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August 02, 2006

Must... blog...

Watch this space...

my take on Israel vs Hezboolahboolah

a story rattling around in my head

a must read article on parenting styles and society.

Coming soon!

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:57 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Happy Birthday, Silent Bob!

Genius filmmaker and blogger Kevin Smith turns 36 today!

And many more!

Posted by caltechgirl at 03:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

South Park RULZ!

See here.

On a related note, I think we finally know who really SHOULD run Hollyweird:  Matt and Trey....

Posted by caltechgirl at 03:13 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

August 03, 2006

Finally, the MSM tells a good story

The Palm Beach Post recognizes Val Prieto of Babalu, and his wonderful family.

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:22 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

August 04, 2006

Sunny Birthdays!

Happy Happy to two of my favorite Florida ladies:  VW Bug and Pam!

Posted by caltechgirl at 09:41 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

August 07, 2006

I HOPE this means what I think it means!

Reuters: 1 hour, 25 minutes ago

Peaceful succession under way in Cuba: official

Cuba has set in motion a peaceful political succession, dashing U.S. government expectations of chaos following Fidel Castro's hand-over of power to his brother, a leading Cuban intellectual and government member, Roberto Fernandez Retamar, said on Monday.

"They (the U.S. government) had not expected that a peaceful succession was possible. A peaceful succession has taken place in Cuba," Fernandez Retamar said at a news conference.

The writer and member of the Council of State was the first government official to say a succession under Raul Castro was in motion after Fidel Castro relinquished power a week ago following gastric surgery.

Stay tuned.  As always, Babalu has the latest.
h/t Smash
Posted by caltechgirl at 12:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Memo to self....

Never give a llama your work phone #.  Or any phone # for that matter.

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:40 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

well kiss my grits....

"A site that has a Link Popularity Score of 1,000-5,000 is considered average. A site with a Link Popularity Score of 20,000 is considered popular. Sites with a Link Popularity Score above 100,000 are Internet "Icons"."

well, ok.  great.  Check this:
Link Popularity Total 303,763

Does that make me triple iconic?  I find this highly bogus, especially as:
1) I am no icon.  Try Glenn Reynolds.  Iconoclast., sure,  Icon, No way.
2) The Google hit was zero.  Yeah, as if you know, more than half my traffic was fake.

h/t GuyK

Posted by caltechgirl at 03:27 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

August 08, 2006

Two Paragraph Tuesday

Well, here we go.  Let's kick things off with two simple paragraphs, shall we?

Jenny was bored.  She looked out the window and gazed over the lawn, and down the lane.  Two hours until the mail arrived, the highlight of her day.  After the white truck pulled away, she would walk down the lane to the street and see who was sending her junk mail this time.  Then back up to the house to be bored again.

Life in the country is so wonderful, they'd told her.  You'll love the quiet, the animals, the gentle breezes.  Bullshit, she thought.  Not even here a week and already everything seemed so bland. Standing up she turned from the window and moved toward the kitchen for a glass of water.  A sudden noise made her turn back around.  In the lane was a small man, neat of appearance, and moving quickly towards the house.  He was clearly calling out, but she could not make out what he was saying.

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:15 AM | Comments (17) | TrackBack

August 09, 2006

Holy crap you people are creative

I was offline all day yesterday and much of today due to a work excursion, and when I came back, there was a real story in place of the two paragraphs I left!

Posted by caltechgirl at 04:05 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

It was the Joooooooooos!

Cynthia McKinney and her goons blame the usual suspects for her loss yesterday. 

OTB has the video from Hannity and Colmes here

Posted by caltechgirl at 08:57 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 10, 2006

Your daily rant

don't fucking get me started on these quacks.

Here's what got me:
"Head cases

A few neurological differences between women and men from Louann Brizendine's "The Female Brain":

Thoughts about sex enter women's brains once every couple of days; for men, thoughts about sex occur every minute.

Women use 20,000 words per day; men use 7,000 per day.

