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Cardhouse
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party poker

RARRRRRRRR!!!! Rarr rarrrr rarrr meow rarr?
RARRRRR!!! Rarr. Rarrr rarr J-List rarrrr.

2008apr01. Mail.

Hey Man i saw your page and while i was laughing i realized you must have absolutely no life ... .

What prompts people to take their time to do this crazy shit?

Your a wild man ... ..

Dave

I don’t even know how to approach this one. NO REPLY

2008apr01. Preview of upcoming documentary on flying penguins w/Terry Jones. Oh what a glorious day!

2008apr01. The American Heart Association has come up with a new and improved non-cooties way of performing CPR that is fairly simple. On this page, it indicates: “Push hard and fast in the center of the chest.” At the FAQ, extra labor is revealed: “Begin providing high-quality chest compressions by pushing hard and fast in the center of the chest with minimal interruptions.” Look, the game is coming on in five minutes, can I just tape a squirmy fish to this guy? Great.

2008apr02. Ask.metafilter: non-standard food combinations that are delicious.

2008apr02. The story of Estupido Espezial!!!, the font too dumb to die. The slow roll reveal at the end is priceless. [via waxy]

2008apr06. Achewood: Problems with the Shrovis.

2008apr06. Mail.

hi im mohan i am having problems. [urls shoved]
Samoa, Beijing

Wasn’t that a Siouxsie and the Banshees song? “Samoa’s in Beijing”?

2008apr06. Jet engine wind turbine. The video doesn’t mention the additional environmental advantage – it looks like wind turbine-related bird mortality rates would plummet. See also Windside for vertical-mount wind turbines. Can’t ... stop ... staring

2008apr06.

2008apr07. I’ve been running the Firefox betas for a little while because they’re much more snappy than the current production model (THE NEW ’09 FOXES ARE IN!). But extensions don’t work with it, so I’ve been seeing “advertising.” It’s a strange world. Today a moving image of a woman flexed her muscles at me and made a funny face; in exchange I’m to visit to her cam site and enter my credit card number. I gently decline.

2008apr07. Mail.

Re: Firefox 3 betas and extensions

This tip works:

http://lifehacker.com/355973/make-your-extensions-work-with-the-firefox-3-beta.

Ah! Thank you for that. Another reader tackles the problem farther down the gridiron:

Sr. Tarjetacasa,

I have run into the same ad blocking issue as you [I’ve been running nightlies of Flock, the “social” browser based on Firefox]. AdBlock wasn’t working anymore, so to get around it I started blocking at the host level, which is a tip I originally learned from @Man’s websi+e ten years ago but which has been carried to extremes by these dudes, who update their list religiously and even packaged an installer:

http://www.mvps.org/winhelp2002/hosts.htm

It doesn’t collapse the banners the way Adblock does, but at least there’s nothing in there anymore. Note that it does not kill banners hosted on the si+es themselves like the J-list one for Cardhouse, which is ok with me.

Ho! I had abandoned that methodology years ago when Adblock came into vogue ... I’ll have to give it another eyeballing. Many thanks.

2008apr08. loudQUIETloud: a film about the Pixies’ 2004 reunion tour. Available for one week only on the newly-minted Pitchfork TV. [via waxy]

2008apr08. Superheated Steam Oven. These types of ovens have been around since the ’80s, at least. Retains vitamins, removes fat, costs too much. People jabber about earlier versions here.

Regarding the new Sharp steam oven, this seems to be a reinvention of what was used in the old Henry’s Hamburger chain in the 50’s and 60’s. I would beg my parents to drive to Skokie, Illinois, so I could have one of their Melted Cheese Sandwiches. They were made from a hamburger bun and a couple slices of american cheese. The sandwich was placed in a tabletop mounted stainless steel box with a handle on one side. The handle would be depressed 3 or 4 times and pressurized steam would be injected into the cooker, instantly melting the cheese and heating and moisturizing the bun. Just wonderful! I’ve been trying to figure out what happened to this type of cooker. Thank you. – Jim Morris Seattle

2008apr09. Mail.

[fake username] asked you a question. View the question [url shoved] and answer it.

This email was sent by [fake username] while using the Question It application by Curiosity Solutions. Go here [url maimed] to learn more or stop receiving emails from friends using Question It. 255 G Street #723, San Diego, CA 92101, USA

Go bite yourself.

2008apr10. Mail.

Hi. My name is Sunny B. I am looking for used seat on arcade machines with English instructions like racing formula one , motorcycles, shooting guns or standing on used arcade game machines please reply to my mail at your earliest convenience.
Yours: sunny

Sunny! Thank you for the mail message you sent to me. Sunny thank you for your query you sent today. You gave to me your query call and now I feel that I’m ten feet tall. Now the dark days are gone and bright days are here, but there are no arcade machines around I fear. Sunny once so true, I failed you.

2008apr11. Friday. “Free.”

