a variety of reviews,
because this is one movie the Dowbrigade will never see.  Not for
religious reasons – but we get faint at the sight of blood.  We
didn’t make it through “Carrie” or “The Exorcist.”  Still we are
glad Ryan saw it and can explain it to us….

People sing songs like “Washed in the Blood of the Lamb” in church,
strumming away at acoustic guitars and following along on the overhead
projector, but they have no idea what those words mean. They’re
thinking of lots of things when they sing those songs, but surely
they’re not imagining themselves soaked in blood, dripping wet with the
stuff, smelling the metallic stink of it, and wondering what being
washed in it actually means.

Is RSS Jumping the Shark?


RSS is increasingly going mainstream. Any day we expect
to see WalMart start a steam with its latest markdowns and sales prices.
Today a
long, informative article
appeared on the Yahoo – Technology
site.  Some exerpts:

The technology behind them is called RSS and I rely on it daily to
consult The New York Times, the BBC, CNET News, Slashdot and a few dozen
other Web sites that employ RSS to make the very latest news stories
or bits of commentary available for the plucking.

Some of that upsurge
was election year fever as Democratic presidential candidates
led by
Dean (news
– web
daily turned
on the RSS spigot to "broadcast" to supporters.

But Web feeds are no Howard-come-lately. Info generators of all kinds
– big media,
government and non-profits alike – are embracing them.

Disney leverages the technology to deliver video clips for and
Apple’s iTunes generates a feed to alert subscribers to its latest sounds.

Anyone who builds a Web site can incorporate Web feeds. If it lives on the Web,
it can be brought to your desktop – or to your wireless device, for that matter.

Hundreds of thousands of Web feeds are available, spurred by the popularity
of Web logs, which account for their bulk. One site that has been sorting
feeds since 2001,, added 7,326 in January – its biggest
monthly jump- to its collection of more than 53,000 information streams.

Hell, our buddy Andrew has more than that in his great index Share
. But the gist of the article is correct. It IS a "killer

from Yahoo

Doncha Hate It When That Happens


The graphic below was forwarded to the Dowbrigade by the estimable Norma Yvonne. What is she trying to tell us? Our obtuseness in regards to the fairer sex is legendary, but we know there’s a message in there somewhere…

Thai Bars Hit With Cinderella Law


entertainment industry is prepared for a blow as a new law comes into
effect to enforce midnight closing on bars and clubs.

The only exceptions will be a few zones in the capital, Bangkok, and some resorts,
where bars can open to 0200.

Thailand’s government says the law is part of its campaign to curb juvenile crime
and drug abuse.

What! Bangkok bars closing earlier than in straight-laced Boston? Say it
ain’t so! Our recollection of Bangkok nightlife, admittedly somewhat
hazy, doesn’t include much at all BEFORE midnight. We do remember one
year being holed up in the Honey Hotel, an infamous dive of the faded
jaded elegance variety off the main drag in Sukamvit, watching the
NFL Playoffs with a shady hologram salesman and a member of the Malaysian
who was
on extended
leave or AWOL.

There were two games on each night. The first game started around 1
am. Green Bay was kicking ass, and the Dowbrigade was up and down at
the same time. We were sampling all of Thailand’s vices serially and
sometimes simultaneously, and betting

But despite the visceral rush of professional playoff football on the
tube and money on the bedspread, the highlights of those evenings were
our mini expeditions out into the bars and nightclubs BETWEEN the early
and late games. What with all the commercials and inane analysis we had
almost an hour between games.

Luckily there were approximately 2 thousand bars and nightclubs within
a two block radius of our hideout. The short narrow streets were packed
with sloshed, buzzed, stunned, stoned or staggering individuals of all
known races and sexes.  The sky was ablaze in a neon cacophony better
than any art installation we had ever seen. 4 to 5 AM seemed to be prime
time in that part of Bangkok, anyway.

And the shows, inside the clubs, upstairs, downstairs, around back,
in hidden, windowless rooms, were truly astounding in their
sheer imaginative variety. Despite our extensive knowledge of human anatomy
and erotic activity in diverse cultures, we were exposed to numerous
feats we would have never admitted possible had we not witnessed them
with our own eyes.

All that – Gone! Lets hear from some Thai Bloggers. Is this really going
to work? What are those "special zones" in the capital? Why do they want
to reschedule the youth crime and drug use for earlier in the evening,
so more kids can take part before bedtime?

Trust your tireless correspondent to keep an eye on this one, dear readers….

from the

Stalin’s Revenge


An explosion in numbers of a species of giant crab is
causing concern amongst environmentalists.

Millions of Kamchatka or Red King Crabs have already spread around 400
miles south from northern Norway.

The monster crustaceans, which were introduced to Europe by Stalin in the
1930s, have a claw span of more than three feet and can weigh in at 25

More than 10 million have reached the Lofoten Islands in northwest Scandinavia,
all but eliminating populations of other species such as Northern clams
in their wake.

from Ananova