Tag Archives: Twitter

This is magic

Come for the Cardinals baseball… stay for the Lord’s Own Hockey.

(language alert!)

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And your little Joss, too

So Joss Whedon’s been chased off Twitter by these petty-minded scolds, these would-be tyrants of the human mind.


The man responsible for Buffy, for Firefly, and for Dollhouse, is now the latest target of a Two-Minute Hate from these oh-so-tolerant and oh-so-loving leftists.

None of them is fit to sharpen the man’s pencils. They could barely write a bloody greeting card but they see fit to level their mindless shrieks at Joss Whedon, who is as close to the King of Geekdom as you are likely to find today.

None of us is safe. Not in our works, not in our words, not even in our thoughts – not if such as these have their way over the culture and over the world. They want the power to veto other human beings, to so commandeer us that we will be incapable of doing, expressing, or even believing anything of our own – to drain us, to hollow us out and make us mere puppets of their own will. We will be made to agree, to approve, to admire.

Pardon my salt, folks, but fuck that noise.

I have had it beyond all reckoning and patience with this anti-human codswollop. God Himself permits us this autonomy – it is in fact one of the favorite accusations of skeptics against Him, that He does suffer our sins and doesn’t make them impossible to us. Simply hating Him for that isn’t enough for some folks, apparently; they want to take on that job themselves.

So I appeal to all and sundry – don’t fall for this. Think twice, especially if you find yourself agreeing with the silencers, much less joining in. You may think you’re safe because you’re in the midst of the mob today; but crowds shift and tastes change, and you may look up and suddenly, uncomfortably find yourself facing a very large group of very angry people – the same ones you called friend and ally. The innocent jokes you all told yesterday will be People’s Exhibit A in your show trial tomorrow.

Freedom means the freedom to disagree, and the freedom to get along with each other despite disagreeing, and not being ground into a monochromatic paste. I will call “brother” and “sister” whomever stands with me on this fundamental point: that any individual deserves individuality, personhood, a unique voice, and a free will – not subject to any veto power over that will.


Infinite tributes in infinite combinations

UPDATED March 1, 2015: One particular tribute that I missed, as I am not a part of this online community… but that might be the sweetest of all:

Basically, when the news came of Leonard Nimoy’s passing, Star Trek Online players decided, spontaneously and en masse, to go to virtual Vulcan and pay their respects.

It’s seriously dusty around here right now.

ORIGINAL POST: The outpouring of love and heartfelt tributes to Leonard Nimoy have been wonderful to see. And the variety! Quotes, of course. Nearly everyone had some variation of “He lived long, and prospered” when the news first broke. Others have sent out pictures, usually screenshots of Spock, but also of Nimoy in a variety of his guest roles.

The most fun one has been the Twitter hashtag “PutSpockInASong,” which has resulted in a fine paradox: people howling in laughter due to puns about the emotionless paragon of rational thought and dispassion. Yet for all that, I think it is flawlessly logical, and one hopes that he would, at least, quirk a friendly eyebrow at the foibles of humanity.

As my favorite of them (so far) put it:

Some have been touching, some absurdist, some serious, some comic… all have been heartfelt.

One thing I observe is that three men reprised their characters from the original Trek in episodes of The Next Generation – DeForest Kelly, James Doohan, and Leonard Nimoy – and now all three have boldly gone on.

(FUN FACT! Peter Duryea acted with Leonard Nimoy on Star Trek – in the original pilot, The Cage, Duryea played Lt. Jose Tyler opposite Nimoy as Mr. Spock.)

Leonard Nimoy was more than Spock, of course. He sang folk tunes, some of which were original compositions. He was a professional photographer. He wrote and directed as well as acted. He was a veteran of the US Army. He was one of three Star Trek regulars who had been on The Twilight Zone. He acted on Broadway, was the voice of a cartoon robot, and played himself as a head in a jar. (“It’s a life of quiet dignity.”)

All in all, one could do far worse.

Yeah, he was under alien influence, as would happen from time to time. Tough tribbles.

Yeah, he was under alien influence, as would happen from time to time. It still counts, so tough tribbles, nerds.

My 15 seconds of fame

So after last night’s Islanders win, I was rattling around on the Twitter, half-noticing the postgame show…

Yup, that was me. Shannon Hogan and Butch Goring briefly poked fun at the idea, and then it was gone.

Over at the Lighthouse Hockey online digs, such japes are par for the course. We kid! We kid, because we love! So I hope that Cal won’t mind it too much. Besides, yours truly wouldn’t rate an emergency call-up with this weak ‘stache game.

