March 24th, 2005

flavored with age

Five thicks slabs of blue cheese

Thanks to thebitterguy for this...I bet, like me, he beelined right to the Arabic speakers section.

What is it? It's an audio archive of accented English from George Mason University. They record a number of English-speakers (native and non-native) reading a stock sentence, provide background about each speaker (nationality, age, how many years they've spoken English, how they learned English, residency, native language, other languages spoken, and so on), and give a phoenetic translation of their particular accent. They also provide an index of pronunciation variants common to particular accents -- reading "p" as "b", flattening vowels, and what have you. Given my geeky interest in language, language development and so on, I find this fascinating...I could listen to this thing all day. Even the "English" section (native English speakers reading the stock sentence) is really interesting, especially given that I'm currently reading this.

Take a look. Surefire fun for the inveterate language nerd.
flavored with age

Ring-a-ding-ding, I'm rotten inside

So, who's got the stupidest take on the Terri Schiavo case?

Is it President Bush (who, as governor of Texas, couldn't be bothered to review the cases of death row inmates even if there was serious doubt about their guilt, so eager was he to sign their death warrants), spouting off about "erring on the side of life" as soldiers under his command kill dozens a day in Iraq?

Is it Tom DeLay (who clearly knows a gift from God when he sees it, especially when it comes at just the right time to make people stop paying attention to the fact that he's the biggest crook in a party of crooks), claiming publicly that Terri Schiavo is a "gift from God" -- in the not-particularly-giftlike form of a comatose woman doomed to a lifetime of misery -- while claiming privately that what she really is is a gift to the Republican Party?

Nope! Naturally, it's James Lileks, who carries off another of his patented triple-axels of cluelessness by:

(a) simplifying a political issue to the point of idiocy: note his claim that the only way leftists would care about Terri Schiavo's life is if she was an innocent civilian in Iraq

(b) climbing up on a moral high horse that's clearly too high for him to ride: note his drizzle of contempt for the unfeeling, heartless, soul-dead scum who dare use Terri Schiavo's name to make cheap jokes on the internet, which he posts on an internet site full of cheap jokes


(c) managing to filter whatever issue is beclouding his burb-in-the-urbs mind that day through the always-reliable prism of his asinine pop-cultural obsessions: note how he wraps up whatever point it is he's trying to make by noting how the Schiavo case reminds him of one of his favorite episodes of "Star Trek", and that it might remind other people of a different episode of "Star Trek", but they're obviously misreading that particular episode of "Star Trek".

Kudos, Jim-Jam! Kudos to you! You've proved once again that despite your near constant claims that you don't want to be thought of as a political blogger, you can out-stupid any political blogger on the internet. Kudos!
flavored with age

And now, to make up for past misdeeds, a stupid, stupid meme I made up.

How to play: go to Google's image search. Type in any of your LJ interests that are unique to you -- that is, interests that no one else shares. If any images come up as a result of the search, pick one and post a link to it. Dig it.

Dancing with Frankenstein.

Buddha sack.

Having 110 interests.

Hillbilly culture.

Jack “King” Kirby.


New icon sets.

Sad little clowns. (This one is TEH WINAR!.)

Songs about mules.

Telepathic apes.

Thank you D. Boon.

The Feast of Shame.

Now you try!