Friday, June 26, 2009


It just wouldn't be right to let MJ's passing go overlooked in this space.

MJ has been a presence in my life for all of my life. I was 5 when Thriller came out, and it was one of the first tapes I was bought. I can still remember listening to it on a Sony Walkman on family vacations when I was a kid, when even the baby tiger in the cover art blew my mind. His music is still as powerful today as ever. Music from the early Jackson 5 work, Off The Wall, and Thriller are all still in my ears regularly. I don't think any other artist ever achieved the kind of perfection I hear in much of Michael's music. His music truly has made me a happier person.

I'd just take this time to say, from the bottom of my heart, thank you, Michael.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

C.I.C.L.E.'s Bicycle Lifestyle Guide

If you've been thinking about really adopting a bike routine into your lifestyle, there are some good nuggets of info and advice here. This is being printed and given out for free in Cali, but the rest of us can see it online. (C.I.C.L.E. stands for Cyclists Inciting Change through Live Exchange - a little contrived, but they get an A for effort)

Friday, June 19, 2009

Sansa Aggravation

I picked up a little 4 GB Sansa Clip about a month ago. It's a tiny little mp3 player that also features an FM receiver and voice recorder. It also has a screen, unlike my trusty first gen iPod Shuffle.

It's worked as expected, and overall I am pleased with the purchase, with one glaring exception: the clip attachment itself. On the bike tour that was the impetus for buying the thing, the clip broke. The tolerances on that plastic attachment were exceeded by simply removing the clip from an armband. Now the thing has no tension, and therefore functions less as a clip than a hook.

To be concise, I've gotten the run around by Sansa's tech support, and resorted to shelling out another $20 for a pack of three replacement clips. Now why would Sansa only sell replacement clips in packs of three? Seems like an admission of a flawed design, no? If that's the case, why not put an extra clip in the original package?

Of course the clips are backordered. Seems like this is a common problem! I put an order in anyway, and my credit card was billed. Today, two weeks later, I noticed that the funds had been refunded back to my account, and the clips are still on backorder.

Sansa, you annoy me.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

See how the Genitals make use of the Gap.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

CKLW - Radio Revolution

As a radio junkie and a Detroit kid, I ate this film up. I knew CKLW growing up as an AM talk station, but in the 60s and 70s it was one of the most influential rock stations in North America. The entire documentary is fascinating and had me glued to my TV when it came on PBS this evening. This chapter on the news department is deliciously outrageous. If you like radio, Detroit, or rock music, hunt this doc down. Radio Revolution: The Rise & Fall of The Big 8

Sunday, June 07, 2009

The Closest I'll Get To My DJ Fantasies.


I didn't see it, but Roger Federer won the French Open this morning. The NYTimes reports that someone accosted the athlete during the match. I think the word "accosted" is ready for retirement.

In honor of the historic event, I hereby repost a link to the fabulous David Foster Wallace (R.I.P.) essay which appeared in the NYTimes Play magazine almost 3 years back.

Pee, The Way Nature Intended.

I know just a hair this side of zilch about soil chemistry, so it's no surprise I was struck dumb by Andrew Leonard's piece in Salon about phosphorous and, well, pee. Andrew does the heavy reading of the source material in Scientific American, and boils it down to this - the phosphorous we ingest is a critical element of healthy soil that we rely on to produce our food. It's fertilizer. Thing is, it seems that phosphorous is becoming a thing of some scarcity.

"How can I help?" you are surely asking yourself. All you need to do is remember what you learned in kindergarden: to put things back where they belong when you are done with them. It still applies, though we still haven't learned our lesson. When we are done using phosphorous, we tinkle it away down the drain (and eventually to the ocean).

Besides all the water wasted in every flush of our modern toilets, here's another good reason to reconsider the water closet's status quo. Leonard proposes an evolution of the basin as we know it from a evacuation tool to a seperation tool, but as far as I'm concerned, his solution is needlessly complicated. Is it time to get over ourselves and resume doing things the old-fashioned way? Cut out the middle man!

I googled "urine compost" and found this quote:
The best form of liquid addition for compost is what some composters primly call Household Compost Activator. Other people call it urine. Don't be coy about it -- this is what should happen to urine rather than wasting it by flushing it down the toilet.
I can think of at least one group of professionals that are leading the way. In cycling, it's called a "nature break."