November 18, 2002

Avram Davidson

Cyprus was another world.

The city of Paphos might have been designed and built by a Grecian architect dreamy with the drugs called talaquin or mandragora: in marble yellow as unmixed cream, marble pink as sweetmeats, marble the green of pistuquim nuts, veined marble and grained marble, honey-colored and rose-red, the buildings climbed along the hills and frothed among the hollows. Tier after tier of overtall pillars, capitals of a profusion of carvings to make Corinthian seem ascetic, pediments lush with bas-reliefs, four-fold arches at every corner and crossing, statues so huge that they loomed over the housetops, statues so small that whole troops of them flocked and frolicked under every building's eaves, groves and gardens everywhere, fountains playing, water spouting . . .

Paphos.


Avram Davidson

He was the autodidact's autodidact; cognoscenti's cognocenti; the polymath's polymath, one who knew the minutiae of freemasonry, heraldry-any number of categories of the arcane, major and minor; front to back; top to bottom. Long before the genre Steam punk was named, he'd already defined the Other Nineteenth Century. And he wrote the most sumptuous prose.

Come step within the heirodule enclosure
posted by y2karl at 10:09 PM PST - 17 comments

Good news for poetry

An astonishing bequest of $100 million to Poetry Magazine instantly turns a 4-person literary journal into the wealthiest poetry organization on the planet. The benefactress, Ruth Lilly, has given millions to libraries and medical research labs in the midwest. But poetry has never been showered with such munificence until now. What will this donation achieve beyond ensuring the existence of the journal into perpetuity?
posted by dougb at 8:57 PM PST - 49 comments

Campbell's Chunky Soup Curse?

The Campbell's Chunky Soup Curse strikes again. Well, as sports prognostications go, it's no sillier than the Sports Illustrated Jinx.
yes, via fark, but I dressed it up.
posted by yhbc at 7:32 PM PST - 11 comments

Plane Living

The JetSet Society What if the passengers on any given plane actually lived there? One guy's musings, with sections on the Economy, Love and Death, and of course, Religion.
posted by amberglow at 6:40 PM PST - 2 comments

Tropical America game

Tropical America intriguing Flash game about forgotten histories of the Americas, inspired by the works of David Alfaro Siqueiros.
posted by none at 4:27 PM PST - 2 comments

End of On-line Petitions?

At last, someone has created an on-line petition that in its own way, though user participation has proved its own point. I especially think that because Bill Gates AND Elvis Presley have both signed it, gives the whole exercise immediate merit. Has an on-line petition ever succeeded at anything?
posted by Smooth at 4:26 PM PST - 15 comments

Homeland Security

Homeland Security "Goodies". "The bill the president supported was 35 pages long. The bill that I've been asked to vote on on Monday or Tuesday is 484 pages long, filled with special-interest legislation, loaded up by the House Republicans in the last few days," Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) The most egregious, Democrats say, is language to protect pharmaceutical companies from lawsuits over the vaccines they create and their side effects, including wiping out lawsuits already in court.
posted by Espoo2 at 3:56 PM PST - 39 comments

Jakob's Search Engine: Contradiction?

Am I the only one finding this URL odd, considering the content: But for those of you interested in more devilish Jakob fun, check out use.it.or.lose.it
posted by TNLNYC at 3:14 PM PST - 16 comments

Al Gore Discusses the 2000 Election and His Future in Politics

Al Gore Tells All! Okay, maybe not all, but he does give his first extended interview since the 2000 election to Liza Mundy of the Washington Post. Mundy discussed the interview further in a live forum earlier today. Required reading for political junkies. [via Tapped]
posted by boltman at 2:11 PM PST - 32 comments

Salaries of presidents at private US colleges and universities

Salaries of presidents at private US colleges and universities. The Chronicle of Higher Education releases results of country-wide survey (complete database available only with subscription). The salaries and benefits of presidents at public universities from previous report.
posted by shoos at 11:37 AM PST - 20 comments

John Pound Art

John Pound. Illustrator for over 400 Garbage Pail Kids, Meanie Babies, Silly CDs, Trashcan Trolls, and Wacky Packages. Find your Garbage Pail Kid name, then find your card in this gallery (Hopefully, before the Geocities site is overloaded. And it also shares a peculiar injoke MeFi address).
posted by Stan Chin at 9:09 AM PST - 21 comments

Instant Online Ordination

Please address me as Reverend Carlos from now on. Thank you. For I have been ordained a Minister, in two minutes flat, by the Universal Life Church and possess the official document to prove it. Tomorrow I'll be starting my own religion - your contributions and suggestions for a good name for my Church are most welcome. [Sacred instructions inside].
posted by Carlos Quevedo at 8:13 AM PST - 64 comments

1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 26

chip glitch Robbie Floyd - seemed agape even hours after learning of his defeat Wednesday. "It was hard to believe that that type of mistake had happened," he said.
posted by specialk420 at 7:56 AM PST - 8 comments

Natural Selection Half-Life Mod Released

Fans of first-person shooter games are flocking to Natural Selection (review 1, review 2), the Marines vs Aliens modification that uses the engine of Half-Life. It is a stunning game and focuses greatly on cooperation with your team (it currently is only playable through network). The designers are still working out balancing the strengths and abilities between human and xenomorph but the anxiety of trying to defend the marine base while the mammoth-sized aliens are battering the door down is a delight to all of us who always wanted to be like Drake, Vasquez and Hicks (and Hudson). Download it here (reg req'd) and find games to join over at Gamespy (their Arcade download makes it super-easy). Note: you do need to have a retail version of Half-Life to play the game.
posted by ao4047 at 7:36 AM PST - 33 comments

Pre-order

Pre-order your Ginger today! Amazon scores exclusive selling rights, apparently.
posted by adamms222 at 6:48 AM PST - 70 comments

Pentagon readies microwave bomb for Baghdad

Pentagon readies microwave bomb for Baghdad There go the blogs in Iraq! Might be worthwhile going to war just to test this new toy, says one cynic, the poster of this link.
posted by Postroad at 6:37 AM PST - 20 comments

Pitchfork's Top 100 Albums of the 1980s

Today, the music critics at pitchfork.com posted the first half of their "Top 100 Albums of the 1980s" feature.
posted by Pinwheel at 6:36 AM PST - 51 comments

rakes are not just for leaves

Ryoan-ji (Temple of the Peaceful Dragon) is possibly the best known of all rock gardens. The entire design consists of fifteen rocks arranged in a large bed of raked gravel, and on the outskirts there are many benches so that visitors may contemplate its meaning and find inner peace. Ryoan-ji inspired the design of the very first mini-zen garden, according to the self-proclaimed inventor, who also pays homage to Ryoan-ji with beautiful photographs. For those who might like to try making their own source of inner peace and harmony, not to mention taking up that awkward space on their coffee table, check out the unabashedly exuberant version by Crafty Chica, who always celebrates her Mexican-American roots with color and verve and quirky charm.
posted by iconomy at 5:11 AM PST - 9 comments

Stanford Web Credibility

Stanford Web Credibility “Our goal is to understand what leads people to believe what they find on the Web. We hope this knowledge will enhance Web site design and promote future research on Web credibility.” A project of the Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab, who offer ten guidelines for a web site’s credibility.
posted by raaka at 4:41 AM PST - 12 comments

Kunstbar by The Petrie Lounge

Kunstbar is funny, cultured and very well executed. [Flash]
posted by Pretty_Generic at 3:47 AM PST - 23 comments