Even in absurdity, sacrament.     Even in hardship, holiness.     Even in doubt, faith.     Even in chaos, realization.    Even in paradox, blessedness

 

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* Latest additions... welcome!

[?]= Seems to be down or on hiatus.
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"Life expands or shrinks in proportion to one's courage."    ~Anain Nin

{ Wednesday, 31 March, 2004 }

Something Awful presents, in the

Something Awful presents, in the worst taste possible, "Advertisements of the Christ."

"When you have the passion for great shampoo." [pg. 2]

jaybird found this for you @ 19:33 in Silly People, Satire & Strange Behaviors | | permalink



The Do-It-Yourself Deity You are

The Do-It-Yourself Deity

You are invited to select from the list below the attributes which you believe God must have (or the attributes that a being deserving of the name God must have). Metaphysical engineers will then model this conception of God to check out its plausibility.

jaybird found this for you @ 14:52 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



"The News on the Job Front is in..."

I just got the news; I have until the end of April in my interim position here. Sure, I'm a bit saddened but feel that this all happens for a reason, which sounds cliché as all get out but, that's life. We live in a clichéd society.

I'm relieved as hell that the wait is over, feel supported by more names than I can mention, and know that one way or another, I will not only survive but thrive. It is spring, after all, not only outside but inside. My soul is sprouting. This is, as I mentioned, a challenge I mentioned last night that I've risen to before. My plan is to rise with gusto and grace into the future and what I've chosen to co-create with the Universe.

Breathing in, breathing out...

jaybird found this for you @ 11:56 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



"March's Utterly Baffling Search Requests"

It was a rather perverted month... in the name of Good Taste I've omitted the heinous offenders (who should be prostrate with guilt, saith the Lord! ) from the scroll, but as always it's spicy enough. March has continued the upward trend of readership, so thanks again for wasting some of your valuable time here. Anyway, I'm grateful that either my free time, research quandries, or sexual proclivities don't lead me down some of these confusing and puzzling paths that follow:

  • Munch: pretzels and holy travelling men  

  • Eek: mousepox pics  

  • Woof: how old is fluffy the dog went to afghanistan  

  • Why do they call Americans sutpid?: why do they call the french forgs?  

  • Yes: wanna see what else i can do?  

  • What's the first thing you think of when I say: psychology test house sun snake road  

  • Sunglasses: ufo noah moon eyes  

  • Inexplicable: the science behind the blue bird the car  

  • You too?: life - i m overcome  

  • Hold it: peeing in the grass  

  • Lay off the acid and Google: ex of dialectical journal for roll of thunder hear my cry  

  • Agreed: this eternal truth is above the logic of force the concept of environment or the terminology of society  

  • More acid and Google: uncanny halo rapture misery lost lover capital city poem poetry  

  • No charge: royalty free i love you for sentimental reason  

  • Charmed, I'm sure: indian summer. leaves fallen from government trees. they remind me of sex.

  • Good for you!: golden potto penis  

  • Multitasking: harvest moon friends of mineral town tips and hints on how to get the goddess as your wife  

  • Gross: snookums and santorum  


  • MacIntosh: ancient geek masks  

  • Rubbed elbows with...: genghis khan and six degrees of separation  

  • Instant Message Romance :)~ to me you are my sun....brightens my day when your around i feel warm when your around and ur the center of my universe.  

  • Also agreed: i have estimated the influence of reason upon love and found that it is like that of a raindrop upon the ocean which makes one little mark upon the water s face and disappears.

  • Hello, sailor: persistant sexual arousal syndrome  

  • Batten down the hatches: my milkshake brings all the guys to the yacht  

  • You too, buddy: fuck you and the horse you rode in on  

  • Not the same way as you: do you remember jack frost melting on the playground walls....  

  • Om my: buddha and consuming all movements ghost  

  • I don't know: tuck or untuck shirt
  • And this month's "like totally tormented" winner:

  • why does my sister hve to step over my boundaries  
  • jaybird found this for you @ 10:00 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    The Gross International Happiness Project

    The Gross International Happiness Project [via MeFi]

    The Gross International Happiness Project (‘GIH’) is based on the insight that conventional development concepts such as GNP and Per Capita Income do not properly reflect the general well being of the inhabitants of a nation. In order to develop real progress and sustainability and to effectively combat trends which compromise the planet’s natural and human ecosystems, GIH aims to develop more appropriate and inclusive indicators which truly measure the quality of life within nations and organizations. GIH is inspired by the concept of Gross National Happiness (GNH) proposed by the King of Bhutan, which puts the well being of individuals on top of the national development agenda. Rooted in Buddhist philosophy and values, GIH presents a radically different development paradigm, but one that holds a promise for achieving real sustainability. GIH aims to connect the international efforts which are taking place in the field of developing alternative development indicators, human economics and happiness psychology, so that individual efforts can benefit from each other and that collectively these efforts more strongly impact international development agendas.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:19 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    { Tuesday, 30 March, 2004 }

    "No Matter What..."

    Still no word on the job situation, but I'm maintaining remarkably well in spite of the pressure of not-knowing what next week, even tomorrow, will hold. Still, I have faith and feel that, no matter what, something good is going to come of this. I've faced greater challenges and am one hell of a tenacious survivor, if I may say.

    The depression of last week has not only broken but completely dissolved into the ethers. A good friend is going through the same type of funk that I was in, and the best thing I could think to tell her that worked for me was to break the rhythm, change it up, force the languid blah inside to keep up with a tougher pace. That's partially what got me through the eye of the needle, and what continues to motivate me.

    So, if there's been a lesson in this recent experience, it may be this; the rhythm is yours to set... passive/depressive/"at-effect" states of mind are like being stuck on the cul-de-sac and forgetting about the open road not far away. Walk differently, keep your eyes off the ground and your shuffling feet and see the world around you. Notice details outside of the self and it's drama. Find something that's been stagnating and take action, even if it's small- like the dishes. It doesn't take long for control and energy to rise up and call your name again.

    Maybe tomorrow, I'll know about the job- and maybe not. Maybe I'll be permanent, and maybe I'll be riding the great unknown for a while. I told another friend that, no matter what, I've got the sun and the moon and the stars at night, one gorgeous spring, and wonderful friends. That is true stability, and the most reliable support, no matter what.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:20 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    The Singularity and the Fifth

    The Singularity and the Fifth Dimension

    The concept of "The Singularity" is all the buzz amongst certain types of futurists. Mostly it fits in with transhumanist thinking. It is based on the observation that a lot of technological trends are accelerating, even faster and faster. And there are a number of them that in and of themselves have the potential for deeply transforming our collective lives. Take nano-technology, which ultimately might allow us complete control over physical matter, so that we can build any physical object we might desire, at essentially zero cost. Take artificial intelligence. What happens if a computer becomes smarter than you are? What happens if computers are a million times smarter than any of us? What would they do that we wouldn't even be able to comprehend? Or, take genetic engineering. What happens if we're able to understand and design genetics freely?

    I can't rave enough about the originating site, FutureHi. Please do visit.

    jaybird found this for you @ 21:32 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    The meanness factor: Gleaning insights

    The meanness factor: Gleaning insights from daily tasks [via MeFi]

    If the stuff of everyday life makes for ratings-grabbing reality TV, might "reality science" be next? If so, make John Trinkaus the producer. Trinkaus has spent more than a quarter of a century recording the little decisions people make in the course of a day—whether to stop at a stop sign, cut through a parking lot to avoid a traffic light, or bother with bottle-and-can recycling. No April fool, the 78-year-old investigator is an emeritus business professor at Baruch College who believes that his compilation of weird facts and statistics may shed some light on contemporary values—or the lack thereof.

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:09 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    New elements: Physicists Extend the

    New elements: Physicists Extend the Periodic Table

    Nuclear physicists have long suspected the existence of atoms far heavier than any yet discovered, but they lacked the technology needed to synthesize them. Now, a joint American-Russian team has found two new elements—numbers 113 and 115 on the periodic table—hinting at an impending breakthrough in creating novel forms of matter that will test our understanding of atomic behavior.

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:45 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Drops of life: a photo

    Drops of life: a photo essay on the vitality and scarcity of water in India [via WorldChanging]

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:01 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    "Tuesday Morning Meditation"

    A raindrop falling past the flowering tree
    Hands cupped, anticipation skyward
    There is a word on the wind
    And it nears a palm anxious to receive.
    Green overtakes me
    I am sprouting too, and come what may
    This sweet rain shall swoon me to grow,
    And the sun to blossom.
    Though the season is short,
    It's this moment to savor
    For it is the rooting of my soul
    In a tender Earth that shall receive
    The fallen seeds when the time is nigh,
    And again, I will be placing my faith skyward.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:27 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Carl Zimmer: Whose life would

    Carl Zimmer: Whose life would you save?

    Dinner with a philosopher is never just dinner, even when it’s at an obscure Indian restaurant on a quiet side street in Princeton with a 30-year-old post-doctoral researcher. Joshua Greene is a man who spends his days thinking about right and wrong, and how we separate the two. He has a particular fondness for moral paradoxes, which he collects the way some people collect snow globes.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:08 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    { Monday, 29 March, 2004 }

    The Brain in Love Dying

    The Brain in Love

    Dying of a broken heart is, of course, not adaptive, and neither is forsaking family and fortune to pursue a sweetheart to the ends of the earth. Why then, Fisher asks, has evolution burdened humans with such seemingly irrational passions? Drawing on evidence from living primates, paleontology and diverse cultures, she argues that the evolution of large-brained, helpless hominid infants created a new imperative for mother and father to cooperate in child-rearing. Romantic love, she contests, drove ancestral women and men to come together long enough to conceive, whereas attachment, another complex of feelings with a different chemical basis, kept them together long enough to support a child until weaning (about four years). Evidence indicates that as attachment grows, passion recedes. Thus, the same feelings that bring parents together often force them apart, as one or both fall in love with someone new. In this scenario, broken hearts and self-defeating crimes of passion become the unfortunate by-products of a biological system that usually facilitates reproduction.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:17 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    It's neat-o, realtime randomness: WebCollage

    It's neat-o, realtime randomness: WebCollage [via Monkeyfilter]

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:05 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    Volcanoes or vociferous microbes? Methane

    Volcanoes or vociferous microbes? Methane raises Mars life puzzle More here.

    The detection of methane has been the holy grail of scientists studying the Martian atmosphere, as its presence could provide unequivocal proof that there is life beyond Earth.

