Archives July 2006

If only we had a Standard Generalized Markup Language!

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

If you’ve been participating in various Web-based forums for a while, you may have noticed the great variety of ways you can avoid polluting your fingers with HTML.

  • Some venerable bulletin-board systems use UBBCode™. See, in HTML, if you want to make something boldface, you use <b>codes surrounded by angle brackets</b>, but UBBCode™ uses ...

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Not kosher

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

OK, I’ve been defending Israel’s actions in Lebanon because, in the absence of other information, I want to give them the benefit of the doubt that they are trying in good faith to fight a clean war, to the extent that such a thing is possible.

That’s a little harder to do when seeing news ...

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It sucks to be unarmed in the Middle East

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

One of the main critiques (from the left) of Israel’s behavior in Lebanon goes roughly like this: hundreds of Lebanese civilians are dying under Israeli bombs, and hundreds of thousands have been made refugees; therefore, Israel is doing something wrong. Nobody denies that Hezbollah stations itself among civilians, but a lot of folks seem to ...

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What is man, that thou art mindful of him?

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

While reading Self-Made Man, Norah Vincent’s story of spending a year and a half passing for male, I came across an analysis of how men in a bowling league she joined would try to help her with her game. She recounted how, as a female athlete, she got back-stabbing and catty remarks from other women ...

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Unilaterally correct

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

Billmon, assessing Israel’s prospects in its war against Hezbollah and Hamas, remarks:

Unilateral withdrawal was, in the end, a dangerous fantasy. The reality is that Israel can only disengage from [the Palestinian territories] if there is a PA willing and able to play the role of … government – providing some minimal level of public services ...

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A school for scandalously bad writing

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

Every once in a while, a writer from outside the SF community gets touched by our peculiar muse, and produces an excellent work that is recognizably SF, or at least something damn close to it. Books like this make the true believers grind their teeth and mutter “if only SF wasn’t considered a subliterary genre ...

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Frontiers of ecumenicism

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

Some of my readers (המבין יבין‫‬) might be interested in this article about an Israeli reality-TV show in which a Jewish and Arab family swap wives.

via “Krum as a bagel” guest-blogging at DovBear

In the United States of America, in the 21st century...

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

A large Delaware school district promoted Christianity so aggressively that a Jewish family felt it necessary to move to Wilmington, two hours away, because they feared retaliation for filing a lawsuit. The religion (if any) of a second family in the lawsuit is not known, because they're suing as Jane and John Doe; they ...

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A conversation with my wife

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

(Scene: Oak Square, Brighton, in 90° heat)

“Do you want me to push the stroller?”

“No, it’s OK, I’ll push the stroller.”

“But what will people think, seeing me just walking alongside my 8½-months-pregnant wife while she pushes a double stroller with two children?”

“Do I look pregnant?”

“No, that dress ...

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‫די שטערן-באַצירטע פאָהן‬

Last update on Nov. 11, 2014.

O’zog, kenstu sehn, wen bagin licht dervacht,
Vos mir hoben bagrist in farnachtigen glihen?
Die shtreifen un shtern, durch shreklicher nacht,
Oif festung zich hoiben galant un zich tsein?
Yeder blitz fun rocket, yeder knal fun kanon,
Hot bawizen durch nacht: az mir halten die Fohn!
O, zog, tzi der “Star Spangled Banner” flatert in ...

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