Tuesday, March 30, 2004
Dan and I have both been saying this since we got our iPods: the white headphones are tantamount to an announcement that 'I've got something expensive, small, and easily resold on my person!' Well, finally someone has acknowledged it.

Plus the story's correct that the Apple headphones are crap. A 7.99 pair of Philips headphones with extra bass work a million times better and are as inconspicuous as I could ever want.

Monday, March 29, 2004
I think most people who make political campaign contributions in the US know that all attached information (save for the person's Social Security Number) becomes public information. But up until a few weeks ago, getting hold of this information took quite a bit of effort and wasn't very common.

If there's one thing the Internet excels at, it's aggregating public information and making it available. So now we have FundRace.Org, a web application that allows people to search, by address or zip code, and find who in their area has contributed what to whom.

It's a fun tool, although some part of me feels as if I'm doing something wrong when I use it. Case in point: when I did a search for the area where I used to live, who was I surprised (and a little unnerved) to see, halfway down the list? One famous NPR reporter who apparently doesn't think much of giving in round numbers...

Tuesday, March 23, 2004
Laugh if you will, but I pronounce both 'r's in 'February' (see also: 'library'). Because, well... it's correct.

Thursday, March 18, 2004
I've got a feeling I'm not the only one.

I've lived in the same flat for three years now. In that time, there have been three different cohorts of undergraduates living in the house above my place. The first bunch was a group of five men who subsidised the rent of one of their number in exchange for housekeeping. As a result, the house (which I can see because we all share a common hallway) was almost always moderately clean. Then came the onslaught of the five co-ed students who were all, apparently, raised by bonobo monkeys somewhere. Their house was a pit of filth for a full year. There was a period of a few weeks where dirty dishes and old rotting food piled up so high that it obscured the door to the kitchen. The hall also always stank. Now, we've got another co-ed bunch, but this group is the most sedate I've ever seen. They all seem very studious, and are almost never loud at all. I call them 'Les Dorques', but in an affectionate, ironic sort of way. The only gripe I've ever had with them is the one that's grating on my nerves right now: they seem to collectively own exactly one CD, which they play all morning and all afternoon of every weekday. Don't get me wrong-- it's not too loud-- it's just that this year, I've gotten far too familiar with the entire Sheryl Crow oeuvre.

Tuesday, March 09, 2004
With all the craziness happening in my life now: dissertation being written, papers for conferences cropping up here and there, online course being taught, a biblical plague of ants at my house in MD, etc., I'm surprised to discover that I'm actually kind of sanely equilibrated... It's the last thing in the world I'd expect at this phase of my life, but I think that having some perspective as a 'mature student' (love that euphemism) is making me understand that this is genuinely a good place and time to be me. Granted, things may come crashing down around me at any moment (knocking on wood now...), but it's all OK for the moment.

Wednesday, March 03, 2004
I should give all credit for this to Dan, who very astutely spotted this uncanny juxtaposition on a walk through Kilburn this weekend. I can't imagine who thought of the brilliant idea to put this poster on this particular bus shelter, but whoever it was, he/she deserves either kudos for cleverness or a slap on the wrist for all the children of London about to be traumatised...

Click the image to see what I mean.

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