Archive for 2010|Yearly archive page

Experimenting w/ Hitler

In Culture, Curious Notions, Humor, Political on December 27, 2010 at 11:21 pm

Q: Hitler – Ripe for comedy or still taboo?



  • Exhibit B: Cats that look like Hitler and a new exhibit in Germany.

A: What is the answer? Is there one? You tell me.


Gallup poll finds congressional approval at all-time low

In Political on December 27, 2010 at 2:29 pm

On Dec. 15, Gallup released a study that found that the vast majority of American citizens disapprove of Congress. 83% of those polled felt that members of the House and Senate were/are failing to do their jobs. Only 13% approve. That number is the lowest congressional approval rating since Gallup began tracking suck figures in 1975.

I may or may not pen a short rant about this later, but right now I’d like to see what my readership has to say. Posting here or on Facebook is more the sufficient.

Top 10 Quotes from my Readers About Social Media (via Adventures in Technology)

In Uncategorized on December 27, 2010 at 3:30 am

A helpful list of what readers of a technology blog in Vancouver, B.C. have said on Social Media. Enjoy!

Top 10 Quotes from my Readers About Social Media Thank you for sharing your knowledge and adding value to my posts. Congratulations on making the Top 10 lists of quotes relating to social media. Blogging about upcoming events and follow-up blog posts help me gain visitors Zemanta is really cool – they suggest links, tags, and pictures. typhoidterri Research like minded communities and keywords in both the blog wor … Read More

via Adventures in Technology

The holiday of The Me

In Culture, Curious Notions on December 26, 2010 at 9:52 pm

Christmas is a holiday for ourselves. We feel good about buying presents for others, just as receiving gifts makes us feel better about our own self-worth. It’s the rare holiday that is about making ourselves smile just as much as seeing others do the same. Call it capitalism, pragmatism, fun or human nature. Whatever you call it, I hope you enjoyed it.

Terrible poetry

In Poetry on December 25, 2010 at 11:45 pm

I was roaming one of my favorite blogs this evening (Aardvarchaeology) when I discovered a particularly bland bit of poetry. Reading said poem inspired me to write an equally terrible limerick describing my feelings after, erm, “digesting” said poem. What I wrote is of no consequence, but the act of doing so helped me remember a limerick I read during my private school days. It goes as follows:

There was a young lady from Bright,

Whose speed was much faster then light.

She set out one day,

In a relative way,

And returned home the previous night.

It’s a science poem. If Einstein were alive he’d either chortle or shake his head disparagingly. Maybe, both. Merry Christmas and skoal to you all!

Blogging 101: Fears and Subliminations

In Blog Culture on December 25, 2010 at 1:34 am

Blogging is fun, but also difficult. I access my blog (almost) every day in order to check my stats, layout and overall choice in content. Yes, even after I post I will sometimes regret having done so. It’s nerve-racking, but you get used to it.

Sometimes I slam my metaphorical head into my screen in an (oftentimes) fruitless attempt at coming up with a topic. I’ve spoken to several colleagues about my blogging (Andy and Heat, I’m lookin’ at you two) and have struck upon only a few truths: keep the posts short, frequent and interesting. It sounds like a metaphor for sex and can be just as tiresome.

My biggest bitch is “what exactly am I going to write about?” Sometimes I don’t post. Sometimes I just write and leave a post unfinished for several days. Sometimes such drafts get “left behind” (har har) in the proverbial “to do pile” only to be revisited and determined to be no longer timely or simply dull.

What I am often told is “keep blogging!” Well, that’s much easier said then done. A watchful blog reader will notice I don’t always post on a regular basis. Sometimes I post every day for a week, while other weeks receive barely a post. (I *intend* to rectify that, so just sit tight.) What I truly despise about my blogging is when I feel forced to do so. The posts I (literally) churn out due to a sense of obligation are oftentimes the ones I dislike and the ones my readers dislike.

What have I learned since I’ve started blogging? The best posts are the passionate ones. Even if it’s short, as long as you write with fervor (don’t forget to spellcheck!) and from a place of intelligence, you will go far. But, even then there are times where the posts I put little effort or research into are the ones EVERYBODY hits. So, who knows? Give your all most of the time and you should be alright. Sounds like a metaphor or life, doesn’t it?

Guest Column: From the non-Christian’s point of view

In Alaskana, Culture, Curious Notions, Guest Columns, The Cool on December 24, 2010 at 1:01 am

From the non-Christian’s point of view

By Elika Roohi

You know how there are those people at Christmas time that insist on saying “Happy Holidays,” and they make you put up unspecific decorations?  I am one of those people.

I’m not going to tear down the holly wreaths on campus, I’m not going to bemoan the fact that there are poinsettias everywhere, and I won’t complain when Christmas Carols are played nonstop.  In fact, I’m not even going to make a fuss.*

Even though we live in a country that is predominantly Christian, it’s exactly that: predominantly.  Which means that there are a whole lot of people around that are Hindu or Buddhist or Jewish or Zoroastrian or Baha’i or Muslim.  And those people don’t celebrate Christmas.**  A lot of those people don’t even celebrate a holiday in the month of December, so when you try to be politically correct and wish them a “happy holidays,” you’re still not getting it.