Women excel at knowing what people are feeling; men have difficulty spotting an emotion unless someone cries or threatens bodily harm.

Women remember fights that a man insists never happened.

Women over 50 are more likely to initiate divorce."


SOME of them have to do with functionality/ functional outcome, but for FUCK's SAKE, is it AT ALL responsible to say that because a woman is over 50 that she files for divorce because her brain is hard-wired to do so????  I mean COME ON.

MAYBE MAYBE you COULD make the case that women's brains are MORE dependent on the influence of sex hormones than men's and that after menopause function is decreased BECAUSE hormone levels drop.

Sorry to be so mad, but while I am technically a developmental neurobiologist, I am ALSO a neuroendocrinologist.  Which means I study how hormone signals affect the brain.  This is my field, folks.

It is ENTIRELY not clear that the differences in the way women and men think are at all somatic (body-based) rather than socially nurtured.  There is a growing body of evidence that Estrogen and Testosterone drive certain biological processes in the brain,  HOWEVER, E and T are both converted to the same physiologically active molecule (they're not that different to begin with).  Some of the proposed difference may have to do with feedback mechanisms based on progesterone (P), which women have in abundance compared to men.

The idiot who wrote this book argues that women's brains are "wired for communication".  Sure, fine, but IT IS NOT AT ALL CLEAR based on the available evidence that this wiring is a direct effect of having 2 X chromosomes.  MUCH of the wiring in our brains, and in fact the very essence of what we believe about learning and memory, is based on our experience.  The neurological imprint of experience shapes the pattern of wiring in our brains.  If we speak multiple languages as children, for example, we are more able as adults to learn and comprehend multiple languages, as our brains are wired for it.  Because Estrogen and Progesterone affect the processes of wiring, that may play a small role, but clearly, experience is the basis of preferential wiring and preferential connectivity.

There are some anatomical differences in the brains of men and women.  First of all, men have bigger brains.  No shit.  They have bigger bodies.  They also have bigger feet.  the overlap is also pretty significant.  There are some small areas within the brain that are smaller or larger between the sexes, most notably an area in the hypothalamus smaller than the end of your pinky that is significantly different between the sexes (except, purportedly in homosexuals....) according to Simon LeVay back in the late 80s/early90s.  He's a pretty well respected researcher, even though some of his stuff is pretty controversial, like that study.


Also, she talks about hormone cycling and clinical trials, and thats no longer a valid excuse.  Women MUST be included in ALL trials where a therapeutic benefit to females may be achieved (so, that's everything but things like prostate cancer or ED...).  Women who participate in studies that may be affected by their hormones have to keep track of their cycles and note if they are taking any other medications that could alter hormone levels or function, such as birth control, HRT, anti-cholesterol medications (statins especially), and some antibiotics.  These factors are generally accounted for, and generally make no difference.

To sum up, while the premise of the book is not entrely bogus, based on her arguments in the interview and the "neurological differences" presented at the end, it is clear that this book is full of inconclusive data and incomplete understanding, and should be viewed as a POSSIBLE explanation for some of the cognitive/ personality/ functional differences between the sexes.  And a far too simple one, at that.

Just also wanted to point out that it appears that the author of this book is in fact a "real" scientist, who evidently publishes research about hormones and depression.... So perhaps this book is an extended theoretical paper.

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:43 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

I am SO done with Michelle Malkin

She called out one of my friends today.  Called her a "sad moonbat" without even reading her post because like we have all been doing, she lamented the new airline restrictions in the UK and the need for them.

Some of you know Helen, and you know she is neither sad nor a moonbat. She may be a self-described "crunchy granola vegetarian", but if anything, my dear friend is almost entirely apolitical.

I too am appalled by the idea that I would have to trust my cellphone, ipod, and laptop to the honesty of baggage handlers; that my nieces and nephew wouldn't be allowed crayons or snacks on a long, boring flight; that I can have my contact lenses, but not the solution I need to put them in my eyeballs; that racial profiling is a cheap shortcut in the battle against terror.

