Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Around the Web...

Busy, but there are so many good and horrific things to link to, on the Usual Suspects and more and worse...

First, Asia. Look at this map from Strange Maps (courtesy of Rod) showing the "real", ie Han, China as an island. All those places in the ocean to the north and west-- Tibet, Xinjiang, "Manchuria", various tribal states in the southwest- are vassals of the Han Empire.

Which continues its environmental meltdown. Why don't more enviros wake up to the fact that China is doing a lot worse than we are?

Mongolia, though perpetually threatened by Han ambitions, is a cheerier place.Here, Peculiar reviews the movie Mongol, and links to a Tim Cahill piece on a trip there he and others took a few years ago. And our friend Sari from Finland, founder of Tazilist, sends this haunting YouTube video of Mongol throat singing and "moron kurs", horsehead fiddles (that is pronounced "murun" BTW.)

Dogs: Henry's dogs are on TV.

Writing: Liz Hand, author of this wonderful book among others, remembers Tom Disch.

Evolution: Darwin Central has a good post against "I" D here. So with the facts on his side, why in HELL does PJ Myers do things like THIS?? I'm with Freddie. And by the way-- why does he pick specifically on a church which has no problem with evolution and never has? Surely he would do better with, say, "desecrating" a... Koran? Don't hold your breath- apparently he was against the Mohammed cartoons. A brave dissenter...

In cheerier evo news, Emile at World We Don't Live In links (with an awful pun) to new evidence on how flounder "moved" their eyes. There ARE "intermediate" forms. He also links to Laelaps for more-- and if you go to his home page you will find, below this post, one on a fossil "louse" that may have clung to Dino feathers or Pterosaur fur.

Conservation: in typical Government fashion, we pay to save the ferret while simultaneously killing off its prey base. The State-- "what it cannot do?" (Bonus points for knowing that quote.)

Good new "country living" blog here.

Guns. Massachusetts has an idea: make guns too expensive for all but the rich. At some point, will it be an act of civil disobedience to own a gun (Mass.) or breed a dog (California)?

Pure fun. Diana Rigg is 70 smokes, drives fast cars, and finishes off a bottle of wine every night. She is also a fan of fly- fishing. And she still looks good. Any other old Avengers fans out there in Q- Land?

John Derbyshire recently discovered funny Russian names, of which there seem to be many. I emailed him on the great 20th century Russian ornithologist Dementiev, author of the indispensable Birds of the Soviet Union. He posted this selection from Byron's Don Juan, which includes the following (and much more):

"Still I'll record a few, if but to increase
Our euphony: there was Strongenoff, and Strokonoff,
Meknop, Serge Lwow, Arséniew of modern Greece,
And Tschitsshakoff, and Roguenoff, and Chokenoff,
And others of twelve consonants apiece..."

Finally for now: sober mice are depressed mice!


Reid Farmer said...

Hard to believe Diana Rigg is 70. Lots of us had crushes. Remember a couple of years ago when Pluvi posted a pic of herself in black leather and we teased her about looking like Emma Peel?

My other favorite of that era was "Secret Agent" with Patrick McGoohan. Couldn't stand the kooky sequal "The Prisoner"

dr. hypercube said...

"had crushes"? I'm still afflicted! Man appeal (shortened to m. appeal, thus - Emma Peel)? Why, yes.
Reid - gotta disagree on The Prisoner - I loved it's surreality (trippiness?) and it gave us our weekly quota of No. 2.
Matt - OT, but expect a Steampunk post soon...

PBurns said...

Diana Rig? Yessssss!!!

79? Nooooo!

For all the yung 'uns who do not remember ::

Good to know Ms. Rigg is still kicking it in style. Between The Avenger and The Saint, we had good television. Seems a long time ago.


Reid Farmer said...

Between The Avenger and The Saint, we had good television. Seems a long time ago.


It WAS a long time ago. Even further back, don't get Steve and me started on "Sky King", "Rin-tin-tin" or "Wild Kingdom"

{gives old fogey grin}

LabRat said...

What staggers me about Meyers and his ilk is not that they behave as they do- smart, incisive scientists are by no means immune to the pleasures of acting like a six-year-old- but that they don't seem to realize the incalculable damage they do to the gulf between academia and just about everyone else outside its circle. There's nothing inherently elitist about learning, education, and erudition- but when the educated elite pour their contempt down upon Teh Dumbass Masses just over religion itself, which is the dominant paradigm even among scientists... it's just breathtakingly stupid. It's alienating for no good reason at all, and it gives MOUNTAINS of ammunition to the Discovery Institute and every other batch of slimeballs with an interest in portraying the ebil evolutionists as arrogant, close-minded, and out of touch.

The other side doesn't NEED to build their own straw men when we have our own scarecrows...

Steve Bodio said...

Patrick: only 70!

LabRat: EXACTLY, well said as always. The IDiots are all smiling over this.