The thing is, before I got to college, it seemed like everyone was making a genuine effort to say “happy holidays” instead of “merry Christmas.”  But then I showed up at UAF, and there are holly wreaths and poinsettias and Christmas trees all over the place.  I played in a concert this afternoon that had a completely Christmas carol repertoire; there wasn’t even a token Jewish tune.  Not to mention, I haven’t seen a single menorah on campus.

I’m a Baha’i.  I celebrate Naw-Ruz, which is in March.  And I don’t have a problem with Christmas in the least.  But I do have a problem with the fact that people seem to forget there are others out there that don’t celebrate Christmas.  We just had World Week at UAF.  Wasn’t that all about diversity?  Well, where is the diversity now?


*I’m just going to write this blog post.  And okay, I might ask you to turn off the Christmas music.

**Except sometimes they do because of societal norms.

Blogging REDUX and other pretentious comparisons

In Blog Culture on December 24, 2010 at 12:47 am

I may have just had an epiphany. Or an aneurysm. When it comes to sudden flashes on insight (or supposed insight) I can never be sure. What I think just happened was that I realized my blogging sucks.

I thought blogging was supposed to be “news with a personal touch.” (My definition for “blog” as far as I can tell). Like an editorial only with more cursing (and not the Casey Grove “Shit List” kind, even though I feel for the guy). No, blogging is supposed to be more editorial meets diary: Bridget Jones meets Fox News. (That encapsulation just made me shiver…a Fox News comparison? Really, man?)

Blogging is, I think, more of a Barclay’s Commentaries instead of The Bible. I didn’t write the book of life, I just highlight and make notes. So…consider this an upgrade from a Sharpie Permanent Marker to an ACCENT Highlighter. Oh yeah, I just went there.


Did you just hear that? That’s the sound of the ACCENT, baby, and here we go.

A UA Christmas Reflection w/ Pres. Gamble

In Alaskana, Curious Notions, Guest Columns, Humor, UAF on December 21, 2010 at 9:56 pm

In case you missed it, on Dec. 20, UA President Patrick Gamble emailed the UAF Staff list-serve with an letter that can only be described as cute. In case you are not on the Staff list-serve, here is the email in it’s entirety. I have bolded the lines that I felt were particularly fun/interesting.

Patrick Gamble during a summer 2010 luncheon hosted by the Fairbanks Economic Development Coorporation. Photo by Jeremia Schrock/Bagheera Face

A UA Christmas Reflection

As we round out the semester and commence the holiday season I find myself thinking back to student days (the proverbial “days of yore?”) and the anticipation I felt then about the approaching time off. Family and travel quickly replaced any academic focus I might have had, and the burden of classes was mercifully lifted for a couple of weeks. I’m sure that over the many years since then nothing much about that has changed in the student department. Now, being on the other side of the fence for the first time, I’m fascinated to observe the same phenomenon occurring on the faculty and staff side. Amazingly, it never occurred to me way back then that the university was likewise quite happyto be rid of me so they could take a well deserved breather too!!

So enjoy yourselves in all the ways the season provides. Take comfort that despite how sometimes this crazy planet rocks, rolls, and rhumbas to the discordant events of our time, we in America still have many blessings to be thankful for…like our ability to tolerate and appreciate others, our freedom, the diversity we enjoy among our family and friends, and for the special opportunity we have here at UA to educate generations of Alaskans. As professionals we need our students, because making them successful makes us whole in our life’s work. In turn they need us…to support, instruct, and educate them so they can fulfill their awesome potential. They all know they cannot fly solo yet. Even so, at times, this relationship takes on the characteristics of a sumo struggle more than a learning partnership. Not a problem, it mostly works out just fine. It’s just that every now and then, like at Christmas, we need to go back to our respective corners, take a breather, unwind and then smile at the prospect of the exciting opportunities ahead for all of us in the next round. Every job description within our UA system is crafted as a link to all other job descriptions in a latticework that creates a powerful university team. Every individual team member is essential to the task of getting our students through. Thank you all for doing that so well. I look forward to the New Year, and working with you.

Have a great break.


Patrick Gamble

It makes me think that underneath that four star general exterior lies a fun-loving Joe Hayes middle. Thoughts?

You can’t spell “marriage” without “mar”.

In Health, Justice, Political on December 17, 2010 at 4:53 pm

An article on Huffington Post writes that House Republicans just voted down the International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act of 2010. Almost everything you need to know about the bill is in the title. The major “problem” Republicans had with the bill (even those who initially supported it) is that it uses taxpayer money for abortion. Yep, once again a largely male congress is trying to legislate against a women’s uterus. The disappointing thing? (Other then the bills defeat?) Desmond Tutu and Mary Robinson (the former president of Ireland) both wrote Op-Ed columns supporting America’s finally speaking out against such marriages. Wow. Once again I am OH SO PROUD to be an American.