Hey guys, good game.  How about a Dr Pepper?

Hey guys, good game. How about a Dr Pepper?

Also, I’m fairly certain the Islanders clubhouse doesn’t have an unmade bed and a reading light.

Fun with Twitter

These two tweets just passed by in my feed, back to back:

Oh, well that makes sense.

Both these guys are fellow Lighthouse Hockey writers


Obviously Dom’s replying to something Keith said earlier, but for a minute I was trying to connect these two statements as a coherent conversation.  I think I even got as far as thinking that “comedians using puppets” was a reference to the NHL and its referees.

Stupid lockout.

You can’t take it with you

Brent Spiner gets a lot of respect here in the Supersonic Rocket Ship.  It’s not just geek cred for having been Data, either… it’s also for being a clever, good-humored guy (his Twitter feed is a fun follow); for his varied acting gifts – comic, dramatic, and musical; and for generally leaving off the tired sermonizing that too many other entertainers indulge in.

The above is actually a fine example.  Wherever you stand on the recent elections, or the rumbles of secession/nullity, et als, this is the sort of quip that will probably make you chuckle.  It’s reasonably plain where Mr. Spiner stands, in both senses of the phrase – it’s plain, and it’s reasonable.  That’s how you handle a subject that risks alienating a goodly part of your fan base.  Love it.

In any case, you tend to hear these rumbles from one or the other far side, as dawgmark35* points out here.  When it was W’s turn in office, we would regularly hear of some cheesed off lefty celebrity** threatening to abscond to some European clime.  When the Left seems most ascendant, it’s the reverse, and Texas is going to rise again or some such.

* There are 34 other dawgmarks?

** Celeftrity? No, that’s a coinage too far. I feel like there should be something there, but it would be a shame to force it.

I don’t take either thing very seriously, because it’s not at all likely to happen.  But there’s a distinction that I think that dawgmark and Spiner don’t mention here.  It’s most obvious to me in both cases, that of the Baldwinites and E Unumis Plurae,† that each group isn’t trying to take a country with them, but feeling that the country has already left them behind, and it’s time to decamp.

† I know my declension is off. It’s been a long while since my only Latin class.

Neither side makes a secret of this feeling, though I notice that the Left conveniently forgets this feeling when they retake authority.  Troubles and scandals that storm around the Right are somehow far less troubling to them when it’s one of their own in the center.  As CS Lewis observed, they have an engine called the press whereby the public is deceived.  They use this tool much like a high school might use a bonfire at a prep rally: whip up the observers and immolate (at least by proxy) the opponents.

But there’s one more difference, and this one runs right down the middle of the Left/Right divide.  To wit: the Left’s solution involves enforced conformity, and the Right’s does not.

What a lot of people are talking about with this succession business is actually more like Federalism – let the individual state come up with local-level solutions to problems where the Constitution gives the Congress no authority.  This arrangement has the dual advantage of making policy easier to implement AND easier to undo.  After all, if all of Wisconsin or Kansas wants something, why should they be outvoted by a cabal of Californians?  And if it turns out to be a disaster, why should people with no say in the matter be able to block your wishes?

Second, if you don’t like what your state has done, you can head to one more to your liking… without sacrificing your American citizenship or losing your voice in the affairs of your home country.

Now, the Left’s solution is essentially to tell everyone to lump it because they’re in charge.  When they’re not, they threaten to leave the process entirely.  It’s like some tiresome party-goer who insists that everyone will just LOVE their chosen activity, and runs about enforcing the gaiety (and policing the conversation) by a variety of means.  They naturally consider those who stop attending to be tiresome and dull people, and conclude that these wallflowers need livening up – something is obviously the matter with THEM.  They never get to see the parties that these “wallflowers” throw among themselves, with a variety of games, conversations, and even people quietly sitting in ones or twos when they please.  They imagine, if they get wind of such parties, that they’ve been snubbed and take offense… perhaps they never even faintly dream that they would be invited if only they wouldn’t try to carry out a coup d’fete every time.  They can gladly have their fun, so long as they don’t inflict that fun on all present.

Texas and New Mexico can coexist doing different things with abortion, health insurance, and whatever social issues present themselves.  They can’t coexist if one insists on making the other follow all the same policies.  The Big Ticket items that make us an Unum are outlined in the Constitution; that same marvelous document insists that where such items are not specified, the means to deal with them are vested in the Pluribus and the populace.  This would lead to more variety, more opportunity, more choices… horrors, we might run the risk of becoming a more understanding society!  We might have to learn to appreciate how another approach works for a different group of people, and not just reflexively condemn someone who thinks and acts otherwise.  We might just stumble into the shocking realization that it’s possible to disagree without being odious, and realize that it doesn’t make someone an -IST or a  -PHOBE for going their own way.

