Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Scientists have discovered more than 20 new species in Indonesia

This rocks pretty darn hard, especially when they found cool stuff like tree kangaroos and frogs and neato birds and this adorable echidna fellow:

My Skepticism Surprises Me

I'm reading a book called The Long Emergency by James Howard Kunstler. Here is a summary that was published in Rolling Stone last year. I'm pretty tree-huggery by nature, and so it surprised me how often I find that I disagree with the author's bolder doom-and-gloom pronouncements. I can believe that the supply of fossil fuels (and especially oil) could run out a lot sooner than the public expects. I have a hard time believing that the U.S. will break up into smaller factions and revert to a nearly-pre-Industrial way of life, after much of the world's human population is decimated by K-T style die-offs. I'm not very far into it, but so far it gives me the same half-interested half-embarrassed feeling that I get from Michael Moore films.

In a coincidence that's freaking me out a little (but maybe only because it's 1:00 in the morning), there is a Long Emergency blog that uses an identical template to the one I use: www.longemergency.blogspot.com.

Even as a Child, I Was Such a Geek

When I was little, I loved to look through my parents' rag-tag collection of non-sequential National Geographic magazines. One of my very favorites was an issue that had a feature on a shipwreck. A moment ago, I would've said it was about the Titanic, but now I suddenly suspect it was about a ship that sank in one of the Great Lakes during the War of 1812. I watched the documentary Ghosts of the Abyss the other day, and I really liked it. It was enjoyable for science/history geek reasons, but also because it reminded me of going through that old magazine, over and over.

I'm going to try to snag one of the public library's copies of Aliens of the Deep sometime this week, because the only thing better than geekiness is geekiness with a side of nerd.

Reading: Anansi Boys, by Neil Gaiman. I really, really loved American Gods, to the point where I'll probably buy a copy and it ranks somewhere in my top ten favorite books of the genre. Anansi Boys is not quite a sequel, but it's related enough that I think it'll be fantastic, too.

In other Neil Gaiman-related news, Mirrormask comes out on DVD next Tuesday. I was lucky enough to see it in Chicago at the one theater that was showing it the weekend I visited, and I liked it enough that I plunked down $20 at my part-time job to reserve a copy. If you dig Gaiman's stuff or dark-ish Henson movies like The Dark Crystal, I'd recommend renting or Netflix-ing Mirrormask.

Playing: You Are Free, by Cat Power

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