That Malkin calls such honest sadness "whining" and "moonbattery" is beyond me.

I think we should ALL be sad.  I think it should strengthen our resolve to tear these motherfuckers a new asshole.  I think it should make us more focused on using ALL the resources we can to identify the dickwads who would do this and find out what they intend before they do it.

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:20 PM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

Ben Stein Rocks the House

Again.  Over and Over.

One excerpt:

"The line of the fight between civilization and barbarism runs right along the Israel-Lebanon non-border. If it's not won there, it won't be long until the front line is right here, and then it will be too late. When George Bush stands up for Israel, he stands up for the whole future of mankind. Yes, he has flaws and has made serious mistakes, but right now, he is a hero for the ages."

h/t Gay Patriot

Posted by caltechgirl at 03:02 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Goodbye Mr. Agony of defeat!

ABC's Wide World of Sports is about to be no more:

"ESPN will become the overarching brand for all sports programming carried on the ABC Television Network beginning Saturday, Sept. 2 -- the debut of ABC's college football season. "We're using the word evolutionary," said George Bodenheimer, President, ESPN, Inc. and ABC Sports and Co-Chairman, Disney Media Networks. "We're trying to move the ball forward in sports television and we think this is another step in that direction." "
They quit showing the iconic opening featuring the signature line "The Thrill of Victory and the Agony of Defeat" years ago, but it's still sad to think that we'll never see Vinko Bogataj crash again.

Posted by caltechgirl at 03:24 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

August 11, 2006

All work and no play....

... makes this girl boring as hell.

We're off to La Playa for a couple of days of sun and sand.

Be good while I'm gone, and play nice!

Posted by caltechgirl at 02:23 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

August 15, 2006

Two for Tuesday

So here's the rules: read the story, add the next two paragraphs, and take the story where you think it should go! Wait for a couple of others before posting another pair of paragraphs! That's it.

Let's try a first-person story this week:

I walked along the road for miles it seemed.  Hours and hours in the white sunlight, sparkling diamonds in the road.  Fields of trees and crops alongside me.  But I took no notice.  Just to walk, that was my aim.  To walk, and never stop.

Of course, some part of my mind knew that the walking would have to stop.  That teeny, rational voice in the back of my head.  The one we all grow to hate as we grow up.  At some point, my feet would give out, or my back, and I would have to stop and find a place to rest.  And so, I did.

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:18 AM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

August 17, 2006

A Blight has come upon the world....

The Blight baby is here!  Evidently mom and baby boy are happy and healthy!


Posted by caltechgirl at 04:38 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

August 19, 2006

More Map Coolness and a Guessing Game

Have you checked out Wikimapia yet?

I found it this morning and spent 20 minutes adding the places from my childhood.  And, what a treat, the pictures are several years old, so I was able to find this:

This is the place where my darling husband proposed to me.  It's a Costco and a Home Depot now.  Anyone wanna guess what it was?  (hint: the left side is already being demolished, the right side is still intact...)  Anyone who ACTUALLY knows the answer (BN, SS, etc.) isn't allowed to play!

h/t Cobb, who put in a lot of cool places, too.

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:39 PM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

August 22, 2006

Twosday Fun

Today's story is inspired by my favorite book, and my husband's:

The candle guttered.  A sharp wind blew through the tower, waking the abbe.  The once orderly pile of scrolls was now scattered on the floor.  Getting up quickly, l'abbe shut the window before the beating rain could erase the answers he was searching for.  Grumbling to himself, he gathered the scrolls back to his table and settled down in the chair again.

The answer was so close.  He knew it had to be written in these scrolls.  But the ancient runes were written in a cryptic hand and the going was slow.  To complicate matters, the abbe wasn't sure whether he really wanted to know the answers hidden in the ancient parchments at all.  But he resumed his task.  Sometime later he found a blank parchment.  Something told him this was the key.  But what was it?  And what did it mean?