Rush was right.  No, not that one – the guys who sang “Subdivisions.”

Doubling down on petty tyranny

update, 6/3 – they start early, don’t they? (thx to Stoaty via Twitter)

(Plenty of play on the blogosphere and Twitter on this subject: the Swillers, Morgan Freeberg, and IMAO for starters.  Good.  I hope Bloomberg is driven from the field in shame.  It’s high time we let these bossy busybodies know who’s boss in the citizen-politician relationship.)

The more I hear about this seemingly-inconsequential Beverage Mandate, the more it irritates me.  I’ve seen a clip of a flack on TV (I think it was an “obesity expert” or some such from a university) say that obesity began to spike in the early 80’s with the introduction of the two-liter soda bottle.

Horseradish.  I can remember Hoffman’s Beverages on Long Island offering racks of twelve single-quart (glass) bottles.  After we emptied it, we brought the rack back and got twelve new ones, with the old bottles sent to the company for cleaning and refilling… or we could just take the nickel deposits and be done.  Soda has always been around.  Sugary drinks have always been around.  Gigantic calorie-stuffed, creme-filled snack food has always been around.

What we have now that we didn’t then is the Atari 2600 and its successors.  We have an Internet that is so easily reachable that even when kids are turned out of doors, they spend their time huddled over miniature screens instead of running and laughing.  Are we going to ban video game consoles and smartphones next?

We also have such an over-layered, smothering approach to exercise that it’s no wonder that ever-more people are inflating at a rapid rate.  Unstructured play?  What’s that?  Sure, it keeps you healthy, you have fun, you learn to mediate your own disputes, you have opportunity to develop good sportsmanship, coordination, skill, and friendships – but what if you get hurt??!?!eleventy!!?

To top all that, we lack essential counter-influences to these tugs on our daily habits.  We fetishize self-esteem to such an extent that any experience that affronts or worries is considered a borderline assault.  Well, playing a game of pickup basketball offers ample chance to be affronted or worried.  Am I good enough?  Will I be teased for running slow or looking awkward?  Will nobody want me on their team because I’m terrible?

We also lack parental authority.  Not coincidentally, this is directly tied to the ever-intrusive State: they have whittled and undermined the traditional societal units of influence in order to gin up a desire for those necessary functions to be filled by elected officials.  “Government must step in” is the mantra of the newly-infantilized adult, raised for 30-50 solid years in a world in which parents’ and church’s accustomed say in kids’ lives were systematically ridiculed, marginalized, and ultimately ignored.  Pick a topic.  Education?  Teachers know so much more!  A kid ought to feel good about the educational process and be an equal partner in it.  Morality?  Passé!  It’s all situational ethics now, with no timeless absolutes by which to judge the momentary situation.  Relationships?  We’ll teach sex ed.  All that situational ethics and self-esteem we taught earlier will ensure that kids will have no basis for decision other than their in-the-moment, hormone-addled emotions, and no way to be told that the decision may have lasting consequences without being horribly offended.  If it doesn’t work, it’s not their fault – society has failed them.  But government will never fail them!  They pinky-swear!

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Eat, drink, and be wary

The latest in Mother Henmanship from Mike Bloomberg in New York City: banning any sugary bevarage of more than 16 ounces.

This pferdkaese reminds me a lot about the whinnying over tobacco use.  Seriously, if soda or cigs are that bad for you?  Ban them outright.  Otherwise it really isn’t anything to do with “safety” or “public health” or any such fig leaf; it’s about control.  And that all of this is coming from the man who shoved through a revocation of the term limits on his office so he could rule a third time.

Sure, he says it was only because of an “extraordinary one-time thing.”  But it wasn’t.  There’s always some financial crisis looming.  This isn’t the first time even in my lifetime that the national or world economy has tanked.  You know what was an extraordinary one-time thing?  Foreign agents driving airliners into skyscrapers, that’s what – and Rudy Guiliani didn’t serve a third damned term.  He talked about it but it wasn’t a good idea even then; he gave way to this tinpot potentate – one who now hypocritically says that he supports changing it back so no mere human peasant can have the opportunity.  None are as enlightened as he, and thus shan’t be trusted with such awesome power!  And I’m not fond of hearing, “Oh, but it was legally done!”  Are you fighting Big Beverage “legally,” Mayor Ninnyhammer, or are you just ruling by fiat without any input from the City Council?  The answer is B, isn’t it?

