The twins are gone.

Leftovers & Links #46

You think things are nuts now? In the 1950s and ‘60s, the US had a government program that intended to nuke the moon.

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Trump thought it was totally fine when Capitol rioters chanted ‘Hang Mike Pence’.

It’s a legal thing and I’m not a legal person, but my vague understanding is that it’s against the law to even say “someone should kill the President of the United States.” Apparently, though, it’s not illegal for the President to say someone should kill the Vice President?

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I guess I don’t understand Facebook, which doesn’t surprise me (there are many things I don’t understand). Since Facebook first went online, I’ve been to at least dozens of Facebook pages where I’ve been commanded to sign up and log in, either immediately or as soon as I start scrolling down the page. As there’s no way in hell I’m signing up for Facebook, because of these commands I’ve mostly ignored the entire platform.

Today, though, a link took me to the Adipositivity page on Facebook, where I was allowed to read the whole page, expand posts, even fetch more posts, all without signing up and logging in. That's never happened to me before. I spent some serious time there, and added a permanent link. 

My question for any Facebook-users: Is “You gotta sign up and log in” a setting that Facebook members can control? I emphatically hate Mark Zuckerberg, but there’s doubtless worthwhile content at Facebook and I’d like to be able to read it. Hell, I can’t even read my brother’s Facebook page.  

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Offered without comment: 

Officer Jack Nyce of the San Francisco Police didn’t want to have a COVID vaccine. This got him a one-month paid suspension from the force. While he was out on paid suspension for refusing the vaccine, he caught COVID and died

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1936 project to make the second floor of the Eiffel Tower accessible by car, because if something’s not easily accessible by car, does it actually even exist?

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San Francisco’s most famous twins, Marian and Vivian Brown, are gone. They've been gone for several years.

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Yeah, this news is everywhere, but it makes me happy so it’s here, too: 

Steve Bannon has finally been indicted for contempt of Congress.

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In San Francisco, I lived in a series of residential (rez) hotels, short skyscrapers originally constructed as something akin to a boarding house — you rented a room with a sink, but the toilet and shower were down the hall, shared with other tenants. There’s really no more affordable way to live in an urban area, at least not if you want the modern minimums of heat and plumbing and electricity.

In Madison, the much smaller city where I now live, there simply aren’t rez hotels. Near as I can ascertain, there never have been. I’m not looking to move back to the rez hotel lifestyle, but I’m mildly surprised and saddened it’s not an option.

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43% of the white students admitted to Harvard don’t need to worry about whether they’ll be admitted, because they’re legacies, children of faculty and staff, athletes, or on the dean’s interest list. About 3/4 of that 43% wouldn’t pass the ordinary admissions process, without their unfair advantage.

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Are we on the verge of chatting with whales? 

Probably not, but it’s an interesting premise, worth studying. Might make a good sci-fi story, too. If there’s ever a communications breakthrough, I expect the whales will say, “Hey dummies, quit dumping plastic into the ocean.”

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The creation of Pirate Bay — the original torrent-sharing site —  will be turned into a TV series, by a director who says he’s “an old punk.” It sounds like the story will be more sympathetic to little guys than the likes of Warner Bros and MCI, but to see the show in America, you’ll probably have to pirate it. It’s being made in Sweden, and the dialogue will be in Svenska. 

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I’m intrigued by this four-wheeled surrey style electric bicycle that seats four adults and two children. It’s only $2,000, and the battery packs a 50-mile range. Sadly, it comes with some obvious safety problems. Also, it looks so cool I’m sure it would soon be stolen from almost any bike rack anywhere. 

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Let’s spend $150K to remove seaweed and plastic from our lovely beachfront, and then dump it back into the sea.

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A cantina that probably serves droids.

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An experiment, with exactly one participant who’s paralyzed but still mentally intact, shows that effective communication can be restored, by means of a brain implant, a computer, and special software. It’s gotta be fantastic news for the paralyzed and their loved ones, but I need to throw some pessimism at this.

Here in the real world, and especially here in America, you can’t even see a damned doctor for a sore throat unless you have expensive insurance, or unless you’re a charity case in an emergency room. The number of paralyzed patients who’ll qualify for this kind of brain surgery won’t be much more than the one person who’s already had it.

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How to make a CPU, from scratch.

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For 17 years, Lisa Davis thought someone was stealing her identity, but nope. The bureaucracy in New York City had commingled two Lisa Davises — one black, one white, but with the same birthday — into the same file. 

Quote:  I asked her, “Have you had this happen to you, that you’ve been mixed up with other Lisa Davises?”

“Oh, yes,” she said. “There’s another Lisa S Davis with the same birthday.”