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:34 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

First Pictures of Blight Baby!

The Lady Key has 'em. 

Cute little Blighter!

Posted by caltechgirl at 08:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 23, 2006

Damn I'm old....

This year's Beloit College "Mindset List." 

75 things that the Class of 2010 doesn't know:
(before you bitch at me, remember this is what the average 18 year old thinks, according to Beloit)

1. The Soviet Union has never existed and therefore is about as scary as the student union.
2. They have known only two presidents.
3. For most of their lives, major U.S. airlines have been bankrupt.
4. Manuel Noriega has always been in jail in the U.S.
5. They have grown up getting lost in "big boxes".
6. There has always been only one Germany.
7. They have never heard anyone actually "ring it up" on a cash register.
8. They are wireless, yet always connected.
9. A stained blue dress is as famous to their generation as a third-rate burglary was to their parents'.
10. Thanks to pervasive head phones in the back seat, parents have always been able to speak freely in the front.
11. A coffee has always taken longer to make than a milkshake.
12. Smoking has never been permitted on U.S. airlines.
13. Faux fur has always been a necessary element of style.
14. The Moral Majority has never needed an organization.
15. They have never had to distinguish between the St. Louis Cardinals baseball and football teams.
16. DNA fingerprinting has always been admissible evidence in court.
17. They grew up pushing their own miniature shopping carts in the supermarket.
18. They grew up with and have outgrown faxing as a means of communication.
19. "Google" has always been a verb.
20. Text messaging is their e-mail.
21. Milli Vanilli has never had anything to say.
22. Mr. Rogers, not Walter Cronkite, has always been the most trusted man in America.
23. Bar codes have always been on everything, from library cards and snail mail to retail items.
24. Madden has always been a game, not a Super Bowl-winning coach.
25. Phantom of the Opera has always been on Broadway.
26. “Boogers� candy has always been a favorite for grossing out parents.
27. There has never been a "skyhook" in the NBA.
28. Carbon copies are oddities found in their grandparents' attics.
29. Computerized player pianos have always been tinkling in the lobby.
30. Non-denominational mega-churches have always been the fastest growing. religious organizations in the U.S.
31. They grew up in minivans.
32. Reality shows have always been on television.
33. They have no idea why we needed to ask "...can't we all just get along?"
34. They have always known that "In the criminal justice system the people have been represented by two separate yet equally important groups."
35. Young women's fashions have never been concerned with where the waist is.
36. They have rarely mailed anything using a stamp.
37. Brides have always worn white for a first, second, or third wedding.
38. Being techno-savvy has always been inversely proportional to age.
39. "So" as in "Sooooo New York", has always been a drawn-out adjective modifying a proper noun, which in turn modifies something else.
40. Affluent troubled teens in Southern California have always been the subjects of television series.
41. They have always been able to watch wars and revolutions live on television.
42. Ken Burns has always been producing very long documentaries on PBS.
43. They are not aware that "flock of seagulls hair" has nothing to do with birds flying into it.
44. Retin-A has always made America look less wrinkled.
45. Green tea has always been marketed for health purposes.
46. Public school officials have always had the right to censor school newspapers.
47. Small white holiday lights have always been in style.
48. Most of them have never had the chance to eat bad airline food.
49. They have always been searching for "Waldo".
50. The really rich have regularly expressed exuberance with outlandish birthday parties.
51. Michael Moore has always been showing up uninvited.
52. They never played the game of state license plates in the car.
53. They have always preferred going out in groups as opposed to dating.
54. There have always been live organ donors.
55. They have always had access to their own credit cards.
56. They have never put their money in a "Savings & Loan"
57. Sara Lee has always made underwear.
58. Bad behavior has always been getting captured on amateur videos.
59. Disneyland has always been in Europe and Asia.
60. They never saw Bernard Shaw on CNN.
61. Beach volleyball has always been a recognized sport.
62. Acura, Lexus, and Infiniti have always been luxury cars of choice.
63. Television stations have never concluded the broadcast day with the national anthem.
64. LoJack transmitters have always been finding lost cars.
65. Diane Sawyer has always been live in Prime Time.
66. Dolphin-free canned tuna has always been on sale.
67. Disposable contact lenses have always been available.
68. "Outing" has always been a threat.
69. Oh, The Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss has always been the perfect graduation gift.
70. They have always "dissed" what they don't like.
71. The U.S. has always been studying global warming to confirm its existence.
72. Richard M. Daley has always been the mayor of Chicago.
73. They grew up with virtual pets to feed, water, and play games with, lest they die.
74. Ringo Starr has always been clean and sober.
75. Professional athletes have always competed in the Olympics.