    Just what would that do to our antiquated cosmology? If life is confirmed, what would happen to mainline Christian theology? It would either be forced to stretch or revert backwards. Luckily, many other theologies make room for this possibility. Perhaps, life conformed beyond Earth could cause a revolution in theology, and we may even see brand new spiritual ideas about our Universe.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:03 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    The psychology of meaning: Eudaomonia,

    The psychology of meaning: Eudaomonia, the good life

    The third form of happiness, which is meaning, is again knowing what your highest strengths are and deploying those in the service of something you believe is larger than you are. There's no shortcut to that. That's what life is about. There will likely be a pharmacology of pleasure, and there may be a pharmacology of positive emotion generally, but it's unlikely there'll be an interesting pharmacology of flow. And it's impossible that there'll be a pharmacology of meaning.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:25 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    { Sunday, 28 March, 2004 }

    "Tofu in a Meat Market"

    Do you ever feel that way? All the cheeseburgers are in Paradise and you're a falafel in Schenectady? It's that sense of separateness, and that boundary between you and what you so desire is some unfair, arbitrary and artificial stricture. You're filled with healthy, bountiful goodness to impart but alas, there's no line at the lemonade stand of your heart but the MegaMart is packed. It makes you want to take down your sign, go home, and suck on a lemon. I'm learning (the hard way, as always) that it doesn't always have to be that way.

    I'm presently faced with a vast expanse of teeter-totter gray area. I'd like to think that they're called gray areas for a reason; instability and vacuous lack of definitive answers make us use more gray matter than any pondering of the absolute. It's the lack of surety that ultimately drives us to make peace by reconciling our lives with the unknown. Each day is a little reconciliation with chaos. Some days we're browbeaten by that whirlwind, others we've sliced through and used it's force to make our own graceful loops and whirls, like a kite. Looking out into the week ahead, where I could remain in my job, lose it, or gain permanency (I'll probably know for sure tomorrow), I can't help but to feel a bit awkward. I'm temporarily separated from what I desire, resolution, by an arbitrary barrier. Until I know for sure, and perhaps after, I'm a square peg walking in a round hole world. My place is not yet secure.

    Alan Watts wrote in his wonderful book, The Wisdom of Insecurity: "We can hardly begin to consider this problem unless it is clear that the craving for security is itself a pain and a contradiction, and that the more we pursue it, the more painful it becomes. This is true in whatever form security may be conceived." This is the kernel at the center of the hard way of learning. I've been bleeding for knowledge and understanding of my position, not just in terms of employment, but in life terms. This madcap and hellbent lust for understanding has made the process painful, depressive, and confusing. In this life at crazy times, I've longed secretly to be meat in the meatmarket, rather than the tofu that I AM. Not that I craved conformity, I craved an equal chance to be who I am, despite or inspite of qualitative differences. I screamed into am empty night "where is my place in this world?!" and what responded was just wind through the branches and a truck barreling down the highway. At some point in the past few days, I've stopped screaming, and rather affirmed that this is my place in the world with the wind through the branches and a truck barreling down the highway. The further afield we consider our lives, the less secure it becomes. Reduce it to this one point in the expanse of gray area, where I don't yet know about this or that, what ultimately matters the most becomes more apparent than any job or romance or sale at MegaMart. It's the wind. It's the night. It's the tofu. Consider H.L. Mencken: "We are here and it is now. Further than that all human knowledge is moonshine."

    Consider, too, the vagaries of chance. Perhaps it is best that I am tofu in a meatmarket. Someone may just be wandering the aisles with that bloated feeling, and amid the prime rib and chitterlings, and happens upon something a little lighter. "A-ha, this might just do the trick," the shopper says, and takes me home in a state of surprise and relief. The wildly extended family of humans I love are all rather motley gaggles of sore thumbs, square pegs, pink ducks and odd birds. We're all struggling, even those of us that look polished and preened. But, often in the fulcrum of that struggle, we forget that we aren't the only bozo on the bus. My recent depression was quite severe, and one of the paralyzing factors of depression is that you cannot see out of the murky fishbowl your life has become for that moment. Depression, like any other disease, will either run it's course or kill you. Thankfully, the latter is extremely rare. As the murk clears, you see that yes, you are indeed in a fishbowl, but you're on a shelf with a thousand others in the same predicament. Yet none of us in exactly the same state as you. That's the nature of consciousness; we share it at times but it's also uniquely our own to experience. So, you may as well have fun in your fishbowl while you're there, for it won't be long until a net comes to swoop you off into mystery. Or vying for a window seat on the bus. Or tossed into a wok with teriyaki and snap peas. Or whatever metaphor you like.

    We are singular beings living in a multidimensional, hyper-faceted complex array of variable states. Or, we contain Whitman's multitudes living in a singular world gone bonkers trying to interpret itself. Or we can simply be who we are in whatever this is. The modalities of existence are as endless as the imagination. What we desire will can prod us into suffering if we believe we are separated from it, rather than actively nursing its seed, its potentiality, within us. Further, if we find enjoyment out of self-kicking in the ass for being tofu in the meatmarket, we need a new hobby. Our individuality, for better or worse, is the primary defining quality of our soul. We'd better get used to it. For as trying as it can be to be at the mercy of gray areas and not knowing, we are more keen to manufacture isolation rather than utilization. There's a trend worth reversing. Utilization and proactive acceptance are absolutely key. For, in the wisdom of the Moody Blues: "There you go, man... keep as cool as you can... Face piles of trials with smiles. It riles them to believe that you perceive the web they weave... And keep on thinking free."

    Chick peas and Schenectady ain't all that bad, really. Love your lemons and don't buy into the MegaMart psyche out of fear or want. Ride the bus into the gray area, just keep the headlights on for safety. Make a square hole for yourself. Dare to find bliss in the fishbowl. The night is what it is and you have the stars to guide you. You live in and are the product of mystery; be the tofu.

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:04 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Massachusetts prepares for gays to

    Massachusetts prepares for gays to marry:

    The government in Massachusetts this week showed the first clear signs of getting ready to issue marriage licenses for same-sex couples in May, but the threat of a possible court order to block the action still looms.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:25 in Health, Medicine & Bio-Happiness | | permalink



    "A Litany of Firsts"

    The first time is today that I refuse to be haunted by a nightmare
    The first butterfly seen; it was white with flare of yellow
    The first kiss remembered; a taste of cherry soda on his lips
    The first mockingbird to sing was heard at 3am last night
    The first word heard today was on the radio; it was "notwithstanding"
    The first flowers this year were a shimmering purple like the night they inherited
    The first dance to sheer exhaustion was mere hours ago
    The first ray of sunlight fell on the limbs of the redbud tree
    The first eyes met this morning were green, feline and eager
    The first day of the year when all the windows are open
    The first love-letter was written in green ink by a quivering hand, afraid of trash
    The first water running wild was ice cold; melt from the top of the mountain
    The first neighbor over the fence was gesturing wildly with her hands
    The first wish upon a star might have been the first day of consciousness
    The first glance in the mirror found no faults and was accepted back graciously
    The first step to understand truth is down a path of sacred meaninglessness
    The first chance I get won't be the last but is just as important
    The first bees have awakened for the nectar is flowing sweet and slow
    The first tears recalled were at the barber shop; hair fell in little golden swoops
    The first wisdom transmitted was not to obey but to love
    The first time I saw God she was a thunderous sky wrapped in double rainbows
    The first eggs of the season are lain; they shall crack in time
    The first one to whom I owe thanks is the first one from whom all the firsts come.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:59 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Saturday, 27 March, 2004 }

    It's a stellar day. Green,

    It's a stellar day. Green, fresh and new, is bursting with the vivacity of the morning songbirds. It's a day when it's hard to be inside.

    Alas, I've got a little performance tonight at the Southern Appalachian Repetory Theater, and it'll be time to get ready soon. I'll be narrarating the Ezra Pound story. Crazy Stuff, indeed.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:51 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Dream Yoga via MonkeyFilter. According

    Dream Yoga via MonkeyFilter.

    According to Hindu mythology, this world is the dream of Vishnu. Thus the world itself can be seen as a dream and dreams as just another manifestation of Maya. Perhaps because of this, the Indian texts I read didn't seem to provide special techniques for dream work. A typical sentiment, as expressed in the Bhagavata Purana, for example, says, "Even though apparently awake, one is still asleep if one sees multiplicity. Wake up from the dream of ignorance and see the one Self. The Self alone is real." The Yogavasistha describes dreaming sleep as an opportunity for human beings to create as the gods create, by sending forth images. The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad says of the dream world: "In that land there are no lakes, no lotus-ponds, nor streams; but [the Spirit of man] creates his own lakes, his lotus-ponds, and streams. For the Spirit of man is Creator."

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:59 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    { Friday, 26 March, 2004 }

    The Hunger Banquet went off

    The Hunger Banquet went off without a hitch... the 'third world' kept rioting, but it was fun and delightfully educational for all. Time for bed... I'm shot.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:08 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    "Hunger"

    What follows are the invocation and benediction I'll be giving at tonight's 3rd Annual Western North Carolina's Hunger Banquet. It's my second year emceeing the event. I'm off, with a nervous yipee!

    INVOCATION

    This land is as wide as the eye can dare to see,
    From ocean to ocean we brim with a holy abundance
    Capped with a golden sun that compels a seed to reach for the sky
    And fill our basket.
    In distant years,
    Our muscle and bone was given in sweat and strain to the harvest
    We worked the Earth and she worked us
    Coupled in mutual effort to provide
    According to nature, at the behest of Providence.
    Like an aged farmer who has bent over the soil for a lifetime,
    Who has tilled generation upon generation with well worn hands and thick blood
    We wearily ask, “Where has the time gone?”
    Today, few of us are not obscured
    By the anonymous commerce of survival;
    We scan the horizon for the farmer but he is not there,
    We search for the woman who pounds the corn into flour and she is gone,
    And the coins in our pocket won’t bring them much closer,
    We’re left to dine on illusions,
    And to ponder the aftertaste of our desire.
    We are only removed by the shortest distance from starvation
    Only a few miles from here I know seven children who eat
    Simply for the kindness of strangers;
    Theirs is not a world of stardust and sweet dreams
    But a race to feed and clothe themselves into tomorrow,
    Which will be better, they are promised.
    When you spend your life trying to survive it,
    When your hands are deep in the grit of labor
    There’s no time to remember that our own sun
    Is a glimmer in a constellation
    Seen a thousand light years away;
    When you struggle with real hunger
    When you are parted from feast by artificial famines
    Does saying that we’re all eternal beings
    Momentarily swept into this human drama
    Make a difference?
    Yes, we say, our spirit is greater than the injustices inflicted on our bodies
    By the soft hands of fate and the slick fingers of finance,
    But does that put rice in the bowl
    And give rest to those that live on the crumbling edge
    Of our fanciful, fruitful First World sprawl?
    These are the people we make war with;
    Please pass the peace.
    These are the people whose cultures have been deluged
    Please pass the peace.
    In Haiti, I saw a little girl picking through a mountain of trash
    Please pass the peace.
    Down the street, I saw a beggar weeping on a park bench
    Please pass the peace
    In the morning, the same star rises over us all
    Please pass the peace.
    We are all beholden to the forward motion of miracles
    Please pass the peace.
    And once we've passed that peace,
    Once we've dared to take it on and into our hearts,
    Churning through our veins into bold actions born in love
    Let our deeds beat like a common heart across the planet
    Feeding us all, mending our brokenness and isolation
    From the ancient rhythms of living in freedom
    Living in abundance in balance with the Mother under our feet,
    Living in a peace passed from hand to hand
    In the great work that nurtures souls
    And before us renews the magic
    Of living in a land as wide as the eye can dare to see,
    Brimming with holy abundance.