Yellow Drum Machine. [via jwz]
The Curious Furniture of Ned Troide.
Factory Balls. A game in which you manufacture balls.
Fruit Mystery. A game in which you fruitize animals. [via waxy]
You Have To Burn The Rope. A game in which you burn the rope. That’s a clue. Stay for the theme song.
Bound Bear. This is the classiest Japanese bear head launching game I’ve played this week. Check that background track, mah peeps. It’s ... JAZZ-AY!
1970 Japanese psychedelic Look chocolate advertisement.
Cicada molting. Amazing/BLORTCH. Hey, is that Bounty™? Then, after you’re done watching it five times in a row, you close the window and shiver involuntarily. It’s a thing.
NPR interview: Cookie Monster. Also: Martha Stewart v. Cookie Monster [1 2].
Vice: Toxic Garbage Island. A twelve-part series on the huge “floating garbage patch” in the Pacific. The remainder of episodes will be put up within the next two weeks.
Some penguins.

2008apr11. Out-of-control car injures six on courthouse steps. Noted for last sentence.

2008apr13. Gary Pettis looks into his own soul. [via doc]

2008apr18. Texas.com. What a boring site. It should be Texas-sized. Body font size = 27 points. You should only be allowed to access it if you type it in caps. TEXAS.COM. Bold. Lawless. Insane. I wasn’t even thinking of Commander Dipshit when I wrote that last sentence. These are my Texas rules for Texas-based web browsing. Texas.

TEXAS.

2008apr19. A piece of mail I recently received indicates that I’ve been “pre-selected” for an American Express card. So I’ll just wait here until I get a piece of mail indicating that I’ve been selected, I guess. Send food.

2008apr22. NYMag: Your shoes suck: an examination of why all shoes suck. Shoes: dicks.

2008apr24. Secreted deep within an ask.metafilter post about a “travelling” party game is this gem:

There’s an exceptionally difficult-to-get version of this which goes as follows. You ask any question which has a yes or no answer, and anyone who’s “in” on it can reply with a yes or no.

Typically the questions are about a journey like “Can I go to Dundee?,” “Can I go to Zimbabwe?,” “Can I go to Boston by train?,” “Can I go to Boston by train now?” and so on.

The game is very confusing because the answer to the same question can change, and yet everyone who’s “in” on it will agree on what the answer is.

Of course, the poor victims come up with increasingly elaborate rules about vowels, starting letters, longitudes, latitudes and so on, until they finally get it.

It’s best played slightly drunk and with more than one person in on the secret, because otherwise people tend to suspect that there IS no secret. But there is. And it’s this:

If the person says “um” or “err” in the question, the answer is yes, otherwise it’s no. So, “Can I go to Paris?” is no, but “Can I go to, um, Paris?” is yes. Typically, when people think they have it cracked, they start to “um” a lot more, so get a string of false positives.

It’s viciously cruel, but fun.

2008apr24. Your astrology sucks: an examination of why all astrology sucks. Astrologers: dicks. Well, now I guess everyone will shut up about astrology and astrological signs, etc.

2008apr25. Clublife: The Meta VIP Area.

2008apr25. Electric car round-up.

2008apr29. Entry #498271a in my fictional Big Fat Book of America: The Incredibly Painful History of a Country That Can Yell Louder Than Any Other.

2008apr29. Excerpts from Citrus by Pierre Laszlo. A strange book.

The navel variety of orange is reminiscent of castrato singers – outstanding, but without progeny. Originally, the navel was a sweet orange in Portugal by the name of Seleta, or Selecta. It was brought to Brazil, where, in the state of Bahia, a chance hybridization produced a limb sport. A structure at one end of the fruit, similar in appearance to a navel, led to this novel variant being named umbigo, Portuguese for “navel.” Outside of Brazil, it came to be known at first as Bahia. [ ... ] In the aftermath of the Gold Rush of 1849 and the Civil War, numerous Easterners settled in California. [ ... ] Fellow colonist Luther and Eliza Tibbets had grown tired of the cold, rough winters in the Northeast. In 1873, Eliza wrote a letter to the Department of Agriculture in Washington, DC. She asked for advice on trees to plant in her front yard that might thrive in the California climate. She was sent three seedlings of the umbigo Bahia orange from Brazil. Eliza planted the trees. One was trampled by a cow, but the other two prospered. Legend has it that she used her dishwater to water them: Luther Tibbets was too lazy or too cheap to install irrigation. One of these two trees still survives in downtown Riverside at the intersection of Magnolia and Arlington avenues. ¶ As the story goes, Eliza served her oranges at a housewarming party, and they were an instant sensation. In any case, she started a mail-order business, selling budwood at five cents a bud, according to some sources, or up to five dollars each, according to others. Eliza Tibbets, a Queen Victoria look-alike, made money and became very influential. Her three orange trees were the foundation of citriculture in California, first in Riverside and later in the whole citrus belt extending from Pasadena to Riverside. [pg 37]