Again – it’s about control.  The mandatory posting of nutritional information and calorie contents was supposed to be enough.  Apparently not, so now it’s going to be blunt force.  I’m fond of joking that parody is a dying art because it’s so hard to stay ahead of the idiot curve, but this is nearly beyond a joke, now.  On Futurama, Leela once said something like: “This is Fry’s decision to make… and he made it wrong, so now we’re going to butt in and do it for him.”  Oh, Mayor?  THIS WAS NOT MEANT AS ADVICE.  Stop it.

Sometimes, debate and argument don’t really work, because a person isn’t really being reasonable at all.  That’s when you resort to ridicule.  If you make the dumb idea seem dumb even to the person promoting it, you might stay their meddling, restless hand when ironclad logic fails.  The Twitter hashtag #BloombergMovieTitles sprang up and a good many people spent hours savaging Bloomberg’s pompous overreach.  You can click the tag to see the top lines… some of my contributions are below.  (Hard to come up with ones others didn’t, so I hope I didn’t rip anyone off.  I mean, The Good The Bad and The “X” is just a slam-dunk.)

  • Heavy-Handed Luke
  • Lord of the Servings
  • Smokey and the Big Gulp
  • Ten Things I Hate About Yoo-Hoo
  • Everything You Ever Wanted to Eat, Drink, or Smoke, but Weren’t Allowed To
  • Bloomberg Almighty
  • Birth of a Ration
  • The Incredible Rightness of Being Mayor
  • The Sensible Breakfast Club
  • Silence of the Gourmands
  • The Good, the Bad, and the Salty
  • Transfatting
  • Steamed Green Tomatoes
  • Logan’s Beer Run
  • The Towering Cappucino
  • Blazing Griddles

A season for all men

Margaret: Father, have him arrested!

More: On what charge?

Margaret: He’s a bad man.

More: There’s no law against that.

Margaret: Yes there is – God’s law!

More: Then God can arrest him.  … He shall go free, were he the Devil himself, unless he broke the law.

Roper: So now you would give the Devil the shelter of the law?

More: And what would you do, Roper? Cut a great road through the law to reach him? … And when he turned on you, Roper, where would you hide, now that the law’s flat?  The country’s planted thick with laws, Roper – man’s laws, not God’s.  If you cut them down, and you’re just the man to do it, could you stand upright in the winds that would then blow?  I give the Devil the safety of the law, for my own safety’s sake.

That is from the magnificent movie (and play before that) A Man for All Seasons.  You’ll forgive the paraphrase, I hope, as my copy of neither source is nearby.  It’s somewhat a long lead into the topic, too, and I’ll hope you find it worth it, because this is a very big topic.    It’s been building for a long time, too.

You’ll have noticed that one of the most popular TV shows today is “Person of Interest,” J.J. Abrams’ general apology to the world for the Star Trek reboot and “Lost” finale.  It’s really a great show, too, almost in spite of itself: the premise of an all-seeing surveillance network quietly ferreting out terrorist plots and other impending crimes is enormously troublesome, and under poor stewardship, could easily devolve into a too-blunt critique of society, both badly-aimed and badly-executed.

As it is, they ask some fantastic questions, and all from the perspective of the characters, arising naturally from their interactions.  It’s masterful work, actually, and any aspiring storyteller would be well-advised to observe and emulate the approach.  That’s reason enough for it to become a popular program, but I think there’s more.  Plenty of well-crafted shows die on the vine because they can’t find an audience.  “Person of Interest” got through, because in its way it deals with exactly what Sir Thomas More was talking about 450 years ago.  The more things change…

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Comments for Unpersoned

This is particularly annoying.  Seems like there’s no way to leave a comment or start a discussion for this post about getting the Moses Treatment* on Twitter.

* “Let his name be neither spoken, nor written, nor remembered.”  (GONG)  “Let it be erased from every monument, decree, and obelisk.” (GONG, etc.)

Now, worse has happend to people out on Twitter… some have taken to turning the spam-reporting feature into a coordinated attack on folks they dislike, with the automatic systems freezing the account, sometimes repeatedly, for hours or days.  So in my case, it’s more like simply being kicked out of a nightclub than forced to flee across the desert.  But somehow this one post is doing almost the same thing.  Nothing I’ve tried is working to get the reply button working, either.  Comments are open but nobody can get in.  This irks me.

So, please reply to this thread instead – if WordPress will let you! – and thanks for your patience.