I looked at her more closely then, placed her face against my memory of her Facebook page. It was her. It was the Lisa Davis, the one I’d been looking for all these years. “That’s me!” I said.

Almost immediately, Lisa S Davis reached out and hugged me. She’d heard about me, too, every time she had to renew her license, and they’d tell her she was me. Then she said, “How was your birthday?” and we both laughed. 

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 Mystery links  — Like life itself, there’s no knowing where you’re going:


 Sing along with Doug:
Autobahn, by Kraftwerk

Sincere tip 'o the hat:
Captain Hampockets
Follow Me Here
Messy Nessy Chick
National Zero
Ran Prieur
Vintage Everyday

Voenix Rising

Becky Jo
Substantia Jones
Name Withheld
Dave S.


Leftovers & Links 

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  1. >Apparently, though, it’s not illegal for the President to say someone should kill the Vice President?

    From the Frost / Nixon interview :

    Nixon: Well, when the president does it … that means that it is not illegal

    1. What I wouldn't give to have people as good as Nixon in the Republican Party again.

      *Everything* that makes America even somewhat livable depends on having decent people at the levers of power. And more and more, we don't.

    2. As recently as 8 years ago, we thought Nixon was unparalleled as an awful human being president. That fucking piker wouldn't rank in the top ten of awful elected / appointed national Republicans today.

    3. Worst president ever, is what he *was*, but things have gotten worst-er. Now I'd say he's the best Republican president since Lincoln.

    4. Well, I'd sneak Teddy Roosevelt and even U.S. Grant in there (heaven knows how much worse the South would be today without those eight additional years of federal occupation to enfranchise black voters, establish black learning and religious institutions and sew the nation together economically). And the trust-buster; give it up for the trust-buster and the national parks.

      I think using the various maladies of Trump and his efforts to foment hatred and ignorance in America (a fair amount of which has its roots in the previously-noted war) is much worse than the shit Nixon did, but using somebody that ill and bereft of character to somehow rehabilitate Nixon (or, God help us, humanize him) does history and the people who served faithfully a disservice.

      I don't even really broadly disagree with what you assert; I just think it puts the em-PHA-sis on the wrong syl-LA-ble.


    5. What I know of history is next to nada, sorry, so maybe I should've said instead that Nixon was the last semi-sane Republican Prez.

      I've heard a few good things about Teddy, but Franklin is the only Roosevelt bobblehead I own. Was U S Grant responsible for reconstruction? I don't even know if that's a good thing, overall. Black civil rights were protected to some degree, but wasn't reconstruction also the policy that forgave and forgot treason?

      What keeps me reeling most, though, is that every Republican Prez I can remember — Reagan, then Bush, then Bush, then Trump — has been the worst Prez ever, but then the next Republican Prez is even worse. The next one will be Mussolini.

  2. >My question for any Facebook-users: Is “You gotta sign up and log in” a setting that Facebook members can control?

    I logged out, and it appears that I CANNOT view any Facebook content unless I'm logged in. It is not controllable by me when logged in, AFAIK.
    I swear, you wrote about those twins, unflatteringly, in Pathetic Life at some point.
    Regarding the Lisa Davis story - TWICE, when my ex-wife and I tried to rent an apartment, we were denied due to "evictions up and down the eastern seaboard," as it was once described. Well, she had never lived farther east than Fresno. We looked into it, and someone with her name had these issues. But they never checked the SSN. They saw her name, and summarily rejected us.

    Her last name is fucking SMITH, the most common American last name. And they couldn't even check the SSN to make sure they had the right person. We got both situations sorted, but damn.

  3. My recollection fro apartment hunting in SF is that you had to pay for a credit check before they'd even consider your application. You pay, but they'll rule you out for being named Smith.

    1. Oh yeah, we paid for every attempted rental.

    2. The twins were famous for simply being twins, walking around in matching outfits, and I was an ass so it wouldn't surprise me if I wrote something snide about them in the zine. I don't remember it, though.

      From the article, I learned that they lived about a block from me, so I probably saw them all the time. Did you ever see them?

    3. I've never been able to see a Facebook page before. If it's not a setting users can switch then it's probably a glitch, and tomorrow Facebook will command me to sign up and log in.

  4. Sorry, I'm really behind on reading your posts, but just had to add this:

    >Are we on the verge of chatting with whales?


    1. I'd skip four out of five posts here, you wouldn't miss much.

      That's a funny bit, grazi. Made me laugh three times in a minute and a half.

    2. Glad you liked it. I'm a big fan of Brian Regan.

      And there's no skipping posts. I've got to read all of them. Just taking me a while.


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