At the Brookhaven National Laboratory, [Richard A. Hensz, a Texas horticulturist] began to irradiate grapefruit seeds with thermal neutrons, or with with X-rays, in the hope of inducing further mutations. In 1965, he produced the Star Ruby variety, released to growers in 1970. But you can’t win ‘em all: the Star Ruby tree, resistant to damage by frost, proved to be unusually sensitive to damage from herbicides, and it bore fruit with unpredictable regularity. ¶ Back to the drawing board, and to the BNL, went Dr. Hensz. In 1976, he came up with yet another new variety, named Rio Red. It is “the paragon among red grapefruits” it is advertised to be, at least so far. Made available to growers in 1984, it is now grown nationwide. [pg 43]

Orangeries are buildings providing winter shelter for citrus trees. Their survival hangs on the air temperature not dropping below freezing for several hours. The northern Italian constructions combined protection against the wind and its chill factor with a southern exposure, as well as the use of materials such as stone or brick to store and reradiate solar heat. Sometimes, auxiliary heating by wood- or charcoal-burning furnaces was used. [pg 45]

The Sun King, Louis XIV, was the grandson of Henri IV and Marie de Médicis, her frenchified name. The design of his new palace at Versailles, especially of its gardens by Le Nôtre, merged an Italian style of garden architecture with French ideas of order and rationality, a synthesis known in French history as the Classic age. ¶ What do the hordes of tourists visiting Versailles seek? Many visit out of a sense of obligation. Versailles is a must on the tourist’s checklist. [ ... ] Little do they imagine what the place really looked like in the time of the Sun King – a mix between an American political convention and the San Firmin fiesta in Pamplona, with, on any day, about 30,000 courtiers milling around, eating and sleeping, fighting, gossiping, showing off, whoring, urinating, and defecating on the rugs – and out the windows – and, in general, spending most of their time just being idle – which, indeed, was exactly the King’s intent. ¶ To return to the present: tourists at Versailles flock to the ticket booths, then invade the inside of the palace. In so doing, they miss the whole point: Versailles was built primarily as a garden. The originality of Versailles is in the park – to which, furthermore, admission is free. Accordingly – and paradoxically – few tourists bother taking more than a few perfunctory steps outside. [pg 47]

And then there is canker. The very name of this disease, with its echo of cancer, strikes fear into the hearts of citrus growers. It is a bacterial infection by Xanthomonas axonopodis, of which there are three strains, spread by wind-driven rains. One of those strains, the Asiatic citrus canker, has infected about a million trees in Florida. ¶ Canker shows up as brown and yellow spots on citrus leaves and on the rind of the fruit. And that is all. Nontoxic to humans, it does not affect the taste of the fruit, nor its maturation. It is ugly, period. Only the outward appearance of the fruit is altered. ¶ Citrus canker thus might be just an external symptom of the striving for perfection endemic to American society. The consumer is king, and he is spoiled. American corporations endeavor to provide only the best products. Destruction of canker-affected trees and fruit costs growers in Florida an estimated $350 million per year, representing about 4 percent of the yearly income from citrus. [pg 55]

When economic forces are involved in the effort to protect citrus crops, things get complicated. In the year 2002, facing an outbreak of citrus canker in Florida, Governor Jeb Bush made an executive decision to destroy diseased trees. Thus, 1.5 million trees in commercial groves were sacrificed. In addition – you can imagine the outcry – another 603,000 trees were destroyed in the backyards of about 250,000 homeowners. ¶ This poses the dilemma, familiar to political theorists, between the prerogatives of the state and the freedom of the individual that is familiar from issues such as the wearing of safety belts or cigarette smoking. Yet Governor Bush’s decision seems a little different. He was invading the privacy of a relatively small fraction of the Florida electorate in order to preserve the well-being of a politically better organized segment of the population: the citrus growers to whom the state of Florida owes a substantial part of its prosperity (its other main economic resource being tourism). [pg 57]

For many years, in the 1920s and the 1930s, California was producing about 50 percent more oranges than Florida. ¶ During these golden years, overproduction of oranges in California again became a problem. The growers destroyed surplus fruit in an attempt to stabilize the price, burning tons of oranges with kerosene-fed fires. Such actions were considered shocking during the Depression, when many Americans were starving. [pg 96]

The Sun Up Foods scam netted that company between $10 and $20 million. In 1990, an employee went to the hidden room that pumped liquid beet sugar into the orange juice it was processing. Stainless steel pipes hidden in the walls were set up to appear to be part of the sewage system. In the event of a government inspection, the sugar-carrying line could be turned off, and the outside pipe closed to conceal the illicit sugar pipeline. [ ... ] The main adulterants are corn syrup and beet sugar, since 98 percent of the total soluble organic content of the juice consists of sugars, predominantly sucrose, glucose, and fructose. [pg 105]

A major aspect of Chinese alchemy was potable gold. Chinese proto-chemists had devised procedures for turning the precious metal into aqueous suspensions of tiny particles, colloidal gold that one could drink. The notion was that the inalterability of the noble metal would be transmitted to whomever drank it, conferring on the drinker good health and immortality. [pg 130]

2008apr30. A conversation with Tim Keller.


Book: Animals in Translation Book: Pranks! Book: Adrift - 76 Days Lost At Sea Book: Secret Language of Sleep Book: Consider the Lobster