h/t Prof. Taylor

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:17 PM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

August 25, 2006

Best Post Title of the Day

Dafydd of Big Lizards: "Run Silent, Run Kosher"

It's a great article too, about Israel's new Dolphin nulear submarines

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:11 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

August 27, 2006

I gotta say....

The blogosphere is as small a world as real life.  Especially when you find out  that people read blogs you never expected them to know about.

Jes' sayin.

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:05 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

August 28, 2006


To Xrlq and the lovely Mrs. X on the birth of their second son, Xrlq 3.0!  And also to big brother Xrlq 2.0

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:18 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Happy 20th Birthday

Gilad Shalit

May you have many more, and may this be the only one you ever spend in pain at the hands of terrorists.

Don't know who this good looking kid is? Try here, here , or here.

Posted by caltechgirl at 10:23 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Message we SHOULD be Sending

Today's Editorial Cartoon by Cox and Forkum:

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:07 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

South Park: Smarter, Funnier, and adding insult to injury

From Yahoo! UK:

Former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein is being made to watch his appearance in cult cartoon South Park while he is behind bars.

The deposed leader on trial in Iraq was featured in the movie spin-off as the lover of the devil. South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut featured Hussein and Satan attempting to take over the world together.

Speaking at the Edinburgh International Television Festival, South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone said US Marines guarding the former dictator during his trial for genocide were making him watch the movie "repeatedly".

"I have it on pretty good information from the Marines on detail in Iraq that they showed him the movie last year. That's really adding insult to injury. I bet that made him really happy," Stone said.

Bill at INDC adds, "...I must bask in this perfect manifestation of justice in the South Park conservative worldview (aggressive foreign policy topples murderous dictator, who is then taunted with [a] naughty, filthy (South Park!) movie)..."

For those of you not familiar with South Park's depiction of Saddam, he is a Candian pansy (with requisite flip-top head) who was mauled to death by badgers before descending into Hell and beginning a homosexual relationship with Satan.... who eventually discovers that Saddam is only after his power as lord of the underworld.....

When Satan confronts Saddam, he whines his way back into Satan's heart with a song and dance number worthy of Rogers and Hammerstein (NSFW for language)

Update: Welcome Townhall readers! Thanks for dropping by, and feel free to click around and check out more content. Or visit some of the wonderful blogs listed on either sidebar!

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:27 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack


Denver NBC affiliate KUSA has confirmed from 2 sources that child-rapist and all-around creepo John Mark Karr is NOT the killer of JonBenet Ramsey. DNA taken from Karr DID NOT match evidence from the murder case.

I knew it.

Watch this space for more.

Posted by caltechgirl at 01:18 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

August 29, 2006


Worst news I can think of.  I think I'll go have a little sympathy cry for my friend now.

Why is it that crackwhores can pop out 85 healthy kids just by sneezing but someone who desperately wants to have their own child and will care for it better than most can not?

I love you, hon and if you need ANYTHING, let me know, ok?

Oh, and Twosday Fun will return next week. I'm just not in the mood today.

Posted by caltechgirl at 09:59 AM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

August 31, 2006

A Journey of 10,000 Steps....

Google Maps has yet another great feature:  an accurate pedometer!