    BENEDICTION

    Oh sweet song of life,
    Remind us of our good fortune to be amid such fullness
    Rekindle the fires of destiny to light the way for those not yet seen
    By our eyes which thirst for justice.
    May we reclaim the fields that lie fallow,
    The dreams not fulfilled,
    And the right to live in the freedom, the wholeness, and the beauty
    Granted in covenant by our Earth,
    In the spirit of fairness, justice, and hope.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:06 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    War Rationale: Version 10.0 In

    War Rationale: Version 10.0

    In the year since the invasion of Iraq, the Bush administration has repeatedly shifted its justification for going to war and constantly changed its story on intelligence, the United Nations, reconstruction, political transition and the cost to the American taxpayer. More than anything, the administration's war in Iraq resembles a software program that, at first, works brilliantly, but then catches the user in a cycle of "fatal error" messages.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:29 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Four 9/11 moms watch Rumsfeld

    Four 9/11 moms watch Rumsfeld and grumble... meanwhile, our dubious guvmint is getting worse at telling lies.

    jaybird found this for you @ 06:26 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    { Thursday, 25 March, 2004 }

    Plan to melt through Europa's

    Plan to melt through Europa's ice

    Researchers are testing technology that could allow a lander to melt through the ice crust of Jupiter's moon Europa to reach the water ocean beneath.

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:09 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Bush Introduces Homo Alert System

    Bush Introduces Homo Alert System

    President Bush on Thursday announced the creation of a new alert system that will allow the country to know current risk levels of homosexuality at any given time. The system will coordinate risk factors with current US intelligence to determine the level of risk homosexuals pose to modern civilization as we know it.

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:44 in Silly People, Satire & Strange Behaviors | | permalink



    Images from Madagascar via Plep.

    Images from Madagascar via Plep.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:52 in Culture, People & Customs | | permalink



    Gene Mutation Said Linked to

    Gene Mutation Said Linked to Evolution


    Igniting a scientific furor, scientists say they may have found the genetic mutation that first separated the earliest humans from their apelike ancestors. The provocative discovery suggests that this genetic twist - toward smaller, weaker jaws - unleashed a cascade of profound biological changes. The smaller jaws would allow for dramatic brain growth necessary for tool-making, language and other hallmarks of human evolution on the plains of East Africa.

    jaybird found this for you @ 09:48 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Holy Kaon: Theory of matter

    Holy Kaon: Theory of matter may need rethink

    Particle physicists have seen a rare happening that may force a rethink of current theories of sub-atomic matter. After watching more than seven trillion disintegrations of the kaon particle they have seen three peculiar events when they expected to see just one.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:43 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    { Wednesday, 24 March, 2004 }

    Gay congressman speaks out against same-sex

    Gay congressman speaks out against same-sex marriage ban

    Speaking in highly personal terms, a gay member of Congress on Tuesday challenged supporters of a constitutional ban on same-sex marriages, asking "who are we hurting" when homosexuals want to express the same emotional commitment as other Americans.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:06 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    Scandal after scandal after scandal:

    Scandal after scandal after scandal:

    ...with yesterday's news that the White House supports an investigation into the higher-than-advertised cost of Bush's Medicare plan, I started realizing that there have been an amazing number of investigations of Republicans since Bush took office, some of which directly involve the White House. So much for restoring "honor and dignity" to the Oval Office.

    In fact, we've seen more substantive scandals involving the GOP in the last three years than we ever did with Dems in the 90s. I'm not talking about scandals that ought to be investigated; I mean Republicans and their scandals that have actually been the subject of formal investigation.

    Meanwhile, let's read up on how the RNC's Shrubbies lie and cheat with numbers.

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:38 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Hilarious: Oregon county bans all

    Hilarious: Oregon county bans all marriage

    In a new twist in the battle over same-sex marriage roiling the United States, a county in Oregon has banned all marriages -- gay and heterosexual -- until the state decides who can and who cannot wed.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:15 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    Penguin-cam snaps amazing images Scientists

    Penguin-cam snaps amazing images

    Scientists have obtained amazing images of penguins interacting with each other underwater by strapping miniature cameras to the flightless birds' backs.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:19 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Tuesday, 23 March, 2004 }

    A Muslim calls for reform

    A Muslim calls for reform -- and she's a lesbian:

    It's not hard to see why people react strongly to Irshad Manji. At 35, she's become a ubiquitous fixture on Canadian television, the smartest, hippest, most eloquent lesbian feminist Muslim you could ever hope to meet.

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:04 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    Panpsychism: the thesis that physical

    Panpsychism: the thesis that physical nature is composed of individuals each of which is to some degree sentient. It is somewhat akin to hylozoism, but in place of the thesis of the pervasiveness of life in nature substitutes the pervasiveness of sentience, experience or, in a broad sense, consciousness. There are two distinct grounds on which panpsychism has been based. Some see it as the best explanation of the emergence of consciousness in the universe to say that it is, in fact, universally present, and that the high-level consciousness of humans and animals is the product of special patterns of that low-level consciousness or feeling which is universally present. The other ground on which panpsychism is argued for is that ordinary knowledge of the physical world is only of its structure and sensory effects on us, and that the most likely inner content which fills out this structure and produces these experiences is a system of patterns of sentient experience of a low level.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:43 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Is George W. Bush's the

    Is George W. Bush's the most anti-science administration in modern times? The New Science Wars [via MeFi]

    When a leading psychologist like Harvard's Howard Gardner calls the president's science adviser a "prostitute," it's a safe bet that all is not well in the realm of government science policy. Indeed, in the past month, the United States has been engulfed by a kind of "science war," one pitting much of the nation's scientific community against the current administration. Led by twenty Nobel laureates, the scientists say Bush's government has systematically distorted and undermined scientific information in pursuit of political objectives. Examples include the suppression and censorship of reports on subjects like climate change and mercury pollution, the stacking of scientific advisory panels, and the suspicious removal of scientific information from government Web sites.

    jaybird found this for you @ 14:05 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Max Headroom predicted the future:

    Max Headroom predicted the future:

    The series featured computers and a frightening, high-tech, TV-centric culture "20 minutes into the future," as each episode would begin. Long before there was an Internet, a World Wide Web, e-mail, and cyberculture, this TV series displayed it all in amazingly accurate ways...

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:30 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    Detailed picture of comet's

    Detailed picture of comet's heart

    The highest resolution image obtained by the Stardust spacecraft as it flew by Comet Wild 2 in January has just been released... the image shows a pockmarked "flying mountain" strewn with jets of gas and dust that billow in the solar wind.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:21 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Funny: Emo Philips makes cole

    Funny: Emo Philips makes cole slaw.

    jaybird found this for you @ 00:50 in Silly People, Satire & Strange Behaviors | | permalink



    { Monday, 22 March, 2004 }

    Viral Banter

    Last night I came to a rather sad conclusion; my new computer is infected with a rather nasty virus. Norton hasn't figured it out yet, but it's made my Outlook and MSN Messenger unusable. I think it's the Netsky worm... I'm getting all these emails saying that an email I tried to send to whatever vegetable merchant in Romania is infected and had to be destroyed... blasted spam worms!

    The interesting and fun part of it was an outsourced tech support call to India. I talked with the Delhi Dell support staff about famous Bollywood singer Asha Bhosle, the joy of Raga, what she thought of Bhangra (the new urban sound of India), and how to make the best popadums. She said that it's not normal for a caller from the States, let alone a male, call and enthusiastically engage her in cross cultural dialogue.

    We met again tomorrow night after I back up my sweet snookie's data and wipe the malignant pestulence off the face of my beloved silicon sister's hard drive. So much for Norton's live update, but it's worth it in a very human way to talk to someone a world away and share a moment of commonality.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:51 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Do we really use only

    Do we really use only 10 percent of our brains?

    Why would a neuroscientist immediately doubt that 90 percent of the average brain lies perpetually fallow? First of all, it is obvious that the brain, like all our other organs, has been shaped by natural selection. Brain tissue is metabolically expensive both to grow and to run, and it strains credulity to think that evolution would have permitted squandering of resources on a scale necessary to build and maintain such a massively underutilized organ.

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:40 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Part satire, part fact: A

    Part satire, part fact: A Consitiutional Amendment to codify marriage as based on Biblical principles

    B. Marriage shall not impede a man's right to take concubines in
    addition to his wife or wives. (II Sam 5:13; I Kings 11:3; II Chron
    11:21)

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:26 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    I just interviewed for a

    I just interviewed for a permanent position here in the office. It's a huge relief to be done with it, back to normal breathing...

    UPDATE: That was rather vague. My position here has been an interim supervisor since January (I work in the child mental health field). Due to state pressure to reorganize the office, I've had to interview for the job I've been doing, as well as for an additional position as an employee recruiter. It's been a nerve-wracking past few weeks, dangling into the gray area of how long I will remain here. Obviously, I have a need to know so I can know whether and when income will trickle in. This lack of knowing may have played a strong role in this recent funk.

    To see a picture of the typically casual Jaybird in a suit and tie in his windowless low-light office (rather looking like an English professor going to a funeral) click here.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:26 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    Cool! Philosophy as therapy: The

    Cool! Philosophy as therapy: The Socratic Shrink

    Americans are tired of psychologists dwelling on our every painful feeling, we're sick of psychiatrists prescribing a new drug every time we feel confused and many of our most pressing problems aren't even emotional or chemical to begin with -- they're philosophical. To wit: You don't have to be clinically depressed or burdened by childhood guilt to want help with the timeless questions of the human condition -- the persistence of suffering and the inevitability of death, the need for a reliable ethics.

    jaybird found this for you @ 06:59 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    { Sunday, 21 March, 2004 }

    This grappling with the terms

    This grappling with the terms of my apparent depression continues... I'm so tired, I wish I could write more about it. Nonetheless, thanks to those who've been so supportive.

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:33 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    See Astrophysicists in Captivity On

    See Astrophysicists in Captivity

    On a platform before a crowd of curious onlookers, the scientists eagerly ripped open a box of CDs containing data from a newly released million-second-long exposure taken by two cameras onboard the Hubble telescope, and struggled to transfer the data to nearby computers as they answered a multitude of questions shouted out by reporters and middle-school students. So began Science Live: The Race to Decode the Hubble Ultra Deep Field Image at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. There, teams of researchers from Columbia University, Stony Brook University and the American Museum of Natural History will compute, ponder and dispute the new Hubble data around the clock for six days and nights, in full view of museum visitors.

    jaybird found this for you @ 14:00 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Freaks, geeks, and hoochie shows

    Freaks, geeks, and hoochie shows on the road: some histories of Traveling Carnivals, the American circus and the culture of Vaudevillian showmanship.

    Memoires of a roadie show: We are now halfway to the town. Every barn we have passed is covered with flaming posters, and dates telling the people when the big show will visit them. Market men are making quick time to reach the town in advance of their competitors, and the result is a perfect cloud of dust kicked up by their big-feet "mules." Young women gaily dressed, and old women hanging on to the stakes of a lumber-wagon, "stare their eyes out" at our mirror-sided bill-wagon, and wonder what the plumes in our horses' head-gear mean. They don't get by us quite so easily as they imagined they would; for Bill has chirruped to "Jim," who starts the whole team in motion, and away we go, leaving the "haybinders" to swallow some of that dust they had circulated for our benefit.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:44 in Culture, People & Customs | | permalink



    Carbon Dioxide Reported at Record

    Carbon Dioxide Reported at Record Levels

    That year-to-year increase of about 3 parts per million is considerably higher than the average annual increase of 1.8 parts per million over the past decade, and markedly more accelerated than the 1-part-per-million annual increase recorded a half-century ago, when observations were first made here.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:55 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    "Song of Survival"

    Some stand on mounds of gold
    Some won't waver for traditions of old
    Some survive in the transit of others' passing woe
    Yet a few are strong to the soul, yielding not to the power of the sold.

    I'll rest my head on your shoulder in revival
    And hear your sweet song gleam the fringe of survival
    You've been to darker places than I but you don't stumble for the light
    Your strength is a beacon even though I'm still lost, I'm closer now, nothing rivals.

    jaybird found this for you @ 03:36 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Saturday, 20 March, 2004 }

    The rally drew about 800

    The rally drew about 800 people. I stayed for a while, immersed in the six degrees of separation with all thoe people there that I sort of knew, signed some petitions, and went off in search of a stainless steel trough to use as an outdoor bathtub. Pics later stil...

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:36 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    Going downtown to the peace

    Going downtown to the peace rally... pix later...

    jaybird found this for you @ 14:21 in Misc. Babble | | permalink



    Mass Extinction Not Inevitable Two

    Mass Extinction Not Inevitable

    Two new studies published this week in Science that show steep declines in bird, butterfly and plant populations across Great Britain provide the strongest proof yet that we are in the midst of the sixth great extinction of life. The British analyzed six surveys covering virtually all of their native species populations over the last 40 years. They discovered birds and native plants had declined 54 percent and 28 percent respectively while butterflies experienced a shocking 71 percent decrease.

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:39 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    Peace through music: The Cellist

    Peace through music: The Cellist of Sarajevo

    On May 27th, 1992, a bakery in Sarajevo which happened to have a supply of flour was making bread and distributing it to the starving, war-shattered people. At 4 p.m., a long line stretched into the street. Suddenly, a shell fell directly into the middle of the line, killing 22 people outright and splattering blood and gore over the entire area. A hundred yards away lived a 37-year-old man named Vedran Smailovic. Before the war he had been the principal cellist of the Sarajevo Opera Company--a distinguished and civilized job, no doubt. When he saw the massacre outside his window, he was pushed beyond his capacity to endure anymore. Driven by his anguish, he decided he had to take action, and so he did the only thing he could do. He made music. Every day there after, at 4 p.m. precisely, Mr. Smailovic would put on his full formal concert attire, and walk out of his apartment into the midst of the battle raging around him. He would place a little camp stool in the middle of the bomb-craters, and play a concert to the abandoned streets, while bombs dropped and bullets flew all around him. Day after day he made his unimaginably courageous stand for human dignity, for civilization, for compassion, and for peace. As though protected by a divine shield, he was never hurt, though his darkest hour came when, taking a little walk to stretch his legs, his cello was shelled and destroyed where he had been sitting.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:45 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    { Friday, 19 March, 2004 }

    Ancient Indians made 'rock music'

    Ancient Indians made 'rock music'

    Archaeologists have rediscovered a huge rock art site in southern India where ancient people used boulders to make musical sounds in rituals.
    The Kupgal Hill site includes rocks with unusual depressions that were designed to be struck with the purpose of making loud, musical ringing tones.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:06 in History, Civilization & Anthropology | | permalink



    Thoughts on Voluntary Simplicity [via

    Thoughts on Voluntary Simplicity [via MonkeyFilter]

    Many simplicity gurus urge us to become "tightwads" as the true path to a simple life. But voluntary simplicity and frugality are not really the same thing. To be sure, frugality is a vehicle for achieving simplicity, but the driving force is a vision, a philosophy, a world view.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:59 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Climate risk 'to million species'

    Climate risk 'to million species'

    Climate change could drive a million of the world's species to extinction as soon as 2050

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:29 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Thursday, 18 March, 2004 }

    "A Flock of Prayers"

    From despair
    That fog that conceals reason
    Disrupts even the flow of rivers
    Let fly this prayer;
    Give it wings to circumvent
    Our delusions of the abyss
    Instead returning most majestic vision
    Simply by the perspective of altitude.
    Let me be in the talons of this prayer
    Let me wrestle it for blessing and soar
    Into the spectral blue
    Where quarry and master cease to matter.
    Show the width of this world
    That contains everything
    Where it all falls in
    Holy gravity that gives us days, some to waste.
    Show me the hairs-breadth parcel
    Where lethal regret
    Awaits missteps, misgivings, the missed bus
    To Justice.
    In releasing these winged words
    Imbued with a tenacious, fervent, hungry hope
    May we, may I, set boldly forth from the darkness
    Arise up the slope where the mist recedes
    And be guided to the dawn by a canopy of starlight
    And a flock of prayers
    Than began in despair.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:35 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    "Public Admission"

    Some of you may have noticed a lack of my usual essays, poetry and more creative posting here in the past month or so. At first, I thought I was just going through a writer's block, or at least that's what I wanted it to be. The fact is, that I've been going though a major depression that I've hidden from nearly everyone, including and especially myself.

    Today I saw my shadow. I realized exactly why I've been feeling so numb, inattentive, distracted and distant- these, of course, all have a bearing on creative output. For some, this will come as a surprise. I may have seemed jovial, happy, excited about things... my usual vibrant and goofy self. But, that's the acting there folks. I'm not a big fan of pissing in the cornflakes or raining on parades, and by putting on a happy face I'm not being dishonest intentionally. It's just showbiz, wanting to go with the flow, not drawing attention to the real storm underneath.

    I don't know where to go from here. Therapy... sure. Meds... I'd rather stick to St. John's Wort. Maybe this little blurb in the night will be enough letting go to trigger more and more and more. It's been very difficult not feeling any real sense of enjoyment out of things that normally thrill and inspire me. The only emotion I've been feeling with any regularity is ennui and I'm sick of it. Sick from it. I need something more tangible to hold onto than abstract ideas and variable social constellations. Dizzy and desperate, I just can't see where to turn.

    If you've indeed read to the end of this, thank you for hearing me out and thus alleviating a smidgen of my burden of silence. This isn't a plea; it's an exercise in honesty which is medicine unto itself. I ask for nothing other than support, known and unknown, as I navigate turbulence and instability in vital areas of my life, hopefully on my way to a brighter and more resolute vista.

    jaybird found this for you @ 21:25 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    The troubled story of King

    The troubled story of King & King: The parents of an elementary school pupil are fuming over the book their daughter brought home from the school library: a children's story about a prince whose true love turns out to be another prince.

    Here's the Story

    Here's the Book [via MeFi]

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:45 in | | permalink



    UFO streaks through Martian sky

    UFO streaks through Martian sky

    Astronomers say it could be the first meteor seen from the surface of another world, or a redundant orbiting spacecraft sent to Mars 30 years ago.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:25 in Forteana, Phenomena & the Bizarre | | permalink



    Is Humanity Being Hacked? Sometimes

    Is Humanity Being Hacked?

    Sometimes when I am in deep meditation I get the strong feeling of a higher intelligence speaking through me, through human culture, as if we are being hacked, used, programmed by something else.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:36 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    "Thursday Through the Window"

    The hours, thick cords on a steel guitar
    Played through a tinny radio
    Telling me rain is everywhere,
    Come to dilute the whisky words of last night
    To wash the possum bones scattered on the street
    To kiss the mountains with softer thoughts
    Than the delusions drummed up in a climax to midnight.
    The freedom of a raindrop
    To fall and flow and continue forever
    In a promise hard to rebuke
    Is sweeter than the rim of a glass
    Even raised in celebration.
    I'll walk now,
    I'll get wet,
    Because that's so near to you.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:37 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Spooky... had a dream about

    Spooky... had a dream about this very sort of thing last night: Recently Discovered Near-Earth Asteroid Makes Record-breaking Approach to Earth

    A small near-Earth asteroid (NEA), discovered Monday night by the NASA-funded LINEAR asteroid survey, will make the closest approach to Earth ever recorded. There is no danger of a collision with the Earth during this encounter.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:56 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    { Wednesday, 17 March, 2004 }

    Opinion from the Little Haiti

    Opinion from the Little Haiti community in Miami: 'There, it's a fight just to live'

    "We just want the best for Haiti. Everyone has their own view on what Bush has done and I'm not for or against him or Aristide. We want it to get better. That's it," says Celeste. Ordinarily, the domestic political consequences of US policy towards Haiti are negligible. But this is an election year and there are thousands of Haitian votes at stake in Florida - the 50/50 state - where any one of the diverse tribes that constitute Miami-Dade County could make a real difference to the outcome.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:29 in Haiti | | permalink



    Mr-President bids for re-election: it's

    Mr-President bids for re-election: it's election season in Alphaville, too.

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:55 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    Erinn Go Brach! Extensive index

    Erinn Go Brach! Extensive index on Irish lirerature, folklore, myth and drama

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:01 in Culture, People & Customs | | permalink



    Booze flash! Tests confirm that

    Booze flash! Tests confirm that beer bubbles do fall

    It wasn't exactly one of the great mysteries of the universe, but it was a source of countless bar bets: When beer is poured into a glass, do the bubbles rise or fall? Barflies know all too well that the bubbles fall, seemingly defying the laws of physics.

    jaybird found this for you @ 09:43 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    "32nd Conception Day"

    Wow-wee: today is my 32nd "Conception Day." That's right, I know the actual day, time and place where my parents rather inconceivably begat me. Now, should you read on, you will too...

    My father was had made the signage for a new health club that was having it's grand opening party on St. Pat's Day, and he and his lovely wife (for another four years, anyway) were invited. Now, my father can put down some alcohol, but my mother doesn't drink at all... but she did that night. So, she's drunk enough to get raunchy with my father in a sauna they locked themselves in. Things happened, cells divided, and ta-da, 32 years later here I am writing about it.

    I'm not going to wade into the whole "life begins at conception" argument, but today gives me an additional reason to party. It being St. Pat's, I will wear green, but not in honor of the 'Saint.' I abhor the shite about driving the snakes out of Ireland, the snakes being the pagan-matriarchal-shamanic-earth based practices that were the foundation of a beautiful and simple culture. Rather, I'll wear green to remember those people and the vestiges of their customs, and also for the modern eight grade tradition of wearing green means you're horny.

    Because as squeamishly as it is recalled, without that particularly fun but frustrating state of being, I wouldn't be here. Go out and conceive something today!

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:06 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Tuesday, 16 March, 2004 }

    An Anthropologist from Mars: This

    An Anthropologist from Mars: This site makes the brave distinction that gender is a social meme while sex is a biological state. Another detailed examination (from an androgyonus perspective) here.

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:31 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    Excitement abounds! It's not scheduled

    Excitement abounds! It's not scheduled yet, but sometime after the 29th, I'll have an audition for my dream gig; doing cartoon voices... specifically for Japanese Anime.

    I've been wanting to do this since I was a kid watching cartoons...

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:28 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Social Theorists meet Lego: Butler,

    Social Theorists meet Lego: Butler, Giddens, McRobbie & Foucault turn to plastic.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:16 in Silly People, Satire & Strange Behaviors | | permalink



    The Scientist and the Poet

    The Scientist and the Poet

    ...the scientist and the poet seem to us to be perpetually at odds. To the poet, the scientist seems unimaginative and literal-minded—with his head buried in the ground of facts, incapable of comprehending the larger significance of what he does. To the scientist, the poet seems to have his head up in the clouds, indulging in fantastic visions of what might be and losing sight of the way things really are. It is difficult for us to imagine a successful conversation between a scientist and a poet—they seem almost to speak different languages.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:39 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Wonderful images of old, rusty

    Wonderful images of old, rusty 'sugar boats' in Canada. The colors are sweet: Sugar, by Marshall Sokoloff [via MonkeyFilter]

    jaybird found this for you @ 08:10 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    { Monday, 15 March, 2004 }

    "I Celebrate Mylsef" Queer and

    "I Celebrate Mylsef"

    Queer and poz musician Fred Hersch has created beautful compositions based on Walt Whitman's frequently homoerotic "Leaves of Grass." Link goes to audio of the story heard this morning on NPR's Morning Edition, selections from Whitman's 'Calamus Cluster,' and streams of two songs by Hersch inspired by the ahead-of-his-time poet.

    Also posted on QueerMeta.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:38 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    Book Review: Too many choices,

    Book Review: Too many choices, too few, and choicelessness [via MeFi]

    A few decades of research has made it clear that most people are terrible choosers—they don’t know what they want, and the prospect of deciding often causes not just jitters but something like anguish... The phenomenon isn’t new. “The ordinary man believes he is free when he is permitted to act arbitrarily, but in this very arbitrariness lies the fact that he is unfree,” Hegel wrote. “Negative infinity” was his term for how the man without a well-anchored sense of self would perceive the marketplace. There can even be common ground between those who recoil from choice and those who have no choice at all...

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:54 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Outrageous, insidious, stupid: N.Y. Ministers

    Outrageous, insidious, stupid: N.Y. Ministers Charged for Marrying Gays

    Two ministers were charged with criminal offenses Monday for marrying 13 gay couples in what is believed to be the first time in the United States that clergy members have been prosecuted for performing same-sex ceremonies.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:32 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    Oh no mister, I know

    Oh no mister, I know nothing about computers. The internet? Never heard of it: Agency initiates steps for selective draft

    The government is taking the first steps toward a targeted military draft of Americans with special skills in computers and foreign languages.

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:43 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    What? Bush fabricating journalists? Quelle

    What? Bush fabricating journalists? Quelle Surprise!U.S. Videos, for TV News, Come Under Scrutiny

    Federal investigators are scrutinizing television segments in which the Bush administration paid people to pose as journalists praising the benefits of the new Medicare law, which would be offered to help elderly Americans with the costs of their prescription medicines.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:01 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    This is bad/sad/hysterical: SoCal city

    This is bad/sad/hysterical: SoCal city falls victim to Internet hoax, considers banning items made with water

    City officials were so concerned about the potentially dangerous properties of dihydrogen monoxide that they considered banning foam cups after they learned the chemical was used in their production. Then they learned that dihydrogen monoxide - H2O for short - is the scientific term for water.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:39 in Silly People, Satire & Strange Behaviors | | permalink



    { Sunday, 14 March, 2004 }

    "The world will end if

    "The world will end if you don't act."

    A collection of excellent interviews with playwright Tony Kushner, author of the potent and powerful "Angels in America." [1, 2, 3]


    "I don't think there's ever been a community struggling as hard as the [gay community] was at the moment the epidemic first appeared, while also having to deal with devastation and grief on that scale. The world expected us to curl up and die, but what we did was say, "No, this can become part of our struggle, and we'll take care of the people amongst us who need to be taken care of."

    Posted to QueerMeta

    jaybird found this for you @ 22:16 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    It's another world ... but

    It's another world ... but is it our 10th planet? [ 15mar04 ]

    Scientists have found a new world orbiting the solar system – more than 3 billion kilometres further away from the Sun than Pluto and 40 years away from Earth in a space shuttle. NASA is expected to announce today the discovery of the space object, which some experts believe could be a new planet. It is provisionally known as Sedna, after the Inuit goddess of the sea.

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:06 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    "Cryptic"

    I'm at the theater right now, taking a break from nothing in particular. House manager is the easiest, if most tedious, task in theater.

    I slept all of 3 hours last night. There's entirely too much going through a head (mine) to be able to effectively process on so little snooze-time. I feel good, but in that tentative, cautious way. I'm too busy to make sense out of all of the stimuli of the last 24 hours, not least of which, my own.

    Not trying to be cryptic or anything, but it's all rather cryptic right now, so this is the best I can scribble right now. More specific symbols will inevtiably follow.

    jaybird found this for you @ 14:54 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Nag Hammadi Library The Nag

    Nag Hammadi Library

    The Nag Hammadi Library, a collection of thirteen ancient codices containing over fifty texts, was discovered in upper Egypt in 1945. This immensely important discovery includes a large number of primary Gnostic scriptures -- texts once thought to have been entirely destroyed during the early Christian struggle to define "orthodoxy" -- scriptures such as the Gospel of Thomas, the Gospel of Philip, and the Gospel of Truth.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:39 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    { Saturday, 13 March, 2004 }

    History reveals our debt to

    History reveals our debt to Haiti

    Our history and Haiti's are intertwined, and our fates could easily have been different. A turn down one path, and Haiti might have become a thriving democracy. A turn down another path, and the United States might have been just a small neighbor of the French Empire.

    jaybird found this for you @ 21:35 in Haiti | | permalink



    "Illogical Pawprints of Desire"

    Holiness is found in the incalculable
    There, between formula and foundation
    In the still undilute place between
    The double yellow line of life.
    Civilization races past, bent to achieve
    While the translucent sum that drives our days
    Slips slick past discovering figers...
    Listen for that song of surprises
    When you've given up trying to figure it all out
    Soft piano licks in a darkened room,
    Slow trickles of freshly melted ice down an upheaval of rock,
    The wind through a mountain tunnel-
    We live, cavort, seduce and are secuced by the inexplicable
    But take chances too often on the sure thing
    That makes sense, born of logic and reason
    Quantifyable, qualifyable, steady.
    I tell you, the galaxy tells you,
    You tell yourself when not thinking too much,
    That the prize to seek defies our philosophy
    A wild, untrapable beast of the jungles of consciousness.
    Do not try to capture it-
    But walk in its pawprints in the sweet thawing earth.
    Desire is wrapped in a sacred fabric
    That whips in the wind but you can't count the threads
    What you love and crave and worship
    Is wound up in paradox and waiting to no longer be sought after
    Where you expect to find it...
    Defy the orderliness of the everyday
    And without even having to touch,
    Goodness becomes you
    The first star of evening alights in your heart
    And metaphors be damned
    You are cheek to cheek with holiness.
    What are the chances?
    What are the chances against?
    Immeasurable, and as such,
    Closer to the truth than not.

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:34 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    One man's testimony to the

    One man's testimony to the loss of his wife in the Madrid blasts: 'The day my wife was snatched away'

    When you bury a person, the pain is that it is the last moment when you have that person next to you and when the ceremony ends you hand that person over to God. You don't lose them, but you stop having them at your side through everything.

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:51 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Have a little perspective to

    Have a little perspective to start your day... the Earth seen from Mars. Here we are again a little closer in with amazing detail.

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:06 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    "Saturday Morning: 23 Lines"

    Awaken: the morning begins with a cardinal's song
    Bellows his body as the streak of red
    Daubs the first moment of day with reminders
    There is vastly more happening in the scene
    Then a red bird singing on a branch eager to bud.

    Breakfast: hope came in little packets
    No artificial ingredients, 100 words or less
    Replaying a minute of conversation in a wistful delirium
    As the tea steeps, the bones stretch, the window becomes light
    With sun and the oracular flights and destiny hops in search of seed and a nest.

    Naked: the water's running, the steam loses the body
    Am I more then this, where do the borders of the soul cease?
    The cats push open the door; one waits the edge of the the bathmat
    The other on a magazine... we orbit each other's worlds, influencing in circles.
    You bring me laughter, drying off; already the Universe has tickled the fringe of spirit.

    Leaving: funny, it didn't seem this cold, it's made up for in brightness...
    We fling open windows for fresh air, laundry snaps on the line,
    The same one where we hang our mind, our love, the threadbare skin of encountering,
    Let the day take care of our newly cleaned conscience
    Let us wear it well as we engage, immerse, and become the world.

    "Top of the morning to ya."

    "Beauitful out here, isn't it?"

    "Yeah, like a dream."

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:46 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Friday, 12 March, 2004 }

    Step by Step: Heartache in

    Step by Step: Heartache in San Francisco [via across, beoynd, through]

    The crash of energy and emotion in City Hall was just devastating. Our two members were in line just behind the couple who were stopped in the middle of filling out their license forms. It was almost surreal... for all that we knew that this act of liberation and demand for civil rights could be interrupted at a moment's notice, none of us really believed that it would happen in the midst of a very human moment - and crash down upon very real, very beloved families who had traveled a long way.

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:19 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    Second Thoughts: We're going for

    Second Thoughts:

    We're going for a walk with Brian Greene, the physicist, at 5 in the afternoon, but this is a rough approximation, since spacetime has no absolutes, and even the familiar notion of "right now" has no meaning in a strict scientific sense. Also neither one of us has a watch.

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:48 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Two Steps Back: California and

    Two Steps Back: California and Massachusetts both dealt blows to non-discriminatory marriage on Thursday. An immediate halt was ordered to stop the SanFran weddings and the legislature in Boston gave initial backing to a state constitutional amendment that bans same-sex marriages but allows civil unions.

    Also posted to QueerMeta

    jaybird found this for you @ 09:32 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    Guantanamo Briton 'was tortured' "They

    Guantanamo Briton 'was tortured'

    "They actually said: 'You have no rights here'. After a while, we stopped asking for human rights - we wanted animal rights."

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:27 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    { Thursday, 11 March, 2004 }

    Ethics a-go-go: Whose life would

    Ethics a-go-go: Whose life would you save?

    Dinner with a philosopher is never just dinner, even when it’s at an obscure Indian restaurant on a quiet side street in Princeton with a 30-year-old post-doctoral researcher. Joshua Greene is a man who spends his days thinking about right and wrong, and how we separate the two. He has a particular fondness for moral paradoxes, which he collects the way some people collect snow globes.

    “Let’s say you’re walking by a pond and there’s a drowning baby, ” Greene says, over chicken tikka masala. “If you said, ‘I’ve just paid $200 for these shoes and the water would ruin them, so I won’t save the baby,’ you’d be an awful, horrible person. But there are millions of children around the world in the same situation, where just a little money for medicine or food could save their life. And yet we don’t consider ourselves monsters for having this dinner rather than giving the money to Oxfam. Why is that?”

    jaybird found this for you @ 21:15 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Here's a dainty can of

    Here's a dainty can of pastel worms: The Democracy Now! show on Pacifica Radio is asking this question: "Was Martha Stewart Targeted Because She is a Major Democratic Contributor and a Woman? Where is Ken Lay?"

    Article here, or watch the stream for low or high bandwidth.

    Is it still a good thing?

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:05 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Beautiful, sultry, earthy: Earth Erotica

    Beautiful, sultry, earthy: Earth Erotica via MeFi

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:13 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    Odds on that God exists,

    Odds on that God exists, says scientist

    Dr Stephen Unwin has used a 200-year-old formula to calculate the probability of the existence of an omnipotent being. Bayes' Theory is usually used to work out the likelihood of events, such as nuclear power failure, by balancing the various factors that could affect a situation.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:18 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    Aw, shit: Excrement energy boost

    Aw, shit: Excrement energy boost for future

    Researchers have developed a device which generates electricity from sewage and think it could become a green energy source of the future.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:23 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Wednesday, 10 March, 2004 }

    My new purple and pastel-ish

    My new purple and pastel-ish pet project, QueerMeta, got a nod from Metafilter today, and membership has skyrocketed in the past two hours or so. I'm really excited about this, and I sense from some of the users that I recognize from Metafilter and Monkeyfilter that we have a strong foundation for a warm and dynamic web community. I'm thinking of creating one more 'filter' site for spirituality/consciousness/mythology once this one is up and running steadily.

    jaybird found this for you @ 21:43 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    'God particle' may have

    'God particle' may have been seen

    The Higgs boson explains why all other particles have mass and is fundamental to a complete understanding of matter.

    jaybird found this for you @ 21:21 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    The little picture we're all

    The little picture we're all gaga over: Hubble's Deepest View Ever of the Universe Unveils Earliest Galaxies

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:10 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Study: Obesity an Epidemic in

    Study: Obesity an Epidemic in U.S.

    Americans are sitting around and eating themselves to death, with obesity closing in on tobacco as the nation's No. 1 underlying preventable killer.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:53 in Health, Medicine & Bio-Happiness | | permalink



    Busking around the world in

    Busking around the world in 80 days. Wait a minute... busking? Can you really make a living off of playing music in the street? Yup. Well, maybe not.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:51 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    { Tuesday, 09 March, 2004 }

    "Writer's Un-Blocked"

    It seems like it's been a long, long time since I've written anything about what's going on with me. What has been splayed across these pages of light has been cryptic, nebulous, a string of symbols under a skin of poetry, for I or some passing alchemist to decipher. It's the bottom of winter, where flowers one day are teased by a death frost the next, where our subservience to the sky and craving for comfort dangles like a set of joyride keys in the blind hand of a weather god. It's a time of grappling, of deciding, of cutting through the ice with a verve and longing. It is a time to say what really is on, within and through the mind, because it's taken this long for it to become solid.

    I've had some heath scares, now mostly past. I've wrestled, like Jacob, with inertia and have finally pinned that dull angel. With great effort I scaled the precipice of meaningless, lifeless gloom, and have planted a happy-face flag atop it's whithered summit. All defenses have been tested by the brute force of fate, and somehow, I find it on this chill night that I've made it, survived scathed but unbroken. I lost all my words in a storm of void, a pall over the ability to create, and as those clouds recede nature conspired to shine light through and make a rainbow over the fallen branches of once noble thoughts. As the wind warms, new branches shall spring through the shattered orbits of old, and the view will again be startlingly fresh.

    There has been much ferment, and the sour has taken on an intoxicating quality, the celebrated sip of transmutation. Why bother with the details, that's where the devil lives. I'll outwit the evil by beating around the bush, rubbing it's fallen sticks together, and starting a fire for letting go. I seem to live in metaphor, and rather than distracting me from reality, it brings me closer. If a leaf is a holy garment, it becomes all the more interesting. If a panic about being gainfully employed uproots my sense of security, it's the mythic urge to plough ahead into the abyss of not-knowing that inspires more than tying nows and thens into knots of worry.

    If you were here, now, I'd pour you a glass of wine and listen to your story. I find that much more interesting than this recovery from slumber. Our lives need listeners... we've not yet grown out of the oral tradition, of the storyteller, who keeps alive the culture of the people. Some things are better left to living words, and spilling out a heavy heart in text loses the immediacy of meeting face-to-face. I've met many faces lately, strong bold human faces that belong to survivors. Some have faced with stoic bravery challenges that dwarf my late winter kerfuffles by miles. Some have won me over and caught my heart's attention and eased it's deficit. I'm carrying their stories now, and in my own way will keep them alive, keep them in the culture.

    There, I've dropped the crutches to the side. I can walk again. The words have come back. This may be a simple, if enigmatic, journal entry on the surface but the scribble that underlies it is a many inked ecstatic whirl of freedom. My words are released, they kiss the ground and walk down Thunder Road. My situations are released from their halfway house, rectified, salient amidst the din. My emotions, freed through the ashes, set free by the bonfire of desire. Who is responsible? I cannot always say it is the self since the Universe is capable of who-knows-what intrusions into itself. But, there are choices to be made, and I've made them with gusto. Many, many loving hands have reached out, and I grabbed hold. I'm overcome with gratitiude.

    Cornball as it sounds, you'll be hearing more from me; which is good... I've been waiting to hear myself say that for too long now.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:47 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    The Grittiest Job: Images and

    The Grittiest Job: Images and context of America's coal miners. Especially worth visitng and moving are the images of the 'breaker boys' and other children who worked in the mines. A follow up to the earlier post.

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:16 in Culture, People & Customs | | permalink



    Is Military Creeping Into Domestic

    Is Military Creeping Into Domestic Law Enforcement?

    Several recent incidents involving the military have raised concern among student and civil-rights groups. One was a visit last month by an Army intelligence agent to an official at the University of Texas law school in Austin. The agent demanded a videotape of a recent academic conference at the school so that he could identify what he described as "three Middle Eastern men" who had made "suspicious" remarks to Army lawyers at the seminar...

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:44 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    Working in the coal mine:

    Working in the coal mine: Descent into darkness

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:04 in Culture, People & Customs | | permalink



    MonkeyFilter has a thread I'm

    MonkeyFilter has a thread I'm quite proud of: Tipping the Lavender in which QueerMeta is announced and all rejoice and banter in MoFi's delightful non-snarky way. Membership shot up overnight and I'm just giddy with queer joy.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:23 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    { Monday, 08 March, 2004 }

    Spiritual neurology In the first

    Spiritual neurology

    In the first of what he hopes will be a series of experiments, Dr Beauregard and his doctoral student Vincent Paquette are recording electrical activity in the brains of seven Carmelite nuns through electrodes attached to their scalps. Their aim is to identify the brain processes underlying the Unio Mystica—the Christian notion of mystical union with God. The nuns (the researchers hope to recruit 15 in all) will also have their brains scanned using positron-emission tomography and functional magnetic-resonance imaging, the most powerful brain-imaging tools available.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:03 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    Super Cool: Aurora borealis web

    Super Cool: Aurora borealis web cam

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:37 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    How Will the Universe End?

    How Will the Universe End? - A cosmic detective story about the demise of the world, in three parts.

    Until recently, the ultimate destiny of the universe looked a little more hopeful—or remote. Back around the middle of the last century, cosmologists figured out that there were two possible fates for the universe. Either it would continue to expand forever, getting very cold and very dark as the stars winked out one by one, the black holes evaporated, and all material structures disintegrated into an increasingly dilute sea of elementary particles: the Big Chill. Or it would eventually stop expanding and collapse back upon itself in a fiery, all-annihilating implosion: the Big Crunch.

    jaybird found this for you @ 11:41 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Scientist 'gagged' after warning UK

    Scientist 'gagged' after warning UK gov't over global warming

    Downing Street tried to muzzle the Government's top scientific adviser after he warned that global warming was a more serious threat than international terrorism.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:38 in News, Opinion & Politique | | permalink



    { Sunday, 07 March, 2004 }

    "Feather Churned Air"

    In the gardens revived by an unseasonal warm wind
    Walking the rock paths as the roots release the withheld elixir
    Flowing upwards into the thin branches that weave the cords
    Of an invisible yet pervasive heaven that yearns to touch any being
    I brushed a reddened leaf,
    Bright and holy in the breeze
    And found it not to be the touch of a plant
    But a wing brush by an angel
    A chance encounter of staggering majesty
    A magnitude not rolled off the shoulder.
    Like the eager buds waiting for that right day
    I am bursting, burgeoning, swollen with words and feelings
    That will not pass these lips but echo with the sun-caught stream
    Rolling over rocks older than any philosophy
    Murmuring secrets as it gains force to meet bigger waters...
    Likewise, this air is bursting, this earth is bursting
    All of sight and what hides in shades out of the corner of eyes is bursting
    Daring to speak the words that summon flock upon flock
    Of messengers that pass us as we wind along little paths
    Balancing our thoughts and our deeds in internal operettas
    Nodding to strangers as we go
    In our minds remaking the world so that our place in it is finally safe
    Where we are a harbor and the lost take shelter within us,
    All the while while we beg under our breath for sanctuary
    As we are bathed in sunlight and are so warmed
    We forget to pray.
    One small hour in the garden
    One light year in the world
    One glance of a sparrow on a twig could be a
    Glimpse that holds my eyes still forever,
    A peek at an eternity that will waste away
    And transform everything that I love and covet
    But I won't look away because it's too damn beautiful...
    Oh compel me still to ramble along
    For this day is yet another model, another tongue
    By which the Universe is represented
    Expressed this peculiar moment through the brambles,
    The pine, the periwinkle
    Pushing up last year's glory.
    I'll fill my voice with feather churned air
    And uplift an awkward tune in thanks
    For this accidental rendezvous your celestial name
    In this awakening garden
    Both of us equally distracted
    Looking for signs of life
    Poking through the cold ground, after all.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:14 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    The Exorcist in 30 seconds

    The Exorcist in 30 seconds with bunnies.

    jaybird found this for you @ 20:17 in Silly People, Satire & Strange Behaviors | | permalink



    When marriage between gays was

    When marriage between gays was by rite [via Gayfilter]

    While the pairing of saints, particularly in the early Church, was not unusual, the association of these two men was regarded as particularly close. Severus of Antioch in the sixth century explained that "we should not separate in speech [Serge and Bacchus] who were joined in life". More bluntly, in the definitive 10th century Greek account of their lives, St Serge is openly described as the "sweet companion and lover" of St Bacchus.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:16 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    “Sit beside the breakfast table

    “Sit beside the breakfast table Think about your troubles Pour yourself a cup of tea And think about the bubbles You can take your teardrops And drop them in a teacup Take them down to the riverside And throw them over the side To be swept up by a current And taken to the ocean To be eaten by some fishes Who were eaten by some fishes And swallowed by a whale Who grew so old He decomposed He died and left his body To the bottom of the ocean Now everybody knows That when a body decomposes The basic elements Are given back to the ocean And the sea does what it oughta And soon there's salty water (That's not too good for drinking) 'Cause it tastes just like a teardrop (So they run it through a filter) And it comes out from a faucet (And is poured into a teapot) Which is just about to bubble Now think about your troubles..”

    Harry Nilsson, “Think About your Troubles,” from the film “The Point.”

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:11 in Art, Music, Theater & Film | | permalink



    "Bewitched Again"

    In the shadow of red jazz light twirling
    Swirled an answer to a question only admitted to the fool's moon,
    Spelled out in interlocking circles on a cocktail napkin,
    Occult symbols that spell out yes
    The same way a late night child makes new constellations
    With a ruler, pencil, and upturned eyes.
    The confirming of warm suspicions spilled over the brim of the mind
    As the crooning bent midnight backward and the pigeons raced the rooftops.
    We watched the dancers but only with patient envy
    Smoke rings were tumbling prayer wheels that kissed tentative lips
    And when we left and the hours caught up to being late agian,
    I walked away knowing, that in the measures of an old standard,
    You said yes, and you caught me floating up toward the lights
    The flickering of enchantment growing ever brighter.

    jaybird found this for you @ 01:28 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Saturday, 06 March, 2004 }

    "Pact with the River"

    Making a pact with the river
    Submerging dangling fingertips in a prayer
    That reaches from surface to surface
    One dissolving into the other,
    A confluence of blood and downstream sacraments.
    Along the banks, some bones, bleached winter white
    Wating to enter the fray, for the fortune of gravity's pull
    And the winding flow of eager water.
    Wild violets spring up through the vertebra
    And immortality is there,
    You can stroke it's tender purple petals
    And be assured that your covenant has been received
    That the pulsing within you is the cold splashing over these weathered rocks
    Rounded smooth hermits that themselves slowly disperse
    And hide in the morning fog.
    This river knows my name, and yours too;
    It mutters endlesly the lives it touches through it's lips of eddies
    And carries onward to the sea,
    The sea to the rain
    The rain to your breath
    Your breath to me.
    Let that be a promise,
    Let that be the measure of the infinte, of goodness.

    jaybird found this for you @ 18:13 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    WOO-HOO! My new site for

    WOO-HOO! My new site for the discussion of worldwide queer issues is open for business. It's based on the Metafilter model using the Drupal operating system. Do check it out, sign up, and post away:

    QueerMeta | Hold on tight, evolution ahead.

    jaybird found this for you @ 14:29 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    The lives of the Sadhus

    The lives of the Sadhus of India, an interview with a boy ascetic, and the passionate feats which express their devotion. [pictures 1, 2]

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:21 in Spirituality, Religion & Mythos | | permalink



    Ghosts leak in through the

    Ghosts leak in through the raindrops In the back corner of the night, Long given up for hopeless We sleep through it. Nudging into memory Long since buried and useless Its dug from the depths, fed with rainwater And like a spring shoot comes alive again as the ghost Slips through the beaded curtain of weather, returning a recollection Given up for dead.

    jaybird found this for you @ 06:03 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    { Friday, 05 March, 2004 }

    3-Headed Frog Found

    3-Headed Frog Found

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:27 in Forteana, Phenomena & the Bizarre | | permalink



    Where Is My Gay Apocalypse?

    Where Is My Gay Apocalypse?

    Over 3,500 gay marriages and, what, no hellfire? I was promised hellfire. And riots. What gives?

    jaybird found this for you @ 16:17 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    Another Branch of Human Ancestors

    Another Branch of Human Ancestors Reported

    Another species has been added to the family tree of early human ancestors — and to controversies over how straight or tangled were the branches of that tree.

    jaybird found this for you @ 14:55 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Beautiful images: Space Phenomenon Imitates

    Beautiful images: Space Phenomenon Imitates Art in Universe's Version of van Gogh Painting

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:00 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Birds 'heed monkey warnings' Birds

    Birds 'heed monkey warnings'

    Birds are capable of recognising warning calls from other species, according to scientists.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:32 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Thursday, 04 March, 2004 }

    Wild idea: radio vox populi

    Wild idea: radio vox populi

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:41 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    Mysterious virus may thwart HIV

    Mysterious virus may thwart HIV

    Up to six years after their initial HIV-infection, men whose blood contained the second virus - known simply as GB virus C (GBV-C) - were nearly three times less likely to die than HIV-positive men who did not have the secondary infection.

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:21 in Health, Medicine & Bio-Happiness | | permalink



    Haiti Update

    Another update forwarded to me from Renee, an American working in Haiti with disabled and homeless children.


    Hello everybody...

    Well, things see to be getting back to, somewhat, normal here. Michael was
    up to Wings yesterday and he said most businesses were open. The banks are
    supposed to be open tomorrow. Schools are still closed, but I'm assuming
    that won't last long... the big problem today was long lines at the gas stations. Since we rely on diesel fuel for the generators that could cause a bit of a
    problem if it persists.

    It's been a few days since I wrote you, so let me fill you in on has been
    going on, particularly on Sunday.

    The most visible, or maybe I should say audible, event on Sunday and Monday
    were the plethora of gunshots, some of them pretty close. It was a little
    disconcerting, but eventually I got used to it. I figured if they weren't
    shooting at me I was okay. Watching the activity on the street in front of
    Wings there were a few people walking around with guns, which again was a
    little disturbing.

    There was at least one killing in the area on Sunday. The killing wasn't
    politically motivated, however. It apparently was a thief that someone
    wanted revenge against. The uncertainty and mob mentality of the day
    apparently were motivations for the killing. I heard an Aristide government
    official who lives just up the road had his home ransacked.

    We had heard that the ports were looted over the weekend which made us a
    little nervous because we are expecting a shipment with the two wringer
    washers for the Wings laundry rooms and the new playground for Wings of
    Hope. We have heard that shipment is secure, so that is great news.

    Apparently there were reports in the U.S. media that a lot of orphanages
    were broken into and looted over the past few days. Fortunately, that did
    not happen to our homes. We are still on guard against thieves, particularly
    at night.

    The country is without cable television now because TeleHaiti was broken
    into and destroyed on Sunday. This means that we are getting very little
    news from the states. I am still able to look things up on the internet when
    I can get on, but other than that we are simply relying on the word on the
    street and tidbits we get in emails. It also means we don't have any
    distractions by watching television at night. I'm sure the kids are not
    happy about missing the music videos on BET that they love.

    So far I haven't seen any American troops. I think they are staying
    downtown. It will be interesting to see as things progress what their impact
    will be on the situation and if the attitudes toward them effect us
    non-military foreigners.

    Word is that American Airlines will start flying again on Friday. I hope
    that is the beginning of a return to normalcy that our friends are looking
    for when they consider coming to visit us.

    You will be getting another email from me today or tomorrow that is an
    appeal to help us with emergency funding. We have experienced some pretty
    large losses due to all the guest house cancellations the situation here has
    caused. I ask that you give it and what you can do to help us careful
    consideration.

    Thanks for all your prayers, support and friendship.

    Peace,
    Renee

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:34 in Haiti | | permalink



    Digital Utopia and its Flaws

    Digital Utopia and its Flaws

    Cory Doctorow In Conversation With R.U. Sirius



    "Every other media revolution that we've had from Gutenberg to the radio to recorded music and so on, ended up with an industry that's a thousand times larger, that makes a thousand times more money, and makes available a thousand times more work. That happens every single time! If you go back far enough, you will find the guild of clavichord makers decrying the advent of the lute."

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:57 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    { Wednesday, 03 March, 2004 }

    Experts Say New Desktop Fusion

    Experts Say New Desktop Fusion Claims Seem More Credible

    Scientists are again claiming they have made a Sun in a jar, offering perhaps a revolutionary energy source, and this time even some skeptics find the evidence intriguing enough to call for a closer look.Using ultrasonic vibrations to shake a jar of liquid solvent the size of a large drink cup, the scientists say, they squeezed tiny gas bubbles in the liquid so quickly and violently that temperatures reached millions of degrees and some of the hydrogen atoms in the solvent molecules fused, producing a flash of light and energy.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:00 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Tidal wave of love continues:Queer

    Tidal wave of love continues:Queer couples tying the knot in Portland, Oregon!

    The line outside the county building snaked around the block, with hundreds of people waiting for their turn, some all night. Still others were on hand to show their support.

    jaybird found this for you @ 15:45 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    The Passion of the Christ:

    The Passion of the Christ: Blooper Reel

    Assorted Jews: Crucify him!

    Pontius Pilate: I am innocent of the blood of this just – [knocks over bowl of water, which spills down steps] oh, [bleep].

    Jesus Christ: [smiling] Good one, Hristo.

    Pilate: Nice crown, Jim.

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:49 in Silly People, Satire & Strange Behaviors | | permalink



    How to tell if you're

    How to tell if you're an American

    The following is a first crack at an ostensive definition of 'American culture'-- things shared by the vast majority (let's say 90%) of native-born Americans. Many of these won't sound 'cultural' at all to Americans; they'll sound like just descriptions of the way things are. But each one of them would be contested in one or more non-American cultures.

    jaybird found this for you @ 10:28 in Culture, People & Customs | | permalink



    I kept putting off posting

    I kept putting off posting this: Procrastination and Reality Creation

    Ultimately, in my opinion, all procrastination comes down to a lack of commitment. For whatever reason, we are reluctant to say to the Universe, "This is what I want and I intend to have it." Bold statement, isn't it? Perhaps it isn't nice, generous or politically correct. Maybe it will hurt someone's feelings, take away from what another may need or make us seem too aggressive. We could worry and wring our hands for quite awhile with this.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:55 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Even this won't stop the

    Even this won't stop the beat: Mayor faces charges for marrying gays

    Four days after presiding over a slew of same-sex marriages in his quaint Hudson Valley village, the mayor of New Paltz was charged Tuesday with 19 criminal violations and faces a court hearing Wednesday night, injecting the state's debate over gay marriages with increasing drama and urgency.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:29 in Gay, Lesbian, Queer & Free | | permalink



    { Tuesday, 02 March, 2004 }

    "Winning Back"

    Whatever came over this night
    It dragged it under, seduced it in the depths
    And left it's love mark upon release.
    This immobilized witness, wordless, without a say.

    Words are not kind nor are they vicious
    That is the treatment they receive by our human tongues.
    As night and otherness wrestled in wordlessness
    Emotion too grappled for meaning.

    Here, on the subsiding edge of a dream,
    Where I had begged for mercy to reclaim language
    I am given the remains of an expired passion
    From it, to rewrite, recapture, and with feeling win back the night.

    ***

    UPDATE: As any regular reader might have probably guessed, I'm in a writer's slump. It's been a bit distressing, and this late night scrawl was an attempt to yell about it in a controlled, poetic way.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:18 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    The Individual Sphere: A Transhumanist

    The Individual Sphere: A Transhumanist approach to self transformation.

    [via MonkeyFilter]

    jaybird found this for you @ 19:50 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Sounds quite a bit like

    Sounds quite a bit like me: Caring for Your Introvert [via MonkeyFilter]

    Do you know someone who needs hours alone every day? Who loves quiet conversations about feelings or ideas, and can give a dynamite presentation to a big audience, but seems awkward in groups and maladroit at small talk? Who has to be dragged to parties and then needs the rest of the day to recuperate?... If so, do you tell this person he is "too serious," or ask if he is okay? Regard him as aloof, arrogant, rude? Redouble your efforts to draw him out?

    If you answered yes to these questions, chances are that you have an introvert on your hands—and that you aren't caring for him properly. Science has learned a good deal in recent years about the habits and requirements of introverts. It has even learned, by means of brain scans, that introverts process information differently from other people (I am not making this up). If you are behind the curve on this important matter, be reassured that you are not alone. Introverts may be common, but they are also among the most misunderstood and aggrieved groups in America, possibly the world.

    jaybird found this for you @ 14:08 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    The Major Unsolved Problem in

    The Major Unsolved Problem in Biology

    Such wondering, and meta-wondering, takes us to the heart of what geneticist-cum-neuroscientist Francis Crick (who would know) calls "the major unsolved problem in biology"--explaining how billions of neurons swapping chemicals give rise to such subjective experiences as consciousness, self-awareness, and awareness that others are conscious and self-aware.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:41 in Consciousness, Psychology & Philosophy | | permalink



    Satellite tags to save dolphins

    Satellite tags to save dolphins

    New Zealand is aiming to use satellite tagging to try to save Maui's dolphins, the world's most endangered marine mammal.

    jaybird found this for you @ 07:24 in Environment, Ecology & Nature | | permalink



    { Monday, 01 March, 2004 }

    NASA to Announce 'Significant Findings'

    NASA to Announce 'Significant Findings' of Water on Mars Tuesday

    "It's going to be the most significant science results that we've had from the rovers, and it's bearing on their primary mission," NASA spokesperson Don Savage told SPACE.com . That mission is to find signs of water that might support life.

    jaybird found this for you @ 23:47 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    Kidnap Diplomacy:'Tell the world it

    Kidnap Diplomacy:'Tell the world it is a coup.'

    Multiple sources that just spoke with Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide told Democracy Now! that Aristide says he was "kidnapped" and taken by force to the Central African Republic. Congressmember Maxine Waters said she received a call from Aristide at 9am EST. "He's surrounded by military. It's like he is in jail, he said. He says he was kidnapped," said Waters. She said he had been threatened by what he called US diplomats. According to Waters, the diplomats reportedly told the Haitian president that if he did not leave Haiti, paramilitary leader Guy Philippe would storm the palace and Aristide would be killed. According to Waters, Aristide was told by the US that they were withdrawing Aristide's US security.

    jaybird found this for you @ 17:31 in Haiti | | permalink



    Things at work today are

    Things at work today are horrific. Color commentary/ranting will follow.

    jaybird found this for you @ 13:20 in Journaling the Infinite | | permalink



    Now! No, now! Shortest time

    Now! No, now! Shortest time interval measured

    Researchers used short pulses of laser light to produce images of electrons leaving atoms and recorded what happened to within 100 attoseconds. To imagine how long this is, if 100 attoseconds is stretched so that it lasts one second, one second would last 300 million years on the same scale.

    jaybird found this for you @ 12:21 in Science, Quantum & Space | | permalink



    "February's Weird Searches"

    The tradition moves into it's first full calendar year with some really ripe entries. Enjoy, rinse, repeat.

  • yuck. Yuck!
  • ted kopel s toupee. I did in fact mention it once. But, dang.
  • you re so finicky. Takes one to know one!
  • whale word seaches. I thought that baleen sifted out plankton, not words.
  • songs about the contitution. Rocking the anachronism since 1787.
  • cohen or carnality or passerine or withholdal or paleethnology. Token googlewhack.
  • i need a saturday job at 13 years old. Awww.
  • the infinite hp for all your team only for tales of destiny 2. Inexplicable.
  • antagonizing the cheesy moon theory. That theory sucks. See? I antagonized it.
  • how to make a grasshopper costume for a child s play. Awww.
  • the largest earth quack ever. Duck and cover!
  • new ways to masturbate. Do your own R&D. It's more fun than googling. Wink.
  • naked karaoke. Not good for a first date.
  • sogging tips for your first kiss. Sogging? The idea is not to sog.
  • where can i find facts about the moon roosters? Try animal-husbandry-on-the-moon.com

    And this month's winner is...

  • what are the long term effects of a geisha. Chronic whiteface.

    jaybird found this for you @ 09:09 in Blogosphere, Tech & Internet | | permalink



    Anything goes in Rio

    Anything goes in Rio

    It is 2.30 in the morning. On Brazilian television a man in a silly hat is measuring a woman's breasts.

    jaybird found this for you @ 06:33 in Culture, People & Customs | | permalink




     
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    Letter Excerpt:

     

    Ten Considerations for Being Well n this Goofy Universe

     

    0. If you find yourself wonderstruck, don’t forget to return the favor.

    1. Always be of service to the whole and the Holy. You’ll find that the Holy will reciprocate by being of service to your becoming Whole.

    2. You will be called upon to use your mind and your vision in ways I cannot possibly glimpse. Never turn down an offer to shine that light so uniquely yours to help others in their darkness, and you’ll find that when it’s your turn to be in the night that there’ll be someone along the way who happens to have a little glow to share .

    3. The rewards of being true to yourself  are infinite, even when outwardly your efforts are met with nothing.

    4. You’ll also see that  knowledge and wisdom will come from within yourself through your own struggle and curiosity... your loved ones may guide you to insight, but yours is the power to choose it.

    5. You’ll find that some of your choices could’ve been better, or at times were downright stupid. That’s okay... I have a closet full of reckless decisions, but without making them I wouldn’t have the slightest idea of what a good one might feel like if I tried it on.

    6. Your growth will be a mysterious, comic, ecstatic and sometimes scary ride, and I pray that you strive to savor each minute of it, even the most difficult or embarrassing minutes. Don’t count on second chances.

    7. In those times when everything collapses around you, and what’s left won’t go right, don’t forget your chances of being alive in this solar system, in this galaxy, are a little on the slim side. So slim in fact that it could be called a miracle to breathe this air, drink this water, and have whet ever predicament you’re having no matter how you shake, rattle and roll it. So go with the cosmic flow and always choose something over nothing, while remembering that there’s a little of each one hidden in both.

    8. Respond as best as you can with love to adversity rather than reacting with fear... Love, in any situation and  being the primordial source and essence of ALL THIS STUFF, leaves / enters us with the most possible ways out / in.

    9. Whatever you’re doing, celebrate the process of doing as much, if not more, than what you’ve got when you’re done. Magic lives in the action.

    9 ½ . All matter is energy. All energy is infinite. We are but raindrops falling to the ocean, a short time in this shape until we’re reunited with the expanse from which we came. Your delicate yet sturdy, resilient body is a temporary shelter of energy that has swam the universe eternally and will continue eternally. You are a sudden crystallization of the infinite. One must ask themself, therefore, why be bored?

    9 3/4 . Choosing to live in the moment is courageous but becomes effortless once you begin...feeling obligated to survive in the past or future is dangerous and is difficult to continue. It’s one of the few risks I’d recommend not taking, right up there with trusting icons and shrugging off coincidences.

    10. The Universe itself it not confusing, we humans just like it that way. Do frogs seem bewildered , butterflies befuddled and amoebas addled? Nope, just us, my child. So, whenever things just don’t make sense, just take a deep breath and laugh as best you can, because that’s what you get for choosing this goofy, unpredictable place called Earth to embody yourself upon.