With the GMaps Pedometer, you can trace your route and figure out how far you've walked.  Even for crazy paths.  And there's a calorie counter, too!

h/t Deb

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:27 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Have they no heart? No Soul?

From the Jawas:

Muslims Protest Freddy Mercury's Birthday

(Zanzibar, Tanzania) Muslims are outraged at the planned 60th birthday celebration for deceased rock star and Zanzibar native Freddy Mercury, born Farrokh Bulsara, because his sexual preferences and flamboyant lifestyle insulted Islam.

The full story is here. Here's the kicker line:

"Allowing such a function for a person known outside Zanzibar as a homosexual tarnishes the name of Zanzibar," he said in the letter, a copy of which was obtained by AFP. "Let us protect our good culture."
Ok, sure.  But can a culture without Queen ever really be good?

This is Killer....

Or how about some Flash?

Posted by caltechgirl at 11:53 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Meme'd to oblivion....

I got tagged twice this week. So here's one, hopefully I'll get to the other tomorrow.... Or maybe just later. I gots ta work, ya' know?

From Ken:

Four songs that you could listen to over and over:
"Sunny Came Home"-- Shawn Colvin. Burning down the house AND a mandolin solo, what's not to like?
"Call and Answer" The Barenaked Ladies. F*ck it, almost anything by BNL. Except the Chimpanzees song (see below)
"Somebody" Depeche Mode. That was sung at my wedding.
"Santeria" - Sublime "...I won't think twice to stick that barrel straight down Sancho's throat.  Believe me when I say that I got somethin' for your PunkAss.."

Four songs that drive you up the friggin' wall:
"Live and Let Die"- I don't care if it is just McCartney's accent. It sounds like he's saying "in this world in which we live in".  Uh-uh.  No way.
"Chimpanzees" by the Barenaked Ladies. Self-explanatory from the title, no?
Anything by the Rolling Stones except "Brown Sugar" and "Sympathy for the Devil". I know, I know, heresy, but I HATE Mick Jagger's voice.
"Dixie Chicken" -Little Feat, Garth Brooks, etc. Stupid. And I like punnery.

Four songs that you're embarrassed (or should be) to admit you like:
N*Sync "Bye Bye Bye". N*Sync. N*uff said.
"Fantastic Voyage" -Coolio
"Say My Name" - Destiny's Child
"All Out of Love" - Air Supply

Four best driving songs:
"FreeFallin" Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Always a classic. Or "American Girl". But that always makes me think of Silence of the Lambs....
"Take Me Out" Franz Ferdinand. Try it on the 110 freeway.
"Sharp Dressed Man" -- ZZ Top. Tush is also good.
Anything by the Beach Boys. Except maybe "God Only Knows". (see below)

Four songs that make you cry:
Amazing Grace on the bagpipe
"Lightning Crashes" - Live
"Sunrise, Sunset" -Tevye and Golde in Fiddler on the Roof
"God Only Knows" -The Beach Boys

Four best risque' songs:
"SqueezeBox" -The Who "Mamma's got a squeezebox...Daddy never sleeps at night."
"Baby Driver" -Simon and Garfunkel.... "We can go up to my room and play.... I'm not talking about your pigtails, I was talking about your sex appeal..."
"I Touch Myself" -The DiVinyls
"Strokin'" - Clarence Carter.  Strokin to the east... strokin to the west...

Four best kid songs:
Puff the Magic Dragon
Eensy Weensy Spider
Ten Elephants
Do Re Mi (from the Sound of Music)
... it's all about the old skool here.

Four Other Songs: Four 80's Movie songs:
"Everybody Wants to Rule the World" -Tears For Fears, Real Genius
"Danger Zone" -Kenny Loggins, Top Gun
"In Your Eyes" -Peter Gabriel, Say Anything
"If You Leave" - OMD, Pretty in Pink

Consider yourself tagged if you want to participate. Otherwise? Meh, not so much.

Posted by caltechgirl at